MEDIA: Speaking at a Microsoft Media event

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Last week I spoke at my first media event. Which was kinda fun.

Here's what happened.

As part of the Microsoft Heroes Happen Launch event last week, Microsoft put on a media event. It was all organised by their PR company (in this case Howorth Communications) and involved getting a few key Microsoft executives (Martin Gregory and Bob Kelly) plus a few clients (5 in this case) to tell of their experiences with the new Microsoft products.

Elcom was asked along to present on our increased performance using Windows Server 2008.

The event was reasonably small, with perhaps 15 journalists, the 2 key Microsoft execs, plus a few Microsoft staff and the 5 client representatives (of which I was one).

Martin Gregory hosted the lunch (the food was pretty good I should add), and spoke about Microsoft's message for the launch. He then handed over to Bob Kelly who outlined the Microsoft vision and covered off a number of the new features in the Microsoft products released in the last year – focusing of course on the 2008 stack.

Following that, each of us (ie the 5 clients) had a few minutes to outline the company we work for and our experiences with the 2008 stack.

The clients who presented were Lion Nathan, CargoWise, University of Canberra, Mincom and Elcom. It was interesting to hear about how massive an impact the 2008 stack is having on these companies. Each had good stories to tell about increased productivity, performance and functionality. As you'd expect at an event like this it was all positive about Microsoft of course, but that doesn't diminish the breadth of results being experienced. Coding times are being cut, turn around times are being reduced, network upgrades are being fast tracked and performance is being increased (as we are testament to) – to name just a few advantages.

After the presentations each of us had a little booth with 4 chairs where journalists could come and chat about our results/experiences if they wanted further information. I chatted with 2 journalists but had to rush off (I was already running late for my presentation in Dave Glover's session). Interestingly, many journalists left straight away without talking to any of us one-on-one.

All in all another great experience. But what can I learn from this? I was reflecting on what I said at the event (you can see media snippets here and here) and thought about what I'd do differently next time.

My main thought was that I probably didn't explain Elcom as well as I could have. I launched into our experiences, results and plans, without first explaining who Elcom is. I wonder if I could have been more helpful to the audience in that regard.

[Note to self: Write a blog post outlining 'The Elcom Story' because I get a few people asking me what it is we do, and realised I have never really explained it here.]

Anyway, that was the fun I had last week.

Have you ever spoken at a media event? If so, what did you do, and what tips do you have?

 

4 comments

  • Craig,I thought you did really well in the confines of Microsoft’s rather restrictive format.
    Elsewhere, in a closed community, there has been a bit of chat (led by me) about the journo count – 15 – representing a very low turnout for a Windows launch. Working a room in which the intended audience only just out-numbers the people staging the event (I counted five or six internal and external PR folk, two softies and five client reps) cannot be easy!
    I’ve since discovered that Microsoft, despite banging on non-stop about virtualisation on the day, is yet to release that feature. Had that been known by myself or other journos, or disclosed, your experience would have been rather different!

  • Craig,I thought you did really well in the confines of Microsoft’s rather restrictive format.
    Elsewhere, in a closed community, there has been a bit of chat (led by me) about the journo count – 15 – representing a very low turnout for a Windows launch. Working a room in which the intended audience only just out-numbers the people staging the event (I counted five or six internal and external PR folk, two softies and five client reps) cannot be easy!
    I’ve since discovered that Microsoft, despite banging on non-stop about virtualisation on the day, is yet to release that feature. Had that been known by myself or other journos, or disclosed, your experience would have been rather different!

  • Hi Simon,

    Thanks for the comment (and apologies for this late reply – my comment notification settings weren’t on – Doh!).

    Yes, it was an interesting day, and I’ll be interested to catch up with you sometime (perhaps over a beer at the next Twitter meetup :-)) to chat further about your thoughts on Microsoft and the launch.

    Cheers,
    Craig

  • Hi Simon,

    Thanks for the comment (and apologies for this late reply – my comment notification settings weren’t on – Doh!).

    Yes, it was an interesting day, and I’ll be interested to catch up with you sometime (perhaps over a beer at the next Twitter meetup :-)) to chat further about your thoughts on Microsoft and the launch.

    Cheers,
    Craig

About Craig

I'm the co-host of HubShots and the CEO of XEN - helping mid-large B2B companies with their digital marketing and lead generation.

Craig Bailey

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