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Pitch Perfect: Communicating with Traditional and Social Media for Scholars, Researchers, and Academic Leaders Paperback – May 25, 2010


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Editorial Reviews

Review

This is a great read for those who may have a future in academia and just for anyone else that may wonder what the next step is in getting a story pitched (Madeline L. Moore WordPress.com)

"William Tyson has written the practical guide to communicating knowledge with broad audiences. This how-to-guide of handling the media for academia is a unique book that should be used as a reference for researchers, faculty and scholars." (Under the Crown of Agriculture)

"In Pitch Perfect, author William Tyson provides a practical how-to guide for academics wanting to engage with traditional and new media. The book reads like a primer on the field of journalism with applications for academia....The content of this book would be a good selection for academics who have valuable and newsworthy expertise or initiatives and are seeking to make these advances." (NACADA Journal (National Academic Advising Association))

"REVIEWER'S CHOICE Pitch Perfect is a 'must' for any collection strong in media communication, business and public relations. It covers the basics of how to attract media attention, offering examples and anecdotes from different academic disciplines to show how to explain research to a larger audience than fellow academics. It considers common issues and offers a fine survey for scholars unused to handling the media, and is a 'must' for any education or college-level holding." (Midwest Book Review)

"Interesting Read" (The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education)

"A primer on communicating knowledge and ideas to broader audiences via print, broadcast, and online media." (The Chronicle of Higher Education)

“This new book from William Tyson discusses the many ways to share information to a wider public through mediums such as blogs and Twitter. Through case studies, the book will guide you through the essentials of communicating with your audience.” (NILOA (National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment) Newsletter)

“I have benefited from Bill Tyson’s counsel for more than twenty years. Pitch Perfect is his much-needed primer telling faculty readers what they need to know if they want to make what they know, and have discovered, important to other people. Here is a volume truly chock full of practical advice offered in a context that helps make the mysterious rational.” (Robert Zemsky, Education Professor and Chairman)

“In a time of growing scientific, technological and ethical complexity in all aspects of our lives, the need for researchers and the academic community to reach out to the public has never been more important. Pitch Perfect provides easy access for the interested, but hesitant academic to get involved in some of the most important national and international conversations of our time. Bill Tyson has provided the tools for getting important information off the sidelines and into the national dialogue without compromising objectivity and scholarship.” (Thomas S. Litwin, Ph.D. Director, Clark Science Center, Smith College)

"Reading this book is like sitting down to a long, pleasurable conversation with your own private media consultant. Chapter by chapter, you learn everything from the deceptively simple task of how to frame clear and compelling media messages to preparing for a media interview. Bill Tyson's eminently readable and useful book is a must-read for those scholars, researchers, and academic leaders who recognize that strategic communications planning is not an option, but rather a critical aspect of their ongoing work.” (Joan Dassin, Executive Director, Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program)

“As an academic publisher, I work with hundreds of scholars, encouraging them to communicate their research to the widest audience possible. Each of our authors stands to benefit greatly from Bill Tyson's book, which explains to scholars how they can best share their findings without dumbing down their message. With clear examples and telling anecdotes from across the academic disciplines, Tyson gives faculty a map for transcending their circle of peers and spreading the key points of their research to a larger public.” (Marlie Wasserman, Director)

"This is a remarkable work, a how-to guide to effective media relations by a pro who has seen it all and done it all. It is a brisk, entertaining tour of a largely misunderstood world and a practical and pragmatic primer on how to flourish in it. Now, instead of talking to people about the precepts of media relations, I will simply hand them this book. It is so valuable I plan on buying many copies." (Don Hale Vice President for Public Affairs, The University of Texas at Austin)

"The book is terrific. It's a very clear, very concrete guide to virtually every aspect of dealing with the news media, right down to blogs and Twitter. But what struck me as most unusual – and potentially most valuable – is its pitch-perfect and lucid presentation of how journalists look at stories and sources, and the whole process. It is failure to understand that part of the equation that most often derails potentially effective efforts at communication between the academy and the media. With this book as a guide, that doesn't have to happen. Wonderful job." (Richard Cooper former Deputy Bureau Chief and News Editor of the Los Angeles Times Washington Bureau)

