When you meet someone for the first time, it's a fairly natural reaction to smile, nod and extend one's hand. So, when you're invited to appear on TV, remember Bob Barker's parting words to his loyal Price is Right fans of 50 years: "I thank you, thank you, thank you for inviting me into your home."
For those priceless few minutes of most financial TV program interviews, you are in fact invited into the offices and perhaps homes of investors, large and small. There, in living color and perhaps larger than life high definition, you'll want to ensure that you not only clearly tell your story, but that you also look good while doing so. Remember to consult these tips before every interview opportunity. (Many will apply to print interviews as well.)
- Get yourself in the best possible state-of-mind before the interview.
- Be engaged.
- Listen actively. If you've done your homework, you won’t need to be practicing your next answer during the questioning.
- Don't be afraid to nod or smile, you'll look interested and alive.
- If you are in the same studio with the interviewer, keep eye contact while the question is being asked. If you are in a remote studio, look at the camera. You never know when your shot is on the air.
- Show your excitement about your fund and your messages.
- Always remain polite, even if the reporter seems antagonistic.
- Always be on time.
- Sit up straight no matter what type of chair or stool is provided.
- Sit on your jacket--pull it taught under you to avoid unflattering bumps and wrinkles.
- Keep a handkerchief or tissue handy to wipe perspiration during breaks.
- Leave your note cards in the dressing room. You know all the information you will need to know by memory. Glancing at cards makes it look like you are looking down and unsure of your answer.
- Take the pre-interview conversation seriously. Most programs require a conversation with the booker or producer to go over intended questions and issues to be discussed. Be sure to proactively communicate your key messages and themes because very often they will be integrated in the interview.
What to Wear/What Not to Wear.
- Feel free to ask the producer for wardrobe suggestions ahead of time.
- Dress professionally, even if your office prefers more casual attire.
- Stay away from large patterns or stripes.
- Stay away from black, red or white. Older technologies, which are sometimes still used, have difficulty with these colors.
- Accept the make-up provided, it will eliminate glare and make you look your best under the harsh lights.
- If you wear glasses, use them, but avoid looking directly at the lights.
- Men: consider knee length socks.
- Keep your jacket buttoned or only slightly open.
- Women: Avoiding red refers to your lipstick, too.
- Don't fuss with your hair, use hairspray as necessary.
- Avoid any flashy jewelry, or jewelry that jangles.
Special Tips for Remote Broadcast Interviews.
- Look directly into the camera, as though it is the interviewer or outside caller.
- Be comfortable fixing your earpiece should it fall out on the air.
- Remember the camera is rolling until the cameraman or producer tells you "We're done."
As with anything, practice makes perfect. Ask for a tape of the broadcast to review and learn for next time. Be critical but kind to yourself. Remember, we are most critical of ourselves. The exposure and credibility you gain from accepting television interviews is, as MasterCard has coined, "priceless." So, be sure to refer back to these tips before every opportunity.
Learn more at SunStar's media bootcamp. We'll run you through practice interviews, coaching you before and after as we review the tapes together. You'll have the freedom to make mistakes and get the feel of being comfortable on camera so you can make the most of each and every media opportunity.
Let's chat and see how SunStar can help you.