Choosing a Press Spokesperson for Your Nonprofit Organization
If you want to get the word out about your nonprofit, you need to have a strong public relations strategy. Good PR is what will help you spread the word about your cause, attract more activists, build trust with donors, and keep your organization growing so you can continue to do what you do best.
Before you start your efforts to get your nonprofit more publicity, one of the first things you need to do is assign a press spokesperson. Once the media comes calling, you need to have a spokesperson in place who can handle all the media inquiries and represent your organization in the best possible way.
Of course, not everyone is cut out to be a press spokesperson, and that’s okay. You really just need one spokesperson to deal with the media, but it’s absolutely essential that you choose the right person.
Here are a few tips to help you when selecting a press spokesperson for your nonprofit.
Look to a high-ranking individual in the organization—Your media spokesperson doesn’t necessarily need to be the highest ranking individual in your nonprofit, but it should be someone that has some level of rank and authority in the organization.
Choose someone who knows your message and is passionate about it—One of the most important things is for your spokesperson to know your organization’s key messages forwards and backwards. They need to be able to tie these messages beautifully into interviews, and they should know their stuff so well that they can handle even the toughest questions from reporters. Furthermore, they need to really believe what they’re saying.
Make sure the individual is presentable and commands respect—It’s not right to judge a book by its cover, but that’s exactly what people do. If you choose a spokesperson who doesn’t clean up well, no one is going to take your organization that seriously. The person has to look respectable.
Find someone who can speak clearly and simply—You don’t want a spokesperson who gets tongue-tied easily or who rambles on and on without making a point. You need someone who has a knack for distilling your message into its simplest form. You need a spokesperson who speaks in a clear, easy-to-understand way that people can follow.
Choose an individual who reacts well under pressure—Even under the best circumstances, a media interview can be a nerve-racking experience, but if your spokesperson finds himself or herself in the crosshairs of a journalist who is out for blood, it can be especially challenging to remain calm, cool, and collected. You should choose someone who doesn’t get rattled easily and who can respond perfectly when things get tough.
Pick someone who will always be available—You never know when a reporter is going to try to get in touch with you, so make sure you choose a spokesperson who is going to be readily available by phone and email for media inquiries. You don’t want to squander publicity opportunities by not responding to a reporter.
Have any tips you’d add to this list? Let us know by commenting below.