There are some public figures who appear to think they can get away with just about anything under the media spotlight. Take Sepp Blatter, the president of FIFA.
When asked, at a press conference yesterday, what gay people should do if they want to go to the 2022 World Cup in Quatar, where homosexuality is currently illegal, his flippant response merely enraged gay rights organisations – and many others besides. You would have thought he would know better.
Mr Blatter may think he has the power and influence to ride out any storm. Time will tell. Certainly, the same cannot be said for almost everyone else.
Which is why most people who have a public profile or position of responsibility should consider receiving media training, says Andy Comber, PR Manager at matm, the marketing, public relations, graphic design, web design and web development agency at the Maws Centre in Jackfield, near Telford in Shropshire.
We’ve just published a brochure outlining matm’s media training services. These include formal media relations training, media crisis training and one-to-one coaching. The brochure can be found on matm’s web home page.
Andy says: “As a journalist I created stories for newspapers and TV that caused the downfall of more than a few public figures. And as a senior PR advisor I have protected just as many as well.
“Some people cause their own demise. However, I’m a firm believer that cock-up is a more powerful force in a media crisis than conspiracy – and many pitfalls are avoidable if you think ahead and know the tricks of the trade.
“And now, with the many opportunities and risks presented by social media, as well as the traditional media, taking the right approach to protecting and enhancing your public reputation is more important than ever before.
“A media gaff can be out and running on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn within seconds and can then be much more difficult to recover. The good thing is, most media howlers are avoidable.”