Emirates Airlines’ Public Relations Manager for Europe, Jonathan Hill visited Murdoch University Dubai on Sunday, 27 March 2011. His current work includes supporting Emirates’ Geneva and Copenhagen launches, and leveraging the PR side of Emirates’ European sponsorship portfolio. He also manages 14 PR agencies covering 25 destinations.
Murdoch’s Media Relations students were particularly interested in Jonathan’s roots in print, radio and television journalism. “In media relations you have to know and understand journalists. They constantly work towards deadlines, so don’t waste their time. Make sure you give them something they can publish.”
According to Jonathan, relationships with the media are built over time, and these relationships need to be nurtured.
“It also helps to be proactive”, he advises. “Journalists nowadays have a lot to do with little support, so media relations people must know what is newsworthy in their stories and provide content that can be published with ease”.
Jonathan asserts that the speed at which the media run with stories nowadays has become a major challenge to media relations practitioners – thanks to the immediacy of social media like Twitter.
“You have to be ready for the unexpected”, he explains. “Especially if a story is potentially damaging to your company’s reputation. Sometimes the media will be ready to run with a story that has been sourced through social media, and you have to be quick to react. If not, you’ll be sitting with an even bigger problem”.
Jonathan Hill is the latest in a series of guest lecturers visiting Murdoch University Dubai. Previous lecturers have included ex BBC chief news correspondent, Kate Adie and Francis Matthew, Editor at large of Gulf News.
Stay tuned to Murdoch Dubai’s newsfeed for further information on upcoming lecturers.