How to conduct an interview

Conducting a successful interview is difficult. It’s smashing that you’ve been given the to interview a celebrity, . In spite of this, without a little effort, something significant to say and the competency to help your interviewee feel at home, then there won’t be more interviews in the future. So gather round: here’s a couple of things that might prove useful.

What you have to know is that your interviewee is just another person. Yes they may have featured in the new Batman film and yes, they did meet Justin Bieber. Yet what’s not often remembered is that they probably have the same or similar pressures as you. They’ve gotten so drunk they woke up naked in a shed, they once forgot to bring their bag for life to Tesco, they’ve had to run for the bus and they have, at some point in their life, been just as nervous as you. Maybe. Unless you’re interviewing a sponge…

Without doubt, my favourite interview is Mila Kunis talking to Chris Stark from the Scott Mills show. It’s not exactly your standard interview, everything about it should have rendered it a failure, but by getting to know his subject he’s able to realise what sort of conversation his subject would like. If you haven’t seen it yet, then here it is, Stark actually says the words “my mate Dicko…”:

So why does it work? Just for a minute, picture that you’re Mila Kunis, when promoting a new movie, there is going to be interview after interview, and the subject matter is more or less going to be identical. If there’s been ten interviews in one day the same question keeps coming up, then it’s going to be rather boring. It’s obvious in this particular interview that words have been said before they’ve even begun filming, swiftly creating a pleasant interview venue. He comes off rather approachable when he starts by letting his nervousness be known, which motivates supporting thoughts from his subject promoting her to feel less vulnerable to the piercing look of her interviewer, and probably even stimulating more specific feedback.

The general interview is presented as an entertaining discussion rather than just a number of queries – and we’re going to have learnt more about our subject because of it. It so happens that because the interviewer is eager to share his own private , so that the interview isn’t entirely centred around the subject, then his subject is far more prone to answer in greater detail. Would we know that Mila’s favourite colour is purple had Chris not suggested she wore a yellow Watford FC jersey? A vital part of undertaking a effective interview is incorporating personal flourishes, people can’t empathise with a robot.

We might not have learnt much about Mila’s latest film, but we learnt more about our subject and how to get 12 million hits on YouTube. All you need to do is offer your subject a lad bomb.

A fantastic video to watch is this blog from Lambda films, a video production company, entitled How to conduct an interview. It looks at some really basic techniques you can use when interviewing. Simple things such as warming up can make all the difference.

For a bit more in the way of video marketing tips, I recommend this blog.

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