Podcast interviews are the most popular format in the podcast industry. It typically involves a podcast host and a guest that will be interviewed about a particular topic or niche. Podcast interviews are often considered simple as the format opens opportunities to provide valuable information while creating engaging conversations with podcast guests.

However, conducting an interview for podcast content is not as easy as people would think. Carrying conversations and keeping them entertaining is a skill that podcast hosts should have. Podcast interviews are not as simple as chatting with a friend with microphones. 

A critical part of podcasting is keeping the flow and the content engaging for the general audience. Without proper preparation, podcast interviews can turn out bland or boring. To help you with this, here are some helpful tips on how to conduct interviews for podcast content.


Find the Right Podcast Guest

A crucial part of the success of a podcast interview lies in who your guest is. Considering this, finding the right guest for a specific topic or niche is important for preparing for a podcast interview show.

It is safe to say that not everyone is suited for content creation, especially podcasting. It is not easy to feel comfortable and at ease while recording a podcast. Some guests may be too nervous or tense that they cannot deliver an entertaining and engaging conversation. Thus, having someone like that as your guest can affect the quality of your show. 

But aside from the way your guest conducts themselves, another important angle to look at is their background or expertise. If the topic of your podcast episode is something specific or technical, look for someone with the credentials to stand as an expert on the subject matter.  Doing this brings a sense of credibility, reliability, and value to what is said on the podcast.


Learn More About the Topic


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A podcast host’s role is not limited to interviewing and asking questions to the guest. Part of this dynamic is that the host should be an engaging listener as well as a conversationalist. To do this, they should have enough information about the topic. Enough to exchange and bounce off ideas with the guest.


Do Some Background Research on the Guest

Aside from studying the topic at hand, it is also important to spend some time learning about the person you are going to interview. As the interviewer, it is your responsibility to introduce your guest to your audience. Therefore, you need to have a good grasp of who they are and what they do to give your listeners the context of why they are the chosen guest for the topic.

To do this, dive into your guest’s history. Look into their work, achievements, and projects and see how these relate to the topic. If they create content as well, consume some of their work. Read their blogs, watch their videos, and even check their social media profiles to gauge their level of interaction and engagement with people online.More than that, another way to become a better interviewer is to avoid commonly asked questions about them. Watch previous interviews and take note of the things that have been asked about them. Instead, come up with unique and innovative questions that will show a different side of your guest, making it more interesting for the audience. 


Know What and How To Ask

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Interviews are typically comprised of a list of questions asked to a guest. These questions are also used as a guide to direct the conversation from one idea to the next.

First things first, it is important for any interviewer to prepare their questions in advance. This keeps the conversation structured and prevents it from straying too far away from the main topic. While there is really no harm in having conversations veering off from time to time, it is still essential to keep the discussion within the general scope and then bring them back in. 

But more than preparing the questions ahead of time, it is important to know what to ask and how to ask them to your guest. 

One of the first things to remember when conducting an interview is to avoid yes or no questions. Don’t deliver your questions in a manner that can be easily answered with a simple yes or no. Doing this puts the pressure of continuing the conversation on the guest, which is not ideal. Instead, phrase your questions in a way that encourages them to expand and say more.

Aside from that, another habit to avoid is to ask leading questions. Your role as an interviewer is to get their point of view. Therefore, it is essential for you, as the interviewer, to remain neutral regardless of the topic.

Another tip when it comes to asking questions is to avoid asking too many questions at once. Instead, mention one question at a time and give your guest enough time to respond. Asking follow-up questions based on their answers even makes the conversation feel more natural and authentic than referring to your prepared list of questions the whole time.

Lastly, an effective way to bring out more information from your guests is to focus on the hows and whys. This encourages them to tell a full story that provides a clear picture instead of just sharing bits and pieces. 


Learn How To Be an Active Listener

Have you ever heard of active listening? This is a particular skill that can be extremely useful for podcast interviewers. Active listening is the ability to comprehend more than what other people are saying. In this sense, listening goes far beyond just hearing the words being said. Instead, it aims to dive deeper into the meaning and intent of each word.

Making active listening a habit can help interviewers become better listeners and communicators. They are able to digest more than the surface information and are more keen to know the whys and hows behind each statement.

To become an active listener, interviewers need to pay full attention to their guests. They should be fully present in the conversation and avoid getting distracted by the tiniest things. Active listeners also take in more than what is being said. A part of being an active listener is to take note of non-verbal cues that can help give off a different impression or meaning than what the guest is saying.

One benefit of becoming an active listener is that you tend to be more open-minded as you are more concerned with understanding what they really want to say. Active listeners withhold judgment and the urge to offer unsolicited advice. Instead, they focus on making the other person feel valued and heard. 

Doing this in podcast interviews helps create a more comfortable, safe, and natural atmosphere that can bring guests at ease. 



Podcast interviews are one of the most consumed types of podcast content. Many listeners find this format more engaging and entertaining to listen to. Some of the most popular podcasts globally follow this content style. This includes the likes of the Joe Regan Experience, WTF with Marc Maron, Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend, and more. 

However, their success is not solely because they follow a podcast interview format. Instead, they have mastered the art of amazing interviewing. They can interact with their guests in an entertaining and engaging manner while also keeping the topic at the heart of the discussion.

To create the same quality of interviews as your favorite podcasts, developing your skills as an interviewer and a conversationalist is important. Study how to get better at asking questions, make banter a natural part of discussions, and learn how to become an active listener.


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