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How to build your audience as a podcast guest with Christina Lenkowski

May 19, 2021


Melissa Guller


Transparency Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links, which means that we may earn a commission if you make a purchase. This is at no additional cost to you, so it's a great way to support Wit & Wire. So thank you! Full disclosure here.

Today I’m excited to switch gears and talk about why podcast hosts can benefit from being guests on other podcasts.

If even hearing that sentence gives you a bit of imposter syndrome, and you aren’t sure if you have enough expertise or experience to be a guest, my friend Christina Lenkowski is here to answer these three important questions:

  1. Why is being a podcast guest a fundamentally different marketing strategy than social media or paid advertising?
  2. Who is qualified to be a podcast guest?
  3. What are some of the most common mistakes people make when it comes to pitching podcast hosts?

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Guest Spotlight: Christina Lenkowski

Christina Lenkowski is a forward-thinking publicity strategist and educator for entrepreneurs, speakers, and authors looking to expand their credibility and go from “best-kept secret” to “go-to expert” in their industries through being a guest on other people’s podcasts.

Website | Instagram | LinkedIn

Episode Transcript

NOTE: This podcast was transcribed by a free AI tool called Otter. Please forgive any typos or errors. Melissa Guller 0:00 If you’re thinking about starting a podcast, I’m excited to share that I have a new, free online masterclass about how to start a high-quality podcast without feeling stressed about editing or all the steps that go into creating a new show. In the masterclass, I’m going to share three of the biggest mistakes I see online business owners making when it comes to launching their own podcasts, and I’ll walk through my step-by-step podcast launch system, which hundreds of Wit & Wire students have used to launch successful shows. Learn more and save your free spot at witandwire.com/register. I can’t wait to see you there! Melissa Guller 0:31 Welcome to the Wit & Wire Podcast, where we help podcast hosts climb the charts, turn a profit and make an impact. I’m your host, Melissa Guller, and in each episode, we share simple tips and creative strategies to help you create a binge worthy podcast that listeners love. Melissa Guller 0:42 Welcome back, podcasters. I’m Melissa, and today, I’m excited to switch gears a little bit and talk about why podcasts hosts can benefit from being guests on other podcasts. If even hearing that sentence gives you a bit of imposter syndrome, and you aren’t sure if you have enough expertise or experience to be a guest, my friend Christina Lenkowski is joining me today to answer these three important questions. First, why is being a podcast guest a fundamentally different marketing strategy than focusing on social media or even paid advertising? And how can it help you find more podcast listeners? Second, who is qualified to be a podcast guest? As a quick spoiler, this part of our conversation applies whether you’ve already launched your podcast or you’re still thinking about it, so anyone interested in building their audience will definitely learn a few important marketing strategies from Christina here. And third, what are some of the most common mistakes people make when it comes to pitching podcast hosts? Christina and I both have different perspectives here, me from the host perspective and Christina from the pitching perspective, and I’m excited to help you learn how to craft a great pitch and get the yes. I can’t wait to get started, so let’s first meet our guest. Christina Lenkowski is a forward-thinking publicity strategist and educator for entrepreneurs, speakers and authors looking to expand their credibility and go from “best-kept secret” to “go-to expert” in their industries through being a guest on other people’s podcasts. Here’s how Christina first started her business. Christina Lenkowski 2:38 I’ve been in the PR game for over 15 years, right out of school, I started working in publicity for a comics company actually in Portland, Oregon, which is where I’m from, I just really loved PR, it was a mix for me of being able to still write, but also still be social. And those are two things that are really important to me. And so that’s what PR kind of became, I always thought I would just be a writer do journalism. That’s what my degree is in that type of thing. But PR just was a natural fit for me. So I was doing that for a long time work for different agencies around the country, my husband and I moved to the east coast for a couple years. Then back to Boise, Idaho, which is where I’ve lived now here for the past 10 years. You know, those places I’ve worked for agencies work for all kinds of amazing companies from huge, like Cirque du Soleil down to mom and pop stores and tourism. And when I had my daughter, who’s six now, I realized that I didn’t really want to be a senior account exec at that point, like I didn’t really want to be working this amount of time. So I decided to go off on my own. And I did my first course that was all about PR for tourism destinations, because that was my particular area of expertise. And I did exactly what all the marketing gurus told me to do. So I did ads, and I did webinars, and it was a complete flop. I did not do publicity. Even though I had been doing it at that point for over 10 years. I was like, well, no one’s talking about this. So I guess this isn’t how people do this work. So after I kind of had that fully flop and I would truly call that a lot of monies and time, you know spent into it, but I still believed in the course. I was like alright, how do I how do I figure this out? Like I’m going to do this my way. And so I started to get myself booked on a bunch of podcasts and started to do publicity work. And the difference that I saw in my launch was, I mean, it was just insane. Instead of me chasing people and paying for people I was having people seek me out. And I was having people come to me and say how can we hire you or how can we work with you? You know, or just by Just full on buying even though