There is nothing I like seeing more in this industry than people creating their own thing. I came across Danielle Alvari on YouTube which led me to checking out her other social media feeds. Danielle is a smart, passionate young broadcaster who is going to have some major success in this industry and I was more than excited when she agreed to chat with me to share her story and advice with SMG. I hope you take what she says to heart and put into action what she’s doing.
Taylor Shold: Tell us a little about yourself, what you do, and why you wanted to get into broadcasting?
Danielle Alvari: I was born and raised in the California Bay Area. I lettered and played in 4 varsity sports in high school: competitive cheerleading, swimming, track and field, and wrestling. I continued my athletic career when I got into my dream school and became a UCLA cheerleader. Once I earned those courtside seats in Pauley Pavilion and ran out on to the field of the Rose Bowl for the first time, I knew I had to find a career that would keep me close to the action. So, I bought a camera, a microphone, and a tripod and started doing interviews. My first job after UCLA was as a Sports Reporter and Weekend Anchor at CBS NewsChannel5 KGWN in Cheyenne, WY. At KGWN, I received an Emmy nomination for a live show on which I co-anchored. After that, I worked in the Bay Area as a high school sports reporter, and now I’m a freelance sports broadcaster working for Comcast Hometown Network and GetSportsFocus.com.
Taylor: SMG is all about networking, how has it helped your career and how can people do it effectively?
Danielle: Networking is essential to a career in sports media. No one achieves anything alone. When I first started out, I was afraid to “bug” people. Don’t be afraid. One of my favorite quotes is, “You get in life what you have the courage to ask for.” Oprah said it, so you know it’s true. Not every person you reach out to or connect with will materialize into something and that’s okay. You never know which connection will end up making all the difference. Even though I am still in the early stages of my career, I always make sure to pay it forward by acting as a resource for others. Be kind, be helpful, and be yourself.
Taylor: Your online and social media presence is fantastic, why do you think that’s important in today’s industry?
Danielle: First off, thank you! Social media has completely changed the game in the world of broadcast and media. It has facilitated the rise of citizen journalism and social media influencers. With all this technology at our fingertips, it’s never been easier to get yourself on camera and online for all to see. You can show people who you are and what you can do, and you don’t need a camera crew or air time to do it. If you want to improve your social media presence, make sure you’re posting content regularly that promotes your brand- who you are and what you’re about.
Taylor: Tell us about your YouTube series “2 Minute Warning”, what made you start it and are you finding it beneficial in improving your personal brand?
Danielle: “2 Minute Warning with Danielle Alvari” has been my passion project from the start. I love writing and I wanted a way to showcase myself and my skills while entertaining people. I truly enjoy sideline reporting, but I didn’t feel that it showcased all of my skills and personality. I have so much fun creating my show each week for GetSportsFocus.com. People are often surprised to hear that I write, shoot, edit, and produce the show. They often think I just show up and read a script someone else wrote, but producing your own show is definitely a labor of love. It’s so rewarding for me when people reach out and tell me how much they enjoy the show. I’ve even had producers reach out and offer me a job after seeing “2 Minute Warning.” Personally, I love producing my own YouTube show because it gives me complete creative control over my content. It definitely isn’t for everyone, but if you have ideas that you want to bring to life this digital age of media makes it all possible.
Taylor: What does it take to be a great on-camera presenter? How can people get better?
Danielle: If I knew, I’d tell you. What I do know is that you should never be done learning or trying to improve. Getting yourself as many reps as possible is the best way to not only get practice, but also to get footage that you can then watch. Sometime I leave an interview thinking it went so well, only to watch it back and realize there’s ten things I would want to change or do better. This is where networking can come in handy, yet again. Ask for feedback from other people in the industry. I think the best on-camera presenters have confidence and grace under pressure.
Also, try not to get discouraged when you get tough criticisms…those are the best ones! You’re not going to improve by everyone telling you how great you are. Stay confident and try to get better every time.
Taylor: When it comes to standing out and finding a job in media, you send in your online application and resume…then what?
Danielle: Resilience is key. Media is a competitive industry, so you might not hear back from a lot of the jobs you apply to. It is definitely helpful to know somebody at the company (there’s that networking creeping back in again.) Other than that, just make sure you’re putting your best foot forward and showing off all of your skills.
Taylor: Finally, what’s your best advice for others looking for a career in broadcasting?
Danielle: Be patient, be resilient, and be tenacious.
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