Mastering the Art of Podcast Interview Planning
Welcome back to our podcast series! In this session, we’re going to delve into a crucial aspect of podcasting – interview planning. Whether you’re a seasoned podcaster or just starting, this article will provide invaluable insights on how to conduct engaging and well-prepared podcast interviews that captivate your audience.
The Power of Thorough Research
Before you embark on a podcast interview, one golden rule prevails: Do your research. Your guests have generously given their time and attention, so it’s your duty to be fully prepared.
Dive Deep into Your Topics
To ensure you’re well-prepared, you must familiarize yourself with the topics, backgrounds, and arguments associated with your guest. Here’s how you can achieve this:
- Thorough Googling: Begin by exploring the first page of Google results for both your guest and the organization they represent. You might uncover surprising details, from past records to inspiring stories they’ve never shared before.
- Don’t Make Assumptions: Never assume that you know everything about your guest. People evolve, and so does their story. New and exciting angles may emerge that you can explore.
- Leverage Social Media: Visit their LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram profiles. Social media offers insights into what your guest is passionate about and the issues they engage with in the public sphere. It’s a treasure trove of potential conversation starters.
Identifying the Gaps
If your guest has authored articles or participated in numerous interviews, pay close attention to what hasn’t been asked or discussed. Identify the gaps in their previous conversations. This is where you can shine as an interviewer by asking the questions that others have overlooked.
After your research is complete, it’s time to start making notes. There are various approaches to note-taking, but the key is to maintain a natural flow in the conversation while ensuring you cover the essential topics. Here’s how to do it:
Be Concise and Natural
Avoid writing out your questions verbatim. Reading questions aloud can make your podcast interview sound scripted and choppy. Instead, note down the main topics and questions in a concise and natural format. This allows for a more conversational and authentic exchange.
Prepare More Than You Need
Write down more topics and questions than you could ever cover in one podcast interview. This ensures that you are well-prepared for any direction the conversation may take. Not all questions will be equally engaging or relevant, so having a surplus allows you to choose the most captivating ones.
Leading an Authentic Conversation
The ultimate goal of your podcast interview is to get your guest talking authentically. You should be ready to change course and delve deeper when the conversation warrants it. Here’s how you can achieve this:
Flexibility is Key
Be open to shifting the focus if a particular topic ignites a spark in your guest. Let their passion guide the conversation, even if it means deviating from your initial plan.
Remember, you are in control of the interview. Your role is not to simply ask questions; it’s to guide the narrative. When a topic isn’t engaging or isn’t leading to insightful responses, have the confidence to move on to the next subject.
The Path to Improvement
As you gain more experience, you’ll become more adept at podcast interview planning. It will take you less time, and you’ll refine your narrative framing with each interview. However, the fundamental principles of research and preparation remain constant.
In conclusion, podcast interview planning is an art that evolves with time and practice. The key is to do your homework, make effective notes, and be flexible during the conversation. This way, you can create authentic and captivating podcast interviews that your audience will love.
Podcast Interview Planning FAQs
- How can I stand out as a podcaster? By conducting thorough research and asking unique, engaging questions that others have overlooked.
- What’s the best way to handle an uncooperative guest during a podcast interview? Stay adaptable and change the topic if necessary, always keeping the flow of the conversation in mind.
- Is it okay not to understand everything about the guest’s field? Absolutely. Your role is to facilitate a conversation, not be an expert. Let the guest explain complex topics.
- How do I frame the narrative effectively in a podcast interview? Pay attention to your guest’s passion and let it guide the conversation. Be prepared to dive deeper into topics that resonate.
- What’s the biggest mistake to avoid in podcast interview planning? Over-reliance on scripted questions. Be concise in your notes and prioritize an organic conversation.