Whether you are a seasoned spokesperson or the changing of the calendar came with a promotion that will now require you to speak to the press, you have this in common: The New Year is a great time to revisit (or acquaint yourself with) the interview basics to ensure you are ready for the first press request of 2018.

Speaking with the press can be nerve-racking for just about anyone, but it certainly doesn’t have to be. All it takes is the right mindset and preparation.

First and foremost, an interview is an amazing opportunity so get excited! It is a chance to deliver your point of view about a trending issue, key points about a new product or commentary on any number of topics. Many spokespeople, especially novices, believe that they are at the mercy of the reporter, but that is far from the truth. A media-savvy and well-prepared spokesperson knows how to leverage a reporter’s questions as a means for telling the desired story. A sophisticated spokesperson knows precisely how to navigate an interview to lead the reporter down a preferred path – and not the other way around. Understanding that you are an active participant with the ability to steer the conversation just as much as the reporter will help put you in the right mindset and is key to a successful interview.

Remember: the reporter only has the questions, you have the answers.

Now that you have the right mindset about interviews, it’s time to get down to brass tacks for nailing press interviews. Here at M/P, we have 16 tacks – or tips, in this case – to be exact and we’re willing to give them to you for free in our new Sweet 16 Tips ebook.

Here’s a little preview of what you can expect:

  • Remember Your Audience
  • Use Trigger Words
  • Provide Positive Information First
  • “No Comment” is Not an Answer
  • Limit the Scope of your Answers

In this ebook we have 11 more tips, as well as complete explanations of each, and advice for what to do after your story has appeared from how to properly share the article on social media to correcting errors and how to handle being quoted out of context.

If you have any questions, you know where to find us.