How to do Live Television Interviews

by admin on February 11, 2011


One of the things I dislike is doing live television interviews. I usually do a good to great job but it’s stressful; there are no retakes. What you see is what you get. I get complements when I do them and people think that after 30 years, I could do them in my sleep.

Nothing could be further from the truth. All of us who venture live do it with butterflys in our stomach.  I find that deep breathing (holding your breath till 10 and letting the air out slowly) and telling yourself that you are going to do well ( I walk through the valley of death I shall fear no evil) and knowing your subject matter will take care of the jitters in most cases.

Focus on the interviewer and talk to that person as if the cameras were not there. It’s a conversation between two people, not an audience.

It’s not going to be perfect, it never is. But it needs to be authentic which means that less than perfection is perfectly fine, possibly preferable.

Have 10 phrases prepared. If you stumble, fall back on those. These are the communication objectives for the interview.

Know that you will always feel a twinge of panic before you go on the set (or while on the set). Understand that. Anticipate it and it won’t be something you can’t work through.

Most interviewers recognize when a guest is having problems and they will talk while you regain your composure. They look good when they make you look good.

So if you are scheduled to go live, understand that those who have done it hundreds of times still get the jitters. Know what you are going to say and say it as if you don’t have a care in the world (but do your deep breathing exercises first).

See my latest example at . Feel free to have fun at my expense.


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