Unpacking Interview Mastery With Nicole Christina, Zestful Aging

Too many podcasters fall into the trap of sticking to a formula, but your dedication to honing your skills sets you apart. Join us as we sit down with Nicole Christina, host of the Zestful Aging Podcast, a master podcast interviewer whose dedication to honing her craft is truly inspiring. Unlike many who settle into a routine, Nicole continuously elevates her interviewing skills, making each episode better than the last. In our conversation, she shares the moment she realized her sweet spot in interviewing, the techniques she uses to evoke deep emotional connections, and her disdain for overly media-trained guests who stick to rehearsed sound bites. Nicole’s passion for genuine, compelling conversations shines through, offering invaluable insights for anyone looking to enhance their podcasting prowess. Don’t miss this enlightening discussion!

Watch the episode here

 

Listen to the podcast here

 

Unpacking Interview Mastery With Nicole Christina, Zestful Aging

In this episode, I have Nicole Christina of Zestful Aging. It has everything you’d want in a title. It’s getting you excited about it. It’s getting you interested like, “I want that.” If you’re not there yet, maybe you want that. If you are already there, then you want to be in a place where it is already zestful. I love that title. I think it’s a great one.

Nicole Christina is a pro. The Zestful Aging Podcast is a multi-award winner. It is heard in 106 countries and it has more than 350 interviews. Nicole Christina’s guests are change-makers from a variety of disciplines like filmmakers, writers, advocates, poets, musicians, scientists, athletes, and entrepreneurs, many of whom are top experts in their fields. She calls herself the Terry Gross of Aging Well. The podcast is also broadcast on the public radio in Syracuse, New York.

Nicole is the author of the book Not Just Chatting: How to Become a Master Podcast Interviewer. That’s why I invited her to the show. She is a contributor to the online magazine Crunchy Tails – Smart Stories for Late Bloomers and her Zestful Aging is a whole lot of fun to listen to. She is such a professional interviewing model from a psychotherapist and clinician. You’re going to love this. There’s something about doing a great job with interviewing people. There’s an exchange of energy, and that’s what you’re going to see here with Nicole and me. I am so glad you’re going to witness this. Learn from Nicole Christina of Zestful Aging.

About Zestful Aging Podcast Host Nicole Christina
The Binge Factor | Nicole Christina | Interview MasteryZestful Aging Podcast is a multi-award winning interview show heard in 106 countries. More than 350 interviews strong, Nicole Christina’s guests are change makers from a variety of disciplines; filmmakers, writers, advocates, poets, musicians, scientists, athletes and entrepreneurs, many of whom are top experts in their fields.

She calls herself “the Terry Gross of aging well.” The podcast is also broadcast on Public Radio in Syracuse NY. Nicole is the author of the book “Not Just Chatting; How to Become a Master Podcast Interviewer”. She is a contributor to the online magazine Crunchy Tales–Smart Stories for Late Bloomers. Find out more at ZestfulAging.com.

Follow Nicole Christina on Social: LinkedIn | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Nicole, I’m so glad to talk to a master podcast interviewer. It’s so wonderful to have someone think of themselves that way because I think too often, there’s a lot of success and masterfulness that comes over many episodes of doing it, but we have to keep upping our skills on the other side of it. Not enough podcasters do that. They just set it, forget it, and do their model. They’re not improving those interview skills. I’ve listened to your first episode, and I listened to your 300th and something episode. There’s a big difference there and yet, interviewing is your profession.

I love interviewing, and I think I started to gain confidence when I interviewed these people who have been interviewed a lot. I kept getting the feedback, “That was the best interview I’ve ever had.” There were times when I got teary about that. I was like, “I think I found my sweet spot,” and it was so consistent. I thought, “I want to pay attention to what I’m doing and what I could do more of. I wanted to watch people who were the big names, so I paid attention to people who were doing talk shows.

I thought, “What are they doing that I think is great and evokes a connection? What are they doing that’s leaving money on the table?” By money, I mean emotional connection and more good stuff because everybody can talk on a superficial level. Many of our guests have done this so many times that it’s in the can for them. Our job is to get underneath the sound bites and there are ways to do it that are not difficult. You just have to learn it. It’s pretty straightforward once you know the secret formula.

