Updated: Nov 5, 2021
Is reality TV real? More and more it seems scripted—and outtakes and bloopers are proving it’s rehearsed instead of spontaneous. Personally, I like it better when the “actors” don’t filter what they say. I was watching a politician stump for another candidate recently and although he used a teleprompter and had an outline, it was when he went off-script that he was the most persuasive.
A local broadcaster in San Diego (Ted Leitner) insists on using the product he’s pitching and then ad-libbing when creating the commercial. It isn’t perfect, but it’s more authentic and more believable.
Even if you have a “shtick,” rehearse it to the point that you know it backwards and forwards so you don’t need notes and can tweak it a little each time you use it. Make it seem like it’s the first time you’ve used it.
Terry Ostrowiak, a speaker (and speaking coach) told me a long time ago to never point at the audience and use, “We” instead of, “I” whenever possible. Good advice.
Real, authentic, and personal are sometimes more important than polished.