I’d never spoken to them before in my life. And that was just kind of the complete opposite to what I’d had before. And that’s not to say those other things aren’t important they are, it’s just a matter of all of those things need to work together. So anyways, that’s kind of what led me to what I do. Now, I saw the big difference that podcast had. And that’s why I just wanted to do for other entrepreneurs so that they knew that this is something they can do, and it should be a part of their marketing. Melissa Guller 5:29 Well, first of all, I love that you shared that you had this expertise. And then when you tried this new venture, you listen to the Guru’s and it just didn’t quite click. And I think that that’s important, because I had a similar experience when I started my own business where I had been in this business for years working behind the scenes for major companies and coarse graders. But something about going in fresh, and the best way, like you want to be open minded. But then I think there’s a real power in remembering like what you know, and what has worked. And I think often things that are being, you know, recommended by everyone, it doesn’t mean that they’re the best for you. So I think trusting your gut, and using what you know, is really important as a business owner Christina Lenkowski 6:05 100%. And I think that you and I have a very common story among many people that go into this online business world, we don’t listen to our gut at first. And we kind of do what we’re told to do to a certain extent, and then realize, like, oh, the power comes from me actually doing what I know how to do and what I feel comfortable doing. So anyways, that was my journey. Sounds like you had a little bit of that as well. And that’s kind of what led us to where we are now. Melissa Guller 6:33 Yeah, well, it’s worth it to because the trial and the error and the learning, I think is all really valuable, too. But we wouldn’t be where we are in our businesses without kind of going through all those different attempts. So we’re done? Christina Lenkowski 6:47 Yes, definitely. Well, Melissa Guller 6:49 when you followed all that advice, the ads, all of that, kind of in contrast to PR, I did want to get into this a little bit. So how is PR? How is being a podcast guest or putting yourself in front of all those audiences? How is that different from other forms of marketing, like social media? And frankly, the marketing that we hear talked about the most? Christina Lenkowski 7:10 Yeah, absolutely. I love that you asked this question, because I really like to make sure everyone’s on the same page with what publicity is and how it fits into your business. So your marketing is a pie. Let’s think about it that way, your favorite kind of pie, whatever that already sold, I love pie. For me, it’s peach, I’m just like, you want to put me in a peach pie in front of me like I’m all in. And there’s three parts of that pie, there’s earned, owned and paid. Okay, and so a lot of people just like you said, focus on the own, and the paid portions of the pie. And what I mean by that is paid is obviously things you pay for. So ads, or maybe an influencer campaign, if that’s the kind of business that you run that type of thing. Then there’s owned, which is the stuff you own your own podcast, your website, your social media channels, all that good stuff, you, you are able to control what comes out of those platforms. You know, it’s it’s what you say and what how you feel about something. And then the third part of that pie, that delicious, sweet pie is publicity. And publicity is the earned media. And that’s what I mean, when I say earned media. And that’s because no money is exchanged. I’m not paying to be on this podcast today. None of my clients are ever paying to be on the podcast that there are, I always like to make that very clear to people, because people ask me that a lot. You know, they’re like, well, how much does it cost to me? So I’m like, No, no, no, no, that’s not the type of work that I do. And that’s not what earned media is, this is you saying, I have value to your audience that I would like to exchange in exchange for you getting me in front of a new audience, getting me in front of some new people. And so that really at the core is what earned media is, is really you earning the opportunity to be in front of someone else with no payment, just with your expertise with your personality, with the value that you can bring to them. And it’s hard for people because it’s not a distinct ROI, like maybe an ad would be. Or sometimes they can say from like, their social media, like, well, I saw this many new followers when I did this, or XYZ, I totally get it. I’m a business owner, too. But the thing with PR is it is it’s like a tipping point. You got to be doing it. sustainability. You know, you got to be doing it over time over time. And it’s gonna eventually hit this point where now everybody knows who you are. They know what it is you do. You know, they know what a great job that you do for people and they want to learn more about your business, it’s going to open up opportunities that you never saw coming. Melissa Guller 9:42 I think that was explained really well with the different pieces of the pie. And in particular, earned versus owned media is something I talk about a lot in my programs. I feel like it’s a really important difference. And another way that I like to think about it is that with Instagram, let’s say you have 1000 followers. That’s an audience size. But if you go on even one podcast, and they have 1000 listeners, you’ve just doubled your audience because you’re putting yourself in front of a new audience. So I think social media definitely has a place for business. But I see it more as an opportunity to engage with people who already know about me, while earned media is a way for new people to learn about game. Christina Lenkowski 10:21 I love that you just said that, because I feel the exact same way about social, I’m not necessarily going and social looking for new people to follow me, that’s not really, I guess, a part of my marketing strategy that I have. But for people that do know me, or they hear me on something, and they start following me, that’s where I really get to start that nurturing, you