Taking into consideration that the world is crazy about podcasts, is it fair to say that you, too, may have been bitten by the podcast bug? You have a pleasant voice, and a compelling story to tell, but you are not sure if that is enough to be a good podcast host?
Here are a few things to master to become a great podcast host.
All the equipment in the world and fancy editing won’t make up for a boring, disinterested host. So, before you spend your fortune on the gear, focus on the following. Make sure that you are true to yourself, your core values and your audience. Don’t strive to be like somebody else, because listeners will pick up on that. Instead, focus on being authentically and unapologetically you.
Know your audience
Before you do anything, make sure that your content is aligned with your mission statement and your niche. Always bear in mind who you are addressing, what their problems are, and how you can solve them. Think of the topics of interest for your specific audience and expand on that.
Research and preparation
This is crucial unless your podcast is a collection of your thoughts or rants for example.Even then, you want to back your arguments off of the facts, right?
Research is as important when podcasting as it is for any other area of life. Preparing for the show provides you with credibility and confidence. This particularly goes for interviews. You want to make sure that you research the person you are interviewing well. Pay special attention to possible previous interviews they have done. Asking the same exact questions as someone else won’t help your podcast stand out. So always prepare, do your research, and think of the questions that haven’t been asked before. You don’t have to script the whole episode, but preparing some notes can serve you as a guide for a more structured show.
Show off your expertise
Imposter syndrome is real. A lot of people suffer from it. However, in order to run a successful show and create a good community, you have to have confidence in yourself and take the lead. Your podcast is the perfect medium to show off your expertise. Through the form of interviews, or solo episodes, you can show your listeners that your knowledge on the topics relevant to your field is bringing them value, and can help them achieve their goals.
Engagement is the key
You’ve probably heard Gary Vee scream this from the top of his lungs all the way to Zimbabwe. Love him or hate him, he built his brand on that. Provided that you have an online presence, when people comment on your podcast episode related posts, or DM you, please know that it is very important to reply. It shows respect for the ones who took the time out of their day to comment on your work, and it shows that you care. Another important thing if you want to grow your audience is to take the initiative and comment or DM yourself those who react to your content, as well as other podcast creators that you might collaborate with down the line.
If people cannot trust that you are going to show up when promised, then don’t expect them to show support either. I see this a lot of times when podcasters lack in consistency, but wonder why the number of downloads doesn’t go up. Consistency is saying I’m here, you can count on me, and I’m here to stay.
Of course, life happens so no one will take it against you if you absolutely have to postpone an episode because you haven’t recorded one, but don’t make that a habit. For that reason, always strive to record a few episodes in advance, however, in case you don’t, at least repurpose an old one so that your listeners can check it out in case they missed it.
Like with anything in life, it is important to look back at what you have accomplished. What segments of your podcast are good, and which ones need more work? Are you asking your guests the right questions? Do you give them time to respond, or do you interrupt them repeatedly? Do you talk too much about yourself when you are interviewing guests? Do you express gratitude and appreciation for your listeners and guests? Or just a simple – if you could, what would you have done differently? Only by reviewing and revaluating can you improve your performance, and get overall better results.
Hosting a podcast is not as easy as one may think. It is a time-consuming process that takes a lot of will and determination to make. But being the best podcast host you can be, that engages with their audience and makes it listening to you worth their while, pays off in the long run.