July 25, 2018 Heather James


The Video Interview Part Two: Being Interviewed

by Rich McEwen, TVG Media Specialist

There are techniques you can use as the subject of a video interview to make sure you communicate your message in a way that is concise and easy to edit.

Know your story.

Know in advance what your key message points are and make sure they are all covered in the interview. You can’t expect an interviewer to know the subject as well as you do, and he or she will appreciate your suggestions. Try not to memorize answers, as this can come across as stilted and not genuine.

giving media interviewTell it to the vase.

If your interviewer is also operating the camera, he or she may ask you to look at something like a piece of gaff tape or a flower vase rather than at them. In this case, there is a tendency to look to them quickly after you have finished an answer (“Was that OK?”), which can make the end of the answer difficult to use. Try to avoid this temptation and remain focused on the object a few moments after finishing your answer.

Keep it short.

Your answers should be short and sweet. If you have answered a question already, and are asked it again, try to make your answer more concise. That may be why the question was asked again. Don’t feel the need to say the exact same thing.

Give context.

Make sure you give context. For instance, you should say: “The XXX Company was founded…” rather than “We were founded…” Those types of statements can be vague or confusing.

Don’t refer back to earlier answers.

Never refer to something you said previously in the interview, such as “As I said before…” or other reference to an earlier answer.

Show some emotion.

It’s OK to show some emotion when it’s appropriate (within reason, of course). Having human reactions is engaging and can spur people into action.


Please note: these tips are primarily for informational/corporate video programs. If you’re doing an interview for the press, some of these considerations apply but media training is necessary, particularly in contentious situations.


Need help preparing for a media interview? TVG’s media relations team can provide custom training to executives and spokespeople at your organization. Contact us today for more information and to learn about our other training classes on storytelling, presentation skills, crisis communications and more!


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