The Power of Skype

Skype post, pat138241 via

Television news organizations increasingly rely on Skype or similar technologies to interview experts for a story. Doing so makes sense for cash-strapped news organizations looking to save time and money by conducting interviews with you as you sit at your desk. Skype interviews can also save you the time and money it would take getting to and from the studio.

TV news interviews provide valuable exposure that can help your business grow. If a Skype interview is part of the equation, however, know that there’s more to consider than simply delivering your key messages. Here are tips from Chuck Coppola, a Chicago reporter for First Business News network, who frequently conducts interviews via Skype.

  • Make sure the camera is at eye level. If necessary, elevate your computer with books or other platform to bring the camera to eye level.
  • Be conscious of your background. Mr. Coppola advises guests to avoid doing the interview in front of a blank wall. Consider placing part of a plant, framed picture, filing cabinet or doorway behind you (but not sticking out of your head). Avoid a cluttered or moving background which can detract from the actual interview.
  • Close out of everything on your computer except Skype. This will minimize interference and help ensure a quality video.
  • Light up your desk area. A lamp strategically placed off camera can add warmth and minimize shadows.
  • Use a stationary chair. On camera, even the slightest movement in your swivel chair can distract the audience. Likewise, limit your hand and arm movements – unless you have a good camera with a fast connection. Webcam interviews are the one time when gesturing can actually be a detriment to your delivery.
  • Invest in a quality camera and a discreet earpiece instead of an over-sized headset. Don’t settle for the cheapest option because in this case, quality matters.

With these tips, prepare to rock out Skype interviews time after time.

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About Chris Ruys

Chris Ruys is founder and president of Chris Ruys Communications, Inc., a marketing/public relations firm that specializes in high visibility campaigns using both traditional and social media strategies. Her blog, originally called "Getting Social," was launched in October 2010 as a way to share her progress as a "student" of social media. While she's still learning, Ms. Ruys has broadened the scope to include other aspects of marketing communications and PR, including blogging, email, traditional media and advertising in the blog she now calls "Proactive PR."