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One of the questions I get a lot is how to pitch podcast guests. I get it, it can be a little intimidating to put yourself out there especially if you don’t know the person you want to pitch very well!
So the first thing I’ll say on this is, lose the mindset that is telling you that they’re going to say no. Just lose it. Everybody has something to talk about and everyone is willing to explore opportunities that fit with their goals. Just ask my pal Matt Ardill, who got famous comedian Patton Oswalt on his podcast Comedy Album Book Club!
And now we’ll cover the logistics of how to pitch podcast guests.
1. Do your research!
Before you randomly start emailing or DMing people, look them up. Even if they seem like a good fit at first, they might be in a totally different phase of business, or might not even appear on podcasts. The most important thing to consider at this stage is whether or not their stories or expertise are relevant to your audience.
Here are a few things you can investigate:
- What is their area of expertise?
- Have they been on podcasts before?
- Is their content relevant to your audience?
- Is your audience relevant to them?
- Do they frequently partner with other businesses?
2. Build a relationship
I’m not a fan of random cold emails. I get them a lot (usually for those SEO backlink requests), and it’s so obviously careless that I just delete them right away. Then there’s the PR push. I can’t tell you how many media kits I’ve received over the years for podcast guests that aren’t even relevant to my audience – like… why? If they had done step 1 they would have figured it out pretty fast.
The pitches that I LOVE getting are the ones that have a bit of a relationship attached to them. It doesn’t need to be extravagant or like, BFF central, but you’re more likely to land the interview if you warm them up a bit first so they know who you are.
Try this before you pitch podcast guests:
- Engage with their posts and content
- Start conversations in DM’s
- Learn who manages their bookings
- Find common ground
- Offer their audience something of value
3. Personalize the pitch
I made you a template! You can use it! But if you don’t personalize it I swear I will take this off the internet SO FAST. This template is designed for you to get started, it’s not a one size fits all, and it 100% is not complete. With great power comes great responsibility and whatnot.
Keep this in mind:
- Don’t use the same email for everyone
- Demonstrate that you know their space
- Mention some of your favourite content that they’ve produced
- Articulate your personal interest in having them on your podcast
4. Create mutual benefit
BUT WHY DON’T THEY WANT TO BE ON MY SHOW?! I feel like this is typically a panic response when people start complaining that no one wants to guest on their podcasts. It’s not enough to just say “be on my show, only talk about this, and you’re not allowed to plug anything.” Frankly, that’s why everyone does any kind of media circuit. Why do you think actors go on Late Night shows? They’re always plugging stuff! So use this principle and give them a reason to be a guest on YOUR podcast.
Keep this in mind:
- Offer an opportunity for them to promote an upcoming offer on your podcast
- Offer to share the audio from your recording for their podcast or content
- Share how your audience would benefit from their expertise
5. Close that pitch!
It’s closing time baby! Prove that you know that this is a win-win, and remind them that you’re in their corner and want to support them! Give them an ego boost, and use language that makes them take action.
Include the following:
- Give them a few options for times
- Mention when you’ll be airing their episode
- Tie the timing back to an offer they’re promoting soon
- Share some examples of previous successful guest episodes
There! Now you know how to pitch podcast guests! Practice makes perfect, so keep working at it! And if they say no, they clearly weren’t the right fit in the first place, so no harm done!
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