I’m so glad you said that because my least favorite person to interview is someone who’s media-trained. I dislike it because they work so hard to work back to their sound bites that they’re not even consciously in the interview process. That’s what I found. They’re almost over-trained and it’s a terrible interview. Now, I yell at the TV when I’m watching a bad interview. It frustrates me. I’m like, “That’s a good question. Where’s the follow-up? What are you doing? It’s your job.” They had bad microphones during the pandemic. Those were the two pet peeves. The two things that got me yelling at the TV. “Microphones are cheap. Get a good one.”

Also, you can wear headphones.

 

The Binge Factor | Nicole Christina | Interview Mastery

 

Raising The Bar

Those are the three things that get me yelling at it, but you’re so right. Getting under that, it’s the long tail process of podcasting where you have to be on for much longer than your five-minute spot on media. That’s helped things, but not everybody’s comfortable in that so we have to be better interviewers. What kinds of things do you do that help you raise that bar?

Let me start at the way beginning and now, I’m going to sound like a therapist, so you’re going to have to cut me some slack. We have to establish safety and trust. The way we do that is unsexy and a little boring, but we need to come off as professional and like, “I have done this so many times. You are in good hands.” We don’t want to leave our guests saying, “Is this going to be live? How long?”

We want to come in and provide real structure like, “I totally got you.” Now, particularly for me, because they know I’m a therapist, I wanted to dispel any idea that I’m going to get inside their head. I’ve guessed a lot because I have an interesting niche in the therapy field. I’ve talked to some successful podcasters and they’re sending me these little emails and it’s not structured professionally.

I send a PDF and I go through everything. I talk about even down to Apple AirPods. “It doesn’t have a great mic. This is what you need.” My logo is on that and everything is polished. I want them to feel like they’re dealing with a pro. I think that provides safety and trust. What we get with that, besides being decent humans, is we allow them to be vulnerable because they feel like, “This person knows what they’re talking about.”

Now, I can open up a little bit more and that’s what gives us the juice because nobody wants more information. We want some kind of human connection and our audience to feel like, “I wish I could be in this conversation. It’s so juicy. It’s so real. It’s so compelling.” First of all, we want to set the stage. I think that’s important and then there are some other techniques. Some of them, you do so beautifully.

Nobody wants more information. People want human connection. Share on X

I just come to it like, “I’m meeting a new friend.” It’s goodwill. We’re collaborating to have a lovely conversation that helps both of us. We start there. I know this is so hackneyed and some of these words, I can’t even believe I’m using them because they’re so overused, but I am so naturally curious that I wouldn’t care if I was meeting this person at the bus stop. Once, I was taking a hike, and I was chatting with this person looking at a map. My friend said, “Did you know that guy?” I was like, “No,” but I like to meet people and find out about them. That’s just me.

Me too. That’s why we connect here. I can tell.

It’s like, “Of course, that’s going to going to happen.”

Curating Guests

Tom, my husband, always jokes that I’ve never read a book I didn’t like and I’ve never met a person I interviewed that I didn’t like. I was like, “Part of it is because I have good screening mechanisms,” and that’s what I want to ask you about next. I don’t pick up a book or invite someone to my show if I’m not already curious and interested. I already have natural screeners. What do you have in your process of curating guests?

I’ll tell you what my husband says, which is a little embarrassing. He says, “Did you make them cry,” which is not my intent, but when you’re talking about Zestful Aging, I’m of the age where life has kicked you in the butt a few times. Now, we’re talking about resilience, people do get tearful. It can be an emotional topic. What do I do? It’s exactly what you said. There are millions of wonderful guests. Only bring people on your show that you care about because you can’t fake it. There are some things I wish I would do more, like the financial aspect of aging. I have people on just because they have an interesting little hyper niche.

However, just going, “Let’s talk about finances and your future,” is not me. I’m much more about, “You’re going to San Quentin to help these aging inmates by teaching them hospice skills.” That’s what I want to hear about. I’m a clinical social worker. I like things that are off the mainstream and that are humanitarian. I can tell you about some extreme examples of guests I’ve had at some point that give you, “That’s what I’m looking for.” I know what I’m looking for. Unfortunately, because I love interviewing so much, we talked about this, and there are a lot of people who are interested in me.

You got a little bit of a backlog.

