Believe it or not, there’s a secret to success when it comes to guesting … and it’s all in the preparation.
How you prepare for your appearance on stage or being interviewed via a podcast, blog or vlog can help define and shape your brand. It can build your brand’s reputation, help you become known as THE expert in your field and build an engaged audience who will eventually want to buy from you.
Need help with your preparations for guesting? Here are 7 things you can do:
#1: Research everything you need to know about your host / interviewer
What is their preferred social media channel? Who is their primary audience? What blogs, vlogs or podcasts are most popular? Do they host events? What are their key messages, products and services?
These are all things you need to know ahead of your appearance. Why? Because it will help you deliver the best interview / keynote possible and it will equip you to build a good solid relationship with the influencers you’re targeting. It will also help you position your brand better for other guest appearances and attracting new audiences.
#2: Listen, watch or read previous published content
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again – you need to do this before every single guest appearance. It’s so important in terms of both helping you to prepare and making you the best possible guest you can be.
Already published content will give you a good understanding of previous topics discussed, guests who have been interviewed, titles of key episodes, FAQs, set up the episode via show notes, event, post etc.
#3: Know your subject inside out
Guesting helps shape perceptions of your brand and if you want those to be positive then you need to come across as an expert in your field with unrivalled knowledge of your subject. That means:
- Being able to answer complicated, sometimes technical questions on the subject
- Articulating that subject area in a way that is relatable to all types of audiences
- Being knowledgeable enough to offer practical solutions to audience
- Understanding what type of pain points your target audiences face when it comes to your subject area and knowing how you can solve them
This is how you’ll become known as an expert in your field, how you’ll attract a wider audience who trust you and convert these audiences from followers to paying customers.
#4: Check your tech
Your tech will make or break your guest appearance. Here are some questions you need to answer:
- Is your internet connection ok?
- Have you got a feel for the stage you’ll be speaking on?
- Do you know how to mute your microphone if you need to?
- Is the quality of sound good enough?
- Are your slides uploading properly?
- How does your microphone work in the room you’re in? Does it echo?
If you can’t answer right now and you’re preparing to guest then you need to do it sooner rather than later. Your tech needs to be in working order to ensure you come across as professional as well as knowledgeable.
#5: Ask questions
Are there things you need to know ahead of your appearance? If so then make sure you ask them in advance. It could be that there are certain questions the host asks each guest, maybe you’re needed to be on a panel as well as a keynote speaker or maybe there is a series of questions you need to get access to ahead of going live.
Whatever is needed, you need to make sure you access it ahead of your appearance. If it doesn’t form part of the brief from your host then ask.
#6: Do a test run of your own
If it’s your first appearance you might be feeling the nerves by this point. That’s natural. If you’re feeling the nerves then it might be a good idea to do your own test run – not only from a tech perspective but also rehearsing your own key messages you want to relay.
This is the time for you to make mistakes, to say things you wouldn’t want to say as a guest and to experiment with sound and video quality. If this makes you feel comfortable and releases any nerves you might feel for going live then go for it.
#7: Get ready to enjoy the experience
This blog seems to be quite practical I know, but I just wanted to share this last point with you in case you forget about it. It’s important to enjoy the experience – for you, the host and the audience. If you hate every second then trust me this will come across, either on screen, in person, through headphones or via the written word.
Take your time, share your knowledge and enjoy every second. This will add to the appeal of your brand and will make the whole guesting experience fun for you.
Final thoughts …
The most important thing to remember when guesting is to be yourself. After all, how can you be anyone else?
If you’re guesting on the right channels and speaking to the right audience then being yourself is how you’ll build a connection, how you’ll relay your knowledge in a way that appeals to them and how you’ll attract new fans for your brand.
Do you want to learn how to build influence and become to go-to expert in your industry? Check out my membership site Headliners: The PR & Digital Marketing Academy to learn more.
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You may also be interested in reading:
- How to become an influencer in your industry
- 6 ways to build your brand’s influence online
- 4 ways to be seen as an expert