How to Conduct an Engaging Podcast Interview
60 percent of Americans consume podcast media. Podcasts aren’t only for entertainment anymore either. If you’re running a small business, podcasting can be a great way to bring value to your customers.
If you’re planning a podcast for your business, you need to learn how to conduct a podcast interview. This article will walk you through some key interview skills to learn.
Set Your Space Up Right
While your audience won’t be able to see the space you occupy it can vastly affect your comfort. If you’re uncomfortable, it will show in your voice, your pacing, and the way you conduct the interview.
Make sure you set up your space so that you and your interviewee are comfortable. Make sure that both of you are miked properly so that you don’t have to make any adjustments during the podcast. Podcasts thrive on the rhythm of casual conversation, so you should try your best to eliminate interruptions.
If you need help in setting your space up the right way, the best podcast companies can make sure that your space is good to go. A podcast company can help you get the ball within 10 yards of the endzone so you can deliver the touchdown in your interview.
The best interviewers out there do research on their subjects before they conduct an interview. If you’re interviewing a writer — read their books. If you’re interviewing a restaurant owner — learn their history and eat at their restaurant.
This helps for several reasons.
The first is that it helps the interviewer get genuinely interested in the interviewee. If you learn what your interviewee is all about, you might have some genuine questions that you want to ask them personally, rather than for the sake of the interview.
These questions are most likely the ones that they haven’t been asked 1,000 times before. It will allow them to share their unique, nuanced opinions.
Take for example this interview that Charlie Rose conducted with famed literary critic Harold Bloom about his book, The Western Canon. Rose asks Bloom — in a genuinely interested fashion — why Bloom enjoys “Hadji Marad” by Tolstoy more than Tolstoy’s more famous book, War and Peace.
Bloom is caught off-guard by this question, but it allows him to elucidate his love for Hadji Murad, and explain the ways in which literature stays relevant through the ages.
Pinch Your Finger
Famous investigative journalist Bob Woodward embraces silence as his interview tactic. He says that silence sucks out the truth. No matter what you do as an interviewer, your goal should always be to make your interviewee look good, not to look good yourself.
Bob Woodward personally pinches his finger out of sight of the interviewee, so that he remembers to say nothing. You don’t need to necessarily go this far. Come up with your own way of staying silent.
Learn to Conduct a Podcast Interview
The skills that it takes to conduct a podcast interview are easy to learn but tough to master. Make sure you set your space up comfortably, do research on your interviewee, and let your interviewee talk, and you’re far more likely to have a podcast that shines.
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