I say to people, “Please contact me in six months,” knowing full well that’s not even going to be enough time.”

Finding Guests

Finding those guests, when someone’s about to start a podcast or early on their podcast, part of it is when they don’t dial into what they’re most interested in and what their audience is most interested in, I think that’s where it falls apart most and you’ve definitely done that. You know what you’re looking for and what you’re providing to your audience. You’re very clear on that. How do you then decide, “This person’s worthy?” Where do you go find them?

They find me now. I didn’t know this when I started, but this is all the rage now talking about aging well. I just happened to find myself in a really hot subject matter right now. I don’t do that anymore. I’ve been doing this for six years. It hasn’t always been this way, but one of my little techniques, and maybe everybody does this, but if I’m interviewing a guest who I think is interesting and well-connected, I will say to them, “Who do you know that would be a great guest?”

The Binge Factor | Nicole Christina | Interview Mastery
Interview Mastery: If I’m interviewing a guest who I think is interesting and well-connected, I will say to them, “Who do you know that would be a great guest?”

 

People will send me documents that are like, “You got to interview this person. She works at the UN on aging. Here’s her email. You have to interview this person. She discovered this. Here’s her email.” Maybe this is obvious. I don’t know, but what I would do then is I’d have an email and say, “Susie Johnson sent me,” and then your email gets opened.

Sometimes, people will say, “I can’t be on your podcast because I’m on Oprah,” or something. That’s fine, but normally they will respond. This happened to me. One says, “I’m not your guy, but I’ll tell you who is. The guy who does this is my colleague. He’s a professor at the University of Washington. Here’s the email,” and then I say, “So and so sent me,” and you’re in.

We don’t often ask enough from our own connections. We get into the moment of the interview and to the end of it and we don’t say, “Who would be great for me next?” That’s the perfect time to be asking for that. I’m glad you do that. You mentioned and left us a little teasing with some weird guests and stories. If I don’t ask it, my audience should be yelling at me.

I have so many that are so beautiful and I feel like they’re my children. “Who do you like best?” People love to hear the story and they joke to me about it. I talked to you about it at Podfest. I had played tennis for the national senior games and I knew I was going to be in Florida. I was made aware of a woman in her 60s who removed Burmese pythons from the Everglades. These things have eaten all of the mammals and they’re invasive. They’re apex predators so literally, they have changed the environment.

A lot of documentaries have been made about this woman. She’s on Nature on PBS. They had a Japanese film crew come. She’s this petite woman who doesn’t need to work because her husband is a big-time attorney in Miami. She goes out every night at midnight because these guys don’t hang around during the day. She pulls them out of the glades. I said, “Donna Kalil, I am going to be in Fort Lauderdale. Can I come ride shotgun with you?” She said, “Yeah, of course. I’ll have a volunteer with me.”

I showed up. She has a truck that’s all decked out in Python skin and she does this. People think, “She’s such a badass, and she is because she goes into these places where there are also rocks, alligators, and other things. With her hands, she scoops them out. If you want to see a great, crazy picture, go on Facebook and look up Donna Kalil. She’s a heroine in that she’s not doing this to be like, “Look at me. I have this documentary.” She grew up in Florida, where predators are taking over glades. They’re damaging the ecosystem. People always like that one. I still can’t believe I did it.

I’d love that one. I have a thing about snakes.

Most people do. She said to me, “The volunteer didn’t show up. You may have to hold the tail.” I was like, “I didn’t sign up for that.” I just found it so fascinating. We’re sitting and looking. I’m up in the back of her pickup truck with this huge spotlight, looking. I got bruised because it’s bouncy. We saw a lot of wildlife. We didn’t see any pythons that day because they had been mating and I guess they were taking a little bit of a break. How would I have ever done that had I not been a podcaster? I felt so appreciative and in awe of her letting me go along.

The other one comes to mind and I’ll try to get through it without getting choked up, I interviewed a woman who’s a humanitarian attorney. She’s no longer practicing. She’s in the Netherlands and she has done all kinds of work in Sarajevo and Sudan. She wrote a book on young women who were resistance fighters in World War II. They were Dutch women, teenagers and they would lure the Nazi officers into the park and shoot them.

