A friend (and past client) of mine recently wrote a book. As part of her promotional push, she has appeared on a number of podcasts. Last night, she posted about being a guest on a podcast/Facebook Live broadcast happening in minutes. I decided to follow the link she provided and watch her interview.
The format of the show is two co-hosts with an occasional guest. As I began watching, the two co-hosts were doing the typical unfocused blather you see all the time. This went on for about 13 minutes. (Time, I will never get back.).
Finally, one of the hosts introduced my friend, reading from some notes (which in and of itself is fine). Once my friend was brought into the fold (and on-screen), the co-hosts briefly asked about my friend’s geographical connection with themselves.
And then the interview was essentially put on hold.
We got to hear about the co-host’s reading patterns. We learned one of the co-hosts thought she’d be best friends with my friend during the time covered in the book. On and on it went, with my friend forced to nod and smile during this time.
It was intolerable and unprofessional.
During the “interview”, I sent a FB message to my friend:
Eventually, TWENTY-THREE (23) minutes into the broadcast, I decided to ask a question in the chat:
Oftentimes, people who don’t know how to do a FB Live interview properly will continue to search the live comments for help. Thankfully, that was the case. At 25:43 into the live video, a co-host said,
“Someone asked. . .what was the hardest part of writing the book?”
“Someone.” First, if you’re interested in getting people to carry your show’s flag up the proverbial hill, mention their name if they ask a question. I suspect the host didn’t say my name because she didn’t know who I was. (She said there was a question. . .looked at it. . .likely decided she didn’t know who I was. . .then read the question.)
Once my question was asked, things began to flow a bit better.
After the interview was over, my friend replied:
“Why Bother” indeed.
Blathering on once a guest is on your show is like inviting somebody to your house. . .and then ignoring them. It’s rude. It’s boring and uncomfortable (for the guest). And it does nothing to help position yourself as somebody who knows what the hell you’re doing.
The fact 98% of the podcasts she’s appeared on suck is not new news. The VAST MAJORITY of people never take the time to learn how to interview somebody. And it shows.
Interview Like You Mean It
If you’re going to interview somebody, take the time to PREPARE. Treat it like a job interview YOU’RE GOING ON. Have a plan, be professional, stay focused, and show interest in the guest and their topic.
If you’re already hosting an interview-based podcast, or are thinking about doing so, do this work. If you’d like help, you can contact me. Once we’re done working together, I promise you’ll conduct interviews that your guests will LOVE!
That sounds frustrating… The difficulty is that the interviewee is in a position where they can’t call the interviewer out or remove their lav mic theatrically storming off set as they will then be seen as the rude ones.
Not good, but thank you Scott for raising this issue, basically they need to realise they are interviewing someone and that someone is the interesting person in the room.
Exactly. Have you ever been invited to a party and a few minutes after you arrive and are by yourself, begin to wonder “what the hell am I doing here”? That’s what it feels like to be a guest on a podcast whose hosts forget the reason for having the guest in the first place.