3 interview techniques I learned from my favorite comedian with Tristan Pelligrino

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Episode Summary

Although there are a lot of different podcast formats, many podcasters start with an interview-style show. And it’s a good format for a company to use as their initial approach.

But even though many podcasters start with interviews, this doesn’t mean the format is easy. It takes work to refine your interviewing skills. And it requires a lot of practice to make your podcast interviews feel more like a natural conversation. 

In this episode of Recorded Content, our host Tristan Pelligrino shares where he seeks inspiration for interview-based podcast episodes and analyzes the work of comedian Anthony Jeselnik. Tristan also explains how to use either-or and follow-up questions. And he outlines why, as a podcast host, giving your perspective and sharing something personal helps the guest to do the same.

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Episode Highlights

How to Improve the Way You Ask Questions and Conduct Interviews

“One of my favorite things to do is to study how other people interview guests, and I like to go beyond podcasters. I like to analyze talk show hosts, documentarians, and even comedians. In this episode, I’m going to analyze one of my favorite comedians, Anthony Jeselnik. 

If you’re not familiar with Anthony, check him out on Netflix. He’s got a few specials out there, and he also has a podcast called The Jeselnik & Rosenthal Vanity Project.”

The Either-Or Question in a Podcast Interview

“In a podcast setting, I think an either-or question can work, but there’s one ingredient you need. It has to be polarizing — meaning it’s more interesting if you have the guests take a stance. 

So the setup to the question must present two very different options. You can’t let the guests just pick an answer in the middle.”

As a Host, You Can Add to the Quality of the Episode by Sharing Your Perspective

“One of the biggest challenges hosts run into is that they’re not able to provide their perspective on the show. It is one of the biggest complaints about a host and the guest episode format that we hear. The host gets caught in a situation where they’re always asking questions, and it becomes more of a transaction instead of a true conversation.”