Media Relations Handbook

for Government, Associations, Nonprofits, and Elected Officials

Second Edition

By Bradford Fitch (Author), Jack Holt (Editor)

Book Summary

Human communication is a constant, continuous, and dynamic phenomenon. You cannot not-communicate nor can you un-communicate. For an individual entity, there is only ONE communication. Not multiple, not varieties, only one. That one communication is the culmination of all that has been communicated by the entity until the “now” in time. You cannot go back and un-communicate something. You can only begin from the “now” to create the intended outcome. That outcome is always a negotiation with the receiver/audience/community to cultivate an agreed understanding.

For a communication professional, understanding this fact is essential. No matter where you work, someone has been communicating something before you began. You cannot un-communicate it. You cannot create a new beginning; but you can begin now to create a new outcome. Research continues into the changes in communication wrought by the Internet and public expectations that are experiencing mercurial change.

As best practices are now being developed, the Media Relations Handbook can give you guidance and ideas that will spark your innovation. The Media Relations Handbook, is required reading for Capitol Hill press secretaries, federal agency public affairs officers, political campaign spin doctors, public affairs officers (PAOs), public information officers (PIOs), nonprofit PR professionals, lobbyists or anyone involved in garnering media coverage. The Media Relations Handbook 2e explores theory and practice, discussing general principles and illustrating each point with real-life examples.

About the Author

Bradford Fitch (Author) is President of the Congressional Management Foundation. Previously Fitch was Vice President, Client Services for CQ-Roll Call Group, former CEO of Knowlegis, and former Deputy Director of the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF). He is the author of Media Relations Handbook for Agencies, Associations, Nonprofits and Congress and Citizen's Handbook to Influencing Elected Officials. Fitch has spent 20 years in Washington as a journalist, congressional aide, consultant, college instructor, and writer/researcher. Fitch began his career in communications at age 14, reading statistical summaries of high school basketball games for his hometown radio station in upstate New York. After working as a radio and television reporter in the mid-1980's, Fitch began working on Capitol Hill in 1988. During his 13 years on Capitol Hill, he served in a variety of positions for four Members of Congress, including: press secretary for a House Member, campaign manager for a House Member, communications director for a House committee, communications director for a U.S. Senator, legislative director for a House Member, and chief of staff for a freshman House Member. Jack Holt (Editor) is a recognized leader in successfully formulating, implementing and managing communication programs for very large organizations including both the Department of Defense and the U.S. Federal Government. He created, developed, and produced the DoD Bloggers Roundtable and DoDLive web communication concept, co-authored the OSD policy memorandum DTM 09-026 for the Responsible and Effective Use of Internet-based Capabilities, and is co-founder of the DoD All Services Social Media Council. Jack has more than 20 years communication policy development and application experience, teaches at the graduate level, consults, and collaborates on how to effectively use the new and emerging media in meeting business needs including improving customer relationships, implementing change management and developing innovative organizational environments. He has his own communication consulting firm, is the Director for Policy Analysis for Blue Ridge Information Systems, adjunct lecturer at Georgetown University, and a member of TheCapitol.Net's faculty. He also teaches at the NATO School and has taught sessions on Communication, Journalism and New Media strategies and tactics at the Defense Information School and the Naval Post Graduate School. He is also a member of the PRSA Counselors to Higher Education Committee and the 2009 Chair for the PRSA National Capital Region Public Affairs and Government Committee.

Customer Testimonials

"Media Relations Handbook is to political campaigns what The Art of War is to military campaigns: an essential strategic reference that winners should never be without." -- James Carville, TV analyst, author "This volume is an invaluable road map to the mean streets of a city where information is power and power is everything. Brad Fitch has written a rich 'how-to' lesson for pros and for novices who must negotiate the competitive landscape of America's new media." -- Ann Compton, White House Correspondent, ABC News