Though the format itself is still relatively young, podcasts have quickly become one of the most popular forms of entertainment. Podcasts are popular in part because anyone can easily and inexpensively start a show that has the potential to reach anyone in the world.
But not all podcasts are created equal. Popular ones can have millions of downloads a week, and others may not even have 10 in a month.
Being a guest on one of those popular shows can be a game changer by introducing you and your business to a whole new audience. It’s one of the greatest opportunities to brand yourself as an expert and authority to a whole new audience.
If you want to get interviewed on popular podcasts, there are a few key steps you can take.
1. Go After Shows Very Specialized in Your Area of Expertise
Podcasts tend to be very niche in nature, which means that each show tends to have its own unique focus. If you wanted to be interviewed about a business book that you’ve just written, for example, you wouldn’t try to go on “Fat-Burning Man” – which is a show devoted to paleo diet and primal workouts.
Find shows that cover the topic area that you want to talk about to narrow your field down to shows that are likely to say “yes” when you ask to be a guest.
2. Contact the Host
Even though podcasts are available from notable people like filmmaker Kevin Smith, actor Kevin Pollak and a wide variety of other notable cultural people, they still tend to be small affairs. WTF with Marc Maron, one of the most popular podcasts in the iTunes Store, is recorded out of the host’s garage.
Find contact information for the host on the podcast’s official website and write an email detailing why you’d be a good fit for that show.
Reach out over Twitter and other social media channels too. I’ve been able to connect with Howard Stern, Perez Hilton, Richard Simmons and Joe Rogan simply by using Twitter.
However, in the event that you do come across a show that has its own media team, you can also contact the show’s publicist. If you can’t reach out to the host directly, a publicist will be the next best thing. It’s a formal channel that you can use to ask to be a guest.
3. Connect With Someone Who Has Been on the Show
Another great way to get interviewed on a popular podcast is to reach out to someone who has already been a guest.
Podcasts tend to start out very small and intimate – the first guests on a new show are usually friends or personal acquaintances of the host.
As a result, if you can make contact with a previous guest via a social networking site like Facebook or Twitter, you’ve essentially created for yourself an “in” that you can use to make contact with the actual host of the show.
4. Become a Notable Guest on Smaller Shows
If there is one particular show that you really want to be a guest on but just can’t seem to make contact in the right way, one avenue that you can choose to pursue involves becoming a notable guest on similar shows.
If you’re writing a book, go on a variety of different shows on the topic of book reviews and book discussions. If you can be a high quality guest, give a great interview and make a really great impression, the chances are high that listeners will slowly start to spread the word about you.
If your appearances are of a high enough quality, the chances are high that you won’t actually have to worry about making contact with the show that you’re after – they’ll find you.
5. Start Your Own Show
If all else fails, one of the great things about podcasting is that you can just start your own show and see where that takes you. Start your own show on the topic that you want to discuss and slowly build up your own following. It will help to give you a bit of “legitimacy,” especially if you’ve never been on a podcast before.
Once your show becomes popular enough or has a large enough following, you’ll have a much easier time interacting with and getting booked on other shows.