know, for them to really see who I am, what I’m about, make sure they know of the products that I do have that you know, they might be able to take advantage of. But I 100% agree with, with everything that you just said, you know, it’s, it’s a different way to get in front of people. And people get really caught up in the numbers of stuff. Like they get very into the stats. And again, I get it. But my thing that I always stress with, like a new clients, or when people are asking me in a training is if a podcast host came to me, and it was the perfect audience. They were my ideal customer to a tee. And they’re like, well, I get about 100 downloads per episode. I have clients or people that I’ve worked with in the past that are like, Oh, well, I’m not gonna waste my time on a podcast that only has like 100 episodes or something on it. Excuse me. That’s 100 ideal people that are going to be listening to you hearing what you have to say, if someone called me up and said, Hey, Christina, I want you to speak at this event, you’re going to be in front of 100 of your ideal clients. I’d be like, oh, okay, booking that flight booking in that hotel room. That is the thing that you need to remember about this stuff is the math, the numbers don’t matter. It’s all about making sure that the audience is the right audience for you. So not getting hung up on on this other information. Because if I get in front of 100 people and five of those people convert. I mean, that’s amazing. Melissa Guller 12:02 I think that’s such a helpful visual, not only because even 50 people in a room, that’s 100%. And then let’s say two of them afterwards, they buy your $1,000 coaching package, they buy something from you that’s significant. I mean, this has become such an obvious no brainer. Yes. situation. And I think to just kind of ask the question, we’re already on how does guesting on somebody else’s podcast, help you then grow? Not just your business, but also your own podcast? Christina Lenkowski 12:31 Yes. And I know that that’s your audience is full of amazing podcasters Hello, you’re my people, I love you. Hey, without you, I would never job so appreciate. But you know, I think that the big the big thing that I want podcasters to remember is you’re doing the exact same thing that like I’m doing when I go on to start selling my you know, try selling a product or or whatever you’re upping that know like and trust factor like crazy, you’re going on to a show you’re talking about your story you’re taught you’re giving your real personality, what people really like is the fact that they feel like they get to know you, those are the best podcasts interviews, when the host and the guests really hit it off. And the audience can feel, oh, there’s some kind of camaraderie there, there’s something going on. And then they’re going to seek you out, they’re going to seek out your show, that’s what you can have is your call to action at the end of your interview is like, Hey, you can follow me by Well, it’s not going to be subscribing anymore, right by following my podcast on iTunes, or that type of thing. And I got to tell you that this works like Amy Porterfield, for instance. I mean, I assume most everybody knows who Amy Porterfield is. But if you don’t, she’s in a, you know, huge online business woman. And this is just an example of publicity helping her podcast. But she had an article printed in Forbes and this was in 2019. And from that, they saw a I think it was something like a 35% bump in her email subscribers, but then like a 42% bump in podcast downloads. And that was just from this one piece of publicity. She already has a huge amount of people listening to our podcast, subscribe to our E newsletter, this and that. And I’m not saying that you have to be at Forbes level and have to be these numbers and XYZ. But just the fact that getting out in a different way, in front of a new audience allowed a lot of people to start listening to her podcast that hadn’t been listening to it before. So that’s just the thing that I like for people to keep in mind is, this is a huge opportunity to get in front of new people. And I got to tell you, why if you already have a podcast, when you’re able to offer a podcast swap to another host that has an aligned audience, that is a big plus for them, too, because they want to get in front of your audience as well. Melissa Guller 14:51 Yeah, and let’s break that down a little bit. So can you tell us more about what that swap could look like? Christina Lenkowski 14:56 Yeah, absolutely. So when you’re trying to figure out podcasts you’re going to be on, you don’t want to be someone who’s your direct competitor, right? You don’t want to be on a podcast with someone that does the exact same kind of thing that you do. Or you’re trying to essentially sell to the same customer, right? Like you don’t want to be cannibalizing each other in that way. But you do you want to find people that have aligned businesses with what it is you do with customers that are interested in that particular area. So for instance, I’m coming here on Melissa’s show, she talks to podcasters. And I book people on podcasts, like I’m all about podcast, guests, we’re not competitors at all. But we have products that complement what each other does. And so that makes a lot of sense. I know it’s kind of meta for me to be on here talking about, you know, the strategy behind it being on different shows. But that’s kind of the main thing to remember here is that you want to be finding those audiences that are aligned, but it’s not a direct competitor of yours. Yeah, Melissa Guller 15:58 I mean, first, there’s a podcast about podcasting. Everything we do around here is meta. So that ship has sailed. I love what you said, too, with, it’s not about your expertise being the same. But I think the fact that we speak to the same people, we speak to solopreneurs people who maybe want to have their own side hustle online business one day, or they have ambition, and they want to get their message out there, like everyone in that group is both of our people. But what we do for those people is very different. And when you have that, then if you’re getting out there, and you’re pitching yourself as a guest to be on their podcast, maybe it makes sense for