Everyone has specific, helpful, experience-based content to share. They just don’t know it yet.
As a podcast host, you have the ability to draw unique perspectives and insights out of your guests. No script needed! All you need is what we like to call POV discovery and the What/Why/How framework (and maybe a little practice).
Today we’re going to cover…
- How a POV question works (and what the heck it is)
- How to get into journalist mode using the What/Why/How framework
- Pitfalls to look out for
- Templates to get you started
Let’s take a closer look.
What is a POV question?
A POV question (aka, Point of View) is an inquiry meant to draw a distinct perspective from a guest. Because, let’s face it, we’re all sick of hearing about high-level ideas like ABM and market disruption.
The thing is, everyone has a unique perspective when it comes to high-level topics. There’s good content there, but your guest just might not know it yet.
POV questions help mine that great content from guests in an unscripted fashion.
Effective POV Questions
We’ve spent a lot of time refining our POV discovery sessions with our flagship show, B2B Growth. So, we have a pretty good idea of what questions do and don’t draw out a unique POV from guests.
Here are some of our favorites:
- What is a commonly held belief that you passionately disagree with?
- What should everyone stop doing?
- What should everyone start doing?
- What’s something everyone is trying to do that you’ve discovered a better method for?
- What’s a failure you’ve experienced that you think many are headed for?
- What’s a resource/tool/channel people aren’t using correctly or to its fullest?
- What’s a recent thing you tried in your company that you were surprised by the result of?
- What’s something you or your team have recently achieved that you’re really proud of?
Now, when you’re asking these questions of your guest, make sure they know it’s in relation to their industry and/or specialization.
For example, if you were interviewing a VP of Marketing, you’d ask…
What is a commonly held belief in marketing that you passionately disagree with?
Better yet, if you know they specialize in SEM, ask…
What is a commonly held belief about SEM that you passionately disagree with?
The more POV discoveries you do, the more sub-categories (niches) come out. And the more granular you can get, the better.
Essentially, you can start doing discoveries with almost no knowledge of the field your show focuses on. Eventually, you’ll learn about the high-level topic and all of its niches.
When to Ask POV Questions
During your pre-call (before you start the actual interview) is when you should be doing the POV discovery. Depending on the quality of the guest’s answers, you’ll be asking the POV questions in the actual interview as well.
In other words, if a guest’s unique perspective is uncovered by you asking what they think everyone in their industry should stop doing, then you’ll ask that question again in the interview.
By doing POV discovery, you’re warming the guest up for the interview and making them feel more comfortable. The awesome thing about POV discovery is that it helps guests develop their answers without sounding like they’re reading from a script.
The What/Why/How Framework
Once you start the interview, think of yourself as a journalist getting to the core of your guest’s POV. Because of the POV discovery, you and your guest understand what questions are going to be asked, so no one is caught off-guard.
How to Use the Framework
When asking follow-up questions to your guest’s initial answer, try to move away from the WHAT and WHY, and get to the HOW. That’s what listeners really want to hear about.
[RELATED: Here are 14 ways to grow your podcast audience.]
Here are some journalistic questions we use to guide the guest towards their WHY.
Pitfalls to Look Out For
As you move through the interview, there are a few slip-up’s you’ll want to avoid.
Focusing on theory: Focus on actionability instead. A lot of guests will live in theory, talk in circles, or just focus on their own experience. Ask questions that make your guest tell the listener what to do and how to start.
Expanding upon the irrelevant: You might be tempted to ask follow-up questions after everything your guest says — DON’T. If they’re rambling on about their cat’s gastric bypass surgery, move the conversation on.
Trying too hard to sound smart: You represent the listener. If the guest brings up anything potentially unfamiliar to you or your audience, respond with: “For anyone less familiar, what did you mean by _______.” Works every time.
Being too timid to interrupt: It doesn’t matter if you’re interviewing GaryVee or your brother — don’t be afraid to politely interject if they get on a rant. Ask something like, “What’s a recent example of that?” or “How did that affect your overall strategy?”
Focusing on the product: This is a big one for B2Bers. Discussing the guest’s product is an easy route to take in an interview, but the thing is, your listeners don’t give a 💩. Use the What/Why/How framework to evolve the conversation.
We want this framework to be as easy to use as possible. It does take some practice to get used to, but here are a few templates you can use to start off on the right foot.
Drawing Great Content From Your Guests
Your guests have unique POVs — they just need help accessing them. Using POV discovery and the What/Why/How framework will help uncover the content your listeners want without sounding like you’re reading from a teleprompter.
Keep these takeaways top-of-mind:
- Use POV discovery before the interview to prepare yourself and your guest
- Think of yourself as a journalist
- Get as granular as possible
It might take a little practice to nail down. Use the templates and, eventually, it’ll feel like second nature!