You've just been asked to be a guest on the reThink ELA Podcast, and you're over the moon — we hope! But now what? If you've never been interviewed on a podcast, cold hard reality is hitting right now. But don't fear. We have hosted podcasts before and we've been a guest on podcasts, so we understand your concerns. To help allay your fears, we have put together this guide to help you prepare for the interview, speak confidently during the interview, and make the most of the interview after the podcast is published. We're looking forward to working with you!
Before the interview
Unlike an interview with the local television station or newspaper, your interview with reThink ELA will be collaborative. My goal is to help you tell your story. With this goal in mind, I'll prepare a few questions ahead of time, along with a biography in a Google Document and send you a link to that document. We will then work together within the Doc to make sure the biography accurately reflects who you are and that the questions bring out your story logically and effectively.
Depending on geographical or time limits, we may conduct your interview in person or online.
Here are some things you can do:
- Send me links to your biographical information, including any awards you've one or publications you are in.
- Schedule a time for a pre-interview chat via Zoom so I can answer any questions you may have and we can work on the flow for our conversation. (This is especially important if I've never met or talked to you.)
In person interview
If we're interviewing in person, we'll need a relatively quite place to record. Some libraries have study rooms that might work. Or, if we want to go for a somewhat noisy coffee shop vibe, I'm always down for Starbucks or All About Cha. I'm willing to go anywhere in the Oklahoma City metro area. If you're in outlying areas, I may need to wait until after payday to schedule your interview. You will only need to bring yourself, as I will provide all sound equipment. Some guests may want to bring notes or a computer for reference.
If we're interviewing online, I'll use either my Zoom conference room or Zencastr podcasting. I'll send you a link to either one in the aforementioned Google Doc.
For the online interview, you will need:
- A laptop or desktop computer
- A microphone (I own this Logitech headset.) — preferable a headset so that the audio won't feedback through your microphone.
- (If using Zencastr) Instructions for using the Zencastr podcasting website.
I will send you a Google Calendar invitation to the interview so that we can both be at the same place at the same time. This especially helps me if you are not in the Central time zone. I am terrible at doing the conversions myself…
During the interview
- Sound check
Whether we interview in person or via computer, I'll need to conduct a sound check. I'll need you to talk for a little bit while I complete any adjustments. If we have trouble with your sound for on online interview, I'll work with you to help you figure it out.
- About 15 to 20 minutes
I like to keep the podcast short for busy teachers. So the interview should only last about 15-20 minutes. If it becomes apparent that there is much more that needs to be said, I may talk to you about conducting a follow-up interview or guest writing an article.
- Mispeaking or stuttering
No worries! You'll hear me mess up, too. Just pause for about five seconds, then start your sentence again. No problem if you have to repeat this a couple of times. My virtual assistant, Christina, is amazing at cleaning up our audios!
Don't feel bad. I find myself nervous and giggling, and it's my show! Just let it out and Christina will clean it up.
After the interview
AFTER RECORDING: Please make sure you wait until after your audio uploads before you close the browser window.
Help promote on social media
I will promote the podcast episode on Twitter and Facebook at the same time it is published and at various intervals for the following two weeks. You are welcome and encouraged to promote those posts and/or to write your own promotions. The more we promote, the more people will hear the message we're sharing.
I also recommend you send your listeners directly to your podcast episode on my website. You can find the episode on the reThink ELA Podcast page, then click the headline to go to the episode page. I recommend you do this so your listeners can choose the method they want to use to listen to the recording: website player, iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play.
Tell everyone you know
You can also attach a link to your podcast episode in your email and mention the episode to your friends and colleagues. If you're telling people about your interview in person, just send people to reThinkELA.com. During the first couple of days after your episode airs, it will be the top story on the home page. After that, visitors can click the podcast link on the top left menu bar of the site, or scroll down to the podcast category for the latest episodes.