The book is called Seducing and Killing Nazis. This is Sophie Poldermans. She writes this book. We had a great interview, and then I decided years later that I was going to Amsterdam because I had to go to the Anne Frank House. I said, “Sophie, are you going to be in town?” She said, “Not only am I going to be in town, but I just published a new book on these women.” One of them is named Hannie and she’s buried near Sophie’s home.

I said, “Can we meet up? I’m going to interview you.” I interviewed Sophie at the cemetery where this woman was executed three weeks before the war was over and the cemetery is all resistance fighters. I found myself with my little Shure mic that plugs into my iPhone, which is very excellent if anybody wants to do remote interviews, talking to her at the grave of this woman who lured Nazis as a teenager and shot them. Where are you going from there?

My parents used to live in The Hague, right down the street from the Peace Palace. I know how beautiful that is and how historic it is. You being there and doing your interview is giving me chills because it must have been so amazing to be able to do that. I think too often podcasters aren’t brave enough to go do a live if it’s not where you do all of your episodes. I love that you interchange between the two.

I don’t have tons of lives, but I’ll tell you what I’m going to do and it’s going to drive my friends crazy. We’re walking on a part of the Camino, which is a pilgrimage in Spain in May, with three of my tennis friends and I am bringing that little microphone because it’s excellent. I am going to interview the heck out of every cool person I see who’s doing something that I think my listeners would appreciate. We all want to have adventures and feel alive and vibrant. I feel like I can share this with people and inspire them to say, “I’m 65, but I’m not dead. I want to have adventures, too.” That’s what I bring.

That’s so interesting for your audience to come along and I think that this is something that is a thread through all of your 350-plus episodes that you’ve got that you have the unique ability to find an interesting subject and be brave about talking about it and inviting that person on it. I think that’s the energy of your entire show, Zestful Aging. It’s this braveness of saying, “I’m good with this. This is the next adventure.”

Your show is like that as well. Every time we get into a different subject, you’ve covered some subjects that everybody’s covering, like you. One of the ones I listened to was on weight loss drugs, but you covered it from the perspective of what it’s like when you’re over 50 and taking the weight loss drugs, which I haven’t heard yet anywhere. You have a very interesting perspective on it.

Following-Up

I wonder if part of what you’re picking up, and thank you so much for that compliment, is as a therapist, I’ve heard everything. I can sit with a lot of discomfort and that’s what I noticed. Not to call out David Letterman, but he was interviewing someone. I think it was Kanye. I wouldn’t want to have to do that, but there were these emotional nuggets that were put out, and then David Letterman would say, “Let me tell you about my son. That happened to me.”

I was like, “What are you doing?” This is something you said when we were meeting. You have to do the follow-up. The devil is in the details. Don’t just take what they’re saying at face value. I surprised myself because I’ve been doing this for a long time. I have been a therapist for 32 years. I pretty much know what people are going to say. I’m wrong 80% of the time.

You have to do the follow-up. The devil is in the details. Don't just take what people are saying at face value. Share on X

I love that when it surprises you, right?

I’m like, “I didn’t see that coming,” but I will see things that are not genius. They’re like, “What do you mean by that or can you reflect more on that? How did you do that or say more? What surprised you?” That’s where the gold is because even if they’re not rehearsed on shows or whatever, it makes them say, “Let me get you some new information. Let me be thoughtful about that.” You’re going beneath these sound bites. I am not here to offer sound bites to my audience. They can have that anywhere. I want to offer a compelling, sensitive and thoughtful conversation that they feel like they wish they could contribute to.

As I mentioned before about how your show is, this is what I’m always looking for. I call it the binge factor because that’s the name of my show. I call it that, but that thing makes somebody want to come back to you again and again, and that is what is unique about you. In this particular way, it is getting to that insightful level of conversation with someone that we are not always skilled in.

You’re absolutely right. David Letterman was not very skilled in that. I personally think it’s because his ego was in the way of him. I think he could do it, but there was ego there. That’s just my opinion on that. I’m not a professional, but that’s what I think it was. However, you look at that and say in order to get to that insightfulness, you have to have that natural curiosity that you have, but you’re looking for that understanding of, “How do I apply this to my Zestful Aging mission, my messaging?”

