Preparing for an Interview
- Cultivate media relationships. Make the time to develop a working relationship with editors, producers, publishers, owners, feature/editorial writers, reporters.
- You are the expert. Help educate the reporter before the interview.
- Identify your communications message and prepare three key "talking points."
- Prepare an opening and closing statement.
- Do your homework. Know the facts. Know your position. Practice.
- Determine questions you hope won't be asked; then practice answering them.
- Find an angle. Identify or create a local hook that links your story to a national one or to other community events/issues/concerns.
- Find out who the reporter is – their position and who else is being interviewed.
- Know others positions. Find out/identify their key points.
- Know the format, theme and audience of the show. Establish ground rules, and find out what will be covered and how much time will be allowed for the program.
- Identify the person who can best represent your point of view.
- Read/listen to the latest edition of the newspaper/radio/TV news program before you do your program. A late-breaking story could affect your presentation.
- Arrive early – check out the setting, your appearance. Talk to the reporter about what will be covered, offer points you'd like to discuss. Do not have any caffeine.
- Be available for follow-up. Reporters often need more info.
- Relax and be yourself.