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Best Practices for Finding a Podcast Guest

Best-Practices-for-Finding-a-Podcast-Guest
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One of the best ways to bring a new perspective to your podcast is by having on a featured guest. Having guests on your show will help you expand your audience reach and provide your current listeners with that extra value and a brand new resources at their disposal. Now, while having a guest on your show is a great idea and all, where do you start in finding someone who has interesting and relevant information to share with your listeners? This thought can be overwhelming, especially if you are new in the podcasting space and still building your audience. However, there is a plan of action for you to take!

The key is to start with people you know or those who are already looking for a podcast to be featured on. If you already have connections in your specific industry or podcast space, then those should be the people you reach out to first. They are more likely to say yes in an effort to support someone they know and admire. Next, go after influential people in the space whom you already look up to and whose ideas you agree with. Often times when authors have released a new book they are looking to spread the word, so having the chance to get in front of someone’s podcast audience is exactly what they need. 

Keep in mind, you may get a few “no’s” along the way, but just continue being persistent. As your podcast grows and the more guests you have on, the more likely others are going to want to be guests on your podcast as well. Now, let’s dive into a few key strategies to help kickstart your journey towards finding your next podcast guests. 

Explore Other Platforms

A great place to start your podcast guest search is to check out what experts are doing on other platforms. These platforms can include YouTube, popular blogs, or even other podcasts. With a simple search, you can discover others who are discussing a similar topic as yourself and understand their perspective on it. This is also a great place to engage with them and start forming a relationship that could help you when reaching out to them with an invitation to your show. 

To find the perfect guest for your show through different platforms, create a list of all of the influential people you like as your search goes along and why having them on your show will be beneficial for both parties. The best part about asking someone that loves the same subject as you is that you’ll be able to build a strong connection with them and maybe even make it a regular thing.

Related read: 20 Best Podcast Directories

Up and Coming People

If you are a new podcaster then another great place to start when looking for your first guest is to look at others in their industries who are also just starting out. Just like you, they might be looking for someone who can give them an opportunity to make their mark in their respective industries. This includes newly published authors, new business owners, or even other new podcasters. 

Having up and coming people on your podcast will give you the edge of having an expert about the topic on your show without the hassle that comes along with landing those bigger names. Remember not to get distracted with the fact that they are also “new”, but make sure to do your research to ensure that this individual’s products, books, or brand is related to your topic and emphasize how it relates to your podcast. Of course, a little publicity for them is a great exchange for being a guest on your show – but make sure that your audience is still getting value out of their contribution. 

Related read: How to Setup a Guest Interview for Your Podcast

Ask Guests For Recommendations

Once your schedule with regular guests is on a roll, one of the easiest ways to get more guest options is to ask previous guests for their recommendations of other individuals would be a great fit for your show. But be mindful to do this tactfully; remind your guests about the value that they gained from being on your show and encourage them to share that value with others. 

These types of referrals are priceless! This opens up the door for you to a whole new roster of guests while also having a connection in common so that you don’t have to continue those “cold invites”. Plus, this way you can establish a common practice so that guests know that they should feel free to recommend new invites for your show. So make sure to add this referral process into your interview routine or workflow.

Related read: 5 Tips to Help You Find Your Next Podcast Guest

Ask Your Circle

Your circle refers to the group of people closest to you. Whether it’s your friends, colleagues, or your mentor this circle is one that should be the easiest for you to tap into. When it comes to your circle you have two options: ask of them to be your guest, or ask them for an introduction to a potential guest. For example, if you work at a real estate company and you are doing a podcast on real estate, it would be a great idea to tap into your colleagues who might special in different areas of the real estate market.

Asking your circle if they have any suggestions for possible guests is another great tactic. Again, it is a lot easier to get an interview with someone who has a connection in common than with a stranger. Your circle might have a great reach of people in their network with a vast amount of knowledge to share. Just ensure again that you are finding guests that will contribute to the common goal of your podcast and not simply settling for any random guest just for the sake of doing an interview.

Related read: 7 Strategies for Building a Strong Podcast Community

Ask Your Audience

As we’ve discussed many times on the blog before, your audience can be a huge resource to you and your podcast. After all, they are the main reason that your podcast exists in the first place! Their satisfaction and engagement with your show are important, so asking them what type of content they’d like to hear is key. This includes asking them which guests they’d like to hear on your podcast and what types of topics they’d enjoy hearing experts discuss. 

You can easily send your audience a survey or ask them to comment on your latest episodes or social media posts regarding which guests they’d like to hear next. Plus, if there are any members of your audience who can make the introduction, this is a bonus! If you’re just starting and can’t find guests yet why not interview a few of your listeners? Create a form for them to fill out so you can choose one or a few listeners to interview. You can even do a Q&A episode to get the interview format going and get your audience engaged in the content.

Related read: 10 Things You Can Learn From Surveying Your Podcast Audience

Reach Out on Social Media

Social media can be a great tool to connect with potential guests. It’s easy and convenient, especially if you just want to send a quick message about your podcast and to introduce yourself. Twitter is a great platform to help you find podcast guests and communicate directly with them. Facebook is the most used platform and the perfect place to find out more about your guests like their passions, interests, and personality. Joining Facebook groups is also a great way to get introduced quickly to new people in your industry and provides a place to stay connected and engaged with these potential podcast guests.

Of course, it is always best to foster a relationship with potential guests before making the ask. Provide them with value and engagement, truly taking an interest in what they do. Social media is also a great way to stay in touch with them on a daily basis to keep that connection going. Then, once you’ve put the feelers out to see if they would be interested in being a guest on your show, send out an official email invitation. Remember that they probably have a busy schedule, so keep it short, emphasize the value exchange, and share a link to your podcast for more information. 

Related read: How to Promote Your Podcast if Marketing is Not Your Strength

Network, Network, Network

If all else fails, don’t discount good old fashioned networking! There’s nothing quite as powerful as that in-person, face-to-face connection that you get from sharing an experience with someone, even if it is just a regular old meet-n-greet function. Of course, a great place to meet potential guests in person is also by attending podcasting events or conferences. There you will create connections with both potential guests and other podcasters as well, expanding your network even further. and creating relationships with possible guests as well as with other podcasters. 

If there are no podcasting events in your area, consider starting one of your own and inviting other podcasters to attend. Another strategy to try is if you’ve already reached out to someone on social media and they are in your area, why not invite them out for an event or even just a quick coffee. This face time is priceless and can really help foster those long-term relationships in your industry or podcasting space. Keep in mind that hosting in-person events are also great for bringing your audience together, which as we’ve discussed, is another source of potential recommendations. So keep an open mind when it comes to networking and start thinking outside the box to build those new connections. 

Related read: 5-Step Email Sequence for Hosting a Podcast Guest

Conclusion

Finding your next podcast guest might not be the easiest task but the benefits outweigh the work it will take to succeed. When screening your guests take into consideration whether your listeners will engage with their knowledge base and the topic they will share. Make sure this lines up with the mission of your podcast and adds to the message you want to send out to your audience. 

The key is to build long-term connections with potential podcast guests and bring on those who will add value to your show. Be well-prepared and give them the best podcasting experience and they are sure to refer others to your podcast or even be return featured guests. If you create a unique impression your podcast is sure to stand out and new guests will be lining up to be on your show!

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Mia Breunissen

Mia Breunissen

Mia is the Content Manager at We Edit Podcasts.

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