3 Tips to nail that press interview

Whether you’re lining up interviews for an upcoming tradeshow or are arranging a press conference, successfully preparing for the interview is key.  These interviews can take your business to the next level – if you get the interview right.  

The news industry is a rapid-fire, 24-hour cycle, so it’s easy for your messaging to be taken out of context or perhaps not conveyed as you had originally planned.  By following a few of the tips listed below, you’ll be on your way to nailing a successful interview. 

1.    Prepare in advance

This is a no-brainer, right?  However, many people assume that since they work in the subject matter to be discussed, they already know the material and don’t need to practice.  WRONG!  A simple question can throw you off track, or you may be asked a question that asks for confidential information.  By preparing in advance, you’ll have your messaging in mind and will be prepared to answer those tricky questions, as well as divert attention away from subjects you’re not comfortable answering.

2.    Be on time

If you’ve arranged an interview at a trade show for say, 11 am, don’t show up at 11 am. Be there early!  Members of the press have jam-packed schedules and aren’t always able to make each appointment on time.  Often times, they may show up late or even early!  Be ready to go about 20 minutes before the scheduled interview. You’ll make sure you’re on time and will have a few minutes to take deep breathes and mentally prepare for a solid interview.

3.    Let the interviewer lead

I always encourage clients to approach each interview with the mindset that they’re simply having a discussion.  You want to build a sense of comradery and want the discussion to be pleasant and enjoyable for both parties.  Don’t approach each interview as if it’s a presentation.  Let them ask questions, read their body language, and most importantly, be respectful of their time.  Remember, they’re doing you a favor by taking the time to speak with you.

There is so much that goes into a successful media interview, but these tips are a great starting point.  Canyon PR offers a media training package in which we provide onsite media training to individuals and/or groups to further prepare them for upcoming interviews.  If this is something you feel you or your business may benefit from, contact us today to learn more!

- Megan Saulsbury, founder and CEO, Canyon PR