It was the tunnel under Stonehenge that did it for me.
Listening to one of those who hates the idea.
You would have thought, a protestor – given the opportunity to go on 5 Live and make a stink about it – would have found the whole idea irresistible.
Now don’t believe for one minute that I am against the plan – having looked at all the evidence around traffic congestion on the A303 in Wiltshire at this World Heritage site and the need to solve the issue once and for all, I liked the idea of the tunnel. It seemed to deal neatly with one of the more contentious problems of the modern world.
But I was willing to listen to the other side of the argument.
Trouble is, the campaigner hadn’t really thought about the platform she’d been presented with – and felt it was an excuse to tell a long rambling back story about traffic congestion on the A303 in Wiltshire and the need to solve the issue of this World Heritage site…
Get the picture?
In other words, she explained the story. She explained the problem. She explained how long it had all been going on. She explained what would happen if they built the tunnel.
And in doing so she told me everything I already knew. And we were precisely no further forward at the end of her interview with Nicky Campbell.
I don’t blame her.
When confronted with an issue in real life, the logical way to get someone on your side is to explain the parameters in order they understand the size of the problem.
You can’t do that in the media. There’s no time and …er…we already know all that!
Don’t approach an interview with a mission to explain – there’s no time to pump up the tyres, you’ve simply got to ride the bike.
Think of it as a chance to influence your audience’s behaviour. What do you want them to think, feel, do, react – how can you hope to get anyone to back your campaign, recycle their plastic, cease their nuclear weapons programme when all you do is explain what they already know.
Creating a compelling argument, devising a scintillating narrative that persuades your audience by influencing them is at the heart of our learning in CoComms Media Training, ensuring delegates define the reason they’re there – and critically know what outcome they would like.
We do it every day, with a clear framework and guidance on language, storytelling and intention. Give us a call if you too would like to be in the know!