Friday, 12 July 2013

A Newbie's Guide to TV Presenting

Giuliana's personality
makes you want to be
her best friend
I'm not a pro at conducting interviews. Nor do I have years of experience in the TV Presenting arena. However, I do tend to read plenty of over-hyped advice from TV presenting professionals who unknowingly put the fear of God in you- And don't get me wrong, their advice IS stellar. It would just be nice to have somebody who's in the same boat as you. For the tonnes of people who decide to break through their nerves and begin to realize their dream of being a TV presenter, it's great to have a community and share advice from others in the same position. Here are a few authentic advice from a fellow newbie-

1) Do your research. There's nothing worse than fumbling over your questions. Straight of the back it shows
that you don't have the chops to be a TV presenter. In other cases, make sure you know all the facts, figures and names. Getting information wrong is highly offensive! I always make a point to over-prepare than under-prepare. I write every potential question down and exhaust Google with my research in the days leading up to an interview. It really does set the tone for the day.

2) It may be hard to remember or even acknowledge when you are a bag of nerves BUT the people you are interviewing are WAY more nervous than you. I've always had nerves at the beginning of an interview, but straight away I've realised that the people i'm interviewing are petrified. They talk too fast, they stutter, they don't know what to do with their hands. It's your job to put them at ease. The first question is the hardest but once you get it out of the way it turns into a conversation instantly. Set that casual tone from the beginning so you can conduct the best interview possible!

3) You should treat every opportunity like a networking opportunity, especially your early presenting jobs. It doesn't matter if you've interviewed a dog whisperer- hand them your business card. Always carry a wad around with you, especially since they're so cheap nowadays!

4) I understand TV Presenting training/courses are ridiculously expensive, but it is great to get some initial training from professionals so you have some sense of direction as to how to act. There's no point splashing out on the longest training course available, but investing in a weekend course like I did will be beneficial. I gained so much confidence in 2 days that I wasn't expecting and did everything from script writing to shooting my show-reel.

5) Say yes to anything. In the early stages you don't really have a choice to say no to a presenting job. Well you do, but your replaceable in a heartbeat. It will also give you a bad name in the industry from the on-set. It's difficult enough to get a presenting job and when you go on to dismiss it, it's a major sin. If it's a case of not being interested in the presenting topic, just pretend you are- you have a show-reel to build in the first instance. Once you have a lot of footage you can really hone down on your craft. If it's a case of travel, ask if the company will cover your expenses. I asked recently and everything worked out just fine.

6) Don't compare yourself to others. Laura Whitmore may look exquisite on screen and no one can play off quirky charm like Giuliana Rancic, but find out what your own style is.

7) Rejection hurts like a bitch. Shrugging it off means you don't care about your career. Take 5 minutes tops to mourn the loss of that job and then move on. I deal with constant rejection, but once in a while I get a golden opportunity which I appreciate. 

8) YouTube videos will help create your brand. Get out there and show off your hosting skills. The great thing with making videos is you can hone your skills on a trial and error basis. You have an audience that can help you decide what works and what doesn't. Also try not to conform! Don't do a smoky eye tutorial if you feel as if everyone else is doing it on YouTube.

9) Dress the part! I've heard shocking stories of people turning up looking like they've rolled out of bed. If that is your personal style, then at least make it look like you've rolled out of bed from the right side.

10) Don't instantly turn your smile into a frown once the camera stops rolling. It's the fakest thing ever!! C'mon guys- at least enjoy it- this is your passion!


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