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The Template

Every week, I maintain THE TEMPLATE, an award-winningWinner of the 2015 Plank Center Award (public relations org.) for commitment to mentorship. blog that's been viewed more than 1.5 million times by people all over the world. In every column, I provide step-by-step instruction to help you become a stronger communicator. Like I always say, "Write well, open doors!"

How to Ask to be a Guest on a Podcast

being a guest on a podcast Want to be a guest on a podcast? Follow my proven formula!

A podcast is an excellent platform to spread your message and gain followers for your business. Many podcast hosts are inundated with requests to be on their shows. How do you break through and make the host want to speak with you?

I’ve had great success with the template below. I used it when I went on a media tour for my book, Wait, How Do I Write This Email?, a collection of 100+ templates for networking/job search.

I used the template below 10 times, heard back from nine podcast hosts and appeared on seven shows. That’s pretty damn good.

In fact, on one of the podcasts, the host and I went through the email I sent him because he was so impressed and wanted others to follow suit.

Why does my approach work? I make the email special to the podcast host and not a blanket email intended for 100 hosts at the same time.

Here’s the template in full.

Subject line — Interview guest: Importance of strong writing skills for freelancers

Hi [person’s first name],

I’m [first and last name], a/an [your job title/company and city/state]. I’m writing to introduce myself as a possible guest on [name of podcast].

Note: Explain at the top of the email what you want. Don’t make the person hunt around for it.

[Next — and this part is crucial – tell the person about a recent podcast episode you listened to and WHY you find it notable; for instance, “I enjoy your show, ’Acme Podcast,’ because you provide tips on parenting from a single mother’s perspective. I thought episode 112 on extracurricular activities and managing schedules was spot on. It’s so true — kids needs to learn how to budget their time even in middle school. Well said!”]

Note: Let’s unpack the section above because it’s critical you understand what I did. First, I call out the podcast by name (proves I didn’t send the same email to 100 podcast hosts). Then, I reference a specific episode (using the episode number), give a detail from the episode that stuck with me AND explain why I like it. In total, it’s a strong intro that shows I actually listened to the podcast and internalized what the host had to say.

[Then, explain why you believe you’re a worthy guest. For instance, “I recently published a book I believe is a smart resource for single parents. It’s called Acme Parenting Book, a reference guide on how to handle the most stressful situations parents face as they raise their children.]

On your show, I can talk about a variety of topics. A few examples:

  • How to stay calm during a temper tantrum
  • Topic 2
  • Topic 3

Note: Give the person three show topics. Otherwise, the person would need to write you back and ask for topic ideas. Be one step ahead!

Here are two examples of me on previous podcasts:

  • Name of podcast, half-line description of what it’s about and the time in the conversation the person should jump to so he/she can hear you at your best; for instance, “Family Podcast, which discusses common family issues and how to resolve them (skip to 8:54 in the recording)
  • Second podcast info that looks the same as the one above

I hope to hear from you, [person’s first name]. Thanks so much.

– Your first name

– Email signature

Deeper Insight

Throughout the email, I give the podcast host specific information about his/her show and my own career. Above it, it’s 100% tailored to the recipient.

There’s no way the person would dismiss it and say, “Oh, well he clearly sent this same email to all kinds of people.” Not possible. It’s written only for this specific podcast host and will hopefully lead to a response which then leads to an appearance on the podcast.

Mission accomplished!

Featured photo: Patrick Breitenbach (Flickr)

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