I recently appeared on The American Dream Show. Although I had done a TV news segment in Austin, TX for my 1st startup and lots of podcasts and phone interviews, I didn’t have a ton of TV experience. It was my 2nd TV appearance and I knew I had about 7 minutes of air time. Here’s what I learned from being on the show and how it taught me to nail a TV interview in a single take:
1). Do your research and get to know your host
I received a few emails from the producers before my appearance and in one of them, there was a short video preparing you for the types of questions that are asked. In it, the show’s host Craig Sewing tells you what their audience is looking for. While I was watching this, I was thinking about what topic I could talk about and what energy I was going to bring to the show. I then watched Craig on another show interviewing someone else and when he asked them a question, I paused it and imagined myself on the show answering it. By visualizing, I was mentally preparing myself for this opportunity.
2). Arrive at the studio early
This might sound obvious and you are probably thinking I am suggesting this so you don’t miss your time slot. But I like to get there early so I can familiarize myself with the environment so I am not overwhelmed or intimidated. I also like to talk to people so I can warm up my voice for the show.
3). Be prepared for being mic’ed up and small talk
A good way to warm up for the show is to talk to the host before the camera rolls. Tell them what you plan to talk about and if you have any questions that need answering, now is your last chance to ask them. After this, drink some water, breathe and relax. You’re about to be on TV!
4). Keep your energy level high
There is nothing worse than watching people get interviewed on TV who are boring and have little energy. So be the example. Keep your energy level high, be passionate about your startup (or whatever you are there to talk about) and be opinionated. No-one likes a fence sitter!
5). If you freeze or stutter, don’t dwell on it
It is easy to suddenly let your mind wander and think about all of the people watching you and making a balls-up of it. Shift gears quickly and move on. If you quickly forget about your mix up, so will the audience.
6). Always focus on your personal and company brand
Make sure that you submit your name and brand with the correct spellings. When it appears on TV, you want to make sure people know who you are and what company you are representing.
7). Always ask for a copy of the show
Once you have wrapped, follow up and ask for an mp4 version of the show so you can post on your social media channels. Once you have this, tell your community about your upcoming TV slot and then once it has been aired, post the video to your network. I was extremely fortunate as the producers said that they were so happy with my segment that they were going to air it nationwide. My interview was going to be broadcast in 9 US cities!
Here is the full interview of me talking about my next startup business Qwerky Coliving and coliving: