How to cover a press conference journalism


6 Tips for Reporters Covering Press Conferences

  1. Come Armed With Questions. As we said, press conferences move quickly, so you’ll need to have your questions ready…
  2. Ask Your Best Questions. Once the speaker starts taking questions, it’s often a free-for-all, with multiple reporters…
  3. Be Aggressive If Necessary. Any time you get a bunch of reporters in one…


What are some tips for covering press conference?

Press conferences tend to move quickly and often don’t last very long, so you may have very little time to get the information you need. Another challenge for the beginning reporter is figuring out the lede of a press conference story. So here are six tips for covering press conferences. 1. Come Armed With Questions

How do you deal with other journalists’questions at a press conference?

A babble of questions from other journalists at a press conference destroys that impression for broadcasters. Radio and television reporters should make a note of all interesting questions – whether their own or from other reporters – and ask them again during their one-to-one interview.

What happens at a press conference?

The person calling the press conference usually makes an announcement or statement first then allows reporters to ask questions.

Do you have to include a press conference in a story?

Unlike a speech or meeting, your story does not have to include details such as the time and place of the press conference. In fact, it does not have to include the fact that the news came from a press conference at all unless that is of significance to the story as a whole.


How do you present a press conference?

How do you hold a press conference?Before the press conference: As we’ve discussed, you may have to schedule a press conference on short notice. … Define the message. … Schedule the date and time. … Pick the site. … Select and train your participants. … Contact the media. … Follow up with the media. … Develop a press kit.More items…

How do I get news coverage for my event?

Here are some ways to make sure a great event still has an impact:Send photos to reporters and photo editors at local papers and TV stations as soon as possible. … Send a press release around that includes the contact info of some of the event’s notable participants. … Tweet at reporters again. … Share everything.More items…

What is press conference in journalism?

A press conference or news conference is a media event in which notable individuals or organizations invite journalists to hear them speak and ask questions.

How do you ask for press coverage?

Write Your Press Release. The most critical piece of any press release is the angle. … Find Local Media Outlets. … Identify the Right Local Media Contacts. … Craft Your Email Query (aka Pitch) … Pitch Your News Story by Email & Follow Up. … Respond to Journalists. … Cultivate Relationships With Local Press Contacts.

Why is a press conference important?

Because: You can give more information than in a press release. A press conference is interactive; you can answer questions from the press, and emphasize points you might not otherwise have a chance to make. You can announce an important development, and explain its significant local and wider implications.

What is press conference?

A press conference is a tool designed to generate news – in particular, hard news that can advance the cause of your organization. Hard news is defined as a story in the print or electronic media which is timely, significant, prominent, and relevant. Imagine a flock of media reporters coming to an event that you have organized.

What is a press kit?

A press kit is a folder of information to give reporters background information about your issue or program. Press kits are very useful, if your group can afford it. If a press kit is beyond your budget, a press advisory will do. Your press kit should contain the following:

How far ahead should you send a press advisory?

You will also want to have a press advisory prepared and mailed about one week ahead of time to inform the media about the press conference. A press advisory is similar to a press release, with the difference being that press advisories can be used for background information to your media contacts.

What is the best time to have a press conference?

Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays are the best days for press conferences, as they are considered slower news days. Try to have your press conference on one of these days if at all possible. The best time to schedule your press conference is between 10:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m, to ensure maximum coverage by the media.

How long should a participant present?

Each participant should present for no more than 3-5 minutes, making his/her 3-5 key points. After all the presentations, the moderator should entertain any questions from the press, and direct questions to the appropriate participants. After about 45 minutes, bring the formal conference to an end.

What is the goal of a meeting reporter?

The goal of your reporting is to understand what exactly happened at the meeting. Too often, beginner reporters will cover a town hall hearing or school board meeting, dutifully taking notes throughout.

How to get a copy of agenda for a meeting?

You can usually do this by calling or visiting your local town hall or school board office, or by checking their website. Knowing what they plan to discuss is always better than walking into the meeting cold.​

How long has Tony Rogers been writing?

He has written and taught journalism for over 25 years. our editorial process. Tony Rogers. Updated June 16, 2019. So you’re writing a news story that covers a meeting—maybe a school board hearing or town hall—for the first time, and aren’t sure where to start as far as the reporting is concerned.

Why do journalists call press conferences?

Remember, if someone calls a press conference it is usually because they need the publicity you can give them. That gives you some control over the situation.

How to get information from a press conference?

Press conferences are a useful way of getting information if you use them to your advantage. Always prepare yourself before attending a press conference. Find out something about the possible topics and the people holding the press conference. Arrive with enough time to settle in before the conference starts.

Why do people hold press conferences?

All sorts of people organise press conferences for all sorts of reasons. A politician may call one to announce a new policy or to deny an allegation. A scientist may call one to reveal a discovery. A police chief may call reporters together to give details of a crime or to ask for public help in solving a case.

Why do press conferences give false importance?

Press conferences can also give false importance to the topic being promoted . Promoters try to convince journalists that by getting them all in the same place at the same time the topic is of great importance, when often it is nothing more than free publicity or advertising. ^^back to the top.

What is a media conference?

The terms, media conferences or media calls, are also used occasionally, though usually about an event to which a company publicist invites the media – not necessarily just journalists – in order to promote a product, performance or a celebrity, e.g. a visiting singer or actor.

What is the advantage of being in all media at the same time?

The main advantage to the journalist is that it reduces the chance of individual newspapers or broadcast stations missing the story.

What are the disadvantages of press conferences?

There are disadvantages to the media in press conference, the major of which is that it is more difficult to get an exclusive story from press conferences. When every reporter hears the same words from the interviewee, they cannot keep secrets from each other.

Pay Attention to Key and Repeating Themes

If you’re not sharing every detail with readers, what should you share? The answer is, repeating themes, big picture conversations and information that hasn’t been shared before. These are the things to be aware of and bring to readers’ attention.

Be Present and Take It All In

Conferences can be overwhelming. Practice the old wisdom and be where you are. Pay attention to what’s going on around you, ask questions, engage with people. There’s a wealth of unofficial information floating around at these events.

Prep Your Work Ahead of Time

Maybe you plan to cover whatever strikes you as interesting. That’s great. But most likely, you or your editor wants a particular angle.

Take Notes On the Vibe of the Event

What’s the energy like? Is it flat? Is it buzzing? What are people chatting about? All these details help paint a picture for your readers, and you don’t want to forget the interesting details. These are the things that will give your article humanness.


I like to get right in the mix at conferences. I get to know people, I participate in discussions, I host unconference sessions, I ask questions. Depending on the topic, you may have something to offer, or you may not.

Mingle and Introduce Yourself

You can learn a lot about what’s happening in an industry or movement if you talk with other participants. And bonus, you can potentially get material and ideas for future blog posts and articles.

Be Active on Social Media

I love to tweet from conferences for several reasons: it further establishes me as an involved and active person in the industry; it’s a quick and easy way to share interesting ideas; it can be a warmup to your article; and people will retweet, favorite, and follow you.


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