Use of a podcast is that you get to hear, you know, hey, listen, I've fallen on my face many times before I got to this place. And that's what we want to hear. And that's what we connect with as human beings.
Welcome to your intended message, the perfect place for leaders and promising professionals who want to convey the intended message for greater success. Every week, we interview experts who address the challenges and best practices to deliver your message effectively. That might be one to one, one to few, or one to many, and perhaps the most important conversation, one to sell. I'm your host, George Torok. My guest today is Brandy Whalen. Here's three facts that I think you should know. But brandy one, she is a mother to three boys, three healthy boys. And two. She's a big fan of morning journaling, and meditation. What a great way to start the day. And three, she's passionate about facilitating meaningful conversation. We should have a delightful conversation today. Brandy, welcome to your intended message.
George, thank you so much for having me on the show. I'm really excited to chat with you.
Delighted to be talking with you, especially because you are co founder of the podcast booking agency called kit caster. And for people who are unfamiliar with podcasting agency, simply you book guest on podcast.
Yes, yes. That simply. So when our clients want to be on podcasts to get their message out into the world, we are we play the conduit between our client and then the podcast, we think would be a good fit for their particular message.
Why? Well, who would want to be on a podcast as a guest? And why?
Well, I think that anyone and everybody should be on a podcast, I tell our clients that everyone has a story to share with the world. It's just sometimes people have a little bit more of a hard time finding their story. But for us, our clients are typically C level executives. So they are CEOs CFOs, head of human resource CTOs. They're looking to get in front of audiences to really showcase their expertise in whatever whatever area they they tend to land.
The sea level people who, who want to appear on pasta podcasts or do appear in podcasts? Are they delivering a corporate message? Or is it more of a personal message?
Yeah, that's a really that's a really good question, George. And, you know, I love the the name of your podcast, your intended message, because I feel like I that is what I preach every single day. And really, what I tell our clients is that there is not a single podcast out there that I think would want to have you on as a guest. So you can pitch your product or service. That would be a terrible listen. So, you know, I for us, what we tell our clients is that podcast provide this unique opportunity for potential customers, customers, employees, to really get a good look at who it is that's behind the curtain of whatever company you're out there representing. And maybe bring in your personal always bring in your personal story. But then we then your professional journey as well. No, it doesn't have to be a sales pitch. You don't have to run through your corporate talking points. Those will come naturally if you do it right. And you're weaving the conversation together in a more organic way.
I'm wondering, with all the with all the Oh, terrible fake news out on social media is the podcast, perhaps podcasting? Is that maybe an answer to the abuse of social media?
Well, I think it is, and my co founder absolutely thinks that it is he actually abandoned social media altogether. And he was like, podcasting is it. This is where we see real people. And I do believe that I think podcasting lives in this really sweet medium of allowing people to be who they are and to be a little bit vulnerable. I think in the world of social media, we just get to see what people want us to see right all the vague Patience and all the good things that are happening. And I think the long form use of a podcast is that you get to hear, you know, hey, listen, I've fallen on my face many times before I got to this place. And that's what we want to hear. And that's what we connect with as human beings.
For fallen on my face, yeah, I've done that a lot.
We all have we all have.
And there's something charming about that.
I think there absolutely is. Yeah, I you know, I think that being able to pull yourself back up after failure, repeat failures, is something really, I think that that is really what we've all what we strive for. And I think those are the stories throughout history that we look for. And in all of everything that we read and who we aspire to be. It's that
I suppose that if we want to get to know someone better, whether it's a business colleague, or whether it's someone we work for the company worked for a supplier a client, then probably the best way to do that is probably sit down and have a coffee conversation or chat over a meal even. And, and I'm guessing that podcasting allows more people to come to the coffee?
It sure does. Yeah, especially in a time, you know, we're pretty new, we're two years old caster is. And so we we really started to ramp up during a time where people were very isolated. So finding different ways that we could, that we could still bring people together and have meaningful conversations while we are trapped in our home, that was really important to us. And I think really important to a lot of our clients, is this, being able to still have that connectivity.
