Monthly Archives: July 2011
July 6, 2011
Starting out as one of the only interns at MWW for the beginning of the summer had its challenges, but everybody was really welcoming and made sure I was comfortable. MWW has been terrific but there was nothing they could do about the reporters who I had to call. I had made numerous media lists for projects I was told about, but never really thought I would be involved with until I had to call the media. I was nervous and even asked for a guideline on what to say when speaking to a reporter. I was so afraid of fumbling over my words or embarrassing the company I was representing. I had been warned countless times about how the reporters could be rude and mean. While I only had one experience with an unhappy reporter (so far…) it was interesting to see how the reporters interacted with a Public Relations person first hand.
Well…to be honest it would have been nice to have a little more interaction with the reporters, but not many answered their phone. From the media lists I created there were glaring mistakes I noticed before even dialing the reporters. Most reporters’ beats didn’t seem to relate to the product or event I was pitching, but it didn’t make a difference. Whether the person was covering the topic will never be known because I wasn’t able to reach 90% of the people on the list. The most success I ever had was calling Sacramento Newspaper reporters, and I mistakenly forgot about the 3 hour time difference. I called them around 8:30am PT which oddly enough allowed me to speak to most of them. It doesn’t make sense to me how people who are supposed to not be at work until 9am are answering the phone in their offices more consistently than those who are supposed to be at work.
My suggestion for future interns is to take your time making the media lists you are asked to create, because there is nothing more humbling than to actually have a reporter answer the phone only to find out they do not cover the topic you are pitching. A little patience and attention to detail will go along way when you call from the list in the future. It might be nice to finish with the media list really quickly, but when you find out you are the one calling the 300 names you placed into the excel spreadsheet you will regret not narrowing the field by call 96.
Good luck and have fun! It’s really great working here. You will learn so much.