Guest interviews are a great way to build your audience and add more value to your show—when done right. If you have not prepared for the interview, it will likely lack value, so before conducting any guest interview, you want to make sure you are prepared. You never want to go into a guest interview blind! Otherwise, you won’t know the right questions to ask to get the most value for your audience, and trust me, your listeners will be able to tell.
Luckily, this mistake is easily avoidable. When you research guests, you’ll be fully prepared and know what questions to ask your guest to make your episode compelling to your listeners and valuable to everyone involved.
Here are some simple tips to research guests before they come on the show
Scope out their website
This is probably the most obvious, but it is crucial. Check out their website and find out more about their offers, products, or services. Who is their ideal client? Read their bio. What is their area of expertise? Their education? Read their blogs to get a good understanding of their expertise and viewpoints.
Check out their social media
Take a deep dive into their Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn profiles. Observe the type of content they share and note how they show up. Are they more casual? Professional? What causes do they believe in? Make sure to check out their live streams, stories, and any Facebook groups they have. What have they been up to? How can you relate it to your interview?
Listen to other podcast episodes they have been on.
Whether they have their own show or they have done other guest interviews, make sure to check them out! Try to avoid asking the same questions that they cover in other episodes. By approaching the interview from a different angle, you may be able to draw in more of their audience because you are uniquely presenting the information.
Now I know what you may be thinking, this is a pretty big list of things to do! But the more you learn about your guest, the quicker and easier this task will become. You don’t have to memorize their life story, but doing your research before the show will make a great impression on your guest and build a strong working relationship.
As you’re doing your guest research, jot down some notes that you can reference during your interview. If you think of any questions as you’re researching, jot those down too. Note anything interesting or that might be of value to your audience.
Now that you have all of your information, you’re ready to go! Before you start officially recording, briefly go over potential topics to cover and ask the guest what they are hoping to get out of the interview. Getting on the same page from the start will help with the flow of the show. Don’t forget to double-check their name pronunciation before starting your show as well!
Additionally, you can have your guest fill out a quick questionnaire including what they want to talk about during the show, their bio information, and any important links they want to be included. This will help you get all of the information you need ready to go so the production side is a breeze. As you get more experience interviewing guests, it will be second nature to research guests. You’ve got this. Now get out there and rock that guest interview!
Looking for more tips? Read more of our blogs:
6 Common Mistakes New Podcasters Make
Everything You Need to Know About the Technical Side of Podcasting
Why You Should Network With Other Podcast Hosts + How to Do It