Press Conference Preparation

When planning a successful press conference, here are important steps and time lines to consider:

A month before the event:
  • Select a media-trained speaker who is very knowledgeable about your product or service.
  • Reserve the room. (Consider a date and time that isn't too early, that will not conflict with a large competitor or a lunch break (unless you provide a quality lunch replacement), and try not to plan it on the first or last day of a convention.)
  • Send press releases to the press well in advance so they can help publicize your event.
  • Promote the event to other applicable media outlets (magazines, newspapers, online press, blogs, TV, and radio).
  • Promote the event to local media.
  • Create a slide show or other visuals.
  • Hire a professional videographer to film the event (for B-roll footage, website use, general promotion).
  • Prepare and print a press kit or save an electronic press kit on a USB drive or website.
A week before the event:
  • Create and print handouts.
  • Make sure you have a compatible laptop, a compatible slide show presentation and a back-up, back-up projector lamp, connector cords, power cords, etc.
  • Hire people to be greeters at the event.
  • Order refreshments for the event (if applicable).
  • Set up individual interviews with reporters for after the press conference (if applicable).
  • Rehearse.

The day of the event: 
  • Train your greeters.
  • Pass out handouts.
  • Have extra pens and paper available for reporters.
  • Turn off cell phones.
  • Encourage interaction.
  • Plant questions.
  • Collect business cards and/or have a newsletter sign-up sheet somewhere in the room.
  • Hand out press kits.
  • Be available for individual interviews with reporters after the event.
  • Edit your B-roll footage.

A day after the event:
  • Send edited B-roll footage of the event to TV news stations.
  • Send a thank you letter to everyone who attended.
  • Provide other proper follow-up.
  • Send a press release covering the event.
  • Set up Google Alerts with keywords to track press clips.

A week after the event:
  • Track press clips.
  • Any additional follow-up necessary.