Thinking Out Loud

Master of Live

This presentation by CNN’s Tom Foreman is a master class in live delivery. Though here he enjoys the use of Virtual Reality (VR) technology, the dynamics that distinguish his performance are applicable to almost any live situation in studio or out — and especially to one that involves relating to a screen or objects behind you. […]

Chemistry and the Paced-Up Newscast

Fast-paced, high story count newscasts can be chemistry-killers — especially if anchors assume that less time on-screen together automatically means less time for connection and relationship.  The good news:  It ain’t necessarily so. As we noted when we shared this clip over the holidays, we were originally attracted to it as an example of the […]

Women Talk Mornings

When you’re committed to understanding what viewers value, there is no substitute for asking the viewers themselves. In this excerpt from a focus group of 25-54 year old women in a Top 10 market, they talk about the kind of performance and personality they prefer when they watch morning news. As you watch and listen, remember that […]

The Power of Wow

As much as we were moved by the On the Road piece featured here, what really put us in the holiday spirit was CBS anchor Scott Pelley’s reaction at the end. Technically, Pelley simply shows us he’s watching by referencing a monitor and then reacting honestly as he turns back to the camera. Simple as the […]

The Secret to Greatness

We were originally going to share this clip as an example of the way great teams interact and work together even when they are not necessarily see together. (See the subsequent post, “Chemistry and the Paced-Up Newscast”). It is that, but a simple backstory made us aware that it is also an example of something that is […]

Why Volume Matters

How loudly to speak is one of the most important and revealing choices you can make on camera. Volume — perhaps more than any other dynamic — ultimately reveals whether you’re interested in connecting with your audience or just performing for them. Few news talent manage volume as deliberately and effectively as NBC New York’s […]

Joy to the News

In case you missed it, we wanted to share this essay from Roger Ebert’s memoir, reprinted by Salon on reports of his death. We were especially moved by this statement: We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always […]

When Reading Ain’t Leading

The problem that’s really at the heart of most mediocre and uninspiring delivery is that the anchors don’t know what they’re talking about.  For a thousand reasons, they haven’t had time to read the story.  For another thousand reasons, they haven’t been able to see the video in advance. The result: They deliver the news with […]

Power Posture

We’ve known for a long time that how you sit and stand on air is a big deal, because it an make a big difference in the impression you make on viewers. Researchers call this display behavior, and we instinctively rely on it to identify who has the power and authority in the room and […]