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How To Land a Guest Spot on a Top Podcast

Not only does appearing as a guest on a top podcast sound like a lot of fun, but it’s also great for business! Whether that business is your podcast or a service or product you provide, podcasts are a fantastic way to gain exposure. Appearing on popular podcasts as a guest can provide crucial networking opportunities, and can also help strengthen your authority within your niche. It’s a win-win all round!

Now you may be thinking that booking a guest spot on a top podcast is an impossible dream, and short of standing outside a recording studio John Cusack-style with a big sign saying “Pick Me!”, you’ve got no chance of landing this type of gig. But I’m here to tell you that you are mistaken! We’re here to show you that you have every chance of making this dream a reality! Follow the ten steps we’ve put together to help you, and you’ll be well on your way to a guest spot with the pros!  

Related read: Best Practices for Finding a Podcast Guest

#1 Know Your Audience

Step number one to landing that guest spot is knowing your audience. Think about the problems they are facing, the questions they may be asking, or what they find entertaining. Then think about how what you have to offer could be the answer to those questions. This will help you establish the possible niches you should explore when looking for podcasts you would like to be a guest on. Not only will understanding the audience help you tailor your content to suit their needs, but you’ll be able to show podcast hosts the value you could bring to their show by meeting the needs of their audience too. 

# 2 Do Your Research

Now to actually find your potential podcasts! You’ll need to do some research at this stage to find the top podcasts that align with your niche and create a working list of your candidates. Podcast directories such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Overcast or Stitcher are the best places to start searching for potential podcasts. 

Next, try keyword searches of topics related to your niche. These will offer up more potential candidates for your perusal. Searching broad keywords related to your topic will reveal the top-ranked podcasts within the niche, but you should also try some more specific keywords. This will result in podcasts with a close correlation to your subject. In these cases, the podcasts may be lesser-known overall, but often have very loyal audiences for you to appeal to. When researching, take note of the rankings of each podcast provided by the directories but don’t eliminate lesser-ranked podcasts just yet. There is another phase of research that could show that the lesser-ranked podcast may actually be a great one to pursue! 

Which brings us to step #3… 

#3 Select Your Options

Once you’ve created your broad list of possible podcasts you’d like to be a guest on, it’s now time to narrow down your choices and select your top options. The first step here would be to follow up your initial search on the podcast directories with an Internet search of your different options. This will help you gauge the podcast’s actual authority within its niche, despite what it’s rankings show. A strong Internet presence across a variety of social platforms will be a good indication that the podcast is seen as an authority within its niche. You can now select those podcasts, based on these results, that you feel will give you the greatest opportunities and provide you with the greatest reach.

Related read: How to Improve the Discoverability of Your Podcast

#4  Know What You Offer

Now that you’ve narrowed down your options, the next step is to determine what you can offer each of the potential podcasts you would like to be a guest on. One of the best ways to land a guest spot is to show the value you can give to the podcast, rather than thinking about what you can get from it. No matter the niche, what podcasters and listeners alike are after is valuable content. If you can show that you can provide great value to the show, you’ll be one step closer to sealing the deal. You should think about each podcast option individually because what you can offer may differ slightly depending on the niche. But essentially, this comes down to honing in on what the podcast can gain from having you as a guest on an episode. This will then form part of your pitch, which is covered in the next step. 

#5 Polish Your Pitch

Polishing your pitch is arguably the most important step, and at its core, a polished pitch is a great story – your story. Your story is what differentiates you from every other podcaster, and is one of the best ways to get people interested in having you as a guest on their show. To craft your story, think about what makes you unique – what circumstances brought you to where you are today? What set-backs did you face? What obstacles did you need to overcome? What are your passions? What motivates you? Harness the answers and use them to craft your compelling story, include the added valuable content you can contribute, and start pitching it to podcasters!

#6 Know Your Stuff

While your story opens the door and creates opportunities to share your pitch, your subject knowledge is what is going to keep that door open. It’s of no value crafting an enthralling story, only to lack the knowledge and expertise to support your claims! You should, therefore, do all you can to become an expert in your niche. Take every opportunity to learn and grow in your field. Read widely within your subject and develop your thoughts and viewpoints on topics within your niche. That way, when the opportunity comes you’ll be able to take it with both hands! 

Related read: How to Find Your Podcast Topic: 8 Unique Topic Ideas

#7 Make the First Contact

This may sound obvious, but there is a right way and a wrong way to establish the initial contact with the podcast host. Start by checking the podcast’s website or social media platforms for the appropriate contact details. There may also be specific instructions for how to send requests to them. If this type of information is provided, the wrong way to go about contacting the host is to not follow their procedures! This will definitely not put you in their good books, and may even jeopardize future opportunities! Always respect their preferences in this regard and make contact via the proper channels. Conduct yourself with courtesy and professionalism, address your correspondence correctly, and always ensure that you’ve checked your email for any spelling or grammar errors! 

#8 Make It Personal

If you’re approaching the top podcasters in your niche, chances are, you won’t be the only one. They may be getting numerous guest spot inquiries – so you need to ensure that yours doesn’t end up in the recycling bin! One way to prevent this from happening is to avoid a “one-size-fits-all” approach by personalizing each request. A generic pitch can be spotted a mile away – and usually earns a one-way ticket to the trash can! A better approach is to use what you know about the host and their show and the value you can offer them to create a personal request for a guest spot. Use the host’s name in the greeting, mention their show, and be particular about what you love about it. Then state why you are approaching this specific podcast with your request to be a guest. A personalized message has a much higher chance of being read and responded to than one that is generic and reads like spam! 

#9 Keep Producing Valuable Content

Now you wait…patiently…but not idly. No, that’s not some mumbo jumbo! All it means is that until you get the call that you’ve landed that coveted guest spot, you keep doing what you’ve been doing. Keep producing great episodes chock-full of valuable content. Keep building your authority within your niche. Keep hustling to build your brand. That way, everyone, and particularly those podcast hosts, can’t help but take notice! Diligent, consistent work always pays off! And when that positive reply comes, you’ll be ready! 

Related read: 8 Strategies to Build Authority in Your Podcast Niche

#10 Deliver The Goods

So that all-important call came! You’ve landed that guest spot! Whoop whoop! Now it’s time to really get to work! From here on out, it’s up to you to deliver all you promised in your pitch. So do all you can to be as prepared as possible. Learn all you can about the host, their audience and the tone of the podcast. Get as much information as possible before the time as to what will be required of you for the show. What type of questions will you be asked? What segment do they want you to cover? What part of your story do they want you to share? Always aim to over-prepare. Not only will the episode be a rip-roaring success, but you’ll build a reputation as a great guest, and will soon have top podcasters asking you to be on their show! 

Related read: 8 Best Practices for Podcast Interviews

Closing Thoughts 

So whether you’re a podcaster looking to grow your audience, or want to grow your business or brand, landing a guest spot on a popular podcast is a great opportunity. With so many people all over the world regularly listening to podcasts, a guest spot on a top show can be marketing gold. And there’s no reason why you can’t be a guest on some of the big hitters! Create a great pitch and show the value you have to offer. With a little determination and our ten steps for landing that coveted spot, the odds will definitely be in your favor and you could soon find yourself sharing the mic with some of the big names in your podcast niche! 

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