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Every Breaking News Story Follows an Arc

This is important to know because depending on your area of expertise, you will know where you will fall in the media requested timeline of appearances. When a tragedy strikes - the first layer of bookings will go to Public Officials and Eyewitnesses. The media is looking for the government body to identify, declare, and detail what has officially occurred. This happens for the first 24 hours of news.

In addition to Government Officials or Public Officials (like spokesperson for an airline), eyewitnesses get the first round of screen time. They add the details to the "official statement."

On Day #2 of a Breaking News Story - the "Digesters" are called in. They don't necessarily need to have any direct relation or experience to the actual event; however, they have experience in the arena of conversation and they are booked to help the viewer "process the information" and "prevent something similar." This can be a former Government or Public Official or a personal story that relates to the experience that either the victims or the eyewitnesses have gone through. This is also the day that the requests will come from Therapists, Psychologists, Life Coaches, Psychiatrists, Grief and Trauma Experts. Producers and Bookers often work from an M.D. or Ph.D. and/or a credible institution backwards in credentials.

On Day #3 depending on whether "new information" is being revealed - the first two days will recycle the same pattern or "polarity" sets in. Producers will look for the two sides of the argument - the Victim and the Victimizer conversation. This is where taking a side becomes important in the layer of speaking points that an expert is willing to take. Weaker, more grey or neutral opinions get pushed further down the booking chain to later days. Having the courage to take a point of view will "up" your chances of getting booked, especially if it's OPPOSITE than what might be expected or predicted based on the access of your expertise. Often, at this stage, "The Voice of Reason" is not invited to the table. However, we believe the "Voice of Reason" can be balanced in the polarity of the conversation, but the Expert needs to be locked down in the boundaries of their own content. PERIOD! This is why we are big "On Camera Training" thumpers. The opportunity is there, but you need to understand how to craft an argument that is within the integrity of your mission statement.

On Day #4 if the story does not have any "new developments" then it often opens up to related or "Kaleidoscope" points of view. This doesn't necessarily require a direct relation to the event or even a polarity of opinion. This is where more of the "What have we learned?" or "What can we learn?" conversations open up. This is where tangible practical tips are required. If it's a fire, "Stop, Drop, and Roll" matter. If it's Prince dying without a will, "What three things do we need to have in order for our own lives and family?" Simple, pedantic, information can get passed here.

There is an opportunity in every story to share your part of the tale and to contribute to the collective story; however, demand, timing, and content are key. When you get booked, execution of the material will be what determines your rebooking.

What Does Value Mean To You?

The way I make my living is by aggregating opportunity and mitigating rejection for other people. It's packaged under fancy names like Producer, Publisher, and Publicist. I have become a connoisseur of mining connections that help my clients grow their core businesses. When I wrote the 2011 book, Heartfelt Marketing: Allowing the Universe to Be Your Business Partner, I was politely calling out the very way successful people often sabotage themselves because I have all too often had a front row seat to such events, and have wittingly learned to duck the tail whip that usually follows.

My ability to create success is directly proportionate to my ability to convince others why a particular moment or appearance is going to benefit them. If I can't bring my client on board with that vision, then it doesn't matter how great the opportunity actually is from my own experience.

What creates the biggest disconnect is when pop culture has influenced my client's naivety by giving them pseudo jargon that sounds powerful, but is still inherently useless.

Here are the rants I hear most frequently along with my professional reasoning behind well intended, but not so effective, questions that do and don't effect value.

#1: "How is this going to affect my brand?"

My first pithy response would like to be, "It's not going to effect your brand, if no one knows about your brand."

In my time as a national media expert, I can say that media is not what effects brand name. Stupidity is usually the cause. For example, this past holiday season, Bloomingdale's had to quickly pull a holiday photo ad that said, "Spike your best friend's egg nog when they are not looking." Branding is not effected by the media outlet, rather it's effected by the value of your content - which means that you are in charge and responsible for the value of your own branding, not the media. At the end of what became an incredulous media campaign, Bloomingdale's brand hadn't been stained, and it hasn't even been remembered.

#2:"I am a published author, shouldn't I be getting more media exposure."

Well, that depends on the quality of the book. For one, a published book, is held in higher regard than a self published book for the reason that a published book has been vetted by qualified editors, marketing professionals, and, of course, the publisher. Many national media outlets we work with will not "plug" a self published book for that reason - meaning that a media booking needs to occur for other content merit outside your actual book. In short, some books can be a detriment to your media campaign.

#3: "What is the reach of the show?"

Common vernacular popularized by the measurement of Nielsen Ratings as the measurement of audiences for the value of advertisement placements. Having produced some top notch A-list talent in my life, I have rarely seen an A-lister turn down an interview when they have something to plug. Although a larger audience may seem better on paper, it's more often a quality audience that is more effective in getting the value out of the appearance for your overall goal. And, if a call to action is, for example, to sell books, then talking to an audience of more than 1, should be substantial enough in the desire to get your message out there.

In addition, mass media is still one of the most effective ways of raising the value of expertise and impacting the most people at once. However, with the internet, appearances live longer in a way that these same appearances used to disappear giving more shelf life and value to what used to be - a one hit wonder. How do you quantify the value of an audience of 4 million vs. 400? It depends again, in my opinion, on the quality of your message. Once again, putting you in control and holding you accountable for the value of your branding.