you to say, hey, and I’d love to have you on my podcast. And that’s where the suave comes in. Christina Lenkowski 16:38 Yes. And that’s a very good point that it isn’t what I lead with, when it comes to like pitching my clients or things like that. But it is something that if they’re open to it, and it seems like it would be a good swap, I do just kind of include more sort of the bottom of the pitch of like, Hey, you know, we’d also be interested in having you on here, but really any podcast host, just like your listeners worth their salt, they’re more interested in the topic and what what you know, information you can bring to their audience, as opposed to strictly just doing a swap Melissa Guller 17:07 makes total sense. Now, I’m already anticipating that a huge question listeners might have right now is, I don’t know if I’m really qualified to be a podcast guest. And I think this is probably a huge area where imposter syndrome is gonna kick in and hold us back some really incredible podcasters and online business owners from pitching themselves. So what would you say to those people who feel like maybe they aren’t qualified to be a guest on someone else’s podcast? Christina Lenkowski 17:32 I’m gonna say a few things to them. Because I love them, and I understand where they’re coming from. But the first thing that I kind of like to say is, what is the worst that can happen? What do you imagine is the worst thing that could happen? If you were to start pitching yourself on podcasts? Start landing on podcasts? And doing those interviews? Like what do you what do you think’s gonna happen? For some people that kind of just like you mentioned, they think things like, well, maybe I’m not enough of an you know, I’m not enough of an expert. There’s other people out there that do what I do, or whatever. Yeah, that’s true for basically all of us, there’s people that do the same stuff. You know, there’s people that pitch people to podcast, there’s people that help podcasts, you know, like, there, there are people out there that do all those things. So like, I’ve kind of been been hitting that, that’s up to you then to find the topics and the angles that you really feel alive about the things that you really feel competent, talking about. And the attitude that I always go into pitching with, and being a guest with his service over self promotion. And that should absolutely make you feel more comfortable when it comes to getting out there into the world, knowing that you’re not out there trying to just promote yourself trying to put yourself out there saying, Look at me, I’m amazing, XYZ. It’s all about what you can bring to their audience. I keep stressing their audience. But you guys, that is the number one that is the thing. That is what’s going to get a host to say yes to you. So the other thing that I say, what are the kind of the thing that I go off of when I ask people what’s the worst that can happen? They might give me a slew of answers this or that. But I always I always hit them with this is the worst that could happen. not putting yourself out there. Because that’s how I feel about it. I think that the worst thing that you could possibly do is to not get out there in front of other people, you’re gonna mess up what you say sometimes I do that done that many times, you know, stumble over my words this or that. It doesn’t bother people. It’s not It’s not something that everyone’s ever like, I’ve heard you on such and such and you mispronounce this word. How dare you. That’s not something that has ever happened in the course of me being on I’ve been on 10s and 10s and 10s of podcasts, interviews. So I truly think that the worst thing that could happen is not putting yourself out there getting in front of new people expecting opportunities to fall in your lap, because they don’t. You got to get out there. Make them put yourself out. You’re not Gonna get accepted by every podcast host, you send a pitch to trust me, I wish that’s how it works. But that is not the way that it works. So you just have to move on from there don’t take it as a personal rejection, it’s not, it’s just a matter of not being the right fit for their show at that time. I can’t even tell you right now that I have another gal that pitches with me. And we just heard back from a huge show. And we’ve been working on them for six months, probably figuring out how we’re going to get this guest on, if it’s the right fit this and that, if we’ve gotten discouraged and just stop reaching out to them, or stop, you know, doing whatever, we would have missed this opportunity for our client. So you just got to keep at it and don’t take it as personal rejection, if you don’t hear back or if you get a no, because it really doesn’t have anything to do with you. Yeah, I Melissa Guller 20:45 think that’s so important, because hearing noes are inevitable. So just kind of giving yourself that mindset going into it. Like the goal is not to get a 100% success rate. The goal is just to find the right fit, give a really you know personalized pitch, share why your topic would be a great fit for their audience really, you know, cater to the host that you’re talking to. And because we’re all podcast hosts around here, like imagine the dream pitch that you would want to get, like I’ve gotten pitches in the past where I read this pitch. And I feel relieved, because when I read this pitch, and it’s good, and it’s a perfect fit for my audience, I don’t have to go out there and find another guest. And they’ve done the heavy lifting to help me figure out exactly what topic could be a fit. And this, this is rare, right? Like I get a lot of, you know, bad to mediocre pitches and a couple of diamonds in the rough. Most people I feel like you don’t even know what my podcast is about. And that’s not a good first impression. But I as a host love being pitched. So I want to throw that out there. Because if any of you feel like oh gosh, it’s such a burden for me to pitch this person or they’re never gonna say yes, like, if you put in a little bit of work, and it’s the right person, you for the right show, like that host is going to feel grateful, they’re going to be excited. Christina Lenkowski 21:57 Yes, they are I, I just want to like I don’t know, take everything you just said