:Creativity / Working from home

Guest podcasting 101: A guide for online course creators

earn money online through guest podcasting earn money online through guest podcasting

With the rise of audio content and podcasts in recent years, more and more online creators are turning to podcasts as a way to market and grow their businesses. Before, one of the most valuable ways to get in front of a different audience for free was via guest blogging. And while it’s still effective to this day, guest podcasting is slowly making its way to be just as popular, if not more popular, for content creators. 

What is guest podcasting?

In short, guest podcasting is a marketing strategy when you appear on someone else’s podcast as an interviewee. 

With guest blogging, you often need to write a blog post and submit it to another website. But with a podcast appearance, it’s a bit less complicated—you’ll have a conversation with the podcast host and answer questions. 

This process might be easier for entrepreneurs who are more comfortable with public speaking. However, you can still to prepare for the conversation and bring in as much knowledge and value as you can.

Benefits of guest podcasting

There are multiple benefits to being a guest on someone’s podcast, but these are the three most important ones.

1. Establishing your name as an expert

Guest podcasting is a marketing and PR tactic to get you in front of an audience. This helps you establish your name as an expert in your industry. It’s crucial if you’re a content creator looking to build a brand in the long term, and it’s one of the most effective ways to do it for free.

Being podcast guest may be harder than guest blogging on an authority website as there are limited spaces. But even if the scene is more competitive, it offers a higher return. The fact that you were chosen to be a guest indicates that the host believes you have something of value to share.

Likewise, this will truly help you establish your authority as a thought leader and an expert in your field. Once you’ve been on a prominent podcast, you can add that to your website as social proof. It’s evidence that’ll raise your profile in the eyes of people who stumble upon your business for the first time. 

2. Reaching new audiences

Another benefit of guest podcasting is reaching new audiences that you wouldn’t be able to otherwise. If you don’t have your own podcast as a marketing channel, then chances are you’re not reaching a portion of an audience who might be interested in your business. By being a guest on someone else’s podcast, you can reach people you were missing.

Starting a podcast can be expensive and time-consuming, and not every content creator is ready to add an extra platform on top of what they’re already doing. However, being a guest is totally free and requires a minimal time investment, offering the same benefits of connecting with the new audience. 

Similarly, if you start your own podcast, then you have an added benefit of podcast swaps. (This is just as it sounds: You go on someone else’s podcast, and then they come to yours.) This allows you both to reach new audiences and grow your businesses.

3. Bringing awareness to your business

Guest podcasting is one of the most effective ways to bring awareness to your business. Usually, podcast episodes run at 40 minutes or so. And according to research, people are more likely to stick around until the end and be more engaged with a podcast than if they were consuming content in any other form. 

This gives you a large window to connect with the host and their audience. Plus, it gives you a chance to invite people to check out what you have to offer once they finish listening to the episode.

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Implementing guest podcasting strategy in 5 steps

We’ve discussed what guest podcasting is and why it might be worth implementing in your business. Now, it’s time to discuss strategy and how to be a guest on someone else’s podcast.

1. Make a list of podcasts to pitch

First, make a list of podcasts in your niche that you would love to be featured on. The easiest way to do it is by going to Google and typing in “[your niche] podcasts”:

search example search example

You’ll find a directory on Apple or other podcast mediums that other people have compiled of the best podcasts in your niche. This way you can see which podcasts actually take on the guests (as not all will have this format) and whether their content fits in with your brand. 

Start by making a larger list of 20-50 podcasts in your niche. Then narrow down the list to the top five or 10 to start with as you go through their content, number of downloads, and other details. 

2. Listen to their content and get familiar

The next step in your guest podcasting journey is to familiarize yourself with the content of the top five or 10 podcasts you’ve chosen. Listen to their most recent episodes, especially with guest features.

See what people are they looking to feature and familiarize with the past guests. Try to figure out what they brought to the show. With this, you can see whether the podcast is a good match, and it will allow you to determine whether you’re the right fit for this particular show. 

For example: If you have an online course business that teaches people how to do yoga at home, you might be looking at lifestyle and wellness podcasts. Make sure that those lifestyle podcasts align with your brand and have an audience interested in what your brand stands for.

If there’s a lifestyle podcast that features everything from beauty to interior design, it might not be a perfect fit. What would be a good match is a podcast focused solely on wellness and mindful living.

Digging deeper into your chosen podcasts will help you determine whether you’re the right fit and whether they would be interested in having you.  

3. Build relationships

It’s time to start building a relationship with the hosts of those podcasts. Interacting with the host without pitching yourself first is crucial, especially if the host is not familiar with you or your business.

Guest podcasting is only efficient if there is a genuine connection. The good news is that building connections doesn’t have to be hard.

Here are a few things you can do to connect with podcast hosts:

  • Interact on social media: The simplest step is to follow them on social media and interact with genuine interest.
  • Make yourself visible on socials: Make your profile stand out by having a bright background and an eye-catching photo. This will draw attention when the hosts see your comment, and they’ll be more inclined to explore.
  • Reach out to them via email with a value proposition: This doesn’t mean you pitch yourself just yet. Email them an article, something they might find useful or that reminds you of their business. 
  • Participate in their community outside social: Most podcast hosts have Patreons or Discords where they interact with their community. Join them there and participate, building closer relationships and showing your authentic interest in what they do.

It’s a long-term game. And it will take some time to build the connection and get familiar, but it’s worth it. When the time comes for you to pitch them, they’ll be more willing to consider you. 

4. Write a killer pitch 

When it’s time to write the pitch, you’ll want to be short and to the point. The chances are that the host of the podcast is busy, and they probably get dozens of pitches (most of them generalized) a day. If you don’t stand out and prove that you respect them and their time, your email is going to be traveling straight to the bin. 

If you’ve connected with the host before and know that they’re familiar with your name, they might be more willing to read a poorly written pitch, but it’s better if you don’t risk it and show your best.

An effective pitch email will include these points:

  • Where did you hear about them?
  • Who are you?
  • What can you offer them?
  • What do you want from them? (the answer for this is to be featured on their podcast as a guest)

Having said that, if you can write something that includes all of these points in four to five sentences, then you have a perfectly composed pitch. Here is an example:

pitch example pitch example

5. Alternatively—hire a PR service

Now, if you’re looking to get into guest podcasting but don’t have the time to go through it all, a good alternative for you would be to seek out agencies and PR services. 

Finally, there are plenty of resources for people looking to be featured on the podcasts in various niches. And it doesn’t even have to be expensive, with the prices starting as low as $10/month to have your profile featured in a directory where podcast hosts are searching for potential guests.

Here are some of the most popular platforms to find guest podcasting gigs:

No matter which route you take, keep at it. Your audience and business will thank you later.

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Author: Karolina Wilde, Karolina Wilde is a freelance writer. Her work has been published on Better Marketing, The Ascent, and Sexography reaching over 25,000+ readers. In her free time, you can find her podcasting, reading, or creating TikTok videos.