Your clients when they come to you? What are their concerns? And what what challenges do you help them overcome?
Well, they come to us with a variety of different concerns. We have the more seasoned CEOs or founders that are really good at getting out there, they probably have done some public speaking. But what they're not used to is tapping into that personal side, they're really good at hitting those talking points, talking about what their company does, how they do it, who they do it for, but bringing in some of that that personal story, those vulnerabilities, that's a really big challenge for them. So that's something that we work with our more seasoned entrepreneurs, C level executives, and then for our up and coming C level executives are entrepreneurs, it's really putting it all together. Because they have a lot of different things that they can they can kind of lean on. But it's, it's putting it together. It's packaging it together so that the delivery is something that really hooks in a listener, keeps them engaged and keeps them wanting more throughout an interview.
I'm guessing, based on what you're saying that that podcast listeners, listeners probably don't want to hear about KPIs or ROI eyes or leveraged buyouts while they might be interested in leveraged buyout, there might be a good story in there. But they don't they don't want to hear that typical corporate speak.
And they really don't I mean, you can, they definitely want to hear about those aspects. But I'm always telling my clients to start with some pain points. That's what we relate to know, especially if you've been in a particular field for a long time and you're able to point to your, your current your past experience, like I've been in this customer service world forever. When I first started, we did things this way, I saw that there were a lot of missteps are different ways that we can improve the process. So you know, in my next job, I did it differently, but I knew there's still room for improvement and kind of build upon it. It's a story. And then what you're doing today, you know, so then I figured out how to do this. Everything that's been missing in the Customer Service journey is what we do with our current organization. And like maybe you throw in, maybe you do throw in some ROI numbers and like some really shocking stats like that's really that's really intriguing, but make make sure that you bundled those stats and those numbers in a story.
Some CEOs might be reluctant to appear in a podcast because the lawyers might be hovering in the background and telling them what not to say? Or what they should say or use this line, or or we want to see all the questions ahead of time. What do you say to those, those people that have those concerns to to get past that?
So we actually, shockingly, we have not encountered that much. I think that a lot of times when people are looking to engage with us they understand that podcasts are they're a little different than a traditional media interview. And yes, sometimes you'll get the questions ahead of time, but sometimes you won't. And it's okay. And I always tell our clients if they're in a highly regulated industry, and there's certain areas that they can't talk about, or maybe they're going through an acquisition, like, there's all sorts of various reasons why there could be some off, you know, off limits topics that we don't want to discuss. And it's just, it's okay to say like, you know, what, I'm actually not able to chat about that. But here's something that I can give you, you know, just making sure that you have something in your back pocket, if something comes up that's very sensitive, to say it like, it's a really sensitive, that's a sensitive topic in our organization, I can't address that. But what I can tell you is this. So you know, being prepared that that that will likely happen, especially if you're in a situation where, you know, there are people telling you that there's certain things that you can't talk about, but always make sure that you have something that you can give.
Now, I heard a powerful phrase that use their transition phrase, that then that I wonder if everyone else caught and that was, well, that's something that's sensitive, and I can't talk about, but here's what I can talk about. And I've heard people say, but what if I don't know the answer? Well, so there are techniques to deal with that. Do you provide those type of tips and coaching to your clients before they start appearing on podcast?
Absolutely, yeah, yeah. And I love by George, that the transition statements, I actually talk about that a lot. Because you're, you're unique, and that you come from the world of radio, and you specialize in helping people really deliver their message. Not every podcast host comes from the world of radio, and or journalism, or any part of being a good interviewer. So, you know, a lot of times, it's just a byproduct of what they're doing day in and day out. And maybe they're trying to promote their, their service their brand. So that is actually a big thing that I talk to clients about is that you have to be respectful. The podcast host is managing the conversation. But sometimes it's okay to kind of help them out. And, and that could require you to jump in or, or maybe kind of help bring them back to a conversation that it seemed to be going really well. But then all of a sudden, it veered off a different direction. So that is something that we prep our clients for. And really what I talked about in the beginning is really crafting that that message because a lot of podcasts when you first come on, there's they open up a question with tell us about yourself. That's a really tough question. For a lot of people. It's like, how far back do you want me to go? Childhood college career? I don't know where to go with this. So you know, really kind of developing that, that message where you get to kind of tie everything together that to come out of the gate strong.