You’re looking for where that insight lies, not just insightful to have somebody dig deep. It’s not just for that. It’s to get to that point of, “What is your audience interested in?” We talked about this at the beginning before we started, but you’re always with this high-quality content focus that you’re thinking about how your audience is receiving, who you’re bringing on, and what you’re asking them. I’m sure that has evolved over time in your show.

Even-Hovering Attention

Let me give you an expression that I bet you’ve never heard of because it’s so esoteric. This is what we used to learn when I was in training to be a therapist. It’s even hovering attention. It’s where exactly what you’re saying is you’re listening for, like, “I want my audience to be interested. Where am I going? Where have I been? Where am I now?” You cannot be scrolling on Facebook or whatever.

I heard your episode about going video. Sometimes, when I am interviewing, my eyes are closed because I’m concentrating so hard on being both in the moment, appreciating where we came from, and what little half step or where I want to guide them to fulfill the submission of, “How are you going to help us age more zestfully?” To me, there are so many levels going on that it takes full con concentration. People batch interviews. I’m like, “I don’t know what kind of breakfast and protein you’re eating, but I cannot do that because it’s a full-body experience for me.”

It’s for me, too. We used to try to batch record because we did twenty episodes a month on my very first podcast on 3D printing. Twenty episodes a month and only four of those were interviews. The rest were conversations between my partner and me, so we thought we could batch them, but I couldn’t get through more than three without completely being drained.

That is because if you’re all in it with the attention span required to be present, future-thinking, and past-thinking, that is not an easy place to be. It’s a very different energy level. I love that you bring that, and I’m very sure that’s the therapist in you who is bringing that thoroughness and consideration to it. However, I think it adds so much to your show in that high-quality attention that you’re looking to bring. It’s coming through in everything you do.

Thank you. It means a lot to me. There are many episodes where I have to gather myself because I interviewed these two women and they were in their 50s. They’re climate scientists and I had to interview them in the North Pole, and they got stuck up there in COVID. Do you know this story?

I have heard about them getting stuck up there.

There is no electricity or internet. Their hut is the size of literally a walk-in closet. I’m talking to them through satellites, so it sounds like, “Houston, are you?” We had finished and wrapped up and I sat there and I got tearful. I thought, “How do I get to do this?” To me, it’s why I exist.

It’s the intangible of podcasting that I wish everyone would be able to tap into and it’s not everyone’s forte. You can very clearly see that, and I can hear that when I listen to people’s shows, not everyone gets that intangibleness from it that feeds my soul. That’s how I look at it.

That’s the best way to say it.

Sponsors And Avoiding The ROI Path

People are always looking for a return on investment and we talked a little bit about this idea beforehand as well. You have an ad sponsor-rich niche. Who doesn’t want to advertise something about aging? You’ve chosen not to go down that path. Let’s talk a little bit about why you’re being very careful about that path.

Let me tell you what my goals are first, and maybe that would help. I’m also streamed on public radio. To me, that was like I died and went to heaven on that one, and then I want to get my own show on public radio or public TV. I have a little bit of a different goal. I work as a clinical social worker. I’m a therapist. I have a specialty in eating disorders in midlife. I have no shortage of interest in that. I’ve trained a lot for it.

I do work in that realm. I went through a period of time where sponsors were contacting me. A lot of the stuff was anti-aging. I’m like, “I’m sorry. I am not about that.” Other people are, but I’m not interested and I’m so protective of my audience. I’m afraid that I want to be super snobby about anything that comes on my show because you know what it’s like. It is lovely and hard work. You have to have some grit in my way of thinking to keep going every single episode.

Sometimes, I don’t want to. I’m like, “I kind of want to go and hang out with my girlfriends and knit, do some travel,” or whatever. If you’ve got a podcast, you have to do it. I was thinking about, “How do I do this?” I went to Podfest. Everyone’s about monetizing and I thought, “What do I have to do to monetize this and how would it look?” What came to me, my weird epiphany as I was flying back from Podfest was, “I want to do less, not more.”

Also, to quote our friend Alex Sanfilippo, I did a little training for him, I want to have such a high-quality podcast that it stands on its own and it’s the cream that rises to the crop. Maybe that will never happen, but I feel like my job is to offer something to people that they can’t get anywhere else. I put my heart into it, and I think that whatever’s going to come, it’s going to come by way of collaboration because I have people that I’m collaborating with all the time. I think there’s a mystery there. Maybe this goes against your business sense, and people are probably saying, “It’s woo-woo. No, thanks,” but I’m in a space where I’m like, “Let’s see what happens.”

