Being a Successful Podcast or Radio Guest

Header.pngBy C.L. Fornari

Spanish version available

In a previous post, Pitching Radio Programs and Podcasts, I gave some suggestions for proposing yourself as a guest for radio programs or podcasts. Once you’ve gotten an affirmative response, here are some tips on making the most of your time on the air.

  • Send the producer or host three to five talking points in advance. This is usually welcomed because it makes their jobs easier. If they choose not to use you’re suggestions, that’s fine, but providing a few ideas helps to ensure that the information you think is most important will end up on the air.

If you’re an author, assume that the host is not going to read the book. Yes, sometimes they do read the book before your appearance, but most hosts just don’t have the time.  This is another reason why providing talking points is in your best interest. If the host skims your book, he or she might end up asking you about something that you view as a minor aspect of the work.

Before sending out your suggested talking points, go back to thinking of who will be in the listening audience and what they care about. Make your talking points about them, not you. Don’t use the same statements or information for every appearance.

  • If you’re an author, check your Amazon rankings before the program starts and two or three hours after the show is over. You can do this whether the program is live or recorded. Either write your rankings down or take screenshots. This can give you an instant reading on how effective your appearance was. It will also help in the follow up you’ll do after the program…more on that below.
  • Never write out what you’re going to say and read it. Instead, practice what you want to say out load…compose and refine it orally, not on paper. The audience can tell when a guest is reading and it puts them to sleep.
  • Practice answering common questions about your topic in four or five short sentences. The average listener won’t be able to follow or digest a long compound sentence.
  • Smile when you talk. The audience can “hear” your facial expression. Have fun with it!
  • The day after your appearance airs, send the host/producer a thank you note. If you noticed a profound change in your Amazon rankings, let them know. This is valuable information for them about how powerful their program is, and it frequently gets passed onto their staff in advertising or underwriting.

Meet the AuthorHeadshot_preview.png

C.L. Fornari is the host of GardenLine, heard live every Saturday morning on WXTK, and podcast and streamed online through iHeart Radio.  She is also the co-host of Plantrama, a podcast that is released every other Thursday. For more information and links to both programs, go to the Radio page at

Author: GardenComm

GardenComm, formerly known as GWA: the Association for Garden Communicators, provides leadership and opportunities for education, recognition, career development and a forum for diverse interactions for professionals in the field of gardening communication. GardenComm members includes book authors, bloggers, staff editors, syndicated columnists, free-lance writers, photographers, speakers, landscape designers, television and radio personalities, consultants, publishers, extension service agents and more. No other organization in the industry has as much contact with the buying public as GardenComm members.

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