American journalist, executive editor and former news anchor, Jim Lehrer, once said, “There’s only one interview technique that matters…do your homework.” They say practice makes perfect, but the recipe for success calls for an equal amount of preparation. Preparing for an interview is an acquired skill that requires a great deal of attention. Being knowledgeable in the subject of conversation is no longer enough. Interviewees must also be skilled in the art of the interview.
In preparing for an interview, it can be beneficial to consult a media relations professional. While journalists cannot be bothered with such details, Obtaining advice and essential skills from public relations professionals will make for a positive interview experience. As important as media interview skills are, these skills are actually overlooked by too many professionals.
There are several components to a good interview, from arrival time to proper dress code and even body language. Further, different media require different preparation steps. For phone interviews, for example, it is important to note that utilizing cell phones is not only risky, but also discouraged unless the connection is strong and clear. For television interviews, you should avoid clothing patterns, such as pinstripes and small checks.
These details, though minuscule, are definitely not insignificant. As noted, interviewees should consider consulting with publicists prior to their interview. Through years of industrial experience, we at The PR Group have collected and compiled several steps essential to a positive interview experience. This compilation has led to the development of our free E-book, 75 Steps to Prepare For Media Interviews, which is available online and free to download. There is no such thing as over preparing for an interview. Understanding the content of which you are an expert, as well as understanding and applying the tips provided in this E-book, can lead to rewarding conversations with the media.