7 Similarities Between Media Training and Championship Football

Man being interviewed by reporters

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The San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs are set to square off for professional football supremacy in Las Vegas, Nevada on Sunday, Feb. 11. Most of the week leading up to the game is dedicated to allowing international media members to interview players and coaches.

As much as fans expect the players and coaches to be ready on Sunday between the lines of the gridiron, those players and coaches equally expect to handle interviews confidently without creating controversies that distract them from performing on the field. Can the same be said of your executives and spokespeople?

Mastering media interviews requires deliberate practice and preparation. That’s why we provide media training as part of our public relations expertise: to equip executives and spokespeople with the necessary skills and techniques. Here are seven ways that media training and championship football share some similarities:

Media Training & Championship Football: 7 Similarities

1. Setting the narrative: 

The game generates interest because of storylines like highlighting underdogs who’ve overcome obstacles to become champions. Storytelling is equally vital in business, where we assist leaders in crafting compelling and relatable narratives.

2. Game plan:

Like a football team’s playbook, businesses often possess guidelines or strategies for communicating with customers, stakeholders and the public. This encompasses branding guidelines, messaging frameworks and crisis communication plans. We assist leaders in effectively conveying their brand messages with clarity and conciseness and understanding the do’s and don’ts to be prepared for any situation.

3. Film review:

Football coaches and players review game footage to assess what does and doesn’t work. During our media training sessions, a film crew records trainees as they respond to questions they may receive from a reporter. We then review the film with the trainees and coach them through areas for improvement.

4. Practice makes perfect:

Effective plays require extensive practice and study until their execution becomes second nature, just like successful interviewing techniques. Media training allows spokespersons to practice using company messaging in various interview scenarios in a secure environment before facing live cameras and audiences.

5. Read and react:

Take what the defense gives you. If they can’t stop your running game, there’s no need to force passing. Similarly, if a news release or announcement gains significant traction in storytelling, stick with it! Many organizations rush to the next thing, but remember, your audience is likely just beginning to grasp the message — they don’t live it like you do.

6. Audibles:

An audible refers to when a quarterback changes the play just before it begins. Sometimes, reporters call an audible and ask difficult, off-topic or unexpected questions. We help business leaders plan, anticipate and address those questions, gracefully redirecting back to the topic at hand.

7. Right players, right positions: 

Proper player positioning is essential. You wouldn’t send a 300-pound lineman on a fly pattern. Success in moving the ball down the field requires a well-equipped team. If you try and skimp on the talent, the results won’t follow. Ensure you offer the most knowledgeable spokesperson based on the interview topic.

Ready to tackle any interview with confidence?

Let us coach your media skills up during a personalized media training session.

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