Tips for a successful media interview

By TINA L. PUGLIESE, APR, Pugliese Public Relations

tina puglieseIf a reporter is interested in your story, she will want to conduct an interview. Here are some tips for mastering this part of the publicity process:

Be prepared to answer basic questions. Don't expect that the reporter who is going to interview you will have visited your Website. This might be the first time they have even heard of your business. Be sure to ask how much they know about your business, and whether they would like you to give them a quick tour. Expect basic inquiries such as, "How did you get started doing xx?" and "Tell me what it is you do."

Do not make up answers. If you don’t know the answer to a question, tell the reporter you don't know. Offer to get back to the reporter with a response or refer someone who can respond to the question before her deadline.

Be clear and simple.

Nothing is "off the record." Do not say anything you wouldn't want to see in print or have aired on television.

Remain calm and in control at all times. While a reporter may ask you hard questions or be rude, it is important that you remain pleasant and calm at all times.

After a positive story appears, send the reporter a short thank you note with your business card. It is very important to maintain good, long-term relationships with reporters.


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