I nearly always advise a client to respond to an attack or respond to a reporter working on a negative article. After all, if you don’t tell your side of the story, who will? But sometimes that’s not the best strategy.
The problem with responding to a negative story — even if you feel it’s wrong — is that your response may keep a bad story alive longer than it would live on its own.
What if the negative attack is true? Attacking a negative story that’s clearly true just draws more attention to the story while picking a fight you can’t win. That’s a losing strategy.
It can be painful not to respond back. I have a recent client who followed the path of no response. A TV reporter did several stories (no doubt trying to enhance his own cred at the sttaion), but no other TV stations picked it up because we didn’t make it a larger story by responding.
Here’s my question for you next time you find yourself tempted to respond to a story you don’t like: Will your response really make your point? Or will you just keep a bad story alive for another news cycle?
Portions re-printed from Monday Morning Media Minute.
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