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How to Conduct an Effective Podcast Interview

By Sharon Housley

Conducting a successful podcast interview can be a tricky proposition for a podcaster starting out. Once you have determined individuals that will appeal to your target audience contact potential interviewees and arrange a time to conduct the interview. Following this guide will insure that the interview goes off without a hitch.

1. Prepare Questions in Advance

Prepare a list of questions prior to the interview, contemplate possible follow-up questions based on the expected responses. Create a list of notes along with the questions that are accessible during the interview and will help you direct the conversation.

2. Research Interview Subject

Do your homework about the individual or individuals you are interviewing. A little due diligence will go a long way. Search newsgroups and Google for the interviewees name, product, or company, and build a background. The research will help predict the interviewees responses to your questions. Listen to previous interviews in which the interviewee participated, read their blog and articles to get a feel for the interviewees position on issues.

3. Confirm Pronunciation

Confirm how the pronunciation of the interviewee's name prior to beginning the interview! It will save you from any potential embarrassment if the name is incorrectly pronounced.

4. Scope

5. Hardware and Software

Be sure to inform guests of any required hardware or software that they must install prior to the interview. The more advance notice your provide the easier it will be for your guests to be prepared.

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6. Test!

Test equipment prior to beginning the interview. Check sound quality, and volume levels to make sure that the settings are correct.

7. Relax

In order to relax your guest spend a few minutes chatting before the interview begins this will put them at ease and relieve some of the guests interviewer's nerves.

8. Avoid Yes or No

Ask your questions in a logical sequence. When framing your questions, avoid questions that will result in "yes" or "no" answers. Questions should be open ended and you should encourage your guests to elaborate on their responses.

9. Provide Guests Tips

Make suggestions to your guest prior to the interview. Encourage the interviewees to talk slow, articulate their words, and to remain a consistent distance from the microphone throughout the interview.

10. Stay in Control

Keep in mind that YOU are the interviewer and you should be directing and controlling the conversation. Occasionally that means you might need to interrupt your guest or bring them back to the topic at hand. There are ways to effectively do this without being rude, practice language that you might use, or better yet watch television interviewers when involved in a conflict and take a cue from the language and techniques that they use.

11. Time Cues

Let your interviewer know that you will provide time warnings, use statements like: "one more question", or "let's wrap this up, can you quickly tell me" to cue your guest that time is almost up.

12. Give Thanks

Thank your guest on and off air. Provide them a copy or link to the interview. Encourage your guest to link to the show, this could potentially bring your show some additional publicity for your show.

About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll software for creating, editing, publishing RSS feeds and podcasts. In addition Sharon manages marketing for RecordForAll audio recording and editing software.

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