How to be a GREAT Podcast Guest - Part 1

- by guest contributor Eric Nevins -

Congratulations! Your book is finally published, and now you are trying to get the word out to as many people as possible. As an author, publicity just goes with the territory. The good news is that there has never been a better time to get your message in front of an audience. Social media and the ability to start one’s own media channels mean there are more micro-markets than ever, and many will be interested in your book. You just have to show how your content relates to the audience.

But how do you bring the most value as a podcast guest? 

What follows will help you find and build relationships with podcasters who work in your genre, learn how to prepare for the interview, explain the mistakes to avoid, and share what to do after the interview is over. Let’s get started.

Part 1: How to find podcasts that are right for your book

When promoting books on podcasts, the first step is to find podcasts that are right for your book. Ideally, you want the category to fit as closely as possible, though it does not have to be an exact match. You need to find shows that your ideal reader would listen to.

Four Steps to Finding Podcasts that Fit Your Book

Step 1: Search multiple podcast directories

Apple Podcasts is one huge search engine waiting to help you find podcasts. To find the ones that fit your genre, first start by choosing the category your book fits into. For instance, if your book is about an historical figure in missions, choose the Religion and Spirituality category. The shows that appear on the first page will be organized into New & Noteworthy, What’s Hot, and All Podcasts. Shows that are getting love on the front page of a category are seeing significant success so look through each section to see if anything jumps out at you. If so, move on to the next step.

If not, try searching for your category. Be as specific as you can for best results. For instance, if your book is about Christian missionary work, search for “Christian mission” or “Christian missionary.”
Pro-tip: A “podcast tour” can consist of as many podcast appearances as you like. Try to find ten where your message will resonate best.


Step 2: Review website & past episodes 

Once you find a podcast or two that makes sense for your book, review the podcast to learn more. The goal here is to learn as much as you can so you can have an informed conversation with the podcaster about their show. Since you are in Apple Podcasts, look at the list of podcast episodes. Does the podcast include interviews? Do you see any themes in their episodes? What will your message add to the conversation this podcaster is creating?

Next, click over to the podcaster’s website and take in the general look and feel. Read the show notes pages for 3–5 episodes, the about page, and browse through the blog, if they have one. This doesn’t have to take forever, just long enough to get an idea about the person you want to connect with. At this point, you should download and listen to at least one episode of the show to get a feel for the format.

Step 3: Contact the podcaster

By now, you should have a very good idea of what the show is about and how you would fit into it. Look for the contact page and begin your pitch. In your email, be sure to include the following:
  • Be complimentary of the show but not to the point of being flattering. Podcasting takes a lot of work hours per episode, and no podcaster will refuse compliments.
  • Introduce yourself and your book including why you wrote it and who you wrote to help.
  • Explain why your content would be a good fit for their show. This is when you use all that research you did earlier.

  • Offer to send a free copy for review. Making this offer suggests that you are prepared to bring value to the podcaster and you are not simply trying to access their audience. We will talk more about building the relationship in the last installment of this series but for now, just know that offering a PDF copy of your book is a great start.

Step 4: Respond promptly to communication

Once you send the message, you wait to hear from the podcaster. When you hear from the podcaster, respond as soon as possible and set a time on the calendar. For an easy to coordinate tool, consider using Calendly.

Once an interview is scheduled, you can get ready by doing a few things to prepare which we will cover in the next post.

To connect with Eric directly, go to Definitely check out at or

And, many of William Carey authors will be popping up on Eric's podcast over the next few months, but take a listen to J.D. Payne's interview by Eric on Roland Allen's The Ministry of Expansion: The Priesthood of the Laity

Want a special discount on J.D. Payne's book? Use code READTHEBLOG at checkout for a surprise discount!  

 Roland Allen's The Ministry of Expansion: The Priesthood of the Laity