6 Questions to Ask Before Appearing as a Guest on a Brand New, Yet-to-be-Launched Podcast

Have some criteria. Nothing wrong with that. Talking to no audience is like being a street entertainer on a back alley…no traffic, no ears, no purpose.

That’s what a colleague said to me after I shared my nervousness about appearing on a new podcast.

I received an invitation to be a guest on a yet-to-be-launched podcast. While I love sharing my story, I also need to protect my time and brand.

And here’s the reason why…

I’ve had some weird situations happen with newbie podcasters…

For example:

  • I appeared on a new podcast where the podcast host edited out all the pauses. I sounded breathless, hurried and rushed. I asked him what happened and he said that he used a plug-in that removed all the silences. I was curious why it removed the pauses when I spoke, but not when he spoke!
  • On another podcast with a newbie podcaster, every time I finished answering his question, he’d rattle off into a 10-minute soliloquy about a situation that happened to him which mirrored my own. I think I spoke for about 10-minutes of a 45-minute interview – and I was the guest!
  • There was a time I had to back out of appearing on a yet-to-be launched podcast because the podcast host required that I fill out a 10-page Word document before appearing on her (again) yet-to-be launched show. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

So, my criteria is to hit me up after you produce 25 episodes…

During this time, the new podcast host would’ve worked out the kinks. They would’ve seen what works and what doesn’t. They would’ve avoided podfading. And I would now have a few episodes to listen to in order to determine whether to appear on their show or not.

I get it – it’s hard for a new podcaster…

Yes, it is. A new podcaster needs the guests to build their audience, but without the audience, the guests won’t appear.

Now, if you don’t mind appearing on a new podcast, read on…

Maybe, you have a bleeding heart for those who are just starting out. You were once there and you know how hard it can be. Or, you’re building your platform and wouldn’t mind the extra publicity.

If that’s you, here are six questions I recommend you ask before saying “Yes” to appearing on a yet-to-be launched podcast.

Six Questions to Ask Newbie Podcasters

1. When will you be launching your podcast? When is the anticipated date?

This question helps you understand whether they’re launching their podcast six months from now, six days from now, or are they going to get bored and not launch at all. Knowing this will also help you align the right offer to the date the podcast will be published.

2. Aside from getting your podcast into iTunes, how else will you promote the podcast?

This gives you an idea on how the new podcast host plans to drive listeners to their podcast. Which leads to question #3…

3. Do you have any expectation from me to promote my appearance on your podcast? If yes, please share what you expect?

Often, a new podcast host wants their guests to help promote their show. They may ask you to share your appearance on their show with your email subscribers and social media followers. I don’t mind helping; in fact, sharing my appearance raises my credibility and celebrity factor. It shows that I’m in demand and that helps with client attraction. However, some newbie podcasters will actually demand that you promote (eg. “You have to share this with your email subscribers at least 3 times.”). I want to eliminate the crazy before we get there, so, I’d need to know ahead of time what they expect, if anything at all.

4. What will you need from me to conduct the interview successfully?

You should expect to deliver your bio, photo, topic, and list of interview questions to the host. However, in my experience, new podcast hosts have this insatiable need to have their guests fill out mountains of paperwork. I think the reason they do this is to appear official, professional, and serious. It’s unnecessary, yet too common amongst newbie podcasters. If you have a heads up on what they require you to do before appearing on their show, you can make a more informed decision on whether to participate. 

5. Can you share 5-7 questions you plan to ask me during the interview?

You need to know the angle that this new podcast host is taking. You don’t want to be caught in an awkward situation where you can’t answer a question because it’s not your area of expertise. For example, you may be disabled, yet you’re trying to build your brand around your social media expertise. You don’t want to comment on disabled issues because you’re not a disabled activist. You’re a social media expert. If the host sends you a bunch of questions in advance, you can see if that question is on the list – the one around disabled issues. If it is, you can ask the host to stay clear of it. 

6. Describe your ideal listener.

Is their ideal listener your target market? You need to know this. If you’re a millenial woman whose style is loved by middle-aged men who live in the mid-west, then appearing on a show whose ideal listener is millenials who live in the hustle and bustle of an urban city won’t work for you. Yes, you’re a millenial, but it doesn’t mean that other millenials will love you. This is the mistake many guests make. So, it’s important to ask who the target listener is so you know if you’ll be successful in driving traffic back to your online platform. 

Here are the 6 questions again so you can copy and paste and throw into an email…

  1. When will you be launching your podcast? When is the anticipated date?
  2. Aside from getting your podcast into iTunes, how else will you promote the podcast?
  3. Do you have any expectation from me to promote my appearance on your podcast? If yes, please share what you expect?
  4. What will you need from me to conduct the interview successfully?
  5. Can you share 5-7 questions you plan to ask me during the interview?
  6. Describe your ideal listener.

More Resources…

A great article on how to ask guest to appear on your yet-to-be launched podcast is this one.