write it up and put it in front of myself all the time, because it’s exactly how I feel, and exactly what I hear from almost every single podcast hosts. And I bet a ton of your audience can relate to that, which is most of the pitches I get are crap. You know, it’s someone that hasn’t listened to my show, or it’s not the right fit, like, you know, people that are like, I’ve only had women guests on and their pitch should be a man but like not even, which is fine. It’s not that I’m against it. But like not even mentioning like, I know that this isn’t like your normal gas that you typically have. But here’s the reasons why this might be a good fit or XYZ. That is really it you guys that is the secret is just pay attention and do some research ahead of time. I’m not saying you need to listen to 10 of their shows. You don’t need to be doing that that amount. But you do need to have a solid idea of who their audiences what they talk about, and do that heavy lifting for them, just like you said, I need to make it as easy as possible for a host to say yes, especially on behalf of my private clients. You know, I have a certain amount of bookings that I’m trying to get them a month. So I need to make sure that I can get all that in and get those yeses and stuff like that. So if I’m giving them everything they need, it’s gonna get a lot easier to get to that. Yes. I mean, I can’t even tell you, this isn’t like, Oh, this is amazing. It’s just it goes to show you how horrible most of the pitches are, is we have actually gotten clients from podcast hosts that we’ve pitched, because they’re like, you don’t understand how horrible almost all the pitches I get are when someone’s actually done the research, I can tell. And I think that that is the crux of what you need to remember is they know, they know Melissa Guller 23:43 exactly, and see that as an opportunity. Where if you even put in that amount of work to make your pitch really stand out. And to me, the number one takeaway here is like personalize it, the host should feel like you are speaking to their soul, like you know, what their show was about, you know who their audience is. And exactly, as you said, Christina, making it so easy to say yes, most people are not going to put in remotely that amount of work. No. So if you’re willing to do it, you will stand out and you will get booked. Christina Lenkowski 24:15 You will and you’ll see a much higher acceptance rate to So of those pitches that you send out. You know, I think some people get in this mindset of, well, I gotta send out 50 pitches or whatever. So I’m going to do that really fast and get all these out. And then they don’t really get any acceptances. Whereas if you were to instead maybe send out truthfully, let’s say eight really solid pitches over the course of a month and you get booked on three or four of those. Like that’s well worth that time and that effort. I’d much rather have you do that than spending the same amount or more sending out 50 cookie cutter pitches that no one’s gonna pay attention to. Melissa Guller 24:54 I think that’s a really good point for a lot of reasons. One is because sending 50 pitches at once is obviously very overwhelming, but also just spacing them out learning about if it’s working, if you’re getting responses, giving yourself a chance to maybe edit your approach, I think that’s important too. And actually, something I love that I’ve heard you say is that the goal of somebody’s podcast publicity work is to create sustainable visibility in their business. And that can only happen by pitching, you know, on a kind of regular basis. And I think that that phrase, sustainable visibility is great, because so many strategies out there focus on growing quickly, or doing something once. And experts recommend all these like new, shiny things to try all the time. But I think the reality of growth is that it’s more about finding something that works, and doing it consistently, almost like working out, like it’s not a secret about how to be healthy. It’s about developing a habit and doing it more over time. So I think the reminder about not just pitching once, but do it occasionally, or you know, kind of developing that routine is really great. Christina Lenkowski 25:58 It is and you know, I love you equate it to like working out, that is kind of what it’s like, like, you’re not just gonna do a one time or one month and expect to see this huge change, you know, it’s going to be the stuff that happens over time and over months. And I guarantee that if you were pitching yourself regularly and landing podcasts regularly, over the course of six months a year, you’re going to see a change in your business, there’s going to be a shift in your business, it is going to change opportunities are going to come to you that you never expected would come your way. And that’s what I always tell people I’m like, No, I can’t tell you what they are. Because I don’t know, it’s always gonna be like this, like, but someone will just write me and be like, you know, someone asked me to speak in their mastermind, because they heard me on XYZ, like, you know, stuff like that, that is just amazing for growing your business. But there are opportunities that you can’t really just like try and get. It’s just that now they’ve heard that person speak. And they’re like, oh, okay, yes, this is someone that would really drive with my audience, that type of thing. And it is all about that sustained visibility, or sometimes I call it sustained spotlight, which is like making sure that you’re getting yourself out there regularly, because over time, that’s where that momentum shift will happen. Melissa Guller 27:06 I like that sustained spotlight, it gave me a quite literal image of like small little lights shining onto the stage. And the more lights you have, the more people can see you. Christina Lenkowski 27:15 Yes, Melissa Guller 27:16 yeah, it’s just really I think, to me, this this whole conversation so far. And I kind of chuckled when you said, You can’t know what the opportunities are until they find Yeah, and I think so much of business is just like, you kind of have to just put yourself out there in different ways. Because you don’t know what will work, you don’t know which podcast you go on. That will lead to