Podcast Interview Tips

by Bruno
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Podcast Interview Tips


It can be hard to find great podcasts mixed in with the huge number of podcasts coming and going on your favorite podcast host. It’s hard to find quality and useful information buried in the myriad of podcasting sameness. The sheer amount of podcasts sprouting up lately will I’m sure lead many to think a huge amount of useful stories and interviews are being shared, sadly you’d be wrong.

Like the billions of blogs choking the internet in their drabness, and their vanilla presentations birthed out of staid thinking. The recent rush over the last couple of years to create podcasts has become epidemic in it’s blandness. Does anyone have an idea of doing something original? Are we condemned to scroll through thousands of podcasts titled Things You’ve Missed?

One explanation I often hear is that people are creating their podcasts for themselves and not for their listeners and customers. That explanation certainly holds some weight, but I think it’s more about the dreaded FOMO (fear of missing out) fueling the growth of podcasts and blogs that are filled with sameness and a lack of uniqueness. Following the crowd is a powerful magnet, and a magnet that destroys the creative spirit.

And audio quality seems to be a victim of the need to produce a new show every week, day or hour. Are low level background conversations being embedded in many podcasts meant to simulate a live coffee shop experience?

A Few Podcast Interview Tips

Are you offering your listeners and those you hope will listen more than the carbon copies of your competitors info and stories? Or are you merely filling up space with cross talk interviews that waste your listeners time? And believe me, your listeners know when their time is being needlessly wasted.

Unfortunately for the listeners many podcasters seem to cobble together their shows on the fly without a minimum of forethought. And even though there is much to be said for creative spontaneity and the recklessness of creating a show in the moment. Your listeners “do not” want to listen for 30+ minutes of rambling incoherence in hopes that they’ll get to the marrow of the show at some point?

Podcast Interview Tips

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Structure Your Podcast Interview

There are many podcast interview tips floating around to help you create an appealing structure that engages your listeners and leaves them satisfied.

I think the most important tip is perhaps this one, don’t chase away your listeners. You’ll often hear a podcaster talk for 5 or even 10 minutes at the beginning of there show about little or nothing connected with the particular show. They may ramble on about past shows, future shows or what they had for dinner (seriously).

What if you create a podcast strictly for your listeners pleasure, for their enjoyment?

What if you craft your interviews so your valuable listeners can walk away having experienced something unique and informative?

What if you structure your show so the first 5 minutes of the interview hits the following three points?

Ask your guest

Question 1

Tell Us About (The Topic) One Minute

Question 2

Help People Understand ( The Topic) One Minute

Improvise The Middle

You’ve listened to your guest talk for two minutes while answering the first two questions. Now ask your guest 2 on point questions relevant to what you’ve just heard. Two Minutes

Question 3

Share Tools Listeners Can Use One Minute

podcast 5 1 Podcast Start Point

The Result

The listener spends 5 minutes listening to you interviewing your guest in a structured way and comes away with a brief yet surprisingly deep understanding of what your guest has to say.

A 5 minute structured interview can be about time travel, a new book, a tour of a haunted castle, new ideas in fashion or even tips on understanding an existential crisis. There really is no subject that can’t be satisfyingly explained in a five minute interview.

Once you’ve completed the 5 minute interview you can air an advertisement or chat briefly about your upcoming shows all the while letting your listeners know you and your guest will be continuing a deeper look at the interview subject.

You’ve delivered a concise chunk of info for you listeners to chew on and for those who care to know more you’ll dive deeper, but for those who have things to do or have gotten enough from your podcast they can follow you and move on.

It may shock some but most people will move on, though perhaps a good number will return to dig deep at another time. People want to choose how and when they consume media. Give them the opportunity to share with you the highlights of a subject and chances are they’ll reward you with more listens and sharing.

When a listener is scrolling through your podcast listings on their phone or tablet they will quickly come to know they can join your for a deep dive into a subject in only 5 minutes. Think about that for a moment.

A listener can almost always find five minutes to find out if they want to stick with a particular podcast.

It’s All About The Listeners

Without being abrupt or harsh, remember to stay in control of the interview. Often the person being interviewed will try and move off on a tangent or personal crusade, steer them back on track with grace and purpose.

Always keep in mind, you’ve created the podcast for your listeners and not for the guests or for yourself.

Caution guests about making the interview an advertisement for their new book or video. Let them know there will be links and more info on the podcast website for promotion.

Honestly, listeners are tired of interviews that really are only advertisements. If the interview offers uniqueness the listeners will visit the links.