Practice Makes Permanent
By Brian Jud


Have you wondered why celebrities being interviewed on television can look so calm when millions of people are watching them? And have you ever wondered if you could do that?

You can appear on national television and radio, and you can appear calm and collected, just like the actors you see every day. But like actors, you cannot just show up for performances. Actors learn their lines and rehearse them until they create a believable, entertaining performance. You can be successful, too, if you approach your media events the same way.

The key to any good performance is preparation. Just as actors do, media guests need to know what they are going to say during all their performances and practice their delivery of each word. Adequate preparation will make you more confident in your ability to perform and help you relax while you are on the air.

You have heard it said that practice makes perfect. However, that is not necessarily true. Practice makes permanent, so you have to make sure you are rehearsing the right things. Before you appear on any media event, engage the services of a professional media trainer so the techniques you make permanent are the right ones.

Hiring a media trainer to coach you in performing successfully may be the best single investment you can make to conduct an effective appearance. Therefore, search carefully and retain the services of a seasoned media trainer. It is best to employ one early to discover where you need the most assistance and help you make corrections. Without the benefit of an experienced instructor, you cannot be sure you are practicing the correct techniques.

Professional media trainers can provide one-on-one or group sessions. Some will even serve as your publicist once your training is completed, helping you negotiate appearances on national television shows. A good media trainer will instruct you on conducting pre-show preparation, applying makeup, wearing the right clothes, creating your presentation, using your voice well, gesturing convincingly, and answering questions in a poised manner. Ask your coach to videotape your session for a complete record of what was said.

Take Two Classes and Call Me in the Morning
Practice on a regular basis and you will conduct professional and successful interviews. Your practice sessions can be as formal or informal as you want them to be. They run the gamut from talking into a cassette recorder to hiring a professional media trainer as a coach. One technique is to have someone who knows nothing about your subject ask you questions. This simulates most interviews, and it will help you practice responding to unexpected questions. The important point is to do something every day to improve your media skills.

Good, Better, Guest
Practice can be as easy and fun as listening to or watching talk shows. On television, watch how successful guests interact with the host and audience. Try watching the show on which you are scheduled to appear, with the sound off to focus your attention on the guests. How do they sit? What do they wear? What are the seating arrangements and backgrounds? What are the predominant camera angles? Incorporate what you see into your own performance.

Turn the sound back on and listen to the host. How are questions asked? How does he or she stimulate audience participation? What is the pace of the show? On radio, listen to the interaction between guests and host and between guests and callers. What makes one show better than others? How are stories woven into the authorís answers? Does the guest answer the hostís questions directly or follow his or her own agenda?

Where to Find a Media Coach
Consult the Yellow Pages to locate a local media trainer. Or you could reach a talk-show host or news anchorperson at a nearby station and contract for his or her services. Seek the local chapters of Toastmasters International and the National Speakers Association, or take a Dale Carnegie course. The video Youíre On The Air and its two companion guides, Itís Show Time and Perpetual Promotion, provide additional tools to help you get on and perform on television and radio.

Brian Jud is an author, frequent media guest, creator of the media-training video program, Youíre On The Air, and author of the two books, Itís Show Time and Perpetual Promotion. Paraview authors can now get more info about Brianís Media Publicity Kit. You can also visit for more information or contact Brian Jud directly.

©2003 Brian Jud


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