Whether it is your first time meeting with a reporter or your 100th time, here are some tips to ensure you are camera ready! Watch below for an example of a great media interview from PFFN president Todd Ingalsbee.
• Be enthusiastic and upbeat.
• Follow the 4 Hs: Be happy, honest, helpful and humble.
• Never lie to or mislead the media.
• Don’t speculate. Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know,” then find out the answer and get back to media promptly.
• Avoid saying “no comment,” which sounds guilty. If you can’t answer a question, explain why you can’t release that information.
• Be brief. Talk to TV reporters in sound bites of 10 seconds or less. Don’t feel compelled to fill an awkward silence.
• Be aware of your body language. Keep your hands out of your pockets, use gestures to help make your points. Body language and tone of voice are more memorable to TV viewers than what was actually said.
• Use “flagging” to highlight your key points. Use buzz words to emphasize an important point you want quoted by using phrases like, “the key is…” or “the bottom line is…
• Watch what you say in front of reporters at all times, even when you think the camera or tape recorder is not rolling.
• Avoid going “off the record.”
Remember – you are the expert and share any point you may have missed as you close out the interview. A simple thank you to the reporter is the perfect way to end and very much appreciated!