EOFire's Podcast Workflow

  1. 1

    Finding Great Guests (or Topics)

    Finding great guests for an interview show - especially when you’re first starting out - isn’t easy. But when you know exactly who your audience is and what content will be most valuable for them, you give yourself a head start. Because if you know what content you want to share, then you know what type of expert you need to find to help you share it.

    1. Google events in your niche. Who are the speakers? They're already proven to be authorities in your niche AND are interested in speaking to an audience about their expertise.
    2. Search for published authors on Amazon. Who has published a book on the topic(s) you cover? Every author is always looking for ways to grow their reach and gain visibility.
    3. Who in your existing network (or friends of those in your existing network) can speak about your topic(s)? Don't be shy; you asking someone to be a guest on your podcast is an honor!
    4. Every time you have a guest on your show, ask if they have any recommendations for others you can connect with - individuals they feel would be a great fit. You can also ask whether they’d be willing to make an introduction. 
    5. There are also several companies and platforms that can help connect you with great guests. We are an affiliate for Interview Valet (done for you service) and an investor in Guestio (do it yourself service).

    Wondering what to say when you reach out to these potential guests? We've got this handy email template to help you get started :)


    If you're doing a topic-based show, then this step is all about finding great topics to discuss. Like finding great guests, when you know exactly who your audience is and what content will be most valuable for them, you give yourself a head start.

    A great place to start is signing up for Google Alerts for your top keywords or phrases. See what major news outlets and authority sites are saying about your topic and consider whether that would be a good topic for your show.


    Also, think about the top questions and struggles your audience is facing right now. If they were talking with you 1-on-1, what question would they ask you? Every question is a potential episode topic!
  2. 2

    Create an Application Form (optional)

    Having an application form in place is optional, and it might not be a step you take right away. However, having an application form in place for an interview show will ensure that you’re finding the best guests who can help you accomplish delivering great content to your audience.

    1. Choose the software you'll use to help you create your application form. A simple, free choice is Google Forms.
    2. When you're creating questions on your application form, think about your non-negotiables for finding great guests. What knowledge or experience do you want them to have? Which topic(s) do you want them to be able to speak about? What equipment or setup requirements do you want to have in place?
    3. You might consider requiring that your potential guest submits a 30-second audio clip, or even a video clip, so you can hear and/or see what they're like in action.

    If you host a topic-based show or a Q&A show, then a form is a great way to accept questions from listener - or even to request feedback on certain episode topics (current or future). Sending surveys out to your audience is also a great way to keep your finger on the pulse!
  3. 3

    Create an Online Scheduler

    OnceHub and Calendly are two great online schedulers that will help you create a live booking form to schedule interviews with ease. Invest time in setting up your scheduler right, and it will save you HOURS of back and forth and last-minute requests. 

    1. Create a schedule that only shows certain interview times you’re available. You are the host, which means you call the shots. Choose a day and time block you'll record your interviews to help you batch your recording times.
    2. Request all applicable info from your guest as they're scheduling their interview time. This includes their bio, their headshot, their website URL, their social media links... anything you need from your guest to prepare for the interview and have everything you need to complete your podcast workflow without having to reach back out to them should be collected here. You can even have your guest submit bullet points for the interview and a sample interview title to help you get a jumpstart. 
    3. Make sure you're leveraging the built-in interview reminders. Customize them as you see fit, and make sure they're setup to remind your guest of their interview date and time 1 week out, the day before, and the day of their interview.


    If you host a topic-based show, then this is your opportunity to put a production schedule in place - and stick to it! Add it as a recurring event in your calendar and hold yourself accountable to staying ahead.

    For example, you might schedule 2 hours for a batch podcast recording session every Monday from 8am - 10am, where you'll record 2-3 episodes at once. Then, schedule an hour for batch editing those 2-3 episodes on Wednesday from 8am - 9am, and so on...

    Everyone's time blocks will look different. The important thing is to get them on your calendar as a recurring event so you're always ahead of your publishing schedule.
  4. 4

    Create an Interview Flow

    Having an interview flow (or interview outline) will help you not only prepare for your interview, but also help support you throughout the interview. This document can and should be created 1 time as a template that you can use over and over again.

    1. Create an intro or welcome script
    2. Create a space for the guest's bio
    3. Format the "meat" of your interview however you'd like (for example, the list of questions you'll ask, bullet points you'll follow, or reminders to help guide the conversation)
    4. Create a section for your call to action
    5. Create an outro or goodbye script

    With this template in place - and once you have all the info you need for a successful interview from Step 3 - fill in the necessary info on your interview flow document. 


    For us this includes:

    1. The intro
    2. The guests's bio
    3. Bullet points to guide the interview (submitted by the guest)
    4. A call to action
    5. The outro

    You might also consider including any sponsorship info or talking points in your interview flow, if applicable.



    If you are producing a topic-based show, the same idea applies. An interview flow or outline can help you create content faster, more consistently, and help you throughout your recording session.

    Here's what my interview flow looks like for my topic-based podcast:

  5. 5

    Create an Interview Tracker

    Having a central place where you can track:

    1. Your guests
    2. Their contact info
    3. Their interview date and time
    4. When their interview will go live
    5. What sponsors will be included in the episode (if applicable)

    ...will help you keep everything straight and give you a central place to refer back to if you have any questions. This is also a great way to be able to share your schedule with any team members who might be helping you with your Podcast Workflow.

    We use Google Sheets for our Interview Tracker.


