Your Media Soundbites Are Mini-Movies!

“A soundbite is a brief and outstanding mini-version of who you are and what you’re selling.” ~ (Gayl) Murphy’s Law!

Having interviewed over 15,000 Hollywood celebrities and news makers my broadcasting career, I can spot a great story and a killer soundbite 10 miles away. For me, it’s like hearing a much-loved song on the radio that I haven’t heard in years. A killer soundbite just speaks to me, probably because it allows me to tell a story that comes directly from the source to millions in a short, memorable and concise way.

As showbiz reporter my job is to tell your story. Depending upon on how you say what you say – that’s what I’m telling, assuming you’re not under indictment. So, the next time you talk to a reporter about who you are and what you do, tell them a great story so you both can have some fun.

People ask me all the time, “Why do I need to have soundbites to tell my story? Why can’t I just speak my mind?” You can definitely speak your mind and tell your story however you want, but if you REALLY want the coverage, you have to know what the rules of the road are before you can even step into the media spotlight.

Rule number one about soundbites; the media thrives on them. It’s their language and their favorite food!

Without going into the impact and the effects of media consolidation and the 24/7 news cycle here and now, suffice to say; in TV, a soundbite is when they cut to the celebrity or newsmaker talking – and in print, it’s a quote. But, it’s all the same. Having a stash of pithy soundbites walking into an interview is vital – because you’re going to need some to feed the beast at least once…maybe twice.

One of the best ways to wrap your mind around soundbites so they’re no so daunting is in showbiz terms, so let’s go Hollywood for a second…

Soundbites are essentially the trailer to YOUR movie. They’re your takeaway message, short and sweet without dumbing it down. A killer soundbite is an attention-grabbing snapshot that not only begs your listener to ask for more, it also compels them to want to tell your story to other people.

In the words of Don Hewitt; TV news pioneer and creator of 60 Minutes, “Just remember it’s the story. Always tell a good story.” I open my book “Interview Tactics!” with his quote, because “if you can’t tell it, you can’t sell it.” And, if you can’t tell your story to one person, you can’t tell it to millions. Which is the whole idea.

One quick tip for creating killer soundbites is using color and detail. Information, facts, times, places, dates. Just keep it short and concise. When people want to know more, I promise…they’ll follow you to your car to get you to give it up.

For more much more on soundbites and how to give a killer interview, grab my free “Interview Tactics! Media Report” at


About Gayl Murphy, Hollywood Correspondent

Gayl Murphy is "The Celebritizer" - a Hollywood Correspondent (ABC News, BBC News, SKY News, E!), media expert and coach, speaker and author of "Interview Tactics! How To Survive The Media Without Getting Clobbered! Gayl has interviewed over 15,000 celebrities and newsmakers for TV, radio, print and online.

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