Pugliese on PR How to handle print interviews

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Pugliese on PR

How to handle print interviews

By Tina L. Pugliese, APR, Pugliese Public Relations

tina puglieseThe newspaper or magazine interview may take place in person or via telephone.  The length of the interview and deadline for the story will vary depending upon the style of the publication and the reporter. 

While an interview for a news story in a daily newspaper may take 10 minutes, an interview for a feature story or profile in a monthly magazine may take two hours.  And, while a daily newspaper reporter must often file a story within hours for it to appear in the next day's edition, a weekly or monthly magazine writer has the flexibility of waiting days to complete a story.

Keep the following tips in mind when taking part in print interviews:

As with all news media, do not be surprised if the reporter has to cancel the interview at the last minute, especially if it is not related to breaking news.  Reporters are at the mercy of each day's news developments, and another event may take priority.  Normally, you can reschedule the interview for a later time or date.

It is not unusual for a reporter to tape-record an interview.  This can help the reporter pay better attention to you rather than furiously taking notes.  But if you are not being taped, remember to speak slowly.

If you inadvertently offer misleading or incorrect information, correct yourself as soon as you recognize the error.

If you tell the reporter you will get back to her with additional information, ask the reporter's deadline and follow up in a timely manner.

Feel free to ask whether the reporter plans to write a story using the interview, and if so, when it is likely to run.  (The reporter will rarely be able to tell you the exact running date, since editorial decisions are made on a day-to-day basis.)

Don't ask the reporter to see the story before it runs.  You do not have the right to review it or change your quotes.

Tina Pugliese's columns on public relations appear in Palm Beach Business.com every other Monday. Her previous column can be found here.

Tina L. Pugliese, APR is an executive coach and counselor for Pugliese Public Relations, a communications firm in Boynton Beach, Florida. Pugliese is an accredited member of the Public Relations Society of America, and is the author of the book, Public Relations for Pharmacists, and e-books, Marketing Your Business for Success, How To Work With The Media, Public Relations Manual — A Guide for Entrepreneurs, and the PR Survival Kit.  She can be reached at (561) 889-3575 and by email at Tina@PugliesePR.com.  Her web site is www.PugliesePR.com

Article excerpted from e-book, PR Survival Kit, by Tina L. Pugliese, APR.



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