Dallas — TheaterJones founder Mark Lowry and Media Darling guru Elaine Liner are teaming up to offer a new, extended workshop for artists, actors, playwrights and other arts entrepreneurs called The Art of Media Intensive. The six-hour session (with lunch provided) will reveal insider tips and strategies for scoring better media coverage in print, online, broadcast and across social media platforms. Also, how to get the most from paid publicists (and how to provide what media want, if you are in PR).
The event is 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, April 11, at the Common Desk, 2919 Commerce St. in Deep Ellum. It's $110, and you can reserve through EventBrite here. The at-the-door rate on April 11 is $125 (cash or check only that day). Seating is limited, so early sign-up is recommended.
“As an arts journalist, I see a lot of productions and events that deserve more publicity, but the producers and performers haven’t reached out to the media in ways that would pique our interest beyond 'we request a review',” said Mark Lowry of TheaterJones.com, and a former staff writer at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I also see a lot of press releases that provide minimal information, which isn't helpful to the media.”
“Editors, critics and bloggers are begging for ideas,” says Elaine Liner, a longtime arts journalist and theater critic who started the Media Darling workshops in part to generate publishable story ideas from the arts community. “It’s so easy to get our attention if you know how we want to receive information. I have seen how much more positive publicity is generated when artists take some simple steps in how they approach media. Artists are often shy about promoting themselves. But we need their stories and ideas as much as they need helpful press coverage.”
Liner took her workshop to the 2014 Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland, the largest arts event in the world. More than 130 actors, directors, playwrights, producers and publicists attended the Media Darling session at the Fringe Central headquarters. The event was so popular, Elaine has been invited to return to Edinburgh this August to teach two more workshops for Fringe participants.
Among topics covered in the Dallas “intensive”:
Why the press release is dead and why the media hate them.
The quickest way to grab a media professional’s attention via email.
How to respond to reviews (good and bad).
How to be a better interview subject and how to write your own Q&A.
Publicity photo do’s and don’t, with tips from a local professional photographer.
Crisis management — the trick to spinning negative news into positive coverage.
How to work with a paid publicist and what publicists can and can’t do for you (and how you can be your own best PR person).
The secret of making news and getting good buzz when you having nothing to promote.
There will also be special guests, including a professional photographer to talk about the importance of photography; a local radio reporter who will help with interview skills; and a Media Darling grad who has become quite the local media darling.
Testimonials from Media Darling graduates:
"The Media Darling workshop at Edinburgh Fringe workshop helped me get more press coverage and put more butts in seats." — Peter Michael Marino, Desperately Seeking the Exit writer-performer, Edinburgh Fringe 2014
"After 15 years in marketing for high-revenue professional sports and entertainment, I thought I knew it all. Media Darling managed to teach this old dog some new tricks. It’s concise, dead on and delivered with practical knowledge and tips that I could put into practice immediately. This wasn't just theory but tangible steps to deliver results in your entertainment marketing.” — Bren Rapp, co-founder Fun House Theatre & Film, Plano, Texas
“I can divide my playwriting career into two distinct eras: the time before I became a Media Darling and the time after. My productions now receive more press, and the press I receive is more helpful and supportive than I ever could have achieved without the tips, tricks and strategies I learned. I’d share some of the most successful techniques with you here, but that would spoil the fun of learning them from the workshop itself.” — James Venhaus, playwright, Fort Worth, Texas
"This workshop offered information and tips that can only be learned from actual experience in the media. I couldn't have gained this new knowledge and perspective from any book and will be recommending this workshop to all of my peers, not just those in the areas of theater and entertainment." — Teresa Andrion, founder, Core Talent, Dallas, Texas