I’m hooked on interviews as blog content -simply addicted.
Interviews can be:
-speedy to create and edit
-a good way to personalize online content
-a way to expand your online community and perspective
My experience with interviews stems from good ole ‘experiment and error’. And conducting them via audio/video has really helped achieve editorial missions in diverse ways.
I recently enjoyed discussing all this more in depth with savvy blogger Joe Loong. He conducted our interview with him presenting questions to me via email. We e-talked about approaches to not only types of interview technology but also ways to navigate the interview itself.
My responses from that e-exchange follow with some additions that have hopeful use for your nonprofit’s blog.
I’ve enjoyed good experiences with Audio Hijack in conjunction with Skype to conduct the interview and record (which can be imported and easily edited in iMovie or other editing platforms; I just happen to use iMovie more steadily). Or by all means, get mobile! Using your cell phone as a mic and content producer can be oh so easy, especially for project free from editing restrictions.
For example, here’s an interview I conducted at Fem 2.0 with conference sponsor and Turner Strategies president Suzanne Turner (...my cell phone was used as the mic and after pressing a few buttons, our interview conversation uploaded to pre-set online destinations using Utterli.
On Setting the Tone with your Interview Subject:
When recording audio or video: Create a sense of ease with the interviewee with the mic or camera rolling. Start the conversation off-topic with some small talk (if this is a comfortable style for you), or a compliment of their work, and/or an appreciation for their invested interview time. This lubricates their conversational mind and confidence.
When cutting a promo video with an association’s CEO a while back, he was nervous. (As in a lot.) He decompressed significantly after talking about his kids for 10 minutes on camera before we launched into our interview.
Inform and Direct... with Respect:
If possible, relay the interview questions before the date of recording, and feel free to tell the interviewee what you envision (or want to emphasize) for your conversation i.e. ‘Sarah, I don’t want to put words in your mouth, but I’m really interested in this part of your story: you’re a registered Democrat but your team is 60% Republican....’
On Choosing a Line of Questioning:
“Combine emotional and more structural questions regarding your interviewee’s organization. Ask not only ‘How they developed “x” initiative,’ but also what their most favored aspect of their organization or initiative is. What gets them on fire? Asking questions with a varied tack can help you recognize where your subject is most forthcoming, most confident, and what most sparks their interest.”
A Suggestion for a Good Staple Question:
It’s useful to ask your interviewee “What was a question you wish we would’ve addressed that I didn’t ask?”
Do you have any tips to add? I would love to hear about it.