Can I throw out that cliche again? Good, because it bears repeating. If there is one thing that kills a media relations strategy quicker and more consistently than any other, it’s slow response time. A sometimes disillusioning truism in our industry is that it’s not necessarily the best source that gets quoted, it’s often the first source that returns a reporter’s phone call. A qualified source must operate on the reporter’s time frame, not his or her own. Not only does timely response endear yourself to a reporter, solidifying your position in that reporter’s rolodex for future reference and ongoing dialogue, but being quick to respond often affords you the enviable opportunity to shape the story, putting the context of the article in your terms, rather than those of your competitor.