An interview with a celebrity of a certain status is bread and butter of magazines, tabloids, and entertainment blogs. It sells monthly subscriptions and advertising space so getting the latest scoop on Beyoncé or an exclusive with Adele means hitting it big.
The point is; people are fascinated by celebrities and interviews sell like hotcakes. Being able to regularly offer tidbits of information about the stars that people are interested in will help you get more readers and visitors and does wonders for your bottom line.
Getting a celebrity to take some time to talk to you requires you to be in the loop. It helps a lot if you know the projects they are involved with, passionate about, and currently promoting. This way, you not only know what questions to ask – those that will get answered – but you also know the right time to reach out.
Of course, all this is much easier said than done. You need to know the ropes; who to contact, when to contact them, and how to make a good impression. On top of that, you have to have something to offer in return – a considerable number of copies sold on a monthly basis or a decent amount of unique visitors to your site, in other words “more exposure”.
Who To Contact
Your point of contact will be the celebrity’s publicist or the publicist of the project they are associated with and promoting at a given point in time.
It’s the publicist’s job to make sure their clients get as much positive media exposure as possible and to do damage control in cases when negative stories do get published.
Publicists keep track of projects and causes that their clients are involved with and they decide which questions get asked. Having a strong, amicable relationship with a publicist is a must if you want to land famous interviewees.
Once you’ve established a good relationship, you will usually be approached whenever a celebrity (or celebrities) that a publicist is handling has something worth saying or promoting.
In some rare cases, a celebrity will not have a publicist. Then the logical step is to contact their manager or the publicist of the project they are involved with, depending on the general direction of your interview and the questions you want to ask.
Do You Even Stand a Chance?
Believe it or not, yes, you do.
It is a dog eat dog world out there and stars are always looking for opportunities to promote their projects and themselves. They have to. If they don’t garner enough attention for their project it just might go completely sideways. Film studios are less inclined to hire film stars whose latest movie was a box office flop. Music sales aren’t what they used to be, so artists are utilizing media to build their brands so companies are more inclined to partner with them on deals like endorsements.
Also, celebrities need to make sure they stay in the public’s eye. Being popular and trending with the media is what gets them their contracts in the first place.
Media sites, magazines, and blogs with substantial readership have it easy. Most of the time it’s simply a matter of finding the right person to reach out to and they almost always get the interview because they cater to large audiences that sometimes number in tens of millions.
If you’re this type of a publisher the only thing you need to work at is maintaining a close relationship with relevant publicists. Eventually, they will start reaching out to you.
Smaller blogs need to get established first. If you’re serious about your blogging and publishing you will work hard on growing your audience and publishing relevant information that gets read on a regular basis.
For smaller blogs its going to be a lot more difficult to land an interview with a huge celebrity right off the bat but there are still plenty of opportunities. Start off small and consider interviewing supporting actors of popular movies or shows, or up-and-coming artists. Once you start populating your blog with relevant content and get readers on board you can start reaching out to publicists that handle really big celebrities.
In every one of these cases, the most important metric is your readership. If you have a couple of millions of monthly views or subscriptions sold, landing an interview will be a lot easier than if you’re just starting out. Having the right readership profile also counts a lot. If your publication caters to a certain niche, then in some cases this may help you as its helping the celebrity to reach a certain market that you may focus on.
How to Establish Contact
You can find the contact info for a celebrities publicists in our celebrity contacts database. Once you have the contact information of the publicist who is handling your start, sit down and write a concise, straightforward email. Keep the following in mind
– Have a clear subject line – communicate, in eight words or less, why you’re contacting them and who you’re interested in.
– Sell your publication – Use the first paragraph to introduce the publication that you representing. If your publication isn’t a huge name, then you may want to briefly include information like how many visitors your site attracts in any given month. It should be noted, that if you don’t have significant or notable numbers, then you may not want to include numbers unless they ask.
– Provide them with a general direction for the interview, including how you would like to conduct the interview, and estimated time that is needed.
– Acknowledge that you’re aware that their client is busy and offer to work around their schedule. In addition to providing more information if needed including questions that will be asked during the interview.
The Best Time to Reach Out
The difference between a phone call interview and an in-person interview is huge. An interview over the phone is almost always going to be a lot easier for the celebrity then an in-person interview. The best time to land an in-person interview is when a celebrity is promoting a new project, or an artist is on tour or performing in your city.
If the artist is performing in your city, then you can get a press pass for the event or concert to interview them before or after the show. It should be noted that sometimes an artist may be tired after the show, and may not accept any interviews even though you were scheduled to do one. If it is an event, in which multiple celebrities will be appearing like an award show or movie screening, you will actually want to get a press pass from the organizers of the event. The great thing about these type of events is that there is usually more than one celebrity at these events so you can squeeze in a couple of questions to others involved in the project as well.
And last, but not the least, celebrities love to talk about their side projects and charities they are passionate about. If you want to interview a celebrity and get a bit more personal about it, it’s worth to find out more about a cause that they support and contact their publicist with an offer to write a piece about it.