Wayne Hurlbert hosts the longest running show, Blog Business Success, on BlogTalkRadio and just recently, he celebrated 5 years on the network. You can listen to his 5 year anniversary show here with a special guest appearance from our very own, Alan Levy. I was so happy to catch up with him on his experiences and as a veteran host, he had some great advice and tips for his fellow hosts on the network. We are pleased to introduce you to host, Wayne Hurlbert.
What is your show about?
Wayne Hurlbert: My Blog Business Success show is one hour in length, every Tuesday and Thursday evening, and features interviews with guests on various business and economics related topics. I have guests on the show that discuss small business, sales and marketing, business management, personnel management, creativity and innovation, systems and processes, project management, search engine optimization, personal development, and the economy.
What inspired you to start a show on BlogTalkRadio?
WH: I had long been intrigued by the idea of internet radio and its tremendous potential for sharing ideas. When I was approached, just after the platform’s initial launch, to conduct an interview with BlogTalkRadio CEO, I decided to start a show. After examining the platform, I could see that BloGTalkRadio was the ideal system for me to launch a business show.
My goal with the show was to provide a platform and and opportunity for thought leaders in the business community to share ideas with listeners. I also wanted to give something back to the business world through a sharing of ideas from thought leaders, and from my own years of business experience. I decided that the interview style program would be the most effective, and provide the best means for both flexibility in the approach and freshness in the content and style.
What is your most memorable show to date?
WH: My most memorable show remains my very first show. At that time, I wasn’t entirely certain if my vision of an interview style format would be effective and have lasting appeal. My very first guest was my good friend and thought leader Toby Bloomberg, of the well known Diva Marketing Blog. We actually created the style of show that i still use today. We started the show with a traditional question and answer format, but as the show went along, we became more conversational in the approach. That conversation and direct interview blend is the format that I still use for the show today; five years later,
What do you like about hosting your show on the network?
WH: I like how easy and convenient it is to host a show on BlogTalkRadio. There is no software to download. All that is required is an internet connection and a telephone. Hosting a show doesn’t get much easier than that. I also like the support provided by the great staff at BlogTalkRadio, and by the help shared by the many tremendous BlogTalkRadio hosts. In many ways, the network operates like a family or a team, where the network, the hosts, and especially the listeners benefit from the atmosphere of sharing and assistance.
Looking back on your 5 years as a host, what advice would you give to new hosts that are getting started on the network?
WH: While it might seem obvious, a host must be prepared for the show, for any guests they may have, and for any callers into the show. If a host is interviewing someone in their show’s area of interest, it not only makes for a better show if the host is familiar with the guests and their work, it’s also a courtesy to the guests and the listeners. A host who develops a reputation within their area of interest as always being prepared, for asking great questions, and providing a rewarding experience for the listeners, will always have a steady supply of guests. That steady stream of guests will also include people who hold different views, opinions, and ideas from those of the host. A well prepared host can disagree with a guest’s ideas if the host is well prepared and understands the subject matter well.
All hosts should develop good and respected relationships with people within their show’s area of interest. That can include public relations professionals, thought leaders, guest staff people, publicists, and other hosts. These people can share their expertise, provide assistance with guests, and connect a host to the very biggest and the most interesting names in the host’s field. A host should always be courteous to everyone, respect others’ right to a different opinion, and be professional at all times.
Prepare a set of questions, prior to the show, to ask the guest during the show. Even if the guest doesn’t know the questions or received them in advance, the questions provide a framework to keep the show and guest conversation on track. A bit of structure keeps the show from drifting aimlessly and losing listeners as well. All hosts, regardless of their tenure on the network, should listen to other successful BlogTalkRadio shows, and how other hosts conduct their programs. There are many new and refreshing ideas being tried and used successfully by other hosts, and those concepts can be incorporated into other shows.
When the show is completed, a host should send a thank you email to the guest and any staff member, public relations representative, or publicist who helped facilitate the interview. Be certain to include a link to the show podcast and let everyone know that they can post that podcast link on their blogs and websites. Not everyone is aware that they can share their completed BlogTalkRadio interview on their blogs and sites. The thank you emails, along with being a courtesy, also strengthen relationships with everyone who helped make the episode a success.
We get a lot of questions from hosts about growing their listener base – what are some tactics that have worked for you?
WH: Once a person becomes a BlogTalkRadio host, they are always a marketer of their own show, other shows on the system, and the BlogTalkRadio platform. Through use of social media, including a blog, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+, a host can reach a very wide audience of contacts as both guests and listeners. A host should also remind the guest to help market their appearance on the show through their own social media network and blogs. Many guests are not aware that they can and should promote their own show appearances, and they are thrilled to be asked to help make their appearance a success. BlogTalkRadio offers a vast array of host promotional tools, including the valuable press release function. Getting a show covered by the mainstream media can create a surge of listeners and an entirely different level of credibility.
Thanks so much Wayne for your interview. We really appreciate your loyalty and support for the network. Congrats on 5 years with BlogTalkRadio!