Jeremy Nicholas is an award winning TV and radio broadcaster, after dinner speaker and compere. He's presented radio shows for BBC World Service, BBC Radio 5 Live, Talk Sport and GLR. On television he's best known for his `And Finally' reporting for the BBC. He also presented `Live and Dangerous', `Turnstyle' and `Sick as a Parrot' as well as live World Cup and Champions League football for Channel 5 and ITV. As Director of Talking Toolbox Jeremy teaches speaking skills for TV, radio and live audiences, as well as providing media training for firms and individuals.
Alan Stevens has been both a TV presenter and expert interviewee notching up over 2,000 radio and TV interviews on BBC TV News, Sky News, Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live as well as in every ITV region. He is Vice-President of the International Federation for Professional Speakers and a Fellow (and Past President) of the Professional Speakers Association. As Director of MediaCoach Alan provides media coaching, crisis management and communication training. In 2006, The Independent listed him alongside Max Clifford as "one of the UK's top ten media experts".
I was looking forward to reading this book to pick up some tips that could help take my expert blog to a global audience and see it picked up by the media and this book didn't disappoint. Whilst it didn't provide me an exact framework for achieving media coverage (but to be honest, I didn't expect it to!) it did give me an insight into how experienced media commentators work and this gave me ideas that I could use to develop my blogging business.
The biggest plus for me was that I was exposed to `lesser known' media pundits - the more `up and coming' experts as well as what I would term "the old boys" such as Terry Wogan and Michael Aspel etc. The newer media experts include Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington, Radio 1 Producer Chris Cox and TV Weather Presenter and ex Soap Star Des Coleman and it was nice to get a young, fresh take on how modern day communicators operate when speaking to the media.
Whilst many of the interviewees supplied their theory on the subject of being a media master, Comedian and TV show panellist Phill Jupitus gave an excellent piece of practical advice for would be media masters - but you will have to read the book to find out what it is!
I did feel at times that the book was written from a very `male' point of view, although this is not surprising as both authors are male. But one example of this would be in one of the interviews (with Michael Aspel), the interviewer comments on newsreader Fiona Bruce and how he is pleased she is getting some work at last. It seemed a slightly patronising comment and a little un-necessary, given that numerous media interviews have reported that Fiona had taken a conscious decision to work part time so she could bring up her two young children.Read more ›
The book is a collection of short interviews with media savvy celebrities. Each of the 25 interviews distils the key tips from the experience and expertise of each subject, capturing the personality of each well.
It's so much easier reading this valuable information 'in context' in this way rather than a list of 'things you must do' (although there is a summary at the back of the book for each).
The writing styles of both authors are friendly and humorous which not only draws more out of the interviewees but makes it a more interesting and enjoyable read than similar books on the topic.
The authors know their stuff too, so they can ask the right questions to get the information that is likely to be of most use to us. Because of that you'll read anecdotes in these vignettes from well known celebrities that you probably won't hear anywhere else. Woven into to the stories is also the expertise of Alan and Jeremy who both deal with the media in all its forms every day.
If you know you'll be having dealings with the media, be it in print, radio or on tv, in a couple of days time, you better order this now and you'll find it such an easy enjoyable read that you'll be ready to face the pen, mic or camera in no time at all.
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I read Media Masters with an outcome in mind. I have dealt with the media in a previous occupation, not always in a particularly great way and it looks like I will be again soon. I wanted to pick up some tips, techniques and ideas that would help me deal with the media better than I had before.
I far more than I expected from this book. Let me start with my minor niggle about the book. It has so many gems, good ideas and thought provoking points that it was difficult to find bits later when I was reviewing the huge amount of good advice I got from the book. That said the authors recognising this have put a five page summary of key points at the back...I would have been happier with this being a little more exhaustive.
Now that is one small point against a really great book. Not only did I get a huge amount of good advice about handling the media I also got some great ideas to try out. For example Chris Cox talks about 140 character Twitter film reviews and this spurred several different marketing ideas for me. So I got lots of advice about the media, stimulated some great thoughts and ideas...but this was not the thing that turn this from a good book into a great book.
The thing I liked most about the book was the fact that it has huge personality and fun about it. Thee are laugh out loud moments. See Alan Steven's response to George Galloway's ideas about repetition, repetition, repetition as one example that got me strange looks on my tube journey home.
Like any great interviewer, as I can see the co-authors are, they allow the personalities of the people they are interviewing shine through and they left me wanting to know more from the people they were interviewing. Not only that the personalities of the two authors comes through.Read more ›
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I've read very few books on how to handle the media which have managed to be both instructive and genuinely entertaining but this is one such book. The authors themselves are clearly media professionals and they have cleverly called upon 25 well known people to share their hints, tips and experience on all facets of the media.
This format means that rather than facing a predictably structured media textbook you find 25 real life perspectives on how to handle the media effectively. The tone of the book is light and amusing, you quickly feel like the two authors are chatting to you about the interviews over a morning coffee. The interviews do not feel scripted; each one teases out pertinent information about the media stars while also giving you a little background about their careers and personal challenges.
The choice of people interviewed for the book is excellent and the different backgrounds of these people ensure the insights are varied. An MP, Comedian and Olympic Medallist are all in the mix.
Some of the people like Terry Wogan use the media for a living, while others like Olympian Gail Emms were thrust into the media spotlight as a result of successful non-media careers. Each one of the interviews looks at the media in a different way, so whether you need tips on public speaking, `twittering' or giving radio interviews - it is all here. I've seen plenty of positive media coverage about most of the people featured in this book so I can confidently say that the advice they have given works.
At the end of the book the authors, Alan and Jeremy, run through a round up of the best hints and tips from their Media Masters. I think this is a great summary for when you want to dip into the book and quickly pull out some relevant advice to use yourself.
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