Starting a podcast is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. I know because I just launched mine!
Even though it’s been a lot of work to get off the ground, I can already see the value behind it. One of the main considerations for me in starting my podcast was deciding on what the content should revolve around. I quickly realized that since I loved traveling, meeting and talking with people that using those conversations in a podcast format would work well for me and my business. It was simply a matter of recording the conversation and sharing them with my audience to provide them with value.
After all, the content you create for your business should be based on doing the things you love. So for me, win – win! I’ve also realized that my podcast now gives me a good reason to meet up with and reach out to the people I look up to. Without my podcast, I may not have the opportunity to connect with them on such a personal level.
Like I mentioned, this isn’t for the light-hearted. It’s not a simple strategy that’s easy to set up and run with. You have to constantly focus on the content, your audience, and delivering value to them. (And it’s a lot of work to get things rolling!)
Creating Productive Conversations for Your Podcast Content
When you think of a podcast, it’s important to understand that it’s not a personal conversation. You have to ask the right questions that not only you but your audience wants the answers to.
Your audience won’t be in the room with you for your conversation. They also may not know or have heard of your interviewee. You need to think ahead and anticipate what sort of questions to ask them. When I choose someone to interview, I work on the topic of discussion before we meet. Narrowing down the topic helps to give the conversation a focal point and helps me to decide on what questions I should ask. You owe it to your audience to create a bigger level of understanding around the topic of discussion for your audience’s sake.
What I ask will normally revolve around their business or a specific aspect of it that they’ve excelled at. In some cases, it may not be related to their business at all. Someone may be a great businessperson, but they’re known for hosting great events. As the interviewer, it’s my job to hone in on their expertise and use that as the focus of our discussion.
I also ask the interviewee about their journey. This includes:
- How did they start out?
- How is their business structured today (so the listeners can understand the different revenue streams)?
- What mistakes have they made and what have they learned from the mistakes?
- Who do you admire?
Of course, these are more generalized questions, and they will vary for each person I interview based on their specific background or circumstances.
When you know what you’re going to talk about beforehand, it helps you to narrow down specific questions. This leads to productive conversations that deliver value to your audience.
A Great Way to Build Your Network and Expand Your Reach
When you take the time to interview those who influence and inspire you, it leads to great conversations and great content. And it’s because of this that you can maximize the value of podcasting to build your network and expand your reach.
I never realized it until I started my podcast that it opened up endless opportunities for me that I would never have had otherwise. The perfect example of this came true when I reached out to author, speaker, and Emmy Award-winning media entrepreneur Natalie MacNeil. I had connected with her through email, but had never met her. On a recent trip to Los Angeles, I asked a friend who I should try to connect with while I was there. She had recently moved there, and after a few emails, she invited me to her house!
I interviewed her and during our meeting she was so awesome and supportive about what I’m doing. We actually ended up meeting for dinner the next evening, and she offered advice on how to get a book deal. She had just accepted a lucrative book deal with one of the biggest publishers in the world. She shared with me what they look for in terms of followers and list size.
It was because of my podcast that we connected. My encounter with her also made me realize how valuable in-person connections are. I could have easily met with her on Skype from anywhere. But meeting her in person created a more personal connection with her that lead to building a relationship with her and in-depth conversations. That wouldn’t have happened if we had only talked on the phone or met online. (And meeting in person makes your podcast recording sound so much better than recording over the internet!)
One last tip that I want to leave with you is this: If you really want to leverage the effort you put into your podcast, I recommend that you seek out interviewees who are promoting their own business, product, etc. They will be immersed in PR and getting the word out. They will be looking for maximum exposure, and your podcast can help them do that. You also get the interview for your own podcast content. It’s a win-win for both of you!
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