Margaret McGann

Preparing for a media interview

In communications and marketing, media relations, public relations, writing on January 18, 2010 at 9:14 am

Whether it’s TV, radio, print or online, most requests for interviews begin with a phone call, tweet or email. The moment it comes in is your chance to take control of the interview.

Before agreeing to a media interview, ask the journalist:

  • What’s the purpose of the interview and when will it be aired, printed or posted?
  • What’s the focus of both the interview and the story you’re preparing?
  • Will the interview be face-to-face, by phone or email and how long will it last?
  • Will it be video or audio taped?
  • Who is your audience? (if it’s not a mainstream media outlet)
  • Who else are you interviewing for this story?
  • What is your deadline?
  • How can I reach you?

Now you have time to get ready:

  • Gather the information your need.
  • Decide what you want to say and how to say it (key messages).
  • Rehearse.
  • Have the interview agenda, key messages and other information you may need in front of you when you return the call or answer the email.

    Next week we’ll look at tips on how to survive and enjoy the media interview.

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