Being interviewed by the media can be a scary prospect, but if you are prepared and
able to control the situation as much as possible then it can result in invaluable exposure and help position you and your business as a leading authority in your industry.
See below five tops tips that are easy to follow and useful in any media situation:
1. Be prepared
It is essential to properly prepare for your media appearance or interview. Where possible try to acquire the interview questions prior to your interview.
Make sure you are clear about your subject and think carefully about the key messages you want to convey. Concentrate on three main points that you want to get across – you will be surprised how quickly the time goes so anything else will be a bonus. Use the Reality Marketing Media Plan to assist you with this process.
Understand the audience and tailor your message accordingly. Ask who will be interviewing you and if you will be appearing with any other guests, so you can research their backgrounds. Check the producer has your correct name, title and company name.
Support your points with facts or anecdotes from your experience.
Conduct mock interviews as practice.
2. Be natural and positive
Most importantly, be yourself, be natural and authentic.
Before you begin to speak, smile at the interviewer to establish rapport. If you are on the phone conducting an interview, make sure you smile and stand up when speaking.
Use vocal variety. Let your voice and your delivery reflect the full spectrum of emotions and points of emphasis.
Use gestures that complement the expression of your ideas. Avoid distracting, meaningless
Maintain eye contact throughout the interview and keep an "open," friendly face.
Communicate total enthusiasm and involvement in your subject.
3. Be confident
Appear confident even if you are a nervous wreck inside. No one is going to believe in what you are saying if you don't believe it yourself. Take a breath before you speak. Your breathing and speaking rate should be steady and calm so you have time to think about what you are saying. This will help to avoid those awkward "ums" and "ahs".
Try not to interrupt the presenter or other guests – especially on radio. Your turn will come. Stay still and try not to move your head too suddenly. Hand gestures can help you make your point but try not to use them excessively.
Don't get over-confident and remember that the camera and microphones will be on even when the interview has finished. You will have seen many politicians caught out this way. Most importantly, smile and be yourself.
4. Be punctual
Schedule in plenty of time, allow for parking and to settle before your interview. Try to relax so you can get accustomed to the environment and go through your points. Don't be afraid to ask silly questions, from where the camera will be pointing to where the toilets are located. Make sure you have a glass of water to hand, as you will need it when your mouth gets dry.
5. Be engaging
Listen carefully to the questions. If you consider it difficult, pause before you answer to give yourself time to formulate a response. If you don't understand a question, ask that it be repeated.
Use short words and simple, punchy sentences. Avoid scientific terminology. Be descriptive, using images that the listener can picture. Use analogies whenever possible to simplify and bring to life your main points. Where appropriate, relate personal experiences or illustrations of your work to support your statements. Telling something about yourself will "humanize" you and make you relatable to the audience.
Thank the interviewer at the end of the session.
Best of luck, remember once the media exposure is released you can share on your social media platform and across any other relevant communications channels.
If you have any further queries regarding media training please contact Reality Marketing.