Do’s & Don’ts
As outlined in a previous article – How to Pitch Yourself as a Podcast Guest, an appearance on another podcast is a great way to increase your visibility. How to Pitch Yourself as a Podcast Guest shared a few best practices on how to go about requesting guest interview spots on a podcast.
This post will cover what not to do when trying to pitch yourself as a guest on someones podcast. Each “Don’t” is followed up with an alternative approach.
Don’t – Me Too
Don’t ask to be on the show because the host had another person that’s a blogger/podcaster/coach/business etc like you.
Scenario 1: “I saw you had Person A on your show and I am a [this] too and I would like to be on your show”
This is a don’t because the email offers no real value to me or my audience. And it also sounds like you’re entitled to be on the show just because I had someone you think is like you. Another don’t say:
Scenario 2: “I saw you had Person B on your show and I am a [this] too and I would like to be on your show to talk about [this topic]”
Scenario 2’s email is a little better than scenario 1. Assuming that the show is the right show for the topic, ask yourself, what about the topic do you want the host to consider? A better pitch would be:
Better Pitch: Hey host, my name is [insert name here, and a little about you and platform] Have you considered doing a topic on [insert topic]? Particularly how to [insert specific angle]?
Don’t – Promo Only without Value
Is it wrong to promote services, books, events etc on podcasts? No. However do not pitch only to promote your product, service or event without offering any value to the show’s host and audience. This is in essence an ad which technically the host should be paid to promote if this is the sole purpose of you wanting to be on the show. It’s not about you or anything you’re doing. The pitch should be what the host and their audience needs. Don’t say:
Scenario 3: “Hey host, I would love to be on your podcast to talk about this upcoming party/book release/event that I am having on such and such date.”
When I get an email like this, it tells me this is not about my audience or the show, but about the guest only. There are some shows that don’t mind having guests on their shows solely for promotional purposes but you should do your research to see if the host/show you are reaching out to would be open to do this or if they’ve done something similar in the past.
I’ve had guests on the show for a particular subject valuable to the audience and somewhere in the interview their book, program or event was mentioned. The key here is that it was not the focus of the show. Make sure that you ask the host beforehand whether they’re ok with you promoting your services, products or upcoming projects.
Better Pitch: Hey host, my name is [insert name here, and a little about you and platform/business] and I would love to could on your podcast to talk about [this topic] and [insert how this topic is valuable] to your audience. I also would like this as an opportunity to share with your audience [insert product/service or upcoming project].
This way the host is properly aware upfront, prepared and can guide the conversation to highlight your ask. On the other hand, you will also know right away whether the host is open to you promoting what you want to promote as opposed to them editing it out of the interview all together.
A Note On Time Sensitive Activities
I don’t think that a podcast is a great platform for you to promote an event (or anything that is promoting a date) just by being a guest on one episode only. Why? Because of the nature of podcasts.
People don’t listen the way they’d listen to the radio. Instead because of the on demand nature of podcasts, people listen in their free time. Which means that by the time the audience listens to the episode your event could’ve past or it’s too close.
It is also important to note, a lot of podcasters often record interviews months in advance. In my case I follow an editorial calendar and your book, event or whatever you’re promoting won’t always align with a show’s editorial calendar.
If you want to promote an event or program via a podcast to get exposure, in addition to a guest appearance consider doing an ad on a podcast, to promote your event for an agreed upon amount over an agreed amount of episodes or on their social media.
Do have a web presence
Ideally you’ll have a website and social media accounts as it helps to show your credibility. If you only have social media media accounts, you should be able to demonstrate credibility by telling the host where you’ve been featured. The reason having a web presence is important – it’s also a good indication that, if selected to be a guest you can promote your episode on your platforms.