By Katherine Kerr

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (April 10) — In a workshop at the Religion Communicators Council’s annual convention, Adelle M. Banks, a reporter for the Religion News Service, offered specific tips for faith communicators seeking to get coverage from the wire service and religion reporters.

  • Know who the reporters are with the organization that covers your organization’s faith or focus of interest. She directed RCC members to the Religion News Service staff page to identify the appropriate reporter to contact.
  • Think about visuals and multimedia opportunities for a particular story.
  • Be accessible and responsive when you get a call from a reporter.
  • If you have a spokesperson who is well-spoken, provide a short video to promote that person’s ability to articulate your organization’s cause.
  • Pitch stories ahead of an event. RNS prefers to advance the story rather than run stories about events that have already happened.
  • Think trends: the media will latch onto a trend if something has happened in threes. For example, three unaffiliated conferences focusing on racial reconciliation were scheduled by different organizations and faith leaders in three different venues. The RNS asked the leaders of each conference to write about their efforts and the RNS wrote a broader context story about the events.

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