On Deadline: Managing Media Relations by Carole M. Howard, Wilma K. Mathews, J. Suzanne Horsley
228 pages, $39.95 list
eBook availability
On Deadline
Managing Media Relations
Sixth Edition
With a clear and fast-moving style, the Sixth Edition maintains its status as the foremost book on media relations in the corporate, nonprofit and government sectors. The authors retained the best and enduring aspects of media relations in the previous edition while skillfully integrating all current trends, such as the increased reliance on technology, complex legal rulings and concerns about credibility that have had an impact on how professionals work with the media. On Deadline is must-read for prospective and current media relations professionals dedicated to maximizing their organization’s results.

As one reviewer remarked, On Deadline is “like having a professional mentor and media consultant on speed dial.” It presents all the tools necessary to plan and implement a successful media relations program, from relationships with reporters, crisis management and global media relations to spokesperson training, ethical and legal issues, news conferences and special events. New case studies illustrate the multiple roles of media relations professional as planner, crisis manager, communicator, counselor and strategist in a world that encounters ubiquitous messages dispersed at the speed of light.
“The art of media relations remains a critical part of any communicator’s job today, and On Deadline is a tangible blueprint for tomorrow’s communication leaders. The updates in this edition set the stage for what practitioners will have to navigate in this ever-changing discipline. This is the book I wish I would have read before jumping into my first PR job years ago.” — Ron DeFeo, Senior VP, Global Communications and Engagement, American Airlines

“It would take years of painfully learning from your mistakes to develop the knowledge about working with the media that has been assembled in On Deadline.” — Public Relations Journal

“The new edition of On Deadline does a masterful job of updating an invaluable resource for practitioners and students alike. At a time when the pace of change in media and social media, and thus in media relations, is accelerating exponentially due to global crises, this new edition provides essential insights and advice based on new data from highly respected sources. I would strongly recommend this as a training resource for students, young professionals and mid-level executives on either the agency or in-house side of the profession.” — Patrick Ford, University of Florida, former global vice chair, Burson-Marsteller

“I am thrilled to see a new edition of On Deadline, which has been one of my favorite class textbooks for years. It is incredibly up-to-date and provides a wealth of contemporary examples. It’s the kind of book I would encourage students to keep after they finish the class, as it also doubles as a fantastic reference for those in the field.” — Jessalynn Strauss, Elon University

“One of the most comprehensive, practical and well-written presentations on media relations that we have.” — Ragan Report

“The latest edition of On Deadline doesn’t disappoint. Its comprehensive approach to media relations, from proactive strategic planning to evaluation and measurement, provides an easy-to-read blueprint and go-to reference for public relations students and professionals alike.” — Diana Martinelli, West Virginia University

“The Sixth Edition captures all aspects of the media relations process in a relatable and instructive manner. It offers clear guidelines on building relations with traditional and social media and navigating the complex environment of online news, communication and audiences. This edition brings on board Dr. Suzanne Horsley who lends her scholarly and professional insights to Howard and Mathews’ vast professional experience. The up-to-date case studies, advice from pros, handy checklists, and helpful hints add to this successful textbook’s strong practical appeal that spans almost 40 years. The authors cover domestic, global, for- and non-profit contexts. Most importantly, they emphasize the importance of empathy and using inclusive and humanizing language for building relations with and through the media.” — Nilanjana Bardhan, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale

“A veritable ‘how-to’ on just about every aspect of strategic communication in a global environment.” — Fay Kajee, Fountainhead Design, Cape Town, South Africa

On Deadline, in its Sixth Edition, remains an important resource for anyone developing or managing media relations. With tips about rumor control centers, copyrights and Instagram, and global media management, this edition provides up-to-date cases and tips for leveraging ever-changing media channels into effective engagement with journalists. Whether one is developing a first media relations campaign or securing a position among organizational leadership, On Deadline provides valuable insights.” — Bryan H. Reber, University of Georgia

“We live and work in an increasingly diverse and often fragmented society, in which most people no longer consume news from the same, trusted outlets—if they value or respect news media at all. One of the toughest public relations strategies to understand, and set of skills for aspiring practitioners to grasp, is the discipline of media relations. The latest edition offers current and comprehensive lessons on why news media still matter and how to manage media relations in a complex world. The compelling case studies and succinct checklists help the reader translate key concepts from each chapter into meaningful actions, and the measurement advice is particularly insightful and pragmatic.” — Dave Remund, APR, Fellow PRSA

“This book is not about publicity, it’s about strategy. It’s not about counting column inches, it’s about building a solid, results-oriented program geared to meeting a company’s business goals.” — IABC Communication World

“If I could be the global C-suite professor for a day, I would require every corporate executive to read On Deadline. Besides expanding their understanding and appreciation for public relations, this important media relations manual powerfully supports the logic and reputational value of building strong media relationships. Since I’m unlikely to become that C-suite prof, I’ll encourage colleagues and pros to use the book’s insights to help guide and expand their public relations efforts.” — Ron Culp, DePaul University

On Deadline has so many strengths—the glossary of key industry terms in chapter 3 is worth the price itself. Perhaps its biggest strength, though, is its ability to effectively position the key role traditional media relations plays in an overall public relations strategy, and particularly how that role fits into the broader context of today’s digital world. It’s a must-have resource that reminds us of the power media relations has if done well.” — Dean E. Mundy, University of Oregon

On Deadline is on point! This book is a must-have resource full of real-world examples and actionable advice on crisis communication, social media, event planning and so much more. This book will be required reading for our marketing and communications team and will have a front-and-center position in our resource library.” — Anita Foster, Arlington (Texas) Independent School District

On Deadline challenges PR students and practitioners at all levels to approach media relations more strategically and effectively. It gave me so many ideas that I can’t wait to introduce it to my students. The case studies and multiple resources reflect the evolving state of the media, the latest techniques for earning publicity and the realities PR professionals face in our work with traditional and emerging media.” — Kristie Aylett, The KARD Group PR/Marketing, Tulane University and University of California/Irvine
Table of Contents
1. Getting Started: Setting Up Your Program
2. News: Defining News and Newsmakers in a Complex World
3. Tools of the Trade: From ANRs to Gen Z
4. Reporters: Helping Them Meet Their Objectives
5. Spokespersons: Training and Briefing Them for Their Role
6. Ethical and Legal Issues: How to Avoid a Crisis of Character
7. Media Events: How to Make Them Work for You
8. Going Global: How to Manage International Media Relations
9. Crisis Planning: How to Anticipate and Manage Emergency Situations
10. Measurement And Evaluation: How to Know if You Are Achieving Your Objectives
11. The Future: Expanding Your Counselor Role