Sarah J. Jackson
Reporting from Netroots Nation 2012, Providence, RI
Media strategist/trainer Joel Silberman gave a great training at Netroots today titled “Presence and Authenticity: The Key to Being a Media Star.” Below are Silberman’s tips on embodying the charisma required for successful media interviews:
Having charisma onscreen:
- Visualize being rooted into the ground like a tree, this will help you appear grounded onscreen.
- Your energy should be big; your aura does not end with your body; visualize radiating your energy and points out into the room around you as you speak, or what Silberman calls, “an energy shower.”
- Make sure you know where the camera is!
- Don’t cross your arms across your chest or groin when you speak, this looks defensive and will collapse your posture. Find a neutral position for your hands by your sides and only gesture within the “strike zone” (between your shoulders and waist).
- Focus your eyes on the person who is interviewing you, or if talking directly to a camera focus your eyes on the lens. Silberman says, “The camera has to be the person you want to sleep with. Right now.”
- Only project your voice as far as necessary to reach the camera, otherwise you will sound loud (which translates to angry on TV).
- Follow the three S’s: SMILE; keep it SIMPLE; and hold STILL.
- There is no such thing as being too polished but you should be careful not to seem slick; if you find yourself simply rehearsing answers you will come across as disingenuous.
Other handy tips:
- Do yoga! That’s right, the posture, alignment and presence that is taught is yoga are the same as those you need to maintain an impressive onscreen presence.
- You never have to answer a question you are asked if you don’t feel you can produce a good answer, or if it is off topic. Feel free to use the line, “I really appreciate you saying that, but what we really need to focus on is…”
- Don’t apologize for what you are saying. Be aware of being so “nice” that you sound as if you are apologizing for your statements. Never begin a sentence with “I’m sorry but…” Coming across stern is better than coming across as if you are unsure of the truth of what you are saying.