You’ve been called by the press for an interview. You’re a subject matter specialist and the thought of a mistake unnerves you. How can you deliver a result that makes you proud?
There’s always an advantage to getting your message out through the press. Preparation is the key to any successful interview. Use these secrets from public relations pros to help you achieve the results you seek.
- Stay focused on your message. Rough out some bullets before you return a call. What is the main point you want to address? Prepare for anything that may be negative or controversial.
- Be concise. Use plain language. Reporters will purposely pause to get you to say more, so don’t just talk to fill space. Don’t make “off the record” comments or saying “no comment.”
- Be memorable. Use statistics, comparisons, examples and anecdotes to make your points.
- Correct misstatements. The reporter will not know the information as well as you. If they make a misstatement, correct it quickly. Do not repeat an inaccuracy but clarify and accentuate the positive.
- Remember that you are in control. Just because a question is asked, you’re not required to give an answer. If it’s something you can’t or don’t want to discuss, change the conversation. If you don’t know the answer, say so. Ask the interviewer if you can get back to them later with accurate information.