As a podcast host, one can always strive to enhance their show. A successful way to do this is to invite renowned guests to join them in recording episodes.
When you invite guests to your podcast show, it could be for a once-off interview or be part of an agreement for a regular appearance on your show. Either way, you need to think about your audience first. What value will your podcast listeners get from your guest appearing in your episode? How will the guest help your show to be more successful? How is this potential guest going to add value to your content?
Your show can benefit from having different guests who can contribute unique perspectives and thoughts that provide a new experience for your audience.
Bringing guests onto your show provides your listeners with some variety in your episodes, whether it is a new voice to listen to, or a change from your usual style of show.
Having podcast guests gives your listeners the chance to get advice from professionals and industry leaders that they may not otherwise have access to without paying for their services.
When you have a guest on your show, you will also get exposure to their audience, giving you the opportunity to grow your followers and listenership. This goes both ways, as by appearing on your show, your guest is given the opportunity to connect with your listeners and grow their own following.
Finding podcast guests to appear on your show is usually a great idea for growing your podcast and producing a more successful episode. As the podcast host, need to make sure you find podcast guests that are going to bring the most value to your show.
Finding stellar podcast guests can be done through multiple approaches.
The first step will be to conduct some research. Consider who would be ideal candidates to appear on your podcast. They could be industry leaders, popular personalities, even those with controversial opinions.
The partnership with a potential podcast guest needs to be mutually beneficial. You want their presence on your show to appeal to your audience and provide content for your show that your listeners will enjoy and value. Your guest also needs to get something out of the collaboration – this can be exposure to your followers, to express themselves as an industry leader, or provide them the opportunity to promote themselves, their brand or any upcoming new product/service releases.
The aim of your guest research is to generate a list of the type of people you would like to engage with and whom you would like to invite onto your show. Once you have a good idea of who these potential guests might be, it is time to reach out and extend the invitation to come onto your podcast show.
It is important not to overlook the potential of your existing contacts in your network. When launching a podcast, your existing network is generally the most suitable place to start to find podcast guests. People you previously have a connection with are probably more likely to accept an invitation to feature on your show, as there is prior trust, respect and familiarity between you already.
Securing the first group of initial guests for your podcast can be the most challenging; however, once that hurdle is crossed, it is more probable that additional guests will accept the invitation. This is why starting with those in your existing network is a good idea.
Reaching out to other podcast hosts in your niche is a great avenue for finding and booking guests for your show. These individuals already understand the basics of recording episodes, so they won't be timid or hesitant to record with you. Plus, they will have the necessary recording equipment to ensure their sound quality is to a high standard. Many podcasters will actively be involved in guest podcasting. A podcast hosts themselves they see the benefit from the additional exposure of appearing on your show and the value in the direct access your audience.
You can always do a collaboration where you also appear as a guest on a podcast for their show.
Not only can you invite existing podcasters to be potential guests, other content creators will also be interested in appearing on podcasts. Content producers, such as YouTubers, bloggers, authors, social media influencers etc, are already in the realm of creating content and will likely engage with the opportunity to appear on a podcast show.
Your audience is a valuable resource and having exposure to your podcast listeners gives potential guests an opportunity to tap into your audience and grow their following. If your listeners are similar to another content creators’ target audience, they will likely be very interested in the opportunity. It also gives them a chance to step into the world of podcasting and potentially branch out to this form of content creation for themselves.
It is a good idea to keep informed about the latest and upcoming product releases in your niche when you are looking to book podcast guests. When somebody has recently published a new book, product, service etc, they will be keen to do as much advertising as possible. It is likely a potential guest with a similar target audience to your podcast listeners will be eager to promote their release on your show.
As the podcast host, you want to avoid turning the podcast into a sales pitch that could irritate your listeners. Inviting potential guests on to your podcast episode to discuss their upcoming release in an authentic and natural way is a great way that you can offer exposure to your audience. It also gives the podcast guest the opportunity to discuss more about the product or service, giving a back story of the company for example, that could resonate with your listeners and boost your guest’s sales.
