skip to Main Content

Optimizing Broadcast Strategies with Eric Chemi, Bospar

Optimizing Broadcast Strategies With Eric Chemi, Bospar

On this month’s profile, we are talking with Eric Chemi, a senior vice president for Broadcast Strategy at Bospar. His career has spanned the intersection of business, technology, and communications. After earning a computer science degree at MIT, he worked as a hedge fund trader for several years. He then transitioned to media roles at Bloomberg and then CNBC, where he was an on-air reporter.

Within this interview, we break down how to optimize your entire broadcast strategy, what works, and his tips for being a valuable source/spokesperson. Read below for the entire interview with Eric Chemi:

 

1.) Tell us a bit about your role at Bospar and who your clients are.

I am a senior vice president for Broadcast Strategy at Bospar, the award-winning tech PR firm that’s “Politely Pushy” to speed our clients ahead. From tech startups to startups at heart, most of our clients are private companies on the road to a big exit, like going public or being acquired, and they span the entire tech sector: cloud, enterprise data, fintech, healthtech, cybersecurity, clean energy and social media, among others.

 

2.) How did your time as an on-air reporter at CNBC prepare you for the role you have now?

What goes on inside the newsroom is a mystery to most companies seeking exposure. With my experience behind the scenes and in front of the camera, I can help Bospar clients navigate broadcast journalism like an insider. That means creating the right story and understanding what works and what is a surefire way to kill a story. I’m able to explain how to get invited back for future guest appearances and to discuss with clients the nuances that work for long-run media success.

 

3.) What are your top three tips for clients wanting to elevate their message and on-air appearance?

Call them tips, or a way of life in the world of media!

1.)  It’s not as much about what you say as how you say it. Energy and enthusiasm are contagious. People forget 95% of what you say, but 100% of the time remember how you made them feel. So practice conveying a warm, energetic vibe. We’re human after all.

2.) Make sure the camera, lens, lighting and microphone are high quality. Poor equipment can wreck a broadcast spot.

3.) Provide specific, concrete examples that show viewers that “you know” what you’re talking about and emotional narratives that show people “you care” too. Do that in high-energy, short and impactful soundbites.

If you use those principles as your North Star, everything else falls into place.

 

4.) What are the benefits of a broadcast placement rather than a digital/print one?

Video is powerful. If a picture is worth a thousand words, video is worth a million. Video puts a face and personality on a story. Video comes with sound, movement, gesture, eye contact and often a conversational feel—it’s alive. Sometimes a reader may not understand a writer’s emotion and tone just from words on a page. Video allows you to show that emotion in full color and directly connect with the viewer. Also, it is piped into people’s homes and offices, so they see you and hear your story whether or not they were even searching for it.

 

5.) Is the news desk still prevalent in newsrooms? Should PRos only be pitching individual journalists?

I would only pitch individual journalists. You need an actual human being to care about your pitch and want to run with that story. Any type of generic email pitch that goes to multiple people means nobody feels the need to individually handle it. The newsroom is good for handling urgent breaking news—but not the place for sending nonurgent pitches.

 

6.) What are the best ways to repurpose broadcast coverage in 2022?

Put it everywhere: all social media platforms, YouTube, your website, your company newsletter, etc. Share it internally and through email outreach… Because our world is so fragmented these days, you want to merchandise your broadcast coverage everywhere your audience is.

Don’t forget to send the clip to the next media target you’d like to appear on, to prove that you’re “good on camera” and a worthwhile future guest.

 

7.) What are the best ways to pitch a feature vs. a news event?

For a feature story, you must give me, the reporter, a clear reason why I should spend my precious, limited time on it. Here’s what I ask myself:
– What is my audience going to learn?
– Why is my editor or producer going to greenlight this story, and allow us to sink a lot of time, effort and money into the project?
Your feature needs to be very compelling and strike a chord with topics my audience trusts me to deliver.

 

8.) What’s the best time of day to pitch broadcast journalists? For example, if they’re a nightside reporter, when is it too late? When do they decide on the day’s stories?

