Margaret McGann

More tips on how to survive the media interview:

In communications and marketing, media interview, media relations, media training, public relations on February 1, 2010 at 8:43 am

Media interviews can seem and sometimes are daunting which is why this week’s post provides more tips on how to handle them with ease and confidence.

  1. Anticipate: Expect difficult questions and use your key messages. Before the interview begins think of the hardest questions you could be asked and mentally rehearse your answers.
  2. Answer first, then segue to your message: Always answer the question honestly and briefly, then move logically to the key message you want to make. Even if the question seems negative, answer it and move on to your point.
  3. Always answer the question: If you do not respond, (i.e., no comment), you will seem evasive and imply  you’ve got something to hide. Say instead, “I can’t speak to that because…” and give a reason.
  4. Emphasize your key messages: Reinforce you main message with simple phrases such as, “the key point is.” or “most importantly.” Repetition is another way to communicate your message.
  5. Speak in personal terms when possible: Using personal anecdotes to illustrate your point is the most effective way to communicate your message.
  6. Keep your answers clear and concise: Don’t give a long explanation or go off topic.
  7. Use metaphors and analogies: Provide comparisons and examples that bring facts and figures to life (i.e., one in four people will suffer from this disease in their lifetime; we are the only organization to have won this award three times in a row).
  8. Prompt questions: You can prompt the next question you want asked by ending your response with a “cue.”
    For example: “We’ve done something no other organization has been able to do.”
    “And that’s just one of many possibilities.”
    “Just think of all the ways people will be able to use this.”

Taking a deep breath and following these tips should help you relax knowing you are in control of the interview.

Do you have any specific tips or techniques to share that have worked well for you?


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