And it's funny, you mentioned that yeah, that that opening question Tell us about yourself. Is is a tough question for anyone, whether they're being interviewed on a podcast or if they're being interviewed for a job. I always thought that that was a silly and a lazy question. However, however, it also can be a brilliant question, because the person answering the question needs to be ready for that question. And they need to read translate the question, and here's advice I gave to a gave to someone recently, when they're, they wanted help for answering questions. But what if they asked, What if I don't understand the question? What if I don't like? Well just translate the question translated into one that you want to answer. So if you're asking me about, well, then here's you know, and just move from there. And it's funny that you mentioned Yeah, my when I started my radio show, I made a list of questions ahead of time. And in I read the first question, didn't listen to the answer, read the second question. Listen to the answer. And I was terrible. And fortunately, I got better and then one time and here's it's not always a good idea for the for the the guests to get the questions ahead of time because what they do is they focus on the questions, okay, great, and they don't show up. They don't, they're not there. They're just they're focused on a question. And, and I made the mistake one time of, of showing my guests the questions I had. And I opened the interview. And then he just spoke for the rest of the half hour. He I never got a chance to say anything, because he just went from one question to the next.
Oh, my goodness, how what did you did you just let up? Did you just let it go?
I did. I wasn't experienced enough to to jump in. But yeah, that you so you learn from those mistakes, painful, painful moments. When, when you're when someone comes to you, and they say, Brandy a bit in the been in the workforce. So we've got we're at this place in our business, I'd like to put a little bit more personality on the business. And I'd like to be a guest on podcast. How do you decide where they should? Who's who they should speak to what's right, because I can't even think of how many podcasts are around anymore. There's are we talking million?
We are talking we're talking actually 2.6 million. That's all a lot of shows. That's a lot. And it is really important that when we bring a client on, that we're really dialing into what it is, well, first of all, what's our goal? Everyone's goal is going to be different. Is it brand awareness, is it recruiting, we're in a time where people are having a really big challenge with finding talent. And podcasts are actually a really great way to to demonstrate what your culture is, what you value in your team and, and who you are as a human being and maybe attract people to come work for you because they care about you and what you're doing. So there's all different ways of using podcasts to your benefit. And so in the beginning, it's just determining what is your goal? And then from there, what is your expertise? What are the different things that you can talk about, both professionally and personally. And usually people have about three strong categories and in both arenas. So that's really how we start to zero in on the podcasts that we think would be a good fit. And then it's it's a matter of looking at the show notes and we do our research, we have to really dig in and take a look at the podcasts because we certainly don't want to set our clients up for a situation that's just it's just not a good fit for them. Or the host. So that's that's really important to us to make, make sure that we have that good fit.
What about what about an organization, creating a podcast creating their own podcasts, perhaps to interview their own team or perhaps interview their customers or the marketplace? Depending on where is that? Is that a useful idea?
I think it absolutely is a useful idea. As you know, though, George, it takes a lot of work to put a podcast together. So we have a lot of clients that will start going on podcasts. And then they're like, Oh, this is so fun. I want to start my own podcasts. And it's about how much time you have. Or team if you don't if you don't have the time. Do you have the team? Are you going to outsources? Do you have the resources for that? Do you want it to be interview based? Do you what what kind of podcasts are you looking for? Again? What are your goals? I definitely think it is it is worth exploring for all organizations because it can do wonders when it comes to lead gen. Getting to Know Your staff, even in a really intimate way I think is is important and letting the world kind of know who it is that they're working with. So yes, I definitely think it is worth pursuing and exploring. But you just have to be prepared for the amount of work that's involved.