TVGuestpert's Jacquie Jordan discusses protecting your branding: youtube.com/watch?v=8Cmy4gJIJFs&feature=youtu.be

Steve Harvey, Ouch! How to Avoid On Air Errors

Ouch! Steve Harvey! That was one of the most awkward hosting moments I can remember in my career as a television producer and media trainer. Certainly, an awkward moment for all who watched. Awkward doesn't describe the confusion between Miss Colombia and Miss Philippines vying for the title of Miss Universe.

If this unforgettable career blunder can happen to seasoned Emmy Award-winning talk show host, Steve Harvey, where does the on camera skill set leave the rest of us? Oh, we think a blunder like that would never happen to the likes of us? I'm here to say, that we have more at stake for foot and mouth disease than Steve Harvey will suffer. We don't get the same amount of media opportunities to redeem ourselves in the public eye to their forgetfulness. If we are promoting and representing our message, our businesses, our point of view and our reputations, the standard for our performances runs high.

Just knowing the basics is instrumental in handling a television interview. While Steve Harvey was hosting an international live event, the guest interview will usually fall in one of the following categories:


It's exciting to know a producer has called to book you on TV, but do you know what type of interview you are participating in? There are four distinctive types of interviews to know about, without getting caught by surprise. Each type of interview has it's own distinct requirement in terms of your participation.


This is the most typical type of interview that you will see on Charlie Rose, Super Soul Sunday, and "on the couch" with your favorite morning show host. This type of recognizable interview is when a celebrity promotes their movie, you promote your book, or an expert discusses the most recent study. What defines a sit down interview is that it is an in person, in studio, interview with a host facilitating the discussion.

It is not to be confused with a Diane Sawyer 20/20 interview or a Barbara Walters interview which looks like a sit down, in studio interview, but is actually an ENG Interview. (See below for ENG definition). A sit down Interview is often live, if not live to tape. A live to tape interview is treated like it is live, but it is actually pre-recorded; however, no post production/editing will be applied to the show, except for rare instances. And almost never because or for the guest expert's comments which is why you need to mean what you say, say what you mean.


DEMO is short for demonstration. We recognize these segments as cooking segments, fashion segments, beauty product, or techno-gadget segments. Demo segments can be in studio or remote ie. in someone's home kitchen.

Reminder, do not confuse a demo segment with your need to have a demo reel!

We recently sent an expert out to do a demo segment. Since we are in the Los Angeles TV market, we often send people to smaller markets when they are new to being on television. In this case, the booking was in Northern California. We booked the client to do a demo segment on weeds in your backyard that make a great salad. As we pitched it to the producer, it was with the idea we'd show the weeds in a big demo fashion and then, what the weeds would look like when you make up a salad.

The client didn't return our pre-production calls with confidence that she had it covered. We all know this spells trouble. We received her email that she had spoken to the producer the night before for her pre-interview, and that the producer said that bringing a salad was not necessary. This was because the client had no props other than a few weeds. When we watched the show live, the DEMO segment had been reduced to a sit down Interview, losing my client the opportunity for a really good DEMO segment that would have placed her on other like-minded television shows ie. Rachael Ray, etc.


This is the type of box interview you see on Breaking News stories on CNN, HLN, Fox News Channel - where they are talking to an expert that is on location via satellite.

More and more of these interviews are being conducted via SKYPE. The quality of a SKYPE interview is never as clean visually as a satellite interview, but they are much cheaper and immediate. Having booked thousands of Guest Experts on television, being on TV in a SKYPE interview is never an excuse for a guest expert to allow for poor quality, uneven picture, and/or bad lighting. A trained guestpert or trained guest expert will know how to level their SKYPE shot with the size of the host on the set. A trained guestpert will know how to look into the eye of the computer camera and NOT at their computer screen.

While discussing satellite interviews, which I think are the most masterful interviews because very often, you do NOT have real time feedback of personal facial expressions. During a satellite interview, you are often staring directly into a camera with a feedback line in your ear, in an empty room by yourself which means, don't look away from the camera. Don't make funny facial expressions. You may not know when you are on a hot camera.


Finally, the ENG or field interview. Is this type of interview, it usually does not take place in a studio. If it does take place in a studio, it's usually in the likeness of a studio, but it has added features such as b-roll, or host narrative and has been edited through post production which means that your primary interview and what you say, will be chosen after you have been taped. This leaves the guest expert very little control over the final product. Again, this is why, what does come out of your mouth, matters, as you won't have the opportunity to take it back.

According to life coach Lisa Haisha, "Having done dozens of in studio sit down interviews, I managed through the brutal 5 minutes in the hot seat with 20/20's field interview representing my client's reputation due to simply being prepared for this style of interview."

And yes, if you are wondering, you can have a combo interview such as a DEMO INTERVIEW in the FIELD.

SEE THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE ON THE HUFFINGTON POST: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jacquie-jordan/steve-harvey-ouch-how-to-avoid-on-air-errors_b_8857166.html