If you have spent time with a toddler, you've practiced some key skills for media relations.
No, you can't have that toy, but you CAN have this one. You're a master at bridging. This is moving the conversation or interview to the messages you wish to convey.
Always be prepared. For the toddler, that might be an extra pair of pants in the trunk of your car or a coloring page in your bag. For the PR pro, that's a mental list of story ideas in case a reporter is on the prowl for a good article.
Think before you speak. Do you really want to bring up THAT topic? A toddler and a reporter ask a lot of why, why, why. Think your comments through to the follow-up question and its follow up.
Words matter. When talking with my toddler, I try to choose words carefully and select the word that best describes what I really mean. When I get lazy with word choice, I must do a LOT of explaining. Journalists appreciate precision, too.
Their vision may not be what you expected. When I think I know how my toddler might approach a toy or puzzle, she sometimes surprises me with an innovative approach. When you pitch a story idea to a reporter, he or she might take that story seed and grow it into something you didn't imagine. Not necessarily good or bad, just different.