In my last post, I shared with you how to get featured in The Huffington Post (though, those tips can really be applied for any online publication). In this post, I’m going to break down how I landed an interview on ABC 2’s AM Northwest morning show:
Before I dive into it, though, I really want to stress something important. Promise me that if there is anything in this post that resonates with you or you find helpful, please take action on it. Don’t wait until you feel ‘ready’ to send that pitch in or to put yourself out there. Know that you have what it takes now as I don’t think you will ever feel 100% ready.
Quick note: I’ll be live streaming and doing Q&As around pitching in our free community.
When it came to writing this pitch, I was very lucky to receive some guidance. As you know, there are a few things that I have been able to do via trial and error but, for this one, my good friend Selena Soo helped me perfect it. I’m going to share with you everything that I did from crafting the email to preparing for the interview and what it’s like to be on live (😳) TV.
Ok, here we go…
How to get featured on TV:
1. How to Pitch a TV Show
When it comes to pitching a TV show, I think it’s a very similar process to reaching out to an online publication. Do your research and try to find a show that is a good fit to your brand and message. In my case, I pitched AM Northwest because I knew of other entrepreneurs that had been featured on it and I had a few segment ideas that I felt would resonate with their audience.
Crafting the email pitch:
Before you write the email, take some time to brainstorm some segment ideas that are intriguing and peak curiosity. You don’t need to explain what you are going to be talking about in each one, though, it’s just the overall idea.
Here were my segment ideas:
You also want to make sure your segment suggestions are timely. Because I was pitching ideas that would help job seekers (or people wanting to change careers), I made a point of mentioning why this would be a great fit for February and March.
To make it easier, this was the structure of my email:
[ Subject: Insert a catchy headline here. ]
[ Introduce yourself in one sentence and why you are credible. This doesn’t need to be long.]
[ Mention the segments ideas you want to pitch and why they are a good fit and timely. ]
[ Add a sentence saying where you are located and offer to hop on a quick call if they’d like any more information. ]
[ If you’ve spoken about a similar topic, list it here. This gives you even more credibility. ]
[ Add a short bio here with a link to your website. ]
Who to reach out to:
Once your pitch is finished, the next step is finding the best person to send it to. For TV, you want to contact the executive producer of the show. This might mean spending some time researching who that is and their contact details but, they are the ones that will be making the final decision.
2. Preparing for the Interview
I’m not even going to pretend that I was some cool cucumber leading up to this. While I wasn’t exactly shaking in my boots the entire time, there were definitely some moments where the nerves kicked in.
What I will say, though, is the more you prepare, the more at ease you will begin to feel. In this case, I knew the segment would be around six minutes long so I crafted four talking points and rehearsed them over and over again.
I highly recommend you find some people to practice your talking points with and get honest feedback. Because you know your content so well, it can be easy to forget how much you need to break things down and so your points are easy to understand.
However, make sure you don’t memorize everything word for word. I started to do this (unintentionally) and as soon as I was asked a question that I wasn’t expecting, I stumbled. So, make sure you get people to test you! 🙂
This is a tricky one because so much of what we do is habitual. But, if you can, pay attention to how your body moves when you are responding to questions.
Caveat: This is still something that I am working on but I found these things extremely helpful to look out for:
- Do you slouch when you are listening to the ‘host’ speak? Try to sit up straight and confidently.
- Are you moving your hands while you speak or are they hidden under the table? It’s great if you can use them while you are talking so you don’t look too rigid or stiff.
- Do you speak quickly when you are nervous? I definitely do. Try speaking 2x slower than you normally would when you’re feeling jittery.
- Do you fidget in your seat? This is a weird trick but if you do find yourself doing this – Take a deep breath in and imagine your body melting into your seat (like an ice cube on hot pavement). Yes, it’s silly but it helps.
3. Debrief and Learn
This is the tough part, watching your segment. I cringed so much when I watched my interview as there were so many things that I would have changed.
Use this to your advantage, though!
Rather than be discouraged (or think you were perfect), spend some time reviewing the video and make notes on what you could improve. The interview will go by so quickly and, if you’re like me, the whole thing will be a blur once you finish.
Again, here is a snippet of the interview:
It might be hard to see all of these things from that clip but some of the things I want to improve are:
- Smiling! 🙂 When I start talking about a topic that I’m passionate about, my face can look very serious.
- Leaning back (I actually learned this tip from Matthew Hussey). It’s a very small tweak but I’d probably sit back in my seat a bit more when I’m talking. It helps you seem at ease and comfortable (notice how the host is sitting?). I was a bit nervous once the cameras started rolling.
- Speak slooooowly. I think I could have slowed my pace down a bit to really emphasize my words.
Now, this doesn’t mean that I’m not happy with how it went; on the contrary, it was an amazing and exciting experience! I just think it’s important we are always open to learning and growing.
There you have it!
I hope this post was helpful and you land your next TV appearance! It can be such an incredible way to boost your credibility for future endeavors.
To sum it up:
- Find a TV show that aligns with your business or message. Then, craft segment ideas to include in your email pitch.
- Practice your talking points and get feedback. Remember to pay attention to your body language and how you move when you’re nervous.
- Review the interview and see what you can improve. This will help you feel confident for your next appearance.
Don’t forget – I’ll be live streaming and doing Q&As around pitching in our free community.
Wait! If you have 2 mins to spare… leave a comment below letting me know what your biggest takeaway was!