Why Media Training is a Good Thing

scared of media photoThe bottom line is that not everyone is comfortable doing media interviews. Most people in fact do get butterflies until they have done so many where rolling out of bed and doing a live interview over the phone in their pajamas and slippers is no biggie. Anyway, especially with television you have minutes to make an impression and segments go very quickly. Not only do you want to put your best foot forward (i.e., comb your hair, brush your teeth, take a shower etc.) you want to appear to look comfortable even if you are internally contemplating running off set and losing your breakfast in the nearest trash receptacle. Why? When you are doing an interview you are selling your product or service and people do not want to buy from you if you are a spaz throwing stress balls at the reporter (I have seen this – not joking). Second, if you do a good job, chances are they will ask you for a follow up or future interview. Here is one priceless example from last week. Monique Hollowell, author of Exersexology was on XM Radio in Vegas two weeks ago. She nailed the interview as usual and the producer wanted her back on the show. As her publicist, I followed up with the producer last week (this show gets 1M listeners per day F.Y.I.) and not only does he want her back on, he wants her in the studio for a full day to record 200, 30 – 60 second commercials that XM is going to run whenever they want. All of the commercials will highlight her book and direct listeners to her website. You cannot put a price tag on that type of exposure. (This would also be a good spot to talk about why your marketing needs to be 100% up and running when you have this type of media exposure, but I will save that for another blog.) Here are a couple of tips and tricks to help you have a successful media spot:

1. Arrive on time. This seems simply enough, but not only arrive at the studio on time, but arrive early! If you are already nervous, you do not want to be panicking while sitting in traffic (yes, plan for this too) and run into the studio like the Tasmanian Devil.

2. Forget everything but your website. I tell my clients that it is OK to forget your name, address, where you parked your car, but whatever you do remember to plug your website and where you can buy your book or other product or service. Do not rely on the television program to have a screen shot with your website on it at all times.

3. If you are afraid of the cameras, just talk to the reporters. The reporters are there to make you feel comfortable and you should have taken a look at the topic you will be discussing prior to the show (but don’t over rehearse). Ignore the cameras pointed at you and just keep in mind that  you are having a conversation about a topic you are the expert in. That is why you are on, right?

If you are still nervous, consider investing in media training or hire a publicist (me) that includes this in their PR packages, so you are as comfy as possible in front of the camera.

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