And I can certainly account for the amount of work.
Yes, and you don't you do such a great job. And that's the thing too, is that if you have to put the time and energy like there's no point in creating a podcast that just isn't isn't quality or doesn't match your brand quality. So you have to make sure that it that you're putting the time and care into it.
What are some of the faux pas some of the mistakes that you warn people to avoid either as guests or as a host?
So guessing it is really easy for people I think you've probably experienced this a time or two that they start to go on a tangent and maybe in a in a direction that had nothing to do with the question that was asked and it just keeps going. So I call it the seven second stray. Were you it, you can have a perfectly great interview, and then all of a sudden, things just start unraveling. And a lot of times it's nerves. Sometimes it's comfort, because you're in, you know, 15 minutes talking to someone, you're getting more comfortable you're settling in, and then it just goes. So that is something that I tell people to always be mindful of, is pay attention to the question. Yes, relax, because that's important, it is a conversation. But don't get too relaxed, that you start to go off and tell stories that maybe could unravel everything. So just being mindful of that. And for hosts, I think sometimes hosts get excited, and they will maybe package five questions into one question. And it happens all the time. And just to kind of slow down, make a note, if you if you have five questions, ask one. And then make a note, whatever you need to do on your, on the side to make sure that you address the things you still want to cover. Just make a note of it, you'll get to it.
Good advice, and reminder, a reminder to everyone out there it it's it's a human to human conversation. And it doesn't have to be perfect. And there are times when minds will wander for whatever reason. Whatever reason as something that's an idea just came to them. And they've gone off on that track. And it's okay to say, you know, what? Could you ask, could you ask that question again? I'm not sure I caught it all. And that's okay. Perfectly. Okay.
Yeah. Do you have any other but when you're working with your clients, or podcast guests that come on, is there any other strategies because that is actually something that we encounter a lot for? Kind of when your mind strays, and you start off on a tangent?
It's to be in the moment? And it could be say, you know, I was thinking about that last idea. And I didn't hear the question. So So let, let me, first of all, let me see if I can tack on something to that last idea. But and tell me the next question again, please. So just go there. So, you know, or like what you said made me think and I was still thinking about that what you were asking and I missed? I missed the question, please come back. And and from a guest point of view, it's okay. If the host is going to mess up once in a while, sometimes they lose their point, or they word a question poorly. And that's just because they haven't thought it through yet. And it's okay to say it, here's a phrase I recommend to when you're a guest. If you don't like the question, or it's confused, are complicated, you can respond with? Well, the relevant question is, and you pose the question, and you answer it, and the host, in most cases will appreciate that you bailed them out. And that you you steered it, the host doesn't the host isn't an interrogator. They're not they're saying answer the question. No, they want to have a conversation that people will get something useful to. And if you can, if you didn't answer it exactly the way they set it up, because they said a poorly. That's okay.
Yeah, yeah, I agree. And I tell the clients, my clients that all the time as the host aren't looking for, to catch you. It's not a gotcha moment. They're just looking to have an engaging conversation. So anytime that you can help each other out, I think it's really important and calling it out, again, back to vulnerabilities. We all make mistakes. I love that George is like, Hey, I was thinking about something else. Because I got really excited about the thing that we were talking about earlier. You know, give that question to me again.
Yeah. And it could be something you know, you know, that question. I've been asked a question before, and you got me thinking about something that I that I'm, I want to get working on and where were we because I want to get working on that idea. And that's okay to show that that spontaneity. And in fact that makes it more memorable and more enjoyable for the listeners. What other tips or ideas do you have for delivering the message online? And and in particular, it just two part question. In particular, how to prepare for the interview.
