Tuesday Tip-Off: Quit Hiding Behind “We”

Great news! Your organization’s PR team just booked an interview with a major media outlet. Now it’s time to prep your spokesperson. Conducting a winning interview is an art – there are key messages to communicate, difficult questions to navigate and, of course, nerves to overcome.

One of the most common blunders spokespersons make is forgetting to use their organization’s name. Instead, they default to “we.” Rather than saying “Brand X is reshaping the widget industry to better serve our customers,” spokespersons often use “we.” What is the point of doing an interview if you’re not maximizing your brand name? While journalists will include the organization’s name in the story, quotes and soundbites are more powerful when the spokesperson uses it, too. More frequent name references also boost online search results, which are especially important given the rapid growth of AI-generated content.

That said, spokespersons need to be careful to not over-promote their organizations. Few things annoy journalists more than sources who sound like the proverbial used car salesperson. Good spokespersons use their brand’s name judiciously and strategically.

There are circumstances, however, when I advise clients to avoid stating their names and stick to “we” in interviews, statements and social media posts. When an organization is immersed in a crisis or pulled into a negative story, there’s nothing to be gained by calling additional attention to the brand.

When was the last time you trained your spokespersons to effectively tell your story? Don’t wait for the next good opportunity or crisis to arise – message me today to discuss how my next generation coaching programs can benefit your organization.