The power of networking is a great asset in any profession. When you are reaching to potential podcast guests, a referral is often more successful in booking a guest podcaster, compared to reaching out to somebody cold. It gives you greater chance of a connection becoming a fruitful partnership as there is a trust there via the referral.
When you have a guest on your show, you can kindly ask them if they know anybody else who could be interested in appearing as a guest on your podcast. The referred party will feel more secure knowing that somebody they know has already been on your show. You can even send the referred party a recording of the episode for them to listen to and get an idea of what it would be like for them.
During a podcast interview, you can also ask your podcast guest questions such as "with whom in the industry would you most like to collaborate?", "whose work have you been admiring lately?", and "if you could have lunch with any person in this field, who would it be?". Their answers can be wonderful ideas and inspiration for possible guests to contact.
Attending conferences and industry gatherings is an excellent way to connect with professionals and authority figures in your field.
Whether it's a speaker, event organiser, or another attendee, you can connect with these people through networking at the event. Meeting people face-to-face is a good way to build a connection and pitch the invitation for them to appear as a guest on your show.
If you are at the same conference, chances are you have a similar target market and field of expertise, but there will likely be a wide variety of unique perspectives from those in attendance. This is great opportunity to provide valuable and interesting content for your show. You also have the potential to collaborate with industry leaders, for example expensive consultants, that can give your listeners highly valuable pieces of information that they may not have otherwise had access to.
Never underestimate the power of social media as a great source for locating people who are enthusiastic about the same subject matter as your podcast. Depending on the kind of person you are looking for to come onto your show, you may discover them in Facebook Groups, Twitter hashtags or Reddit threads for example. If you are looking for other content creators in your niche, what better place to find them than on social media platforms.
If you are searching for industry experts, business executives, and those who have been publishing articles related to your podcast subject, LinkedIn is an excellent platform to locate these individuals. LinkedIn is the ideal spot for networking professionally and connecting with experts. It can be the perfect spot for finding potential podcast guests who could bring excellent value to your listeners.
Once your podcast following starts to grow, one of the most reliable ways to discover who your listeners would like to hear from on your podcast is to ask them directly. If you give your podcast listeners an opportunity to provide their recommendations, your guest episode will surely be highly successful as you are giving your listeners exactly who they want to hear from. Make sure you give them an easy way to share their suggestions, be it through email, your website, or social media.
Numerous podcast guest services exist to help in connecting podcasters and to assist you in finding prospective podcast guests. The advantage of using these is that you are connecting to individuals who have already expressed a willingness to participate in guest podcasting and are actively looking to appear on podcast shows. When you find podcast guests on one of these podcast guest services they are highly likely to agree to come onto your show.
Perhaps potential guests will reach out to you instead. It should be easy for individuals to get a hold of you to express their interest in joining you on your show. It could be that there are highly qualified people who would love to be featured on your podcast, but they don't have the means to connect with you.
Keeping your contact details visible, whether in your podcast show notes or on your podcast website, along with an open invitation to reach out if they would like to be on the show, will encourage others to contact you.
Once you have identified who you would like to invite onto your show as a potential guest, make sure to clearly highlight the advantages of appearing on your podcast so that they are more likely to accept your invitation.
Inviting guests onto your show is mutually beneficial, so be sure to share with them the advantages of working with you. Some examples of how you can do this is:
You do not want to overwhelm potential guests, so keep your outreach brief and provide additional information to them afterwards.
Once you have your guests scheduled, you should consider what method you will use to record the episodes. Could the guest interview be recorded in-person or remotely?
Take a look at our advice about recording a podcast remotely with guests to learn more.
When a guest has agreed to join you on a podcast episode, it is a good idea to provide them with a list of questions in advance that you plan to ask during the interview. While you want to keep the conversation natural, it can do wonders for your podcast guest’s confidence to be prepared.
Download our eBook - a complete guide on how to conduct podcast interviews. You will find lots of additional tips and advice on how to make sure your guests are comfortable and have a successful recording session.
Additionally, after the recording, supply your podcast guest with a media pack to make it easier for them to share content and promote the episode when it is published. Access to their followers is one of the main advantages to having guests on your podcast, so make sure you do everything you can to make it easy for guest to promote your podcast.