A fun way to generate PR for your business is to get in touch with your local radio station. Find a programme that covers local news and pitch stories direct to the producer, you should be able to find the contact details on the website. Listen to the show to ensure your story is a good fit and put yourself forward to be interviewed, either in the station or over the phone.
For many people talking live on the radio can feel a little nerve wracking but with our top tips we can help take away those nerves:
- Prepare! Prepare! Prepare! Why are you being interviewed? Think carefully about what you are going to say. How will you tell you story? Keep it interesting and try to tie your business key messages to the story. i.e. “Because all our products are hand-made the traditional way, the local school children were able to come into our pressoir and press their own fruit juices, we find this gentle method naturally preserves the exceptional flavours of the fruit.”
- Write down any key messages you would like to mention on the air before going in so you have something to refer to if you get stuck during the interview.
- They are likely to ask you to talk about yourself and what qualified you to discuss the subject matter. Prepare to answer the who, what, when, where, why questions, so prepare for these.
- Write your crib sheet in your own words, even if someone helps you to put them together, your own words will flow and feel more familiar.
- Practise the night before, over dinner with the family, with your partner or with yourself in front of the mirror. If you work in a sales type role you are probably very used to explaining what it is you do, if not it is better to practice.
- Ummm…! If you need to think about your answer it sounds far better to pause quietly for a second or two, rather than “umming” and “erring” which is distracting to the listener. You can use filler lines to give you time to think like; “that’s an interesting question” or laughing (if appropriate!) can fill a gap and give you time to think.
- Try to speak in short sentences as it is clearer for listeners and helps you keep track of what you are saying.
- Timing. Don’t rush your words, it should be a little slower just like when you talk to a stranger. Take your time. Look at the presenter. It’s a conversation afterall
- Breathing. Don’t be put off by the sound of your own breath in your earphones. If you find it off putting, ask them to turn your earphones down or take them off.
- Listen to the radio presenter and carefully answer the question that you are asked.
- Wait for him/her to finish the question, so you aren’t at risk of butting in, interrupting the flow or not fully answering the question.
- Clothing. Be careful that you aren’t wearing something that will make a noise or that you are constantly fiddling with a jangly bracelet or a jacket that crackles or needs readjusting.
- Smile! Smiling will naturally relax you and inject personality and tone into your voice.
Good luck! If you’re a PR Toolkit Member feel free to ping over your script for us to proofread.