Becoming a multicultural media pro is all the rage in today’s highly competitive, ultra fluid media landscape. But do you know how to do that in practice? In our last post, we talked about the importance of relationship-driven partnerships. Today, we are sharing our top five tips to take an equity-driven approach to building those relationships:
- Learn: Get to know the various editorial styles, story formats, and subject matter relevant to each media outlet and their surrounding communities. Multicultural media partners appreciate interviews that uncover how a story directly impacts and benefits their community. At TVA, we highlight how our client’s stories, company news, events, or services are relevant to the audience and culturally appropriate.
- Connect IRL: Devote time and energy into meeting each media outlet team in person. It may seem obvious, but you’ll have more success pitching stories to people who know and trust you in real life (IRL). At TVA, we help our clients to make deeper connections, so they understand community members’ perspectives and vice versa.
- Be human: The best storytelling is created through open and candid conversation. What your organization does is important to you, but until you sit down and have an honest, two-way conversation, you can’t know if and/or how it’s important to others. We can help prepare you through spokesperson development, media training, key message point creation, and interview briefings. We can also help you create accessible media materials—ones that transform jargon into “speaking human” and transcreate information into other languages.
- Compensate equitably: Multicultural media outlets often distribute news for free, with an income based entirely on advertising dollars. Most people at multicultural outlets are used to being underpaid and overworked. Frankly, if you want to engage with them, you should think about whether you are going to perpetuate that reality or join us in changing it. At TVA, we advocate for our community media partners, ensuring they understand the value of their demanding work and the importance of their role as the bridge to community.
- Manage expectations: Small media outlet staff often juggle production, writing, editing, posting, and long on-air hours every day. Think twice before you make a last-minute request for their attendance at a press conference across town. With small, scrappy teams, a real-time (aka, last minute) press release postings or custom article may not be feasible. At TVA, we can help you understand editorial processes and timelines and develop best practices for multicultural media.