Spotlight on: Preparing for Interviews

By admin · October 2, 2015

You’ve booked an interview with a reporter. Congratulations! Now what? Here are some tips to ensure your experience is a smooth one.

Interview Preparation

  • Develop key messages beforehand and practice saying them, so they are delivered naturally.
  • Use plain language and avoid jargon. Explain any complex concepts in easy to understand language.
  • Avoid rambling sentences. Short sentences are best for news clips.
  • Play Devil’s advocate. The reporter may ask questions that will pull you off topic. Anticipate these questions by writing down some possible ‘trigger questions’ and developing answers for them.

TV Interviews

  • Don’t panic that you are on camera. View the interview as a conversation between you and the reporter.  
  • Don’t wear any distracting patterns or ‘loud’ colours. Viewers will focus on these details instead of what you’re saying.  
  • Assume the microphone is always on. Avoid saying anything you don’t want broadcast to the world.

Radio Interviews

  • Interview by phone: Stand up, smile and breathe. Your listeners can’t see you but you still need to convey confidence with your voice.
  • Watch your ‘uhs’ and ‘umms’. They are much more noticeable with radio and can make you sound inarticulate. Be aware of these filler words.
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