An interview is a platform for you to make an impression on those who are watching, listening or reading. This is your opportunity to directly promote your company, brand, new product, etc. to your target audience within the media. Take this opportunity to get all the points across you want to highlight.
Here are some tips to make sure you capitalize on this opportunity:
- Be prepared: Chances are if you’re about to be interviewed by a member of the media, they consider you to be an expert on a certain topic. So be sure you sound like one! A reporter is usually willing to provide a list of sample questions they plan to ask you. There’s nothing wrong with practicing how you plan to answer those questions ahead of time. In fact, it’s recommended. The reporter needs you to sound good too.
- Remember your audience: Always keep your audience in mind during an interview. If this interview is with a trade publication (for example, you’re a contractor and are talking to a reporter from a construction magazine), feel free to use “industry lingo.” However, if you’re talking to an outlet like your hometown newspaper or radio station, answer the questions in layman’s terms. You don’t want to give answers that your audience doesn’t understand.
- Have your talking points nearby: If this interview is over the phone, which a lot of newspaper, magazine and radio interviews are, it’s a great idea to have a bulleted list of talking points by you that you can reference easily and quickly. As long as you don’t sound like you’re reading straight off of a script, they will never know that you have them by you. Chances are, talking points will make your great answers even stronger and will assure you stay on topic. This is also a great way to steer the conversation.
- Don’t get flustered: Hey, it happens. We all mess up from time to time. The secret is to not get flustered if you stumble or misspeak during an interview. Getting flustered can keep you from sharing the message you wanted to get across. If you stumble, just move on and be a star during the rest of the interview.
- Show off your success: Once the interview is over, there is a good chance the story will live online somewhere. If it does, make sure you let people know about it. This could be as easy as sharing the link on social media or pasting the story on the “news” section of your company’s website. Even printing out the story and framing it for your clients to see can be effective.
Whether you’re talking to USA Today, the local community newspaper or a local radio station, every interview is important. Follow these tips and you’ll be well on your way to making the most out of any media interview.