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Planning a Press Conference

  1. Prepare the announcement

  2. Confirm the speaker

  3. Select a time that fits news deadlines

 Most people get their news from TV. If TV has an 11 or 12 a.m. news, and you want to be on that show, schedule the conference no later than 9 a.m. This is so the producer has time to shoot, edit and air the program.

If TV has a 4-6 pm newscast, schedule the conference no later than 1 or 1:30 p.m. unless there is urgent breaking news like a fire or plane crash.Conference should not last more than 1 hour.Print deadlines tend to be in the late afternoon for the next day unless there is urgent breaking news, as in a crisis. 

Things to do before:  

  1. Consider the News Cycle

    If you want your announcement to have the maximum impact and the biggest audience, have it during the week. Thursday is best. If you want the least impact, have it on Friday afternoon too late for the evening news. Even better, have it on Friday afternoon on a holiday weekend, as the most number of people will be away from newspapers and news programs.

  2. Make an invitation list - invite reporters who cover the type of news you are announcing

  3. Select a location that is easily accessible for media - be sure there is handicapped access

  4. Arrange for parking - remember press people are on deadline and need to get in and out quickly

  5. Arrange press seating - print and radio in front, then photographers without tripods, then photographers with tripods.

  6. Make sure all press and all photographers can have a clear view of speaker

  7. Position company logo behind speaker or on front of podium so it will be included in photos, if desired

  8. Arrange for and pre-test sound system

  9. Arrange for and test an audio feed system which will allow the media to receive sound directly from the PA system

  10. Arrange for and test multiple electrical outlets for cameras/lights

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