Setting up and overseeing interviews

Working at a PR agency involves a great deal more than sending out press releases and setting aside test products for journalists. For instance, we help our clients with interviews they have with journalists. We both set them up and oversee them.

This all starts with arranging the interview itself. Thanks to our excellent press contacts we know, for instance, which journalists are interested in getting to know which clients or talking about a new product. Once the interview has been established, it is then vital to prepare the client properly. Depending on the journalist and what their expertise is, we create an extensive profile on them and their activities, on the medium for which they write and the type of reader for whom the article is ultimately intended. We also discuss beforehand with the journalist whether the interview is part of a larger story they are working on, whether they are fully informed or if they just wish to chat, and which questions they want answered as a minimum.

We also assist our clients during the interview itself, by sitting down with them while the interview takes place. In this way, the client is at all times accompanied by someone with media experience to rely on, and we ensure that the right topics are raised. Finally, once it is over we also keep in contract with the journalist to provide him or her any extra information or images, and to check before publication whether the facts in the final interview are correct.

Progress @ Mobile World Congress
For us, setting up and overseeing interviews is a cross-border affair. Thus every year – together with the entire telecoms world – we make our way to sunny Barcelona for the Mobile World Congress. Our client Nokia this year made use of this opportunity to present new devices. And of course, we saw to it that this received the necessary attention in the Benelux media. For instance, the Financieel Dagblad spoke with the CEO Stephen Elop, and Colin van Hoek of talked to Executive Vice President HERE, Michael Halbherr about Nokia’s strategy. Etienne Froment of Le Soir also took the opportunity to interview Vesa Jutila, Head of Windows Phone Product Marketing. In the evening, we arranged for a number of Belgian journalists to attend the press dinner of our client Polycom.

Interoute on business TV channel Kanaal Z
What about television interviews? Our colleague Sara recently made her client’s dream come true: a news item on the only business TV channel in Flanders, Kanaal Z. Interoute owns the largest cloud service platform in Europe, and plays a crucial role within both the Belgian and Flemish data centre landscape. Data centres are therefore the beating heart of Flemish industry. Contrary to what you might think about cloud computing, a physical stucture is still always needed for storing data.

 Kanaal Z was extremely keen on this approach and the result was a success! With an average daily audience of 301,500 viewers, Interoute reached its target group – the business people and industry leaders, but also financially engaged citizens and those seeking economic information.

Progress Communications and Steps Magazine try out Zumba Toning
Any new product or service of course demands a different approach. How do you make sure that journalists write about a new fitness trend? The answer is a fun and interactive way that lets them try it out for themselves. The lifestyle magazine Steps was totally up for a Zumba Toning class – the fitness craze of our client Zumba Fitness. More and more gyms in Belgium are offering this efficient and effective fitness method.

We attended a Zumba Toning class along with the journalists, and even without any Zumba experience it was a particularly successful workout! Later on, there was an interview with the Zumba instructor to further explain the benefits of Zumba Toning, and thus in an energetic way the journalists gathered ample material for a great article.

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