7 Video Podcast Interview Formats To Inspire Your Next Podcast Episode

7 Video Podcast Interview Formats To Inspire Your Next

video podcast interview formatsInterview Based Podcasts are not just fun to produce, but also engaging to listen and easier to promote. Video Podcast Interviews or even just Audio Podcast Interviews are great ways to not just produce podcasts, but also other forms of content.

In this article I want to share 7 of my favorite types of video interviews that I’ve drawn inspiration from, what I like about each of them and how you could leverage them in your shows.

While I do talk about video podcast interviews a lot, most of these formats can play a big role in shaping your audio podcast interviews too.

Lookout for 3 Key Factors in Video Podcast Interviews

I also will score each of the format (not the show itself!) based on three factors I’ve seen in great interviews – Entertainment, Information and Conversation Depth. The scoring is based on how much of each of these three factors you can achieve if you adopt that format or style for your podcast.

Wow, that’s a mouthful!

These numbers do matter.

The number of podcasts are growing at a brisk pace. There are over 630,000 of them! But according to Blubrry, out of the 200,000 podcasts that were launched in the last 2 years, over half have ‘podfaded’.

A good number of these ‘podfaded’ shows are interview podcasts. With this article, I hope to inspire you to think and improvise your show so you can drive more listener engagement and grow listeners.

But I don’t have a podcast!.

No matter where you are in your podcasting journey – just starting a podcast or already running a podcast, this article will hopefully leave you thinking deeper about your podcast interviews.

Videos make interviews immersive. But…

Not sure if it’s because I grew up in the television age as opposed to the radio age. I always found interviews on television more engaging and interesting. But all of that changed when I started listening to the FM radio late night talk shows.

All of a sudden, interviews were interleaved with songs from my favorite bands. There was a connection happening between me, the presenter and the guest – we all loved the Eagles (or Jon Bon Jovi or whatever).

Ever since, I’ve loved radio talk shows. But something happened on TV in the 2005.

1. The Colbert Report.

It was The Colbert Report where Stephen Colbert, a comedian, played a fictional character in which he described himself as a “well-intentioned, poorly informed high-status idiot”.

Now that changed the way I looked at interview based shows as it brought in some fun, satire and learning together.

But there are more reasons why I’d like to draw inspiration from The Colbert Report format.

Addressing a ‘named audience’ (which he called ‘Colbert Nation’) and how he researched his topic (on politics) and shrewdly covered them with satire while trying to tell the truth.

In the end, the show really is an entertainment show (without compromising on the main content) that does a clever job of making us think. Here’s an example of how Stephen Colbert does that:

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

The Colbert Report Format Summary

Entertainment

5/5 Points

Information

3/5 Points

Conversational Depth

3/5 Points

2. Cat-on-the-Wall.

I’m not sure if this is coincidence, but the example I have here is also run by a comedian….a stand-up comedian to be specific. I’m referring to The Joe Rogan Experience. Of course there are many others who do such interviews – Tim Ferriss, Marc Maron for example.

If you’ve seen one of these interviews (I’m sure a lot of you have seen the Elon Musk interview!), they are typically conversations Joe Rogan has with a guest sitting across the table.

Just like a cat on the wall.

The guest or the host is not looking at a camera, but the camera is placed just to record this conversation the two people are having. Just like a cat sitting on a wall.

Here’s the one that Joe Rogan did with Elon Musk.

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

Cat-on-the-Wall Format Summary

Entertainment

4.5/5 Points

Information

5/5 Points

Conversational Depth

5/5 Points

Deeper conversations.

These are long in-depth conversations that mostly go on for over an hour or even two or more. The guest and the host are lost in the conversation.

As a listener, this gives the listener a feeling like they are a part of the conversation. Yes, sometimes it can seem to get a little too personal (like when you saw Elon Musk smoking weed during an interview). But that’s a part of the experience.

And experience reminds me of the next format.

3. The Carpool Karaoke

James Corden started this on his Late Late Show with James Corden where he invites famous musical guests to sing along to their songs with him whilst he is driving on a planned route usually in Los Angeles.

Like they say with audio or video, the listener or the viewer needs to see something different every few seconds. This show does quiet that with the filming of the interview inside a car, as the host James Corden drives around talking to his guest.