My job is to offer something to people that they can't get anywhere else. Share on X

I have people in my local community who are interested in the podcast. I feel like there’s going to be something that comes up that I could never have anticipated. My job is to keep doing what I’m doing. If I had a sponsor that I believed in and that I thought was valuable, I would consider it, but for $35 or whatever they pay you, I don’t want to be doing something like, “Make your skin look nicer with this anti-aging cream.” That’s just not me.

I can totally feel that. I am not a fan. My whole business is called Podetize. Monetize and podcast together, but I am not a fan of that type of monetization where you’re giving away your audience. I think it has diminishing returns. I think when you go for the quick buck, you lose in the long run.

That’s interesting, and it’s not that much money.

No. It’s not worth it, and that’s what we don’t understand and that we’re so desperate to make. I think this is psychological. You’re the expert here so maybe you could answer what this is. I don’t want to be seen as wasting my money on something that’s not making me money. They want to look to offset that and break even so that they can justify doing something that they love or that they’re enjoying.

Most of my clients are solopreneurs. Who are you justifying their money spent to? You don’t have to and that’s where I think the mindset of it comes in. It’s like, “Why are we focused?” I love that your focus is on that audience first but that you also have a mission. You know where it wants to go and that requires a high quality level. You don’t get on National Public Radio without it being valuable.

Also, I anticipated you saying, “What would you recommend?” I’m going to tell you. This is my new nickname, dog with a bone. I’m advertising in one of my local towns because everyone here is successful. I noticed that this woman had an account on this other market, so I contacted her. She’s like, “Let me hook you up.” I am a dog with a bone and I don’t give up maybe when I should, but I’ve just found that if you ask people say, “Yeah, sure.” That’s been my model. It’s all about goodwill. It’s not about taking, but it feels very mutual and very respectful and that’s how I want to operate.

Writing The Book

That’s what I love about the podcast space. It does feel very respectful and mutual. It’s like we’re all in it together to grow this beautiful ecosystem and the ones who are working on it deserve respect. That’s why I love that. You could have written a book about all those funny and interesting stories of people you’ve interviewed around the topic of Zestful Aging, but you chose to write the book Not Just Chatting: How to Become a Master Podcast Interviewer. Tell me a little bit about why you made that choice.

The Binge Factor | Nicole Christina | Interview Mastery
Not Just Chatting: How to Become a Master Podcast Interviewer

You know how in podcasting and probably in other places too, it’s like, “You’ve got this material. How do you want to use it in all of the ways?” I was like, “I’ve been a therapist for a long time. I know how to help people feel at ease. I know how to be supportive. I know how to help them talk about hard stuff. Why don’t I use what I know and offer that to the podcasting community?”

The other thing that I will say, and maybe you’re like, “No kidding,” but I give this book out. When I went to Podfest, I started giving them out. They’re small paperbacks and they don’t cost me that much, but I found that people appreciate it. They ask you to sign it. I feel like it’s a great way to start a relationship if that’s the stuff they’re interested in. I was on a panel at Podfest. We were talking about some different stuff, and I said, “If anyone wants a book, I’m giving it away.”

There was a line. “They say free,” or whatever. Hopefully, they thought it’d be valuable and I find it to be such a great conversation starter and a goodwill-builder. That’s how I met Alex. I saw his stuff and I’m like, “I’m sending this guy a book down to Florida.” That’s how I got to know him, be on his show, and all of that stuff.

Also, that’s how we met on PodMatch.

It is a brilliant and elegant solution.

It’s a great solution. What I like about it is that I get to meet someone in an interesting and different niche. I’m pretty picky. It serves us up. It’s like 6 or 7 a day and I probably pick 3 or 4 a month. I’m picky because I’m looking for somebody with an interesting podcast area I’ve never discussed before or got an interesting perspective I haven’t heard before.

That’s what I’m looking for. I use it as that creative like, “Who have I missed that I haven’t even considered or that hasn’t come across my desk before?” That’s how I use it. It is wonderful that you put this book out because I think your perspective on being a person who’s asked questions for a living helps all of us up our game. That is essential to this idea of being curious and continually learning. Podcasting is inherently flexible and my favorite part is that our audience comes along with us.