Yeah, well, that is dependent on the person and I have come to realize that with working with various clients, there are some that I had, do you know, just not to write down your answers but just have some thoughts right like this is, you know, the podcast you're going on. First of all, have a listen to the podcast before you go on it. Even if you don't have 60 minutes to tune into an entire episode. just skim through it and have a listen to how some of the questions are presented. Especially the end. I feel like there's usually some surprise question that's thrown I met you, what's your favorite quote? What's your favorite book, things that you just need to be prepared for. And then jot some notes down some things that you want to make sure that you highlight during the interview. And you can put those as stickies on your computer so that you remember, but maybe you're more of a visual person. And this is something that I've realized working with people. And when we're talking about that, that question of tell us about yourself. And they have a really hard time putting it together in a way that sounds cohesive. They need they need visual prompts. So we make a storyboard that they can kind of pin behind their computer, so that they have this, like they even draw it out. No, they don't have to be artists, they just write little sketch, it could be stick figures, whatever it is, it's just memory prompts. So it will walk you through the things that you think are really important to highlight when you're asked that question or questions that are kind of more open ended, that you need to jump in and, and really fill in the personal professional reading of the stories.
That is a is a very practical technique to create a storyboard to remind you have the ideas because, yeah, I'm one of those visual people too. I, you know, I, I leave things in certain places to remind me to do something. And that works better than writing a to do list. Yes. So that that that is a very practical idea. What are what are some of the mistakes that that you've seen people make in reaching out to podcast hosts?
Hmm. Well, that is really, that is the tricky part. And that's what we, that's what we do at Kitt caster all day, every day. And it's, it's hard. And you certainly we tell our clients this all the time, you can do this yourself. But you just have to be mindful of what it is that podcast hosts want. And what they want is a good conversation. And they want to bring something to their listeners that maybe hasn't been brought to them before. So thinking about that, I think we all kind of get trapped it just, you know, it's, we have, we can easily have conversations many of us can. But when you go to write an email that you're maybe pitching yourself as a guest on a show, it's we kind of turn into this like, like you're selling yourself, you know, Oh, I'm so and so. And I do this and I do this and I do this. That's not what a podcast host wants to hear. They want to hear that you have listened to them. Hey, I've listened to your show before. Really great questions. Love this interview? I think I would be I think we could have a really great conversation about X, Y and Z. What do you think about that?
And that is that is the perfect way to approach a host and in my experience, and in the the the approaches that are me, me. I I did I am I was okay. It's gonna not doesn't sound like it's gonna be a conversation at all.
Exactly. Unless it says, you know, I started Apple, which, you know, something is so, so great and grand that you're like, okay, yeah, that that seems like I should be tuning in and listening to this. You know, like, I think there's, there's times that maybe maybe throwing around who you are and what you what you do and where you been is, is valid, but still at the end of the day, you need to have a conversation. That's what we're selling. Mm.
Yes. Yeah. If if Elon Musk contacts me and he just talks about himself, I'm okay with Elon.
Exactly, exactly. You want to say no, no.
No, Brandy brandy. For those who are interested to to learn more about what you do how you help people become a guest on podcast, they can find information at your site, and that is kit cast kit caster kit or the K kit caster.com. You can find the link in the description below, Brandi and wrapping up. If there were one, two or three pieces of advice you could give to a C suite leader who who's thinking about appearing on podcasts? What would might be those one, two or three pieces of advice you'd give him to be more successful?
I'd say working on your story. It's very different. I think a lot of C suite executives have experience giving talks. And that is I think that there's some overlap that comes into play in the world of podcasts. But again, It's a two way conversation you are going to be if you allow yourself to be open and vulnerable, I think it will serve you very well. But being able to kind of bring together like what you've done in your past, via a story, wrap it into what you're doing today. And what your vision is for the future, I think is a really powerful way to to come and approach podcasting the world of podcasting. You know, but using again, stories, whether it be maybe stories about your clients stories about you stories about staff. That's that's where we as humans, we connect, we have always connected through stories.
Powerful advice. My guest today is Brandy Whalen, reminding you that podcasting is a way for you to convey your human message. If you liked what you heard, remember to like, comment and share this podcast? Come back every week for more practical insights to help you deliver your intended message. I'm your host, George Torok