maybe it’s a huge client. But maybe it’s just another speaking opportunity. Maybe it’s a business partnership. Maybe it’s just like a legitimate friend, somebody that you meet who becomes an invaluable part of your life. And I think the more places you can just put yourself out there, it’ll just come back to you. And you won’t know exactly how or when, but you’re increasing your odds of having those big opportunities. By getting in front of these new audiences and new podcasts. Christina Lenkowski 27:58 100%, just like I kind of spoke about that service over self promotion. If you go into that regularly with that mindset, it will come back to you people will will recognize that you’re someone that provides a lot of value. And that is going to be huge. That’s something that audiences really resonate with. And as soon as we can be back in events, again, we’re all waiting for that day. That’s when a lot of those opportunities are going to arise to be speakers at events to be you know, but also still be doing online ones too. I just mean, all kinds of things are going to happen virtual stages and physical stages and stuff like that, that you might not have expected would come your way. Melissa Guller 28:36 And before we move into the next topic, I do want to ask, what do you think holds people back from sending the pitch? Because I think some people might say to us, oh, I don’t have the time, but I have a feeling it might be a little bit deeper than that. What do you think? Christina Lenkowski 28:50 I think it’s a little bit deeper than that. I i understand that pitching takes time. I do get that I appreciate that, you know, good solid pitching, like we’re talking about that does take time, you know, you might be averaging 20 to 30 minutes per pitch to be sending out a really well thought out a solid pitch pitch that you can be proud of. Let me put it that way. But I do think that people have real mindset stuff around. Am I good enough? Like we kind of talked about the beginning? Am I good enough to be a podcast? Guess? What if they actually say yes. Oh my gosh, what am I gonna do then? You know, that type of thing. And you spoke about it at the beginning. But guys, all I can really say is you just got to do it. The first podcast that you’re a guest on, you’re gonna be nervous a lot, you know, well, you’re gonna be nervous every time I won’t say that, that you know, I’m nervous before any podcast interview I do a little bit but you know, you just got to do it because action is what you get better everyone you do. I always kind of say to people like the first one I was like, it’s gonna be great and it’s gonna be fun, but it’s not going to be your one that you’re going to be like, this is my proudest, you know moment or anything like that in in my business because you’re gonna feel awkward and you know, you’re like, here I am. Again, what’s been recorded and XYZ, but it gets so much easier as you go. And for me now, like I get a little nervous, but really, I just think it’s fun. Like I get to connect with someone and have a conversation with them. And I gotta tell you, I understand that mindset of I’m not good enough, or they’re going to be disappointed when we actually record or something like that. But truthfully, if it’s a good host, they will engage you, they will ask the right questions, they want you to be comfortable, because they want to provide, again, that value to their audience. Melissa Guller 30:33 And I think that point that you made about if it’s your first one, it’ll be uncomfortable. so important. And I think listeners have probably heard me say the same thing about podcasting, your first episode is not going to sound like how you want it to. But the only way to get better is to continue putting out episodes. And the same is true of being a guest. And I will say, as a host, I of course, enjoy hosting my own podcast, but it is a different kind of fun to be a guest and to let somebody else ask me questions. And that’s where my expertise really gets to shine. Because as a host, I really, you know, put in a lot of work before the interview, to research my guests and to show them off and to talk about things that I’m really curious to learn about them. And to make sure that all of you listeners are just getting the very best. But you know, that means not every episode shows you off as much as others, which is totally fine. But being a guest, it’s just a totally different experience. And I think as a host, maybe you’re even a little bit more prepared than you might be giving yourself credit for. Because you’re already used to being on a microphone. And by the way, is like a quick pro tip, the fact that you have a microphone, you’re already a better podcast guest. So I just think that you’re more prepared than you think you are. Christina Lenkowski 31:40 You’re better than me, I don’t have just got my air pods in here. Melissa Guller 31:46 But I’m stopping the great value from coming. So don’t that night having a mic stop you from pitching yourself either. Christina Lenkowski 31:52 Very true. Very true. I love that you said that. I I also think what you what you just said is just it’s so important because I I love when clients come to me and they have their own podcast if people or a prospective client comes to me, and they have their own podcast, because just what you said, I’m like, oh, okay, they know how to talk. They’re not afraid to be in front of this microphone, dropping value, giving thoughts, stuff like that. And to me, that is a huge plus that Now that doesn’t mean that every client that I have has their own podcast, that’s not like a requirement. But it’s certainly a huge plus to me, when I know that they feel confident doing that work. And they also see the value of doing that work, you know, they have a pocket, they see what it’s done for their business. Melissa Guller 32:38 Makes perfect sense. Now, as somebody who sends pitches all the time and talks with backhoes all the time, I feel like that gives you a really keen insight into what hosts are actually looking for. So what kinds of topics are you seeing hosts gravitate toward right now? Christina Lenkowski 32:55 Great questions. So one thing that I’m really seeing a lot of right now, and not in all podcasts, but in many of them even