Are you a talented young go-getter anxious to make useful connections in the media? Or, alternately, are you a lazy young ignoramus anxious to build up enough connections in order to coast through the rest of your media career solely based on who you know? Either way, you'll need to know how to "Network" at "Media Events." PRNewser has an earnest guide to this invaluable practice today, full of tips on how to prepare your "elevator pitch" and "follow up" later to build strong working relationships. If you want to go that route, we salute you. If you're an awkward misanthrope like us, read on for five real tips on exploiting these media cattle calls to your advantage:
- 1. Intoxication—There are two types of people at "media parties": aspiring media people, who go there to make connections, and actual media people, who go for free drinks. If you're in the former group, take advantage of this dynamic and make yourself useful by fetching drinks for more established media figures. If they get drunk enough they might take an interest in you.
- 2. Name dropping—The only people who don't drop names are those so secure in enviable jobs that they don't have any need to impress anyone. This is a very small minority of people at media parties. Everyone else is constantly name-dropping furiously, though many are suave enough to make it seem like they're having a normal conversation. If you haven't been around long enough to get yourself any good names to drop, just act incredibly impressed at all the names that other people are dropping. This will endear you to them forever.
- 3. Sex appeal—If you're young and unconnected, your sex appeal is the only thing you have going for you. Of course, blatantly using your body to further your career prospects makes you a bit of an asshole. That's never stopped anyone before, though. If you're just another regular face in the crowd not attractive enough to draw the interest of lecherous media men with a shift of your thigh, reflect on how unfair the world is. You'll end up being a better writer than your sexier, more affluent counterparts.
- 4. Ego stroking—"Hey, nice to meet you. Wow, you work there? Oh my god, that's so crazy. I was just reading your piece last week! I hate to gush, but it was fantastic. I'd love to hear about how you got the story. I'm interested in that field myself!" Repeat this until you have a job.
- 5. Wild shit—Think that starting a fight at a boring media party would be bad for your career? Au contraire. Highly encouraged.