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  • Too Much Information

    As a rule, “No comment is a No- No.”  That’s what we teach our clients.

    But that doesn’t mean you need to spill your guts.

    When ambushed by reporters — saying “no comment” only makes you look guilty — like a mafioso caught red handed.

    There is always something you can say. “These charges are ridiculous and I will prove my innocence” for example, or perhaps “Good to see you — I wish I were in a position to comment but doing so at the moment would be unwise.”

    But in the video below (h/t KIRO TV) Duane Starkenburg, a man just arrested on charges of molesting female joggers in Seattle, provides FAR too much information.  While declaring his innocence, he tells reports that he likes watching women joggers because they “run around half-naked.”   Stakenburg polls a bystander off-camera to ask if he likes watching women in spandex  (answer:Yes).

    The goal in talking to reporters when ambushed is not to offer your complete defense…it is simply to make you look like a reasonable person and someone who deserves the benefit of a doubt.  Starkenburg failed miserably in that regard.

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  • OMG-TV

    PR expert Lucy Siegel knows a bad interview when she sees one. 

    On her blog she points out an example of a badly bungled interview — her own.

    Siegel recently sat down to be interviewed by Doug Simon, who has a company that produces PR and social media videos for corporations and other entities. Siegel agreed to be interviewed on her area of expertise — international PR.

    To her credit — she recognized that the result was pretty bad.  Siegel describes it with three letters….O.M.G.

    She courageously analyzes what went wrong…the errors she points out are among the most common mistakes we warn our clients to avoid.

    Siegel says she was:

    • Way overconfident.
    • Didn’t prepare well and didn’t practice her answers. As a result, she rambled on camera
    •  Didn’t prepare explicit examples to explain the points she was making and (in our view most importantly)
    • Didn’t develop key messages she wanted to convey in the video

     You can see Siegel’s OMG moment in the video below:

    h/t  PR Newswer

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  • Richard’s Drey-Fussy Interview

    Actor Richard Dreyfuss demonstrated how NOT to give a morning show interview this week when appearing on “Fox and Friends.”

    Using his celebrity to promote one of those causes that Hollywood types like to back (in this case — getting civics to be taught more in the classroom) Dreyfuss had a chip on his shoulder from the opening question.

    When asked what was to blame for the lack of civics teaching — Dreyfuss dryly opined the cause was “…these shows, three minutes in length on which you can’t get anything said.” Not having enough time was a theme he returned to several times.

    We’re guessing the actor was tight jawed because he found out just before going on the air that his segment on morning show was not as long as he hoped.  (In fact it ran for over 4.5 minutes — a lifetime on TV).

    The program’s co-anchors deserve major kudos for trying to make something out of the interview.  Their producers clearly had them well-prepared because when Dreyfuss refused to contribute much to the exchange — they started to quote his positions back to him. Example:  “You say not teaching civics is as dangerous as not teaching medicine, how so?”  (In pre-interview preparations, producers probably collected Dreyfuss’s supposed talking points from one of his minions.)

    Even when he did talk — Dreyfuss’s aimless blatherings added nothing to the segment.  He sounded more like an escapee from the senior edition of “Celebrity Rehab” than an articulate spokesman for a cause.

    The lesson here is that you should not expect an appearance on a morning TV show to allow you to explain everything about whatever you are promoting.  You should look at it as an opportunity to entice people to visit your website, read your book, visit your blog — do something to dig into the subject further.

    Dreyfuss could hardly have won over any converts.  Instead of making a case for more civics education in schools — he demonstrated an urgent need for an adult education course in media training — and manners.

    h/t  Johnny Dollar