It’s simple. The more you speak, the more you’ll speak! And a way to speak more is to be a guest on podcasts.
You might be thinking, “You know, that’s a fantastic idea.” But, before you start lining up possible shows that you can be on, please realize that there’s more to appearing on a podcast than showing up and answering questions.
To help with this, here are several things you want to do.
Be sure to prepare for each episode. This includes completing and submitting the pre-show questionnaire the host might give you. This questionnaire not only gives them the information they need to prepare for your conversation, but it also helps you think through what you’re going to say.
Another thing you want to do when prepping is listened to at least two full episodes of their podcast. This gives you an idea of the feel of the episodes. For instance, if the host is upbeat, you want to be upbeat. If the host is much more laid back — almost sounding like an NPR episode — then you want to be a little more laid back too. Your goal is to have the episode sound natural to the listeners.
Another thing you want to do when you’re listening to the podcast episodes is looking for any consistent segments, such as the host saying at the very beginning, “Tell us about yourself.” Or at the end, when the host asks, “Where can my listeners connect with you?” Be sure you have this information ready to go.
Number two, don’t leave things to memory.
Know the stories you might tell to make a point. Have lists for points you want to make. Now, you might be able to do those off the top of your head. I know I can. But I also know that quite often, when my mind is going a mile a minute, I forget something I want to say. So to combat that — on my studio walls — I have at least one story for each topic I talk about — just the bullets to remind me of those stories. I have bullets with the answers of the most commonly asked questions that I get. For instance, a host might ask me, “What are the three most important things someone who’s nervous about public speaking should remember?” Or, “What’s the worst thing that’s ever happened to you while presenting?” I actually have two answers for the last question — one rated PG and one rated R.
And truthfully, the one that’s rated R is my favorite, but it’s not appropriate for all episodes.
I also include on the notes on my walls the answer to the question many hosts asked near the end, “What’s one final tip you can offer my listeners?” You want to have this one, too! And, don’t let it be simply another tip. You want it to be a powerful one.
Number three: Have a good audio-video setup
The quality matters, especially the audio. So, don’t rely on your computer’s mic. It’s not good. If you’re going to do this a lot, you want to invest in a decent mic. You can get one for about $100. As for the video, if your laptop or your desktop has a great high-resolution camera, that might be okay. If not, buy an external camera. This is important for your reputation, the host’s reputation, and the listeners’ experience.
Number four: Use the host’s name frequently.
Don’t overdo it. But, include it as if you’re speaking to a close friend. It helps make the conversation sound more realistic — as if the listeners are listening to two friends talk.
Number five: If the host asks, “Where can my listeners connect with you?”
Have one specific call to action. Don’t say well, they can get my book here, and they can go to my website here, and they can go to my LinkedIn profile there. Have one — the one that’s most strategically important.
So there you have it … several ideas that will help you be a more effective podcast guest. Remember that your number one job as a guest is to provide your host’s listeners with an enjoyable, beneficial experience, and you’ll have more and more hosts contacting you to be on their shows too.
Oh, one more thing. If you want to be a frequent guest on relevant shows, try PodMatch. It’s awesome!
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