bigger ones is that they’re kind of focusing more on the story, as opposed to the How to. So kind of wanting to get more into like how someone got to this point in their business, what were the you know, maybe obstacles in their life that they’ve overcome, I call these connection topics. So typically, when I pitch, here’s a protip, when I pitch my two or three topics, to any host, I’m giving them like usually one or two connection topics. So that’s something that’s like, you know, the audience might really resonate with talking about their story stuff that’s happened in their life that’s brought them to where they are now. And then I’ll also give maybe one like more how to type topic, unless I know a host is very set on one way or the other. But I kind of like to give them that option. And then that’s more so like a how to pitch yourself to podcast how to, you know, XYZ, or the, you know, the eight ways to the three mistakes, and you know, this and that. I just think that a lot of podcasts, they started out that way. And so now they’re kind of trying to shift a little bit into there. They’re like, we have done all these how tos. So now how do we get these stories that really resonate with the audience that make them be like, oh, wow, his story was amazing. I really want to learn more about him. That’s, you know, that’s cool that he does XYZ. But I loved hearing how he has lived through this, and that this is what inspired him to start his business and XYZ. Melissa Guller 34:32 I think that makes total sense. Because even as a listener, when you’re tuning in, sometimes I feel like maybe I’m not in a place to get out a pen and paper or maybe I’m cooking while I’m listening. And no matter what I’m doing, I always enjoy learning about people. And ultimately, we do business with people who we like. And so thinking about all of us and how we might want to be guests on other shows and provide value and service. Like sharing your own story is really powerful, especially because if somebody relates To you, and they see you having the success that you’re having even. And probably, especially if you’re only one step ahead of where they want to be, it just builds such a connection between you and that listener. And yes, you can also build trust through how tos and sharing expertise. But I think getting to know the person is also just a really great way to build a relationship with people. Christina Lenkowski 35:21 It’s what people really remember, they love listening to a how to as well, just to your point, you can absolutely connect with people over that. But for instance, I have a client of mine who’s a our Latino man. And he had been working for like he been in the C suite of these big Silicon Valley companies and this and that, and kind of his experience with discrimination that he had there, he talks about his discrimination that he felt, and why that led him to start his own business where he helps with sales of underprivileged communities, like he particularly focuses on women, you know, people of color LGBTQIA, like, that’s what he really focuses on coaching them and sales. And for him to tell his like, that’s what people dm him about all the time. That’s what people write him about all the time they listen to his story, they feel a connection to it. And they want to know more about him and they want like, that’s one thing he said about doing this podcast work is his engagement is just through the roof, like people hearing what his story is, and what he has to say, and how he’s doing business a little differently. That to them is huge, and something that they want to find out more about. Melissa Guller 36:34 And I love that you said it’s what he’s doing differently, or even just that it’s the story that’s memorable, because you don’t have to be experienced, to have a story. All you need is your perspective, like who you are right now is already enough, like you’re already ready to go be a guest, you don’t have to get to some expert level and unlock the ability to be a podcast guest. It’s just not true. So I really think that it’s so important what you just said and that the story and who you are, like, That’s such a great thing to share with an audience of any size. Christina Lenkowski 37:05 They they love it, you guys love it. And this is stuff they remember and even little comments I’ll make in podcast interviews, sometimes like I’m type one diabetic, for instance. So like, you know, sometimes I’ll I’ll just mention something about that, or starting a business with like a chronic illness type of thing. And man, people will write me about that, or DM me about that, or, or being the parent of a special needs child. If they hear something around that, you know, they’ll write me about that. And I love it. I mean, I love connecting with people, even if it has nothing to do with my business like building my business. But connecting with people and kind of having that human connection, especially during write all this quarantine and stuff is what we’re all looking for, has really made a huge difference. So I think just remembering that telling your story is powerful, and people do want to hear it. And to your point, you don’t need to be this certain level of expert, you don’t need to be like, Oh, well, I’ve done a TEDx state, you know, I’ve done a TED talk. And you know, this and that. I mean, that’s great for people that have done it, that’s awesome. But that’s not where you need to be, you just need to know that you feel comfortable talking about whatever your area of expertise is, and making sure that you know how to convey that message, provide that service to an audience. Melissa Guller 38:18 And as we start to wrap up, we’ve been talking about leading with value, and you just said, you know, sharing that message with an audience, and maybe something that we can leave people with that is a little bit tangible is how can you figure out what kinds of topics to pitch? How can you figure out? Not necessarily like, Oh, what is my story, but how do you figure out? What are those things that you could start putting in pitches to podcast hosts? Christina Lenkowski 38:40 When it comes to the how tos, the thing that I particularly think about is okay, who is your ideal customer? What is that call to action that you’re