You’re going on TV? Good luck!

Twelve tips to survive as a guest on a late-night comedy show.

Twelve tips to survive as a guest on a late-night comedy show

All this got me thinking — when did comedy replace “serious” news? And if you’re summoned to appear on one of these shows, how do you prepare? Traditional media training won’t suffice. But more on that later …

Why should public figures appear on late-night comedy shows? For one thing, it’s a chance to speak directly to the American people. A study by George Mason University revealed that candidate George Bush actually had more talk time in one appearance on the “Late Show with David Letterman” during the 2000 campaign than from an entire month of stories on “CBS Evening News.”

In this age of targeted campaigning in battleground states, comedy shows are often the only way to reach a national audience. And a study presented at the 2006 annual meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association indicated that late-night comedy appearances can actually enhance a candidate’s image in ways that defy conventional wisdom.

But are these viewers the people you want to reach?

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