How to Be a Good Podcast Host
The podcast is one of the fastest-growing media types in the market today. Despite the abundance of exciting talent and innovative ideas in the industry, not all podcasts succeed. So, what separates a good podcast from one that goes unnoticed?
Well, you may say it's the guests present or the audio quality of the whole episode. But at the end of the day, the hosts are the driving force of it all! The host determines the content, the guest list, and whether or not the audience becomes a strong, engaged community.
Your listeners will not pay attention if you aren’t an effective host even if you have the finest podcast topic and the best setup. Whether you’re new to podcasting or not, you can enhance your hosting skills and become a great host with these tips!
1. Be yourself
Being yourself is one of the most important aspects of being a great host. No one wants to tune in to someone who is pretending and your listeners can determine if you're putting on a show. Be true to yourself and allow your personality to shine through. Also, don't hesitate to share personal experiences with your audience to help them get to know you better.
2. Know your audience
As the host, it’s your responsibility to give your listeners the content they’re asking for and you can effectively do that if you know them well.
You must put yourself in your audience's shoes so that you can understand what’s going on in their minds. Remember that it's the ability to connect with your audience that keeps them coming back.
3. Invite suitable guests
A podcast guest can sometimes make or break your content. If your guests aren't familiar with how a podcast works, do your homework to make sure they have the proper tools and perhaps do a dry run so they can get acquainted with the format. You can invite them a day or two before the actual episode and help them get accustomed with the setup.
Your guest must be an expert or someone who has an established reputation in the field. You can check their credentials to make sure they’re the right fit. Your audience deserves the best speakers who can entertain and educate them.
4. Allot time to prepare
Regardless if you’re solo or with a guest, you must always have a concrete plan. You may want to speak freely and avoid reading scripts word for word so preparation is essential for keeping your podcast episodes focused on the material.
Like a reporter preparing for an interview, create a list of questions prior to the event and write an outline to remain on track. This will allow you to keep the discussion going and reduce the number of long silences or unpleasant pauses.
You also want to make sure that all the equipment for your podcast is working fine. Doing this gets rid of technical glitches while you’re recording.
5. Share relatable stories
Nothing compares to an exceptional narrative. Tell relatable experiences to connect with your listeners on a deeper level. Have you and your guest known each other for a long time? Begin the episode by discussing a shared memory that relates to your topic.
As the episode progresses, you may get thrilled to dwell on data to support your arguments but make sure not to overwhelm your audience with too many figures. Your listeners can get bored if you give them the information they can’t relate to.
6. Show gratitude to your listeners
Make it part of your routine to thank your listeners at the end of every episode. You can give shout-outs or a summary of the topic discussed. You wouldn’t be successful without a loyal fanbase so make it a point to treat them with love and respect. You can throw meet- and- greet events, host giveaways, or connect with them on social media.
Another way of showing appreciation to your audience is by providing transcripts to every podcast episode. Transcriptions also improve user experience, broaden your reach and offer accessibility to your subscribers.
7. Ask for feedback
Feedback allows your audience to express themselves about your episode. You may develop better listener-oriented material by collecting and reviewing comments. Put a link to your online survey and on your website. Share your social media accounts or email address so listeners can reach you.
It takes a lot of time and practice to be an excellent podcast host. You’ll find yourself attracting more listeners and receiving positive comments once you follow the tips above.