"Do you want media attention? then read Bill Tyson's Pitch Perfect. Better than anything else I've read, Tyson teaches strategies for presenting ourself effectively to both old and new media. He shows you how and he helps you understand why." (Douglas Bennett, President)

About the Author

William Tyson is owner of Morrison & Tyson Communications (MTC), a national media relations firm that serves colleges, universities, policy institutes, and foundations. Much of the company’s work focuses on advancing new research and issues of higher education cost, quality, access, and student success. National media also call upon MTC for its expert sources as they develop their stories and report the news. As a leading consultant in communications strategy development and media relations for nearly 30 years, Tyson has worked with the National Survey of Student Engagement; Community College Survey of Student Engagement; National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education in the release of their 50-state report card on higher education, Measuring Up; Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program; Pew Charitable Trusts Early Education project; Institute for Research on Higher Education at the University of Pennsylvania; and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. In addition, he has provided national media consulting to well over a hundred colleges and universities. Tyson is a founding board member of the National Survey of Student Engagement and also served on the board of the American Association for Higher Education and as an advisory member to the Institute of Higher Education Policy’s Building Engagement and Attainment of Minority Students. Morrison & Tyson Web site: www.morrisonandtyson.com

Robert Zemsky
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Stylus Publishing (May 25, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579223338
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579223335
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,827,436 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Gibbs TOP 1000 REVIEWER on July 22, 2010
Format: Paperback
Unfortunately there is often little relationship between the merit of an idea and the amount and quality of press coverage that it attracts. In order to get ideas publicised, the person with the idea has to acquire skills in communicating through the various media, and William Tyson's book is designed to explain what those skills entail.

The book provides a basic description of how the media work and how to develop a media strategy, and it goes on to give advice on a range of different interactions with the media including: presenting your story in writing, contacting the media, presenting new research findings, how to respond when a reporter calls, conducting media interviews, writing opinion articles, delivering speeches and promoting books. A number of useful traditional media contacts in the US, Canada and the UK are listed in appendices.

I was a bit surprised to find that instructions on how to communicate using social media were limited to one chapter (although the chapter on book promotion also referred to social media). In my view the book provides a very useful manual for academics to use in communicating with traditional media, but for a complete overview of how to get ideas publicised academics will need also to consult other resources which deal more extensively with non-traditional media.
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Format: Paperback
I will stop just short of a rave review for Tyson's Pitch Perfect. He delivers a very useful overview of media outlets with very practical advice on how academics can lean into the media fray. He made me think.

In terms of criticism, two relatively minor things come to mind:
1. The book is visually boring. There are no illustrations, diagrams, or pictures. Tyson deviates very little from a straight presentation of linear text.
2. For me, I did not get a real sense of story in the narrative. That is, it felt like a "just the facts" recitation. I loved the material, but without a sense of story it did not jump off the page.

Overall, Tyson has done a nice job. This will be a useful tool for the target audience - scholars, researchers, and academic leaders.
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Format: Paperback
PITCH PERFECT: COMMUNICATING WITH TRADITIONAL AND SOCIAL MEDIA FOR SCHOLARS, RESEARCHERS, AND ACADEMIC LEADERS is a 'must' for any collection strong in media communication, business and public relations. It covers the basics of how to attract media attention, offering examples and anecdotes from different academic disciplines to show how to explain research to a larger audience than fellow academics. It considers common issues and offers a fine survey for scholars unused to handling the media, and is a 'must' for any education or college-level holding.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Hanna on June 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
Although this A-to-Z guide is aimed at inhabitants of the Ivory Tower, the practical lessons on every page can be used by anyone who wants to have productive, professional relations with media. The tools of the trade have changed with the advent of Twitter, blogs and Facebook, all of which Mr. Tyson addresses, but the basics are the same, and Pitch Perfect takes readers through the process one step at a time. Media, too, ought to appreciate that people who pay attention to what is said here won't be wasting their time with pitches that are wide of the plate.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By sarah tschiggfrie on August 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
I've been in media relations at a university for five years and I only wish Bill Tyson had written this book five years ago. It gives every media relations professional both the overview and the specifics they need to perform well, including in the new social media. I'm keeping this book handy as a constant reference. I recommend it to everyone in this field,whether they are new to the profession or consider themselves well-worn pros.
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