author publicity tips for interviews on radio and television

Broadcast Interview Tips for Authors

15 Ways to Maximize TV and Radio Interviews

Interviews provide authors with excellent opportunities to connect with target readers. If you handle them well, you can expect to generate buzz and potentially spark book sales. At Smith Publicity, we’re a leading book marketing and book promotion agency known for securing radio and TV interviews for our author clients. Understanding the most effective ways to communicate key messages and knowing what to avoid in interviews is essential for book marketing and author publicity campaigns.

Follow the 15 tips ahead to get the most out of your interview appearances:

1. For radio interviews, if possible, use a landline.

2. Authors are interviewed, not books! No one wants to (or can) interview a book. Avoid over-mentioning the title. Consistently saying, “as I say in my book …” is a turn-off for hosts and viewers/listeners.

3. Audiences respond to stories, so tell stories related to your book when possible.

4. During TV interviews, look at the interviewer, not the camera.

5. Have a prepared opening and ending. Sometimes authors will have questions hosts will ask ahead of time but often won’t. Be prepared with an answer to a likely first question from a host, and have a reply for a likely
final question, such as “Any closing advice or tips for our audience?”

Be Yourself and Provide Helpful and Interesting Answers

6. If you don’t know the answer to a question you’re asked, don’t fake it! Be honest and mention resources that
could answer the question.

7. Avoid rambling. Keep answers on the shorter side. It’s easy to fall into the rambling trap, so
practice ahead of time.

8. For radio interviews, sit up straight and smile. It will automatically translate into you sounding upbeat and

9. When you say your website address, say it slowly! And, it is NOT necessary to say “www.”

10. Follow the host’s lead; let them drive the interview.

Promoting Your Book Requires Building Rapport with the Audience

11. Relate to your audience; never refer to them as ‘people.’ Address them during your interview by speaking to them
personally, use the word ‘you.’

12. For radio call-in shows, make callers feel important. Say, “That’s a good question.” Pause briefly, as if
pondering your reply, and then proceed with your response.

13. Mumbling is a common issue for most of us. Be sharp and articulate and speak clearly the entire
interview. Avoid using “um” and “like” before every word.

14. Get your essential message across. You can’t drive an interview, but in answers – if you practice – you can find
ways to interweave your core message and points.

15. If you need more information to answer appropriately, don’t be afraid to ask the host to expand on the question.