April 27, 2018
by Karen Kacir
Cision just published its 2018 Global State of the Media Report, a survey of more than 1,300 journalists’ perceptions of the media and communications industries. Participants shared their thoughts on how communications professionals can craft pitches and press releases that won’t get ignored, the perceived trustworthiness of PR content and much more.
You can download the full report on Cision’s website. Here are some highlights:
July 17, 2015
by Kim Stangle
Depending on your age, you may know actor Alan Alda from his notable role on “M*A*S*H” – or more recently – “The Blacklist” or “30 Rock.” I think he has one of the most recognizable voices in television and movies. But, it wasn’t until today while listening to a few minutes of his interview on NPR’s The Diane Rehm Show that I learned he’s also a visiting instructor at a center bearing his name: the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University.
As longtime host of “Scientific American Frontiers” on PBS, Alda’s love of science has been at the forefront, but it’s his desire to help scientists and researchers better tell their stories that I find so fascinating. He told Rehm during the interview about “The Sagan Effect,” which generally describes the biased perception by some that the better you are at communicating science the worse you are at actually being a scientist.
Can you imagine being punished for being an effective communicator for your industry? It’s our job as communicators to break down the most complex information and make it simple. And, that’s exactly what Alda and faculty are teaching at the Center. Through courses ranging from Improv for Scientists to Writing to be Understood, they’re training the next generation of scientists to communicate more effectively.
Emmys and Golden Globes aside, Alan Alda’s contribution to communication deserves the highest honor.
May 21, 2009
by Kim Taylor
Do you regularly spend weeks writing the content for your next big presentation and then wait until the night before to rehearse?
Do you know the difference between a transition and a ‘hot start’?
How about the importance of holding your gestures and keeping them ‘above the belt’ and outside the ‘breadbox’?
These are just a few of the things I learned while attending “Presenting with Impact & Influence” last week at the Academy of our affiliate, MS&L.
The stats were astonishing. When it comes to the 3 V’s of Effective Communications: Vocal, Visual and Verbal, we typically focus on the Verbal … the content of our presentation … yet, the Vocal and Visual are really what counts.
Try this exercise:
Say the heady words we all wait to hear: I Love You … and say it like you really mean it.
Now, say them again, but this time, say the word ‘love’ with doubt and questioning … I Love You?
The same result happens when you shift that doubt to the word ‘you.’
Same content, completely different meaning.
That exercise alone should help validate the importance of Visual and Vocal skills when presenting. Content still counts, but never underestimate the value of thoughtful gesturing, eye contact and replacing your ‘ums’ and ‘uhhs’ with silence.