Stop The Verbal Vomiting

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

After I premised the topic and introduced the guest, I started the interview on my public affairs show with, “Tell me about this event.” The guest on the other end of the line proceeded not only to tell me about the upcoming community event, but also about the history of the organization, the people they help, the money they have raised and all of their future events. Ten minutes into the interview, I began to think of the listeners flipping the station.

He was verbally vomiting all over my show.

I asked the first question and he answered about six in that 10-minute span. He barely took a breath and, in order for me to ask a second question and take back the show, I had to interrupt him. He was obviously knowledgeable about his topic, but he was ignorant when it came to being interviewed.

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Quotable Quotes and Sound Soundbites

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

When I worked in radio, I spent a significant amount of time sifting through interviews searching for the sound bite. In print journalism, it’s the quote. When you are being interviewed, it is important to stay on message. Don’t let the reporter get you off track or don’t go on a tangent about something completely unrelated. A reporter’s time is valuable and in today’s immediate news demands, they have less time than ever to spend interviewing people.

However, giving a good quote or sound bite means you have to say something new, compelling — something that stands out and gets attention.

Decades later, politicians across the country still quote John F. Kennedy, “don’t ask what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” And, Neil Armstrong, “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Now, maybe your quote won’t stand the test of time but it could determine whether you are part of a story.

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