going to be sending them to? And what is a topic that bridges that gap. So where is your ideal customer right now to where they would be like, I gotta pick up that freebie, I gotta pick up that download whatever, because I want to get to that next step. So you know, I have certain prompts for that like a how to or the x ways to the three mistakes people are making that ended up with the idea. And it’s called sometimes the invisible bridge, but of getting them over that invisible bridge of where they are now to where you kind of need them to be. So that’s kind of something with the how tos when it comes to the non blinking on my own name for it. You know, the ways that you connect connection base there we go got there, need my coffee, second coffee happening to you know, those connection based topic ideas and story ideas and stuff like that. I don’t really have like a formula for that. But I just think that you have to think about what people have related to with you in your life. Maybe you’ve written a blog post about something you’ve done, maybe you posted something on social that’s talked about your journey that you’ve been through or things that have happened in your life that brought you to where you are today and doing the work that you’re doing today, a lot of us have backstories that brought us to the work that we do today. So just thinking about that, considering how people might relate to that. That’s kind of how I would come up with those those different story ideas, but just do some brainstorming. Melissa Guller 40:15 I think, what do people come to you about? What’s something that you could just talk about for an hour? Or like, what do you just spend your free time kind of learning more about or getting into? Like, what could you just nerd out about? And it would be so easy for you to chat about? Yeah, me? Those are good indicators to have topics that you could start thinking about? Christina Lenkowski 40:33 Yeah, definitely. Melissa Guller 40:35 Well, before we go, I feel like we’ve covered so much, is there any other advice that you would offer our podcasters about podcast guessing and kind of getting on that other side of the microphone, Christina Lenkowski 40:47 the thing that I would that I would just say in closing is that this is something that can really change your business, is something that will give you the social proof that you’re looking for the credibility that you’re looking for opportunities that may not have come your way, and you just need to be doing the work, I understand that sending out these pitches regularly is work. But when you land one, even if you’re getting on just one or two a month, month after month, again, you’re going to see a difference at the end of the year. Melissa Guller 41:18 A great reminder and a great note to end on. So before we go, I know you have some amazing resources for our listeners, which they can find at Wit & wire.com, slash Christina. I’ll put it in the show notes. But it’s c h, ri, STI na. And can you just tell us a little bit more about what they’re gonna find on that page? I know you have some free and some paid offerings I would love to share more about Christina Lenkowski 41:40 Yes, definitely. So I do have a free download on their free resource that is all about how to know if you’re ready to be a podcast guest. So that’s a checklist that’s there that they can go ahead and grab. I love to hear what people how they do on the checklist, like when people send me a little photos of it or things like like, Okay, I need to get this ready. But I’m all good on this, this, this is awesome. And then I have some other offers on there that that I that I have, I do offer like a one on one client service. That’s something that we’ve kind of talked about throughout this but where I actually pitch on behalf of clients of mine. So that’s something that there’s more information on there. And then I also have a membership and training that I do there’s a training I do every month called podcast pitching 101 and that’s all about how to send the dang PID like how to write them how to research how to send back good stuff. And then I have a membership called Hey, bitch, let’s pitch that is all about the accountability with pitching. You know, we spoke about it a little bit in this interview. But people have it a lot of times they have the tools to pitch they have the templates, they have the swipes the this and that. But they just can’t get themselves to hit send. And so the membership is all about working on the mindset working around, just getting that that work done so that you can be out in front of audiences regularly. Melissa Guller 42:58 Yeah, I love that. And I love that you have something I think for everybody on that page. So again, it’s Wit & wire.com slash Christina. I do hope that everybody checks it out. And where can they send you the results of their checklists? Where can they find you online? Yeah, you Christina Lenkowski 43:12 can find me online. I’m mainly on Instagram at publicity. x Kristina comm hopelessly by Christina calm, thought I was really clever now it was just the bane of my existence. But at publicity x Christina with the CH is where you can find me. And I would love to see those checklists. I just love to hear from you just say hi. And you heard me on the show. And you know, I really love meeting with new people and hearing about their businesses. Melissa Guller 43:36 Yeah, well, speaking of hearing about businesses, it has been a pleasure to hear about yours and all of this great advice that you’ve shared. So a huge thank you again for joining. Christina Lenkowski 43:44 Thank you for having me. Melissa Guller 43:49 Thank you so much for joining us this week. At Wit & Wire, we help online business owners start podcasting so they can build their authority and expand their audience and their opportunities. So if you haven’t already, you can check out our programs and services anytime at witandwire.com. You can also come hang out with me on Instagram @witandwire and make sure you hit the Follow button in this app in case you haven’t already subscribed to the show. Thank you again for joining me, Melissa Guller, in this episode of the Wit & Wire podcast. I’ll see you next time!

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