Hospitality PR 101: How to Nail that TV Interview
By Shae Geary, Senior Communications Strategist
Working with local TV stations is a great way to promote hospitality client partners. From special events to staycation specials, hotels and destinations often produce interesting fodder for morning news programs that want to share unique local personalities and fun activities with their viewers. Getting the attention of TV producers and reporters requires the right pitch, and there’s more than one way to do it. For a chance at an on-camera spotlight, here are a few things to keep in mind:
One of my most memorable segments involved a reporter broadcasting from a plush hotel bed on the deck of a newly opened ocean view hotel pool. It was not only quirky and fun, but also succeeded in showing off both the hotel pool and its world-famous bedding in a way that was more visually interesting than a bed in a hotel room. TV is a visual medium, so anything that plays to the camera, whether interesting, unexpected, unusual or just bright and colorful, has a better chance of nabbing a reporter’s interest. It’s equally important for segments to have movement and activity, such as a chef cooking up a signature dish or guests playing in the pool. In your pitch, offer some ideas for the types of activities that can be featured on camera. The more likely a reporter is to visualize the segment, the better your chances of securing coverage.
Bring The Hotel to The Studio
In-studio TV appearances are a great alternative when a TV station can’t come to you. In your pitch, offer ideas for bringing a destination experience to the studio. We recently had success working with a local TV station to promote a romantic sunset beach picnic program. The picnic scene was recreated on the studio’s back lot and paired with a live chef’s demonstration of making an easy, aphrodisiac inspired salad. It was a pretty close second to actually doing the segment on the beach and succeeded in conveying the program’s dreamy, coastal vibe.
Viewers love to go behind the scenes, so seize the day when the opportunity arises. To generate excitement and positive community buzz for a new TV show filmed in Oceanside, (one of our destination client partners), we invited a local reporter to spend a day on-set with special access to wardrobe, props, cast trailers and show producers. The segments were a hit because the audience was able to experience the show from a perspective usually limited to cast and crew. For a hotel client, ideas for segments could include access to an exclusive Presidential Suite or over-the-top guest experience.
If a hospitality client partner doesn’t have a particularly compelling story to tell, all is not lost! Linking up with complementary non-profits or local businesses can be just the ticket for nabbing some airtime. A good example is the recent partnership between Cape Rey Carlsbad resort and Project Mermaid. The ocean view hotel pool was the perfect backdrop for a live TV remote that highlighted special mermaid photo sessions, where a local TV personality joined in on the fun. The project helps raise money for ocean conservation, a cause also supported by the hotel. In each segment, the hotel was identified by beautiful shots of the pool and surrounding coastal view. The TV segments drew huge interest, as did social media posts from the shoot.
If you are looking to get your business on TV, let us help! We’d love to chat, so give us a call or visit us here.