Speaking/Live Training


Book Michael for your conference or in-house training session

Michael is known for his energy and clarity as a speaker. Audiences leave his presentations feeling both inspired AND armed with specific, actionable tips they can apply immediately to get better PR results. (See their tweets at the bottom of the page.)

In the 20 years I have coordinated the program for our conference, we have not had a better speaker than Michael Smart. He’s in a league of his own. In my opinion, his messages could only be communicated through the imagination of a pitching training virtuoso.

– Keith Moore, principal, Keith Moore and Associates 

He’s a regular presenter at the top national conferences in PR – PRSA, Ragan Communications, PR News – and he’s delivered the closing keynote for the past three years at PRSA’s annual rally for its top leadership from around the country. His speaker ratings consistently range from 4.7 to 4.9 on a 5-point scale, which usually makes him the top-rated speaker at the events he addresses. Michael also keynotes regional and industry-specific PR conferences.

Meeting planners love working with him because he puts audiences first and follows through on requests and deadlines.

Topics and formats are below.

Jumpstart your team with on-site training

PR leaders at companies and PR agencies bring Michael in to re-charge their media outreach and hone their PR writing skills.

Dawn Doty

Our team LOVED Michael’s training. People are super-energized at all levels. Michael’s ‘real people’ stories showcasing national media results were spot-on for the team. They are already sharing their ‘top 3 training takeaways’ so we can reinforce what he taught them.”

– Dawn Doty, VP and Partner, Linhart PR, Denver

Paige Donnelly

My global media relations team only gets together once per year, so I had very high standards when looking for an outside expert to speak to us. Michael delivered. Our group repeatedly told me how much they enjoyed his outstanding half-day session and appreciated how down to earth he is as a presenter. They felt it was the best of our week together – very practical.”

– Paige Donnelly, Communications Manager, Novozymes, Raleigh, NC

Sabia Schwarzer head shot

Michael combines energy and enthusiasm with practical advice and many current examples of successful media pitches. One team member followed one of Michael’s recommendations precisely and landed an interview for her CEO in the WSJ two months later; another colleague used one of Michael’s techniques and landed an opinion piece in a regional publication. He’s become a regular at our meetings–providing great insights and encouragement to building lasting relations with key influencers.”

– Sabia Schwarzer, VP, Head of Communications, Allianz North America, Washington, DC

He’s done on-site training for groups ranging from 5 to 75, from Iowa City to Malibu and from Geneva to Bangkok.

Select clients include:


  • Allianz (#31 on Global Fortune 500)
  • Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
  • Kempinski
  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • Unum
  • Scripps Health
  • Emory University
  • Georgia Tech

Formats and topics

60-90 minute keynotes or breakout sessions:

  • New Secrets of Media Relations Superstars
  • Avoid the 7 Deadliest PR Writing Errors

Half-day, daylong, or two-day workshops:

  • Perfect Pitching Boot Camp: Winning Over Journalists and Bloggers in the New Media Relations Landscape
  • Placements Without Pitching: Getting on Busy Influencers’ Radar Screens So They Come to YOU
  • Smarter PR Writing That Gets Results


Speaking Request