We’re at a different day and time than they were when they first started listening to you 300-plus episodes ago. They’re here and they’re waiting for that next thing. What are they ready for? Maybe your audience is ready to start putting their voice out there so they want to follow in your podcast footsteps. It happens all the time.

The other thing I’m doing just for fun and I’ve heard you talk about it on your show, is guesting is the thing. Everybody wants to guest. I’ve guested a lot because I have this kind of obscure specialty and I realize that people need help prepping for guesting. I don’t mean in the way maybe a lot of people do. I’m not about anxiety. I’m talking about how you show up in a way where you feel confident but also relaxed. What does it feel like to have an exchange of ideas?

The Binge Factor | Nicole Christina | Interview Mastery
Interview Mastery: People need help prepping for guesting. They need to show up in a way where they feel confident but also relaxed.

 

This isn’t about me telling you everything I know about whatever I do. It’s about us feeling both energized at the end of the conversation. I thought, “That’s a fun thing,” to prep people for interviews in a way that is a bit of a different perspective. A lot of people get nervous. I’m like, “Let’s talk about anxiety reduction before you go on. What’s that going to look like?”

I love that idea because sometimes you don’t think about that idea like, “I got to work more on myself first.” I keep going back to that David Letterman conversation. Nicole Christina, Zestful Aging is one of the most wonderful podcasts I’ve come across in a long time and I listen to a lot of podcasts. I have now recommended it to about 5 or 6 other people because, if it’s not obvious, I am in your age demographic. I get that and thank goodness for my beautiful genetics, but this niche, this conversation needs to be happening. This is the beautiful thing about our podcasting ecosystem. There’s a space for everything and Zestful Aging is such a great perspective and show. Thank you, Nicole Christina.

Thank you so much. It’s been an absolute delight.

I think it takes a lot to keep going with interviewing when you hit 350 episodes. When everything about your life is interviewing, it is not the easiest thing to do. Meeting guests, getting new stories, pulling that out, and not being bored with the process is a challenge. Nicole is a master at that. It’s her forte. It’s the way she’s been and everything she does in her professional life has always been about asking great questions and building up to this.

However, I think there’s so much in podcast interviews that is getting worse and worse in the rest of the marketplace that it’s refreshing to see someone who is completely energized by the process along the way. As you’re listening to a show and checking this out, think that this isn’t just an experience built up over 367 episodes at the time we recorded this or something like that. It’s experience that builds up with it, but it is an energetic part of who she is and how she does that. How can you build that for yourself?

If you are feeling like you just want to master this podcast interviewing process, don’t forget to pick up her book, Not Just Chatting: How to Become a Master Podcast Interviewer. That is such an important part of where we’re going to go in the future. Anyone who can keep that up can sustain a podcast for a long period of time. That’s what I want you to realize when listening to the show, reading your book, and checking out our interview here. Thank you for staying with us.

As always, I’m looking for great podcasters out there. If you have anyone you can suggest, someone you’ve been a guest on, someone you have interviewed, someone that you know you want me to hear about, or maybe you’d like me to know about you, make sure to reach out to me at PodcastersUnited.org where you can check out where we’ve put my show and where we’ve donated my show. Go check that out and apply to be on the show. I’d love to talk with you soon. Thanks, everyone. I’ll be back next time with another bingeable podcast.

 

Important Links

 

Love the show? Subscribe, rate, review, and share!

Join the Binge Factor community today:

Picture of Tracy Hazzard

Tracy Hazzard

Tracy Hazzard is a former Authority Magazine and Inc. Magazine Columnist on disruptive innovation, and host of 5 top-ranked podcasts including: The Binge Factor and Feed Your Brand–one of CIO’s Top 26 Entrepreneur Podcasts. She is the co-founder of Podetize, the largest podcast post-production company in the U.S. As a content, product, and influence strategist for networks, corporations, marketing agencies, entrepreneurs, publications, speakers, authors & experts, Tracy influences and casts branded content with $2 Billion worth of innovation around the world. Her marketing methods and AI-integrated platform, provides businesses of all sizes a system to spread their authentic voices from video to podcast to blog, growing an engaged audience and growing valuable digital authority.
Scroll to Top