Working through the COVID-19 pandemic has prompted businesses to adapt in unprecedented ways. From job interviews to offering expert commentary on current events, talking via video for more than just informal communication has become commonplace.
Are you ready for the next Zoom session? Your interview does not have to be the source of unwarranted stress. Instead of wishing after the fact that your virtual meeting had gone better or worrying about how a video clip will be shown in a television segment, taking some steps now to prepare for the interview can help mitigate concerns. Whether you’re already comfortable communicating on video or just getting started, these tips can help ensure optimal results. Here three main areas to double-check before your interview date. Use these 17 tips for making your next virtual media interview a success
Choose your location carefully
Set up your interview at a quiet location with a strong and secure internet connection.
Choose a neutral, yet professional location such as a chair or desk instead of a bedroom or leisure area.
Find an area free of background noise or echo. Avoid outdoor locations that have too many variables, including uncontrolled sound.
Lighting is key. Make sure there are no windows or bright lights behind you. For best results, your light source should be in front of you.
Be aware of your background. A solid colored wall with simple and appropriate artwork in the background is best. Be sure there is nothing behind you that you would not like to share with the public (like family photos or political signs) or that might be distracting for those watching.
Leverage your technology
Use a computer instead of your phone. Place a laptop on a desk so it remains stable.
If you must use your phone, find a comfortable place to sit and remain stationary throughout the interview. Look directly at your phone screen and ensure you are in the middle of the screen at all times.
Log on in advance to make sure the technology is working and allow time for troubleshooting.
Check that your microphone and camera are on and connected.
Make sure to clean your camera so the image is clear and crisp. No one likes to watch a blurry or smudged video.
Use your mute button when you are not speaking to reduce echo and background noise.
Dress for TV: Even though you may be working from home, you still need to dress as you would for an in-person job or television interview. Maintain eye contact: Maintain eye contact with your interviewer. If you have two screens, look into the camera instead of the screen.
Double-check your username: If the platform you are using requires a username to identify yourself, make sure it is your full name and not a nickname.
Take time to practice and prepare talking points: Traditional media interviewing practices still apply so remember to stay on point and practice, practice, practice. As media consultants, our staff is available to offer additional advice and coaching with social distancing in mind. Reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org and (405) 417-4036 for additional help. We’d be glad to help you prepare talking points and ease video call anxiety.