A question I am often asked by prospective Interview Connections clients is “How do you determine what podcasts you will pitch me to and book me on?”. Whether or not you’re thinking of working with us as a guest expert, this blog will help you decide which shows are the right fit for you as a guest expert.
1. Goal Setting
The first thing we consider when determining which podcasts to book a client on is their goal. What is YOUR goal for podcasting? If you don’t know WHY you are podcasting, you won’t be able to determine what shows will be the best fit. Often times we work with our clients to nail down their message and their target market for their interviews, and we build our booking strategy upon that.
For example, if your goal is to attract potential coaching clients, we would find podcasts hosted by podcasters who are likely to work with you. Since most people don’t work with a coach until they feel like they know, like and trust them, you would have a lot more success in focusing on the HOSTS of the podcasts, rather than the audience, download stats, or how long the show has been on iTunes.
If your goal is to tell more of your course or your product, you need to know exactly who your target audience is. Once you know that, we find podcasts that your target audience would be listening to. One of our clients has a course that teaches business owners about legal topics, like trademarks, copyrights, etc. The target audience are small business owners without an attorney who they can talk to about this stuff so we are booking this client on podcasts that this kind of business owner would be listening to (and they are NOT all legal podcasts!)
So, depending on your goal for being a guest expert, the size of the audience and how long it’s been on iTunes may not be relevant.
2. Relevant Content
Once we know your goals and target market, we look for shows that are producing content that is relevant to your area of expertise. How do we know if they have relevant content? We do our homework. We go through their website, check out their social media presence, and read their show notes. You know what else we do? We LISTEN to the podcast. That’s right, we don’t just do a keyword search in iTunes and send generic pitches out to all the shows that pop up with a relevant keyword or topic.
My expert team of guest bookers and I listen to the shows we reach out to. And if you are going to get booked on a podcast, you should too. When you listen to the podcast, you’ll be able to determine if your content will support and enhance the goals of the show. You can get a feel for the personality of the host and the audience they are targeting. I can’t stress to you enough how important it is for your content to be relevant to that audience! Without that, you’ll be shouting your message to an audience that doesn’t care what you have to say. And no matter how big or how small that audience is, you won’t make an impact.
For example, a LOT of our clients want to be booked on really big shows. I worked with one client who wanted to be on The Art of Charm. This podcast’s target audience is men. Jordan talks about relationship advice, social science, productivity and more and if you listen to the show, you can tell his style resonates with DUDES. The client who wanted to be on this podcast was a health coach for women. Her topic did not at all fit well with this show or this audience. Sure, it would be neat to be in front of the tens of thousands of listeners that Jordan has. But since her content is not at all relevant to that audience, it would fall flat.
3. Production Quality
Another thing we do when we are listening to a potential podcast for our clients is to evaluate the sound quality. While we aren’t looking for perfection, we want the shows our clients are on to have a polished and professional sound. Quality content and quality sound go hand in hand, and neither can make up for the other’s absence.
More important than quality sound, we focus on a host who sounds like they didn’t learn how to talk yesterday. Even a basic conference call line recording (which some audio engineers would cringe at) is NOT a bad thing if your audience doesn’t have a trained ear! If the sound is sub par, but the host is a great conversationalist and conducts engaging interviews with his or her guests, than it will be a great show for you.
Before we book a client on a podcast, we also determine how well-established a show is. In general, we look for shows with at least 20 episodes, however, we do have some clients who actually prefer to be booked on newer shows. On a recent episode of Rhodes to Success, our client Jim Palmer explained that he actually prefers newer shows, because the hosts themselves are often times his target market. Hosts of newer shows are looking for ways to grow their business and that is exactly what Jim does. He’s a coach who helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses, so naturally, connecting with a hosts like this would be a great match for him. So if there is a newer podcast but the target market and the host is a home run for our client, we definitely consider it.
Most of our clients prefer established shows so I do want to include that as a main point here. But please keep in mind that if a podcast launched 2 months ago, has 8-10 episodes, but has the exact target audience you’re trying to reach and the host is a successful business owner with (probably!) a following elsewhere, like an email list or social media presence, it might still be well worth your time.
For example, we have a client who is a sales trainer for financial advisers. His expertise is very specific and he has a very niche audience. When I found a podcast that was very new but it was a business podcast FOR financial advisers, I didn’t pass it up because it was new. Even if the audience was small because the host has just started, I knew that the connection he would make with the host could lead to a lot of new business for him.
As you can see, there is a LOT more to it than ‘how big the audience is’ and my team and I have booked literally thousands of podcast interviews using these methods with dozens of clients who have shared their success stories with us. If you’re ready to get booked as a guest expert on podcasts in your niche, apply today to be our next booking!
Enter “Jessica’s Blog” in the “How did you hear about us?” section and I’ll even throw in a BONUS booking your first month!