The straightforward answer is that media training isn’t necessary for everyone. If you inherently excel at interviews, grasp what journalists are thinking, remain calm under pressure, and know exactly what to convey in the brief moments you may have on a TV segment or other media channels, then training may not be for you. For many of us however, media training is essential.

Very few people are natural communicators to the extent required by the media — this is why media training can be crucial in achieving specific goals that involve public communication skills. Like actors, politicians, and athletes who practice extensively to excel, you too can train for media excellence. Initially, this involves understanding the media landscape, followed by extensive practice.

Media training is especially beneficial for corporate spokespeople, like executives and specialists, who often come from backgrounds very different from those of journalists. Training equips you to manage interviews effectively, ensuring both you and the journalist achieve your objectives. Here’s a brief overview of the frequent questions covered:

  • What is involved in media training?
  • How should I prepare for a high-stakes interview?
  • What are the preparations for being interviewed as an expert?
  • Is it possible to get the questions beforehand?
  • Can I modify my quotes after the interview?

How media training benefits you

Unexpected calls from journalists can indeed be stressful, especially when their questions catch you off guard and demand specific answers. However, it’s crucial to understand that being unprepared sometimes is a common part of life and doesn’t detract from the importance of your response and its tone. How you handle these moments is vital. Acknowledging that a situation is still developing and that you lack complete information can be done confidently and professionally. It’s about projecting assurance, conveying that the situation is being managed effectively, and that skilled individuals are addressing the issue. This approach helps to maintain your credibility and authority in the eyes of the media and the general public.

Media training equips you with the skills to handle such scenarios with ease. It helps demystify the intentions behind journalists’ questions and the broader media landscape. Through media training, you learn to communicate clearly, maintain composure, and provide accurate, concise information in a planned manner. It prepares you to navigate media interactions effectively, ensuring that your message is conveyed accurately and your reputation is preserved, and your employer’s brand – or your company’s public image – are protected. By mastering these skills, you can turn potentially stressful situations into opportunities to demonstrate leadership and control. Media training arms you with tactics and social mechanisms to handle the call, conduct yourself during the interview, and positively influence the subsequent report.

Trainings should be fully customized to your needs and may cover some or all of the following topics and bases.

Message crafting and delivery

  • Developing clear, concise, and compelling communication that aligns with the company’s goals and values
  • Consistency across various media platforms and especially in front of the journalists who may come from competing media networks
  • Adapting the message tone and style based on the characteristics of each audience and media format (video interviews, radio interviews, public statements etc.)

Interview techniques

  • Strategies for preparing for different types of interviews (print, broadcast, online) or public questioning
  • Scenario-based techniques for answering challenging questions, staying on-point, and maintaining composure
  • Simulated face-to-face or Zoom-based interviews with practical feedback to improve delivery and confidence.

Non-verbal communication

  • Understanding the importance of body language, facial expressions, and physical gestures (kinesics) in conveying confidence and credibility
  • Tips and advice for maintaining appropriate eye contact and posture during interviews
  • Suggestions regarding the attire, and more.

Media insights

  • Insights into how journalists think and what they are looking for in a story
  • Potential trends currently covered by the media, especially those relevant to your industry
  • Research & details regarding who’s who in terms of specific media people (some interviewers are markedly more assertive or inquisitive than others).

Crisis Comms

  • Developing a crisis comms plan and key messages for potential scenarios
  • Emphasizing the importance of transparency and honesty during a crisis – such situations can make or break a company
  • Techniques for staying calm and composed under pressure. Read more about our crisis communications services.


  • How to craft written statements ready for publication
  • Strategies for different interview scenarios including party, case, or expert
  • Preparing for electronic media where speaking time is limited.

Preparing for a critical interview

Not all interviews are adversarial, but preparation for tough questioning is essential to avoid situations where you are cornered by a journalist without warning. Media training teaches you how to prepare for potential critical interviews, integrating various techniques, data to back-up your claims, and approaches. This training might involve simulated interviews that are recorded and reviewed to improve your on-screen presence.

Often you want to rehearse a few phrases – e.g. 1-3 – that you can return to, and repeat almost no matter what the journalist is asking you.

Preparing for being interviewed as an expert

For experts, media training should clarify why you want media exposure, the conversations you aim to influence (for example, in the case of analyst relations), suitable media platforms, your availability, and how to communicate complex ideas succinctly. Experts are valuable to journalists for their ability to elucidate and analyze topics, adding credibility and visibility but requiring clear communication and availability.

Expert interviews on the phone require less preparation – maybe even none, since the journalist will use the most important bits – in contrast to a live TV-interview, where the goal is to be much more to-the-point and tell your core message in short.

Receiving and editing questions

Typically, you won’t get all questions in advance due to the dynamic nature of interviews. However, you can ask about the journalist’s angle, other contributors, and deadlines. When the questions are not presented to you or your team in advance, you should invest more in the preparation process and expect questions or debates that might take you out of your comfort zone. Discussing these details can better prepare you for the interview.

Editing your quotes

It is common practice to review your quotes before they are published to correct any inaccuracies. While you cannot rewrite entire sections, there is usually scope to refine your statements, especially if any facts are wrong. Although reviewing the entire article isn’t always possible, journalists may share it with you to verify facts, particularly for technical or complex topics, to ensure accuracy.

Unless it is a media crisis situation, journalists are usually helpful and interested in conveying whatever message you want to convey, not miss-quoting you. So stay in friendly contact with the journalist before, during and after the interview, and you have every chance to make interviews work in your – or your company’s – favor.

Feel free to reach out if you’re looking to work with a media training specialist.

This blog post was developed in cooperation with our colleagues at Kemp & Kjær