Here’s What It Takes To Become A Credible Subject Matter Expert

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Get yourself on TV… often.


Simply put, the more often you appear on TV, the more opportunities you have to share your expertise and its importance, and the more opportunities you gain to develop credibility with your viewers. 


At TenXPR, we’ve developed countless, customized broadcast PR campaigns for our clients, and the results typically look something like this:


  • Increased visibility, which leads to
  • … additional social media followers and email subscribers
  • … a boost in sales, whether a product, offering or book


Ready to watch the same results happen for you? Here are our top tips for positioning yourself as a subject matter expert on TV.

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Be pitch perfect.

Getting the media on your side takes work, and it all starts with crafting the perfect email pitch that entices the receiver to open it, read it, and invite you to be a guest on their show. But with TV producers and talent bookers receiving hundreds, if not thousands of emails each day – some of which are also pitches from experts requesting to appear on their show – your pitch has to make them look twice.


No pressure! Here’s how.


Get them hooked.


Creating a catchy subject line is key, especially when you consider that 33% of email recipients open emails based on the subject line alone. If your subject line is too generic or too long, your pitch will never see the light of day – that I promise you.  Instead, try these tips to help your subject line stand out from the rest:pexels markus winkler 4052192


  • Keep it short and to the point. Shoot for 68 characters or less.
  • Make it personalized. Know your audience and what they are looking for in an expert.
  • Use numbers. They often boost your chances at higher open rates.
  • Use power words to create urgency.
  • Avoid capital letters. No one wants to feel like you’re YELLING AT THEM!
  • Make it known that you’re available for an interview. 


Reel them in.


Once you’ve developed your subject line, you’re ready to write the body of your pitch!


Start by introducing yourself, your expertise, and what you can bring to the table as a guest on their show. Pro tip: find a news story or “hook” (i.e. a shocking statistic, a trending topic, a compelling story, etc.) that you can contribute to and tie into your expertise.


But before choosing a topic, research the show’s audience to see if the story or hook will interest them. By doing this, you’re directly showcasing how you and your expertise can contribute to subject matter that is important to the audience, a.k.a. a producer’s dream.


Once you’ve found a compelling story or hook, explain how you can contribute to this topic in bullet point format. It’s crucial to write your talking points this way because (1) who has time to read long paragraphs? and (2) they’ll help producers and talent bookers understand what their viewers will get out of watching an interview with you, which is their top priority –  you’re just making their job easier!

pexels ivan samkov 4240497In summary, make your talking points clear, concise and compelling.

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I talk a lot about crafting the perfect pitch in my blog post 5 Steps To Get On TV As An Expert. Check it out for even more helpful tips!


Try and try again.

Remember, producers and bookers are underwater in emails each day, so if they don’t reply to you, just try again. And while you’re at it, experiment with your pitches to see what is landing – and what is not. Test out different subject lines, see if you can shorten your pitch, or find an even more compelling storyline or hook to jump off of.


It can take as many as 5-7 emails before you get a response. Practice makes pitch perfect!


Take the local wins.

If I had a nickel for every client that has asked me to get them on Good Morning America right off the bat, I’d be retired already! Of course, a top-tier national TV show like GMA is the dream, but even if you’re someone who has had some national exposure under your belt, you can never guarantee that you will get the dream placement – or that you will get a response at all (P.S. this is the case for any PR outreach).


That’s why it’s so important to say “yes” to every opportunity – even local opportunities!


In fact, when national TV producers and bookers are considering you as a subject matter expert for their show, they’re usually looking to see if you’ve had any local TV placements. Why? Because it’s a great way to get a sense of your interview style, to find out if you’re able to talk in small bites while still engaging with an audience, and to get a full scope of your overall TV experience.pexels george milton 6953869


Not only are local placements your ticket to garnering future national exposure, they also play a huge role in building your credibility. Unlike national TV, local TV shows airs reruns of the same interview multiple times a day or even multiple times a week, equating to about 2-3 interviews. And the results speak for themselves. I’ve worked with clients who were resistant to local TV, but when they finally decided to give it a try, they were pleasantly surprised to see a jump in their sales.


So, don’t knock local TV until you try it!


Hire a professional.

Sure, I might be biased, but hiring a PR professional has a lot of benefits.


For one, it’s like working with any expert – the work gets done, and it gets done easily, efficiently, and of course, professionally. It takes the inevitable aggravation out of the pitching process that most experts dread. That means you won’t be writing your pitches, actively emailing your pitches, or coordinating your media hits, which are extremely time-consuming. You will, however, be expected to help brainstorm topics that you are capable of speaking to given your expertise, because one knows the ins and outs of your expertise better than you do!


A PR professional who truly goes above and beyond will also ensure that you’re fully prepared for each and every TV interview you land. Because TenXPR is a niche broadcast PR agency, we make media training a top priority for all of our clients by offering 30-minute training sessions to put you at ease before your big break. Tips include professional on-screen etiquette, preparing for uncomfortable questions, and compiling your most relevant and compelling talking points.


A professional lives and breathes the ins and outs of broadcast PR, and when you’re working directly with an expert who has mastered all the tricks of the trade, you can rest easy knowing that you’re in good hands.


We’d love to help you get placed on TV and build your credibility as a subject matter expert! Visit our website here to get in touch.

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