Introduction to UBC Media Relations

What we do:

  • Help assess the news value of a research paper, project or story idea
  • Identify the best media outreach strategy
  • Package stories: write news releases, produce videos, edit op-eds
  • Prepare researchers for interviews through media training
  • Provide issues management support

Primary audiences:

Through traditional and emerging news media, we try to reach:

  • General public
  • Government
  • Funding agencies
  • Business community

The stories we tell:

  • Peer-reviewed research that is breakthrough in its field or has the potential for significant public good
  • Research published in journals or presented at conferences that has the potential for media interest
  • Expert commentary on current events that are of ongoing public interest
  • Government announcements for on-campus events that are of media interest
  • Donor or award announcements that align with UBC’s strategic priorities and are of potential media interest
  • Strategically important announcements for the university or significant faculty recruitment successes
  • Significant student-related news or initiatives

How we distribute the news:

  • News releases: timed to a journal publication, conference presentation, live event
  • Expert advisories: experts available to comment on news of the day
  • Media advisories: invitation to an event that media can attend
  • Q&As: topics or findings not tied to a journal publication
  • Feature stories: significant human-interest angle
  • Op-eds: help with editing and placement in newspapers and The Conversation
  • Pitches: direct email or phone pitches to select reporters
  • News wires: distribution of news via EurekAlert!
  • Further amplification through social media, internal communications and brand websites

How to get your story in the news:

  • Alert UBC media relations or your faculty communications staff about upcoming papers or story ideas. Ideally, please let us know at least two weeks in advance of publication so we have time to prepare media materials. Please send us an email answering:
    • What did you do? What have you found?
    • Why will this matter to the general public?
    • What are the next steps in this research? What impact will your findings have?
  • Alert UBC media relations about breaking or upcoming news in your area that you could like to comment on
  • Sign up for the UBC Experts Guide

Media training:

We offer one-on-one or group as well as online media training sessions that cover:

  • How to identify stories that will be of interest to media
  • How news stories are told
  • How to craft key messages for interviews
  • Interview tips and techniques
  • Tips for radio, television and print and what to expect on publication day
  • Option for interview practice and feedback