It’s never too late. Stories are decided on in the morning and those are worked on that day. But if something comes along that’s better, we can quickly dump the old story and move on to the new story. If it’s urgent news of the day, we’ll do it fast. If it’s a feature, I might take a couple of weeks before I even get started. Send one or two follow-up notes at different times of the day to see if the feature you pitched resonates. Reporters’ schedules can be all over the place: some days they work very early, other days are very late! It’s just not predictable.

 

9.) What’s the secret to a great spokesperson?

Give me good soundbites. Answer my questions. Give me some background context on what’s happening and why it’s important. Connect me with others in the industry who will talk to me as well and validate your message. Important tip: if you’re a blatant advertisement for your company, you’ll never be invited back.

 

10.) What makes a spokesperson have repeat guest potential?

My favorite guests answer questions in a powerful and emotional way. They give me short, sweet soundbites that are easily understood and shared. To keep the interview moving, it’s important to listen to the host’s verbal cues and wrap up your answer. Running on too long will get you banished. And don’t be boring.

 

12.) What’s your best tip for measuring PR for broadcast coverage? What’s the most valuable KPI to track in your opinion and why?

KPIs for PR are notoriously challenging to track and attribute, but for broadcast appearances, tracking the reach of the segment is a good starting point. 

 

13.) What’s your #1 tactic for building relationships with journalists?

The best way to build relationships with journalists is to give powerful and engaging insights. Context, data and succinct answers to questions with lively delivery will make journalists remember you and seek you out downstream for a quote or to be their guest on a TV segment. Keep giving them useful info, but don’t expect a repeat appearance right away because it can take time to figure out the best story to include you in. To begin a relationship with a journalist, provide fresh insights on topics the journalist cares about and has reported on in the past. Having a demo tape to show how compelling a speaker you are will put you above the rest when they are choosing to book for an upcoming segment.

 

14.) What tips do you have for maintaining relationships with journalists when you have no news to share?

Reporters are outsiders. They do not work at the companies they report on so they rely on industry insiders to explain the truth and the backstory. Help them understand the competition and industry dynamics. Give them background on rumors and inside storylines. Insights about what’s happening at other companies they care about will go a long way to cement relationships.

 

15.) What’s the best PR advice you’ve received or given to others?

 “Hope is not a good PR strategy.” 

Preparation is 80% of the job, any job. When it comes to on-air interviews, it’s always in your best interest to know your topic, know its relevance to the media cycle and have a well-rehearsed delivery. Have your source readied, follow the media contact and understand their beat as well as their audience.

 

16.) Tell us about your new-ish podcast, Politely Pushy, and what listeners can expect.

It lives at the intersection of business, technology and communications. Politely Pushy is the Bospar ethos and that ethos inspires how we conduct interviews and whom we select to be on the show. We’ve interviewed tech company founders, CEOs, CMOs and corporate communications leaders, as well as PR agency owners, journalists, creatives and thought leaders across today’s most important business and technology sectors. Each episode is about 30 minutes long, in an open-ended, no-holds-barred, conversation style. There are no do-overs, as we only record once! We have both video and audio versions that are distributed across YouTube, all podcast hosting platforms, social media and of course Bospar’s website. To be considered for future interviews on Politely Pushy, email PolitelyPushy@bospar.com.

 

________

 

Want to learn more tips for pitching top-tier contacts and landing coverage? View our podcast, Coffee with a Journalist, which interviews top reporters, editors, and journalists who talk about their best pitch tips they want PR professionals to know.

Like this series and have a guest you think would be a good fit? Shoot us a Twitter DM or email us at info@onepitch.co and let us know who you’d want to see featured next! PS: you can recommend yourself too.

Want more blogs like this?

Click below to subscribe to our newsletter and receive weekly emails with the top blogs from The TypeBar!

Kendall began her journey at OnePitch as an intern in January of 2019 and is now the Marketing Manager handling all of the marketing efforts ranging from social media to content, and emails. She studied communications at San Diego State University and enjoys drawing, being outside, and practicing yoga in her free time.

Back To Top
Search