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How to Interview a Radio or Television Guest

Some of the most rewarding moments in media is the opportunity to chat with some amazing people from around the world. I have been blessed to interview some phenomenal guests. I sat down with a gentleman who forsake his successful career in television to adopt 10 children. He had three strikes against him. He was single, an African American, and a male. Yet he overcame those obstacles and went on to raise these wonderful children. He is Taurean Blacque of the 1970‘s hit show “Hill Street Blues.” How do you capture the magnitude of this highly spiritual man’s dedication to service and compassion? You do your research prior to the interview. It is particularly important to gain a bit of knowledge about the person you will be interviewing. I tend to shy away from the word, interview. I like to look at it as more of a conversation. A conversation where you are taking the audience on a journey of the person’s life and their contributions to the greater cause.

If you are looking to start your own radio or television show, there are some things you need to consider when booking guests.

1. How does their platform further promote your brand?

a. Whether we realize it or not, we all have a brand. Whether we are in media or not, we all have a brand. When you are developing your brand, your audience will grow based on that image. Therefore, you want to see that your guests are in alignment with your brand. If your brand is that of a controversial host that engages in controversial conversations, the sky may be the limit for you. However, if your brand is wellness, you may want to stay in the arena of guests who promote a healthy, mind, body, and spirit. A nutritionist would be just as relevant as a psychologist as a guest.

2. What is their purpose for wanting to share on your platform?

a. Inquire as to why this particular guest may be reaching out to request a spot on your show? Do they have information to share with your audience? Is it helpful information? Do they want to promote their business, product, or service? If so, they still need to provide your audience with some nuggets of information and not just refer the audience to their business product or service if they want any information.

3. How do you formulate your line of questioning?

a. Being strategic is especially important here. Depending on the amount of time you have will determine how long you will stay on one topic or talking point. What is it that you want your audience to know? Unless you are a controversial host or shock host, you never want to make your guest feel uncomfortable. Some hosts prefer to formulate questions ahead of time and that is perfectly fine. However, as you gain experience, you may find yourself switching to just jotting down talking points and building the conversation from there.

4. How will you promote their appearance or is that your job in the first place?

a. This can vary. Some guests have their own PR person who will handle this, some do not. You always want to be prepared to promote your shows. You can build from a template that you use. Each time you promote a guest you should have a template such that you are plugging in the guest’s photo and maybe one or two lines about who they are and what they will be discussed.

5. What will you require from them to assist you in preparing for the interview?

a. If you are a one man or one woman show, you will want to have a standard email that you send out to booked guests. This email will include:

1. What you will need from them such as headshot, bio, and talking points

2. Any do’s and don’ts for their appearance on your show

3. Any disclaimers or consent release if required.

These suggestions are not a complete list, but they are a means for you to get started on your journey. Being a radio and television personality can be a rewarding career. You have the opportunity to meet and learn from people all over the world. Happy booking and embrace the journey.

I am Paula G Voice! I am a sagacious independent lifestyle influencer. I am embracing my own journey and sharing experiences along the way. I am challenging dreamers to do the same by breathing life into their deferred dreams and living out the reality! It is never too late to embrace your journey and live your dreams! Visit Paula’s Blog at for the full journey.

Mindset Question:

We all have a voice; we all have a story. What is it that you have inside of you that others need to hear?

Lesson Learned:

We go through seasons in life and for the most part, we learn lessons that we then must share with others to guide, encourage, and inspire their journeys.

Wisdom Challenge:

Find your voice!

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