GB News live was the TV debut for Tracy Heatley.  Here’s some TV appearance tips for anyone who is going on TV for the first time.

Tracy Heatley on GB News with Laurence Fox

My First TV Appearance

My first TV appearance taught me a lot, which has helped me form these TV appearance tips for you. What a great TV debut it was, as I was interviewed by actor and news presenter, Laurence Fox, live on GB News! I had a goal to get on TV, because the more I can share my strategy, marketing and networking knowledge, the better.   It’s a big jump from radio shows to being a guest on TV news, but I did it!  I must admit that being the interviewee, rather than the interviewer, was a little odd. I have to be honest, I didn’t tell many people I was going to be on TV.  Mainly because I didn’t know how it would go.  Let’s face it, I could have fallen flat on my face.  Literally and metaphorically!   Thankfully, I didn’t, and the interview went well.  In fact, I absolutely loved it!

Don’t Keep Your TV Appearance A Secret

Don’t keep your upcoming TV appearance a secret!  Tell people that you’re going on TV.  After all, the more exposure you get, the better.  Moreover, people who know and care about you will be proud of you, so share your good news. Plus, things don’t have to be perfect to be great.  I wish I’d have shared the news with everyone and published it all over my socials beforehand.  Alas, I chose not to, which goes against the grain as a marketing specialist.  Don’t make the same mistake!   Share your good news, embrace the PR opportunities, and relish in the support of others.

Do Your Own Makeup

If you’re wearing makeup for your TV appearance,  do it yourself before you go to the studio.   Unless you’ve been specifically told not to do your own makeup, and that there willTracy Heatley having her make up touched up on her first TV Appearance to accompany her blog on TV appearance tips  definitely be a make up artist there to do it for you, don’t leave it to chance.   Firstly, there is no guarantee that a makeup professional will be on hand, at the studio, to do your make up because they’re not always available. Secondly, you may want to be in control of how you look.  Therefore, if you’re good at doing makeup, do it yourself.  If not, get a local professional, or friend, to do it for you before you have your TV appearance.  The same applies to your hair!  I’d say that you should do it yourself before you go!  I had done my own hair and makeup, but was lucky to have a professional, at the studio, who added a touch of ‘magic’ powder to top up my makeup, before I went on air.

What To Wear For Your TV Appearance

Tracy Heatley with her mic on ready for her first ever TV appearance on GB NewsWearing A Mic On TV

Think about what you’re wearing for your TV appearance because you will be wearing a mic.  Make sure there is a place for your Mic pack to be clipped onto around your waistline. Ideally, wear something with a defined waistline. Also, you will need to wear something that you can quickly and easily thread your Mic wire through.  This will usually go through the neck area of your clothing and thread down to your mic pack. Furthermore, you will need to be able to clip your Mic to something like a lapel or neckline. Choose a hairstyle that won’t interfere with your Mic too.  Otherwise this could effect the sound quality.

How You Look For Your TV Appearance

According to the TED Talks TED Official Guide To Public Speaking book, by Head of TED, Chris Anderson, your appearance and what you wear can create a connection with an audience before you’ve even said a word.  Granted, this book is about public speaking on stage and events.  However, it’s reasonable to assume it’s true of TV appearances too. Therefore, when you’re choosing your TV outfit, think about the colours. Wear something that stands out, but is not so overpowering that it detracts from what you’re saying. I’d recommend wearing plain dye fabrics, rather than busy patterns. Furthermore, avoid bright white or black clothing due to the lighting in the studio.  Consider the audience and who the TV programme is aimed at.  However, always wear something that portrays the right message about you and how you want to be perceived.  Importantly, wear something that makes you feel confident.Tracy Heatley, in the GB News studio, ready for her first TV appearance

TV Studio Setting

Try and establish what the studio setting is like beforehand.  This will help enormously with your choice of clothing. Will you be sat high up or low down?  Indeed, will you be sat down at all or stood up? All this may determine what length and style of clothing will be appropriate.  If you’re unsure then make certain that you’ve got all angles covered….literally! Had I known that I’d have been sitting on a high bar stool type chair, I’d have perhaps opted for slightly longer skirt or trousers.

Allow Plenty Of Time

The last thing you need is an increased heart rate, cortisol and stress prior to your TV appearance.  For this reason, make sure you allow plenty of time to get there and prepare.  Whether you’ve got a long train journey, drive, or the TV studio is on your doorstep, allow yourself time for a stress free experience.  You may need time for a change of clothes.  Hopefully, there will be a dressing room for that.  There is no guarantee about this though.  Plus, it’s nice to have time to relax a little and have some refreshments before you go on air.

Don’t Over Rehearse For Your TV Appearance

I totally get why some people might choose to plan and rehearse for their TV appearance. Also, I accept that people have difference levels of confidence. However, I think that you can over rehearse to the point where you may come across as disingenuous or staged. Personally, I prefer to go with the flow, so that things are natural.  That said, if you prefer to stick to a script, my approach may be perceived by you as ‘flying by the seat of your pants’.  I’m not suggesting that you don’t plan;  I’m just advising that you keep things simple.  There’s nothing worse than having everything scripted in your mind, until you forget something, and it throws you off kilter, especially if it’s live TV! It really doesn’t matter if you forget something that you wanted to mention, as the only person who will know that is you.  Have a basic outline of what you might want to say, but give yourself the gift of going with the flow and enjoying the conversation. It will come across as more natural, and I’m sure it will be more enjoyable for you.

You’ve Been Selected To Be On TV For A Reason

There’s a reason why you’ve been selected to be on TV, so have faith in yourself and what you’ve got to say.  It’s not uncommon for  Imposter Syndrome to creep in when it’s your first time on TV.  Know your worth! Remember that you know your stuff!  If you’re talking about a topic that you know, then you will be absolutely fine.    The TV researchers and producers will have done their homework on you, and if they didn’t think you are a good fit for the programme or feature, they wouldn’t have invited you on the show.  I’m sure that they’ll be lucky to have you on their show, too, and you ought to remember that.  The beauty about being invited on to TV is that, unless you’re an actor, which is a whole other topic, all you have to do is be yourself.  There’s a reason why we’re all different and there’s no one quite like you. Time seems to accelerate when you’re on TV and it will be over before you know it.   So, my final TV appearance tip is to say goodbye to any nerves and apprehension.  Just enjoy the whole experience!


In summary, I hope you’ve found these TV appearance tips useful. Do a bit of research into the TV show and the studio setting that you’re appearing on. Choose what to wear wisely. Prepare well, but don’t overdo the scripting and rehearsal.  Be yourself and remember that what you have to say is important for others to hear.   You’ve been selected because the TV producers think you’re right for the show, so enjoy the moment and the whole experience. Be yourself and have fun!

If you would like to find out more about me, Tracy Heatley, and my strategy, marketing, or networking services, it’s all right here.  Plus, you can read more blogs or listen to the award winning Be Better With Tracy Heatley podcast, which is available on all major podcast platforms, or right here on the website.

Be Better With Tracy Heatley Podcast Cover