Why is it that interviews make people so nervous? Maybe it’s because we so commonly associate the word “interview” with terms like “pressure” or “limited”. Some interviews can even feel like a game of tennis, you’re either hitting or receiving with nothing in between.
A good radio or television interview shouldn’t feel this way! You’re not walking into a job interview, granted you still want to present yourself as a professional, rather it’s about having a conversation with someone.
I’ve had the opportunity in my career to be a first media interview for many independent and emerging artists…here’s the best advice I can give to you…
Be conversational! You don’t need a list of standard questions so you can practice and formulate your answers. Forced responses don’t make for a good product on our end. We want the conversation to be as natural as possible. Let it flow and work with the direction it takes. If you’re worried about the questions, don’t be! Truthfully, they should be about you and hopefully you know everything about you!
Mistakes are okay! If you stumble or miss speak try to keep going. You are human! We all make mistakes! If the interview happens to be pre-recorded and the mistake is substantial, see if the interviewer can edit it out and make sure you provide them with the correct information.
Try to avoid yes or no answers. The goal of the interview is to find out more about you to share with our listeners or viewers…so give it to us! When the interview is done, we hope that you’ll have gained a couple new fans who want to explore your music more. If you’re giving just yes or no answers, you’re not giving the audience a lot to work with! Why should they take interest in you? That said…don’t drag on and on with your responses either. It’s all about finding the balance; give enough information without losing the audience. Here’s a little tip, if it seems like your interviewer cut you off, chance is you were probably dragging on and on!
Try not to get offended either. If the interviewer probes you for more of an elaborate answer,
you probably didn’t provide them with enough. Again, a good interviewer is going to make it all about you so understand the more information you give, the more beneficial to your career this is. Some questions may sound like dumb questions to you, but really in an interview there are no dumb questions. Don’t take this the wrong way….you obviously know everything there is to know about you. However, the listening audience probably doesn’t know a thing about you. Those questions that seem “dumb” or “simple” are going to provide them with that information.
Make sure to also get in there where people can find your music. Even if the interviewer forgets to ask…sneak it in there somehow! For example, if you’re chatting about a new single, mention that it’s available on iTunes or you have a Facebook page where the track can be previewed.
Our goal when interviewing you is to make YOU look good! Help us with that. Give us all the information you can and more. Be present in the interview yourself. Most importantly have FUN with it! And remember…it’s just a conversation!