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Radio Interviewing: Hit Me With Your Best Shot

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By Marika Flatt

A radio interview gives you lots of possibilities–but not lots of time. On the radio you can spin a yarn, but you sure won’t get enough time to knit an entire sweater or even finish the thumb on a mitten. But you can maximize your time by telling stories that intrigue and leave enough out so your audience wants more.

1. Say what you’re not going to tell.

02011002 I was listening to a radio interview, and when the host asked the interviewee a question, he answered her first by telling her what he wasn’t going to tell her. I was all ears. He said he was going to say one thing, but after he said his one thing he wasn’t going to say any more about it.In other words, he was defining his limits in no uncertain terms. And he did it in such a way as to make it final. His one thing. End of story.

2. Soundbites, then stories.

Once you become fluid in your soundbites, you no longer need to adhere to them. Once you understand their construction you can create them on the spot. Be ready with soundbites but also have several quick stories on the tip of your tongue. I tell people, this is your goal: Someone is listening in their car on the way to… wherever. They get where they are going and they have to sit in their car and finish listening to your story or your interview because they are so captured. That’s a great interview!

3. Be unsual.

In this day and age, we don’t remember the normal. We remember the crazy, off-the-wall stories and that’s what we tell others about. Think about being at a party, or lunch with a friend, or sitting around a campfire… don’t you tell about the very strange things you’ve heard. No one wants to hear about people doing normal things. Be zany.

Marika FlattAbout the Author: Marika launched PR by the Book, LLC in 2002, combining her love of the media, public relations and books. Prior to that, Marika spent seven years leading the publicity team of an Austin-based book publicity firm. She received a Gold Bulldog Award for a publicity campaign that resulted in exposure in over 700 media outlets. Marika is a past-president of Women Communicators of Austin, serves as an Expert for IBPA, is listed on Twitter’s Women in Publishing (#womeninpublishing) and serves on the selection committee for the Texas Book Festival. As a hobby, Marika has been a freelance travel writer for over a decade and serves as the Travel Editor for Austin Lifestyle magazine.

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