MARKETING MATTERS: Radio Interview No-No’s

Kathleen Y'Barbo

Blogger:  Kathleen Y’Barbo

Location:  The Woodlands, Texas PR Office

Weather: Gorgeous Texas fall day – sunny with a high in the 60s

Last week, the Books & Such experts weighed in on ideas for making the most of radio interviews. In the process of gathering all those valuable tips, I also got some what-not-to-dos that I just had to share.

“I have an iPhone. Its ring tone sounds like an old Ma Bell telephone, and it is loud. When we began the second half of a one-hour in-studio interview discussing my book How to Keep Your Inner Mess from Trashing Your Outer World, I set my phone’s timer for 30 minutes so I’d have a sense of how much time was left. I was smart enough to silence the ringer. With 45 seconds to go, while the host was signing off, the timer sounded off. I learned that silencing the ringer on an iPhone doesn’t silence the timer.” ~~Bill Giovannetti,

“I did several radio interviews for my novel, Refiner’s Fire, which my publisher set up through a media group. At the end  of an interview, the host said, ‘I’d like you back when your next book comes out.’ When the next book did come out, I assumed my publisher was again going to set up the radio interviews, so I never followed up. Lesson: never assume. Once you make a great contact, keep it on file and pursue it, on your own if need be. My failure made me miss a good opportunity.” ~~Sylvia Bambola,

Lest you think that all interviews end in a less-than-ideal way due to something you’ve said or done, let me leave you with this:

“I’d say don’t panic if you think things went wrong. I thought I must have messed up when hosts cut me off very early and abruptly in Minneapolis during the drive home show-until I found out the bridge had collapsed during the interview. It has made me more mindful that our words on radio could be the last someone hears.” Karen Whiting,

So, what can you dare to share? Help those of us whose knees knock when the interview’s name shows on the caller ID to know that no matter what, even if the worst happens, God can turn it around.

5 Responses

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  1. Susan Heim says:

    My “no-no’s” include: Never start an interview without a glass of water on hand. If you’re doing an hour-long feature, your voice may start to get hoarse or, worse, you might have a coughing fit! Sip water while the interviewer is talking to avoid these problems. Also, don’t do any hard selling! Most professional interviewers will introduce your book and website at the beginning and end of the interview. Don’t try to interject it every time you answer a question. It’s a real turn-off!

  2. I love radio interviews–especially when the interviewer has been provided questions in advance and I have the answers sitting on my desk in front of me in case I freeze. Ultimately, the key to a fear-free interview is remembering I am providing a service and have information other people need to know.

  3. River Jordan says:

    Amazing to think our words, on the radio, phone or in person, could be the last thing anyone ever hears in this dimension. Worth thinking about. Worth saying I love you more often.


  4. KC Frantzen says:

    It sure does!

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