It’s a little heavy on production, but if you put that aside for a moment you’ll see the element of fun, drama and of course the music play a key role in this show.

Here’s one James Corden did with George Michael.

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

The Carpool Karaoke Format Summary

Entertainment

5/5 Points

Information

3.5/5 Points

Conversational Depth

3/5 Points

4. The Coffee Table

What would a conversation be if you had it sipping a cuppa coffee? Caffeine-powered, of course!

Coffee conversations are an amazing way to interview people, and a show that comes to my mind is Koffee with Karan. It’s a show hosted by Karan Johar, a film producer and director, where he interviews (mostly) Bollywood movie stars.

I like these formats, but they can quickly get noisy if the host doesn’t have that experience. The host typically does not have a set of questions on paper, and lets curiosity drive the interview. Here’s an interview from the Koffee with Karan show:

Koffee with Karan

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

The Colbert Report Format Summary

Entertainment

5/5 Points

Information

4/5 Points

Conversational Depth

4/5 Points

If the depth of conversation is something you focus on a lot, the next three interview formats might interest you more.

5. The Charlie Rose Show

Despite Charlie Rose’s reputation being on line with the recent accusations, his career as a journalist and a television host, in-particular is noteworthy. In the context of interviewing, I like the Charlie Rose show.

The conversations on the show are highly researched. The show format allows for focused conversations for both the guest and the listener.

Speaking to Makers.

When asked about how he chooses his interviewees, Charlie says “You want to listen to and hear from people who have written a book, made a movie, fought a cause, and achieved a remarkable mark in their personal, professional or athletic life.”

That really resonates with me. People who’ve done something and achieved something will have stories to tell, experiences to share, strong opinions and convictions. When you throw a question at someone like that, you are bound to get conversations from the heart.

Watch this interview where Charlie Rose interviews Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

The Charlie Rose Show Format Summary

Entertainment

4/5 Points

Information

4.5/5 Points

Conversational Depth

4.5/5 Points

6. Mixergy Style Show

Mixergy is an interview podcast where the host Andrew Warner interviews entrepreneurs and people who are busy building startups. Listeners of the show are either entrepreneurs themselves or those who are looking to start a business.

No matter what you are, Andrew’s hard-hitting style of interviewing and his overall preparedness can certainly be helpful in learning something useful from the interviews.

Guests who get on Mixergy come extremely prepared too. To get a glimpse of what happens when you aren’t prepared to be on Mixergy.

I really love Andrew’s way of getting what he wants from his guest. One can argue with his style of interview (which is quite intimidating, if you aren’t prepared), but it’s definitely worth learning.

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

The Mixergy Style Format Summary

Entertainment

4.5/5 Points

Information

5/5 Points

Conversational Depth

5/5 Points

7. The Guy Raz Style

I’m sure you’ve heard of TED. If you have, you might’ve heard of the TED Radio Hour, a podcast where the host, Guy Raz from NPR, tries to bridge conversations from across multiple TED Talks. He also interviews others and weaves in a narrative on that topic.

Yes, this format is an odd one – it’s not about video interviews. In his other show, How I Built This, Guy Raz does interviews with well known entrepreneurs who built big brands that we know of. These interviews are more narratives than just questions and answers.

Guy uses the power of storytelling and soundscaping to construct powerful narratives around the interview. Listen to this one where Guy Raz interviews Haim Saban, the creator of Power Rangers.

Let’s now look at how they stand when it gets to the three key factors we consider in this article.

The Colbert Report Format Summary

Entertainment

5/5 Points

Information

4.5/5 Points

Conversational Depth

5/5 Points

Entertainment: 5/5

Information: 4.5/5

Conversation Depth: 5/5

Yes, but shooting video podcast interviews are…

I can read your mind. And you are not wrong in thinking so. I thought of it the same way too, but a lot has changed ever since I gave it a try. That said, I’m not here to convince you to try doing video podcasts, but to impress upon you how important it is to do good podcast interviews.

Interview-based podcasts, like I described in the beginning, are fun for the listener, you and the guest. It’s a win-win-win, when done right and when you ask the right questions.

But just incase you do want to explore video podcasts, do read about my Minimum Viable Video Podcast (MVVP) setup. No matter what, I hope this article inspired you to think about your podcast interviews differently and deeper.

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