    If you're creating a topic-based show, it's great to have a recurring, set schedule in place for when you'll record, edit, and upload your episodes. You can use a Google Sheet, or simply book the time on your calendar so you have it reserved.
  6. 6

    The Pre-Interview Chat

    This is the time right before you hit record where you have the opportunity to:

    1. Welcome your guest and "break the ice" so both of you feel comfortable
    2. Thank them for coming on the show with you
    3. Review any important reminders with your guest
    4. Confirm their equipment is acceptable and that their setup is complete
    5. Confirm that they've turned off any notifications (phone and computer)
    6. Confirm the amount of time they have available for the interview
    7. Answer any questions they might have
    8. Hit record!

    Here's a pre-interview checklist to help you with this step.

    If you host a topic-based show, you should still have a pre-recording checklist in place to make sure you have your water, your microphone is selected, you have your outline up and ready to go, and any other important reminders you want to have in place to record. Hitting record should be one of them!
  7. 7

    The Interview / Recording

    Use your interviews as an opportunity to create and grow great relationships, learn new things, improve in areas you’re currently lacking in, and - of course - to have fun!

    Also, you'll want to make sure you have a recording template set up in your recording & editing software. Regardless of whether you'll record directly into your recording & editing software, or use a secondary platform like Zoom or Zencastr to connect with your guest and record your conversation, having a template in place will save you massive amounts of time in the post-production phase. A couple of examples of things you might set in you recording template include:

    • Your equalizer settings
    • A hard limiter
    • Whether you'll record in stereo or mono (we recommend mono)
    • Your export settings

    As you become more comfortable behind the mic, you might consider the following actions during your interview:

    1. If you're recording directly into your editing software, drop markers so you know where to go back and edit. If you're not recording directly into your software, have a queue (like silence that you can visually see in your wav form), or make note of the time stamp so you can quickly return for edits.
    2. Take note of the quotes or ideas you want to include in your show notes or description
    3. Test out different questions or formats to improve the quality of your show
    4. Challenge yourself to omit um's, ah's or repetitive phrases you use as a crutch

    Want some interview tips from the masters? Check out this compilation of master interview tips from our community resources inside Podcasters’ Paradise!

    If you're recording a topic-based show, the same applies! Have your recording template in place, hit record, and dive in! 
  8. 8

    The Post-Interview Chat

    Once you've stopped recording, take this opportunity to:

    1. Thank your guest for their time and for sharing such great information
    2. Let them know when their episode will be going live
    3. Let them know what to expect in terms of communication from you (follow up emails a week before their episode goes live, the day before, and the day of)
    4. Ask if they have any recommendations for great guests you can invite on the show
    5. Tell them you're excited to share their interview once it goes live, and that you hope they'll share it with their audience, too!

    Here's a post-interview checklist to help you with this step.

    If you host a topic-based show, this is a great time to make sure you have everything wrapped up and saved.
  9. 9

    Editing

    A few critical steps in preparing for a smooth editing process include:

    1. Having a recording template created in your editing software so any effects and export settings are saved and ready to be applied when you drag your mp3 in
    2. Having shortcuts setup for audio cuts, breaks, and transitions
    3. Having your intro and outro recorded and ready to insert (unless you read these live)
    4. Having your sponsor reads ready to insert (if applicable)
    5. Have your editing notes ready (time stamps where you'll return to edit)

    Reminder: This is NOT the time to try and be a perfectionist. Um’s, ah’s, and breathes are human and I highly encourage you to use any small annoyances as a challenge to improve your interview skills, not to edit.
  10. 10

    Other Post-Production Items

    For us, this includes:

    1. Tagging our mp3 inside of Libsyn
    2. Creating a show notes page
    3. Generating a transcript with Podscribe
    4. Uploading the audio file to Libsyn
    5. Scheduling the interview to go live in Libsyn

    Once John has edited an episode (Step 9), he uploads it to Dropbox and our team handles the rest (all of Step 10 above).

    We use and recommend Libsyn as a media host, and we are affiliates. If you'd like to get the rest of this month and next month free, visit Libsyn.com and use promo code FIRE!

    We use and love Podscribe for our transcripts. No AI is perfect, but Podscribe is pretty darn close! Plus they have some really cool website and show notes features. Check out Podscribe and get a special discount using our affiliate code EOF at Podscribe.ai.
  11. 11

    Episode Reminders

    Episode reminders are critical, as you want to be sure your guest has everything they need to share their interview with their audience. Make it a memorable chat and your guest will be excited to share!

    Our episode reminders include:
     
    1. An email 1 week before the interview goes live
    2. An email the day before the interview goes live
    3. An email the day the interview goes live
  12. 12

    Bonus: Guest Podcasting

    One of our top growth strategies for your podcast is being a guest on other podcasts. Podcast listeners listen to podcasts!

    So if you can find other podcasts within your industry or niche and request to be a guest on, then you've just increased your reach, hopefully created a great new relationship, and given yourself the opportunity to provide massive value to a whole new audience!

    To find the right podcasts to be a guest on, you can search:
     
    1. Your industry or niche in Apple Podcasts
    2. Top podcast articles
    3. At conferences where you're with other podcasts
    4. Using guest connection sites, like the ones mentioned in Step 1. We are an affiliate for Interview Valet (done for you service) and an investor in Guestio (do it yourself service).

    Don't worry - we've got your back when it comes to your outreach :) Here's an email template you can use to request to be a guest on other podcasts!