For PR professionals, securing a TV placement for your client calls for a celebration. It’s an accomplishment that gives your client the chance to showcase their business or brand to millions of viewers. But first, your client must be prepared for an on-air and sometimes, live, television appearance. So, where do you start? Here are 4 steps for how to prepare your client for a TV segment.
Step #1 Secure the details
You’ll want to find out what kind of broadcast segment you secured; pre-recorded package, in-studio segment, live off-set interview, etc. This will gauge exactly what you will need to do to appropriately prepare your client. Communicate with the producer or your main point of contact to get all of the details secured before taking any next steps. For example, will your client be asked any questions on-air? If it is a cooking segment, will they be making a dish from start-to-finish or just explaining the steps of a recipe that is already pre-made? You want to have every detail broken down so that your client does not have any questions about what is expected of them during the segment.
Step #2 Prepare a run sheet
The run sheet takes all of those details you nailed down and lays them out in an one organized document. You will want to prepare two versions of the run sheet, one for your client and one for the producer. The run sheet will act as a guide for everything your client needs to know about the segment: filming location, arrival time, segment start time, attire requirements, questions they may be asked on-air, items they need to bring, etc. Again, you want to answer and questions your client may have and eliminate room for surprises during filming.
Step #3 Schedule a media training session
This step is particularly important for TV newbies, but you still want to schedule a media training session even if your client has years of experience in front of the camera. There are many necessary touch points to run through such as, drafting talking points, sharing the dos and don’ts of being on camera (e.g. good posture and energy and looking at the reporter and not at the camera), and suggesting camera-friendly attire (e.g. avoiding certain patterns and white shirts). Sit down with your client to review talking points, visuals and coach them on body language.
Step #4 Devise a strong social media promotional strategy
If your client is handling their own social media accounts, encourage them to promote the segment as soon as they have all of the details and are given permission to go public by the producers. Educate the client on social media best practices and how-to pique their audiences’ interest without giving away the whole segment. You will also want to make sure they include all of the details, so audiences know when and where to tune in! On the day of the segment, you will want to take photos and videos to promote live (e.g. clips of your client putting on a microphone, photos of your client with the reporters, and photos of the set all make great content).
By following these four steps, both you and your client will feel at ease about being prepared for a television segment. In addition, the producer you are working with will have confidence in you and by developing a reliable relationship, you have a better chance of booking another television segment. Ready, set, ACTION!