By Jeff Beals
At some point in your career, there’s a good chance you’ll be interviewed on the radio or some other form of media. When this opportunity happens, you’ll want to maximize it.
As a guy who has hosted a radio show for nearly 11 years, I have seen professionals use radio interviews to boost their careers and advance their businesses. I have also watched people fumble the opportunity of a radio interview, and worse yet, some guests will even fall flat on their faces.
Here’s how you can maximize your chance if you’re ever asked to be interviewed on a radio talk show (much of the same applies to television and podcasts as well):
But don’t over-prepare! Have your facts and figures in place and know what you hope to accomplish during the interview but don’t memorize scripted answers.
Show up on time with a positive attitude. Be prompt in answering the producer’s or host’s calls and emails leading up to the interview. If you are a “low-maintenance” guest who also happens to talk about interesting things, you’ll be invited back for additional interview opportunities.
Don’t ramble on with lengthy answers. I once interviewed a CEO whose answer to my first question was four or five minutes long. That’s forever in radio time. I eventually had to cut her off which I really hated to do.
Avoid clichés, excessive industry jargon or too much politically correct language. While you don’t want to say things that are insensitive, hurtful or harm your competitive advantage, listeners have no use for guests who spit out a bunch of lawyer-approved platitudes.
Stroke Their Egos
Most talk show hosts have elevated egos. They love sounding witty, pithy and intelligent. Do what you can to make the host sound good in front of his or her listeners while getting your message out.
Serve the Listeners
The worst interview guests are the ones who focus too much on themselves or go overboard in plugging their businesses. If you want your interview to help you do more business, focus on providing valuable and interesting information to the listeners. If they like you and appreciate your information, they will remember you and ultimately reward you. Never sound like a paid advertisement!
Strike a balance between being energetic-positive-enthusiastic and professional. You don’t want to make it sound like you are giddy about being on the radio, but you never want to come across as bored or disinterested.
Remember that the host is there to attract and retain listeners, not build up you and your company. The interview might be cut short. There’s a high likelihood you won’t get to cover everything you would like to say. Just let it go. Have a great attitude, build a relationship with the host and there’s a good chance you’ll be invited back.
Jeff Beals is a professional speaker and award-winning author, who helps professionals enjoy greater success through effective sales, marketing and personal branding techniques. He delivers energetic and humorous keynote speeches and workshops to audiences worldwide. To discuss booking a presentation, go to JeffBeals.com or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (402) 637-9300.
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