TV interviews are a great way to get in front of your target audience, increase brand awareness, educate them and create a call to action.
Preparation is key to a successful TV interview. It also goes without saying that the more practice you get, the more confident you will feel. So, here are our top tips for TV interviews.
Know your key messages: what are the messages you want to get across to the audience? Know these inside and out, whilst also being able to provide examples.
The curve ball: having worked on political campaigns you can always count on a curve ball question. Make sure you have a fail-safe that will allow you to gather your thoughts and provide a cohesive response. If you want to steer the conversation away from the question then redirect.
Do your research: know the program and the audience.
Speak with authority: own the interview. If you’ve got the opportunity to get your message across then do it – don’t hold back. Hold your head up, don’t slouch, place your hands on your lap or on the desk in front of you (if you’re standing place you hands to the side, in front or behind you), don’t fidget, lean in (slightly), make eye contact with the journalist/host and speak clearly, slowly and annunciate your words.
Provide good sound bites: I’ve had clients stand outdoors and do a 20-minute press conference or 30-minute recorded interview for the TV station to then select a seven-second sound bite. If it’s the world’s best sound bite that’s ok. Make sure you are able to respond to a question in one sentence, but allow yourself the opportunity to expand upon the initial answer.
Visual aids: when you are approached to do an interview offer visual aids, photos or footage. If it’s appropriate you may want to demo your service or product. We recently had a client perform acupuncture on live TV.
Dress to impress: if you’re representing your business and it’s appropriate to do so wear branded apparel. However, if you’re more comfortable in a suit or smart casual and this reflects your role within the business or your ‘uniform’ that’s perfectly fine too. Don’t wear anything too busy or with a pattern; bold, block colors look better on TV.
Practice: if you want to practice then there’s no harm in asking someone to run through questions with you ahead of your interview. We work with clients who are well accustomed to live interviews and still like us to run through a few questions with them ahead of time; that’s perfectly fine.
Good luck … and enjoy.