The Art of Podcast Interviews: A Comprehensive Guide for Independent Podcasters

The success of a podcast often hinges on its ability to capture exclusive guest stories. Not only does a well-executed interview make for an engaging episode, it can also attract new listeners and help build a loyal fanbase.

However, for most people, interviewing skills aren’t a natural talent. Crafting the perfect podcast interview takes time and practice, but it can be made easier with the right approach.

So, whether you’re a seasoned podcaster or just starting, mastering the art of podcast interviews is incredibly important. In this post, we’ll discuss top tips and tricks on how to ace your interviews.

Top Tips to Maximize Your Podcast Interviews

We all know a great interview when we hear one. Conversely, we know when an interview isn’t going well. Although the difference between a good and bad podcast interview can be subtle, there are several key elements that make up a successful interview experience.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

1 – Preparation is Key

Before launching into an interview, it’s crucial to prepare thoroughly. Do your research on potential guests beforehand to avoid potential awkward moments. Having background knowledge on your guest can help to avoid generic questions and help craft unique talking points.

However, don’t just rely on Google research. Explore the guest’s social media profiles to get a sense of their interests and concerns. Better yet, prepare a pre-interview worksheet and send it to your guest. This will give you a great idea of how they respond to questions — as well as a nice way to break the ice.

2 – Choosing the Right Guests

When selecting guests, it’s essential to consider a diverse pool of subjects and backgrounds. Doing this ensures that your podcast resonates with a broad audience and keeps things fresh and exciting.

Some other things to consider when selecting guests are their availability, industry expertise, and relevance of their story to your listeners.

3 – Thoughtful Questioning

Avoid scripted questions during interviews and instead engage in natural and insightful dialogue. Allow your host and guests to speak fluidly and naturally. Always, focus on open-ended questions that prompt further discussion.

Avoid leading questions, and also pay close attention to your guest’s response to an earlier question. Their responses might provide great cues for follow-up questions.

4 – Active Listening

Actively listen to your guests. Their input is valuable, and that’s why listening to their responses intently is important. Ensuring active listening, allows you to provide adequate and meaningful responses and create a more engaging interview.

It’s also essential to avoid interrupting guests; allow them to finish their thoughts before chiming in.

5 – Follow-Up Techniques

After an interview, it’s essential to follow up with your guest. Thanking them for their time, and sharing information on when the episode goes live, will show that you appreciate their time and input.

Additionally, sharing a preview or a soundbite from the interview can create excitement and anticipation for the audience.

6 – Choosing the Right Environment and Equipment

An ideal environment for your podcast would depend on factors like the guest’s location, budget, and even your show’s format. Recording an interview remotely is common, but ensure that the audio and internet quality are perfect.

Moreover, make use of quality equipment so that you can deliver great sound quality through your podcast.

7 – Keep Your Listeners Engaged

Incorporate soundbites in your podcast, incorporating music and sound effects, and keeping the tone conversational to keep listeners engaged. Always rearrange the podcast into a conversational format that will hold listeners’ attention from the start of the episode to the end.

8 – Creativity in Interviews

Opting for co-hosts, taking the conversation on diverse subjects, and posing thought-provoking questions to inspire the guest to talk more also represent exciting content for your podcast listeners.

Bonus Tip for Better Podcast Interviews

We didn’t discuss leveraging technology to help you record better episodes and discussions. But finding the right recording platform can make all the difference for independent podcasters.

Choosing an easy-to-use solution like Boomcaster removes a lot of technical hassles associated with podcasting. The platform is efficient and provides you more creative freedom and control over your interview recordings.

Prep, Practice, and Do it All Again

Honing your interviewing skills presents opportunities to create engaging content, attract new listeners and build a loyal fanbase.

Don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t go as planned the first few times.

Remember always to stay prepared, practice, and keep trying until you get it right. Investing in preparation, proactive posting, and post-production follow-up strategies can elevate your podcast content, providing meaningful insights into your audience and industry.

Remember to embrace creativity in your interviews, and you’ll watch your audience grow.