(By Scott Carson) At the beginning of 2019 I set a personal goal to be a guest on 100 podcasts. I knew that from tracking my numbers and talking with other podcasters who also made it a point to be a regular guest on other podcasts that being a guest is a great way to grow your audience by drafting off of other similar podcasts that identify with your target audience. On December 27th of 2019, I recorded my 105th appearance as a guest for the year. Now while that number might seem impossible for most, it’s easy when you use this simple three-step approach.
Target Your Guest Spots. The last thing that you want to do is be a guest on shows that have little to nothing in common with your audience. You want to appear on similar audiences with things in common where your show can add value to them. One easy way is to see what podcasts pop up when people search for your show. I’ll check Apple Podcasts and Stitcher at least once a month to see what existing or new podcasts have popped up that I need to add to my radar and my list. I’ll listen to a couple of episodes to make sure that that show is a fit or that I can add value or good content to their audience. The last thing you want to do is say the same thing repeatedly, so make sure you’ve got some new stories or nuggets for your different guest appearances.
Systematize Your Podcast Pitches. To hit 100 guest spots in 2019, I rationalized that I needed to hit at least two spots a week (which is not as big a number). I figured that I would need to “pitch” myself to five shows to get approval on one. A 20% booking rate might be high or low depending on your niche. So, I scheduled an hour twice a week (Tuesday and Thursday afternoons) to reach out to others either via email, their social media profiles, or on Linked In. I would start off by leaving a 5-star review on their podcast and mentioned a note or two about one of their recent episodes and how I thought I would add value to their show. I also included or attached a short 2-minute “pitch” video with me talking about my overall message and some of the topics or stories that I’ve shared on other guest spots along with my energy (Having the video added actually increase my closing ratio to over 50%).
Give Back. One of the most important things to do is give back to your guest hosts. If someone invites you on their podcast, make sure you take the time to share it and help promote their efforts. I added a page to my website that features each podcast that I’ve been on with a link to that episode or their show. If it makes sense, I might lead off with doing an episode swap if their show makes sense for my audience as well. I’m also sure to add my episode and their infographics into our social media posts on all our channels. I also started a private Facebook group just for my guests and those hosts who have had me on as a guest to make it easier for them to be booked or add bookings. That group has become its own mini mastermind. Whatever I can to help them grow their show as well as grow mine, I’m glad to do. If they are going to take time to share my message or audience, I’m going to make sure and do the same on my side of the microphone.
What you don’t want to become is a professional podcast guest who just shows up and doesn’t reciprocate the time and energy that we all take in creating and producing our shows. Bring value, quality content, and be yourself. I’ve got a sound board with sound effects that I’ll use on my show and often use it when I’m a guest. It’s a great way to get people laughing and ads to the energy of the episode. We’re all working to get our message out to a bigger audience and if you are looking to add guesting to your podcast marketing plan in 2020 these three things will help you achieve your goal while being a value add to your guest hosts. Happy Hunting!