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Pitching Your Podcast To Get Guests

Posted by Heather Armel on December 5, 2019 at 2:45 AM

A Path To Podcast Success

Over the past decade, podcasts listenership has skyrocketed. The majority of people in the United States actively listen to podcasts, and a maybe have even been a guest or know someone who hosts their own. Although most podcasts are started with enthusiasm, why is it that so many expire after only a few episodes? With a little guidance from experts, you can help keep up the momentum behind your own. 

Recently, our CEO sat down with a booking agent who knows the in and outs of podcasting. With almost two decades in media, today's guest has an incredible amount of knowledge worth listening to. In this blog, Hollywood Branded learns about pitching your podcast from the powerhouse publicist behind The Talent Squad, Kelly Glover!


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A Little More About Kelly

Kelly has an 18 year track record in media that includes working as a celebrity interviewer, talent agent, radio host and podcast producer. In the 12 years since her first podcast was published, Kelly graduated from the Australian Film Television and Radio School, hosted her own syndicated radio show, produced podcast for the Mamma Mia women's network and launched her own podcast agency, The Talent Squad. During that time, she's accumulated over 5,000 hours on air and booked over 2000 interviews.

Last year she received the best branded podcast award. Today we're going to talk about all things podcasting, including PR opportunities, and how to pitch your podcast and what having a podcast can do for you and your business. We will learn what's worked from Kelly's experience, what could be avoided, and how some podcasts are missing the mark.

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Interview Transcript Highlights

Question: So could we start off chatting a little bit about your background and what got you to doing what you're doing today?

Answer: Sure. So the first thing you might notice about me is my accent. So, yes, I'm Australian but I actually graduated from Ohio University. So I went to college in Ohio and I'm in New York. So little bit of an international vibe. My background is in commercial radio. I was a radio announcer, hosted a syndicated show, did lots of celebrity interviews on the red carpet, produced shows and now I run my own agency. So my background in broadcasting, in talent agency, in casting, in being a producer, being on air, I know every single side of it, which is amazing because I can reverse engineer everything. So I know all the secrets, all the secrets. Stacy,


Question: Okay, so let's start off talking about those secrets. You know, do people just wake up, I know I actually did, but do people just wake up and say "I want to have a podcast" Or how do you know it's time to have a podcast?

Answer: I think people do and I think it's been in the ether for a really long time. So I first started podcasting in 2007 so this is when I was in radio and it was radio minus songs minus commercials. So it's been around for a really long time. Even before that, I'm not the first person to ever do a podcast, like whatever. But I think people are really getting into it now and it's accessible and it's much easier and the barrier to entry is lower and you can get a podcast up in a day. You absolutely can and anybody can do it.

I think people want to have a go and they are and that's great. The difference is if you keep going, because there's such a thing called pod fade, I think people might make the mistake of not really knowing what goes into a podcast. But that's something you learn along the way and you learn something every time. So whatever your personal journey is is what your personal journey is. I get that.


Question: What is the first step to start getting guests?

Answer: So the first thing would to be is to look in your own network. Who do you know that would be great for your audience and bring them on the show. I would do some practice interviews first just to make sure you've got your... Like for example, this interview is being done by Zoom. Well you need to know how to hook into Zoom. You need to make sure your microphone works, you need to make sure that it's actually recording properly. You need to make sure you're confident on the microphone and you can do your introduction. I think a lot of people say done is better than perfect. I disagree with that in some ways in podcasts. Like you wouldn't show up to a job interview wearing a pair of flip flops and a pair of shorts.

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I would say just get the minimum viable product with like don't do it with just air buds and your computer mic. Invest... This is probably the minimal viable product. This is my... I'm using my traveling kit today. So make sure you sound good because in a podcast all you have is the audio. So if it sounds bad, no one's coming back to your show after episode one. So make sure you've got that setup.

Your guests also need to have a great set up. I would not interview somebody in a podcast if they had no microphone and just earbuds because that's going to sound bad and the audience is going to be annoyed. So look in your immediate circle for guests. Also ask your audience what do they want to hear? What do they want to learn? And look at people that already have shows. So finding guests for your show is you need to figure out who you want to talk to, why you want to talk to them, what the guests want, who you already know and who already has a show.


Question: Moving into pitching, what should be created for either the podcast host, media kit or a guest speaker kit?

Answer: So they're the inverse of the same thing. For a podcast guest, and I think this is a little bit of a mistake people make as well, Stacy, is that they think, okay, well I'm going to go straight to pitching but what you need to have ready before the pitching is the messaging.

You need to make sure you've got your expertise in your story, turned into topics, turned into talking points, turned into angles to pitch the media turned into media ready hooks. So that all needs to be in place before you even pitch. I find a lot of people pitch without really having all their ducks in a row and as you would know, as a host and a producer, if someone doesn't have that in place, they're not getting through. If you're one of those 52 vying for the 18,000 spots and you don't have that stuff on point and you say, hey, I want to come and talk on your show about business or marketing. The answer is so what? Who cares? If you can answer so what, who cares? Then your pitch isn't great. You don't even have a pitch. Your pitch may not even get opened if your subject line isn't great.

You need to have that in place first before you even write the pitch. Now as far as pitch assets go, everything that I've just said does is part of the pitch assets. So it needs to be a media one sheet, so that's a PDF file that has your name, your headline, your talking points, sample questions. It'll have a professional headshot on there. It'll have your socials on there, it'll have your logo on there. So it looks it's brand integrated. It looks exactly like it could just be ripped off your website as a one sheet overview of what you are bringing to the table.

And that's not about you. The bio is about you but everything isn't. Everything else is for the host. For here's what I can offer your audience. So the pitch isn't about you, it's about them and what you can offer them. So that's your messaging, that's your pitch. And then something that we do at the Talent Squad Agency is media vaults, which you would have received. So that's an online media kit and that has everything. It's the one shape 10 X. So instead of just having a head shot in there, it'll have six head shots that you can choose with, you know, a transparent background, white background, a lifestyle shot, a three quarters shot, a hedge... Like all these different things that the host can use. And then I want you to hear my voice and see me. So I might put a video in there so when you're going to check, you'll be like, oh yeah, she's actually a great speaker. Great. I can see that. Oh yes, she'll be camera ready. Great.dreamstime_xxl_143616624


Check Out The Podcast!

This blog is only touching the surface of all the great podcasting advice Kelly shared with us in her episode! Listen to the full episode here: 

Every week we have a marketing professional on our show to share their tips, tricks and lessons learned from their professional experience. Check out some of our other podcast blogs from earlier this year: 

Every week we release a new podcast featuring guest's with so much knowledge about marketing, you don't want to miss one!  How can you make sure you don't miss an episode? Click below to subscribe!

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Topics: Business Advice, Podcast Interviews