By Ray Young
For analysts, strategists and economists, doing financial television is great exposure – both for the firm and for the individual. But it can be a little frustrating, especially starting out. Here are a few things to consider as you get started with your budding TV career:
1. Be flexible – When news is hot, that’s generally when the networks will want you. It’s not about what’s convenient for you. Go above and beyond to be available and producers will really appreciate you…and often invite you back.
2. Do other TV and media besides CNBC – This will make you more marketable since producers do google searches on potential guests and sometimes want to see how and where you’ve done previous interviews. And more TV time will give you more practice and that’s a good thing.
3. The first TV interview is often the most important – That’s because is sets a precedent with the producer; if they know they can count on you, they’ll often ask you back (as mentioned above). The opposite is true as well…if you are difficult to work with, they’ll likely take a pass the next time.
4. Have a shirt and jacket (and maybe a tie) in your office – You never know when breaking news will make you relevant and you don’t want to look too casual during an interview.
5. You can work from the car – Often networks will provide a car to pick you up and take you to and from the studio. This gives you the opportunity to work while in transit, thus mitigating the time away from the office.
6. Sometimes you get cancelled – It happens. Breaking news can’t be helped and it’s nothing personal.
7. You can only be on each network once in a given 7-day period – it’s an unwritten rule all the networks have in order to get more voices on air. The exception is if you are a paid contributor.
8. Both CNBC and Fox Business want to be first – That’s why they require that you don’t do the other network for at least three days prior to going on their airwaves. Note – Fox Business has been winning in the overall viewers game the past year, but CNBC leads in the key 25-54 demo.
Ray Young, president of Razor Sharp Public Relations, has promoted Wall Street firms for more than 16 years and works with top analysts, strategists and CEO’s to deliver their insight to key audiences.