Interview Tips

Stories about Kennesaw State University programs, students and new construction, among other things, have been successfully placed by the Office of Media Relations in newspapers, magazines and on television news. In addition, KSU faculty and staff members are often contacted by the media to comment as an expert on a topic within a story.

For ideas to enhance your interview skills or on-camera appearance, read through the following media tips.

Remember Your Rights:

  • If contacted, you are not obligated to do an interview.
  • You can set limits on the interview.
  • Always get the name and news organization of the reporter.

Before the interview:

    • Know the facts
    • Prepare your main points
    • Gather background information for the reporter
    • Rehearse your key message and sub-messages
    • Anticipate and prepare for tough questions
    • Videotapes of crisis communication tips are available from the Office of Media Relations

Dress for TV interview or photographs

    • Conservative, professional dress means:
      • Do: Wear long sleeves; dark, solid colors; and neatly pressed clothes
      • Don’t: Wear bold patterns or prints; clothing with words on it; or neon colors
      • Remember: light colors add pounds, dark colors are more flattering

During the interview:

    • Be brief and direct – don’t ramble
    • Remember your key message and sub-messages and weave them into your answers
    • Be informative
    • Don’t use jargon
    • Tell the truth (this includes saying "I don’t know" when you don’t)
    • Don’t say "No comment"
    • Don’t guess
    • Cite facts
    • Don’t be defensive
    • Use anecdotes and humor
    • Smile and be patient
    • Relax

For answers to specific questions about dealing with the media, contact the Office of Media Relations, 770-423-6203.