Podcasting Tips

Podcasting Tips: How to Conduct an Awesome Podcast Interview

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Great podcasts rely on great conversations.

Interviewing guests involve more than just asking the right questions. Your audience wants to hear captivating content.

“It’s about genuine interest, flow, vibe, sincerity, concern, digging deeper, defining the unclear, attracting stories, avoiding awkwardness and being conscious about all of that at the same time,” says Pat Flynn, host of The Smart Passive Income.

Spreaker wants you conduct an awesome podcast interview. Here are five strategies you can implement today:

  1. Research Your Guests Thoroughly

Most podcasts exist to educate their listeners about a particular subject. In order to host informative shows, you must learn not only about the topic but also the guests. It’s your job to extract the most interesting stories your guests have to share.

Do your homework. Search online and gather background information about your interviewees. For instance, follow them on social media channels, like Twitter and Facebook.

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Listen to previous talks featuring their work and read their blog posts. Researching your guests will help you guide the conversation in multiple directions.

  1. Engage With Open-Ended Questioning

Ask open-ended questions. These questions require a response with more depth. They also are helpful in learning about a person or a situation.

Stephen Walsh, co-founder of Kineo, suggests you ask these five standard questions to elicit answers that are useful to your listeners:

  1. What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about X…?
  2. What’s your key piece of advice on X…?
  3. How would you explain topic X to a newcomer?
  4. What keeps you interested in X…?
  5. What drives you mad about X…?

Be consistent and natural in your questioning. It will ease the guest’s anxiety and build your authority as a podcaster.

  1. Listen Carefully

Listening sounds obvious, but it’s a common mistake made by beginner and seasoned podcasters.

Sometimes, we get so focused on asking questions from our prepared list that we miss important points made by our guests. Then, the natural flow seems awkward, and we even ask questions that have already been answered.

To effectively listen, reduce any nearby distractions. Focus on your guests, not the next question.

Cliff Ravenscraft, host of Podcast Answer Man, offers the following tips to improve your podcast interviews:

  • Don’t interrupt your guest when they are speaking.
  • Don’t give verbal agreements to every statement that they make.
  • Avoid questions that allow for simple one word answers.
  1. Ask for Stories

Researchers found that storytelling drastically changes the way our brains work.  

Jennifer Aaker, a marketing professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, states that, “A story is a journey that moves the listener, and when the listener goes on that journey they feel different and the result is persuasion and sometimes action.”

If you want to persuade your audience, encourage your guests to tell stories about their experiences. Those memorable moments will capture people’s attention and build a relationship with the audience.

Remember to give listeners insight they never expected. To hone your skills, listen to other Spreaker podcasters.

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  1. Summarize for Clarification

A third time’s a charm. This expression rings true in podcasting.

Repeating and summarizing the conversation can help listeners digest the information. Don’t let your audience miss out on good points.

Again, be yourself. No need to use jargon. Rev. Kenneth V. Blanchard, Sr., host of Black Man With A Gun, says, “I believe that everyone has their own rhythm and style.”

“Find what works for you and polish it. You don’t have to copy anyone but you should be ‘comfortable in your own skin’.”

Learn & Grow

Podcasting is a skill. It takes time and patience to develop your talent.

Your interviews should be compelling with a conversational tone. Using stories and listening carefully can give depth to the experience.

The Spreaker community supports your podcasting efforts. What tips would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below.

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1 Comment
  • Civilla Morgan Apr 26,2016 at 5:09 pm

    I have a big interview in two days, I so needed this. Thank you!

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