Journalists Identify the Best Location for a CEO Media Interview

Location, location, location are the three keys to success in real estate … and they can also be a key success factor in your CEO’s next international media interview in it can help to create the right impression with the reporter.Interview Locations Image

According to a survey conducted across Europe and North America by our partners in the Public Relations Global Network (PRGN, the setting preferences for a CEO media interview may vary depending on where the reporter lives.

• North American reporters overwhelmingly prefer the CEO’s office or a company facility (88 percent), followed by a phone interview (70 percent), email interview (20 percent) and a restaurant or public place (10 percent),
• While the preferred location for European reporters was the CEO‘s office or another company location (67 percent), European journalists also have a high preference for a restaurant or public place (55 percent), followed a phone interview (53 percent) and email interview (27 percent).

Looking more closely at the results, interview location preferences for reporters in one European country can be very different from the next. For example, the PRGN survey indicated:

• In France, Italy and Spain, the top choice (average 78 percent) for a CEO interview setting was a restaurant or public place which allows a more informal and personal atmosphere , while
• In the United Kingdom (100 percent), Denmark (100 percent) and Ireland (75 percent), the #1 preference was the phone interview – apparently due to tight time and availability constraints – which makes it much more difficult for the CEO’s personality and environment to come through.

Here are four setting-focused tips that can help you optimize your CEO’s next media global interviews:

1) Try to accommodate the journalist’s preference for the interview setting. If the reporter has no preference, choose the setting that helps the CEO to communicate her/his personality and/or supports your key messages. For example, if one of your messages focuses on innovation, the company’s R&D center might be the best setting.
2) Encourage the CEO to be a personable, gracious host for the reporter. Makes sure the CEO is on-time, welcoming, well-prepared and cooperative in providing the journalist with ample time and attention to get the story.
3) Ensure that the interview area is free of distractions and interruptions, so the CEO can concentrate on the reporter’s needs. Computers and mobile devices should be turned off.
4) Obtain specific local cultural and logistical insights from a PR agency that intimately understands the local market. (PRGN has offices in 50 key markets around the world that are run by local PR experts.)

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