Interview questions

85 Best Podcast Interview Questions to Ask [2024]

Asking your guests engaging questions is pivotal to the success of interview podcasts and helps differentiate your content from other shows.

This guide breaks down how to come up with great questions so you can nail your interviews and keep listeners hooked.

Tips for asking great podcast interview questions

A little preparation goes a long way toward an engaging conversation. Follow these interview tips to get the most out of each interview-style podcast.

Have a goal and be curious

Knowing your goals for your episode can help you figure out the type of questions you should ask.

A little time spent on this step can go a long way toward keeping the conversation productive and avoiding awkward silences.

Ask yourself:

  • What is the primary goal of this episode?
  • How can my guest help my listeners solve a problem?
  • What is the one thing I want to accomplish or convey?

Do some research

It's up to you how much research you want to do on your guest beforehand.

If your podcast listeners are beginners or new to your podcast topic, doing too much research might lead you to ask in-depth questions that are a bit above their head. For introductory podcasts, the best questions are probably a bit more basic.

If this is your podcast audience's area of expertise, go deeper:

  • Review their Instagram, TikTok, or other social media profiles
  • Read through their work history on LinkedIn
  • Find your guest's previous podcast interviews on apps Apple Podcasts or Listen Notes

Once you’re done with your research, write your podcast intro and your show notes.

Remember the 5 Ws

If you aren't a natural question-asker, you can always go back to who, what, when, where, and why.

If you're interviewing a podcaster, it could look like this:

  • Who: "Can you tell us a little about yourself and what you do?"
  • What: "What do you do in the podcasting space?"
  • When: "How long did it take to grow your show to its current size?"
  • Why: "Why did you decide to switch your career?"

In this case, "where" isn't relevant. You can choose which of the five Ws fit your topic and target audience best.

Ask clarifying questions

Ask plenty of clarifying questions to get more information out of your guest and keep the conversation natural.

Clarifying questions can be:

  • What do you mean by that?
  • Can you give an example?
  • How did that experience affect the trajectory of your life?

Stay flexible

A great interview requires some structure but also allows for spontaneity.

Depending on your guest's answer, you might need to ask follow-up questions or veer slightly off-topic before asking the next question.

This is especially important if you’re asking open-ended questions where you probably won’t know how your guest will answer.

Your template can help you stay on the right track but shouldn't box you in.

Ask a signature question

Asking a signature question every podcast episode is a great way to set your content apart.

Here are some examples:

  • What are three book recommendations you have for my subscribers?
  • What is the biggest misconception people have about your field of expertise?
  • What is your best childhood memory?

Things to avoid

A good interview follows many of the same rules as everyday conversation.

Try to be natural, curious, and unstilted while also avoiding:

  • Overly personal questions or questions about their personal life at the beginning of the interview
  • Negative or insensitive phrasing
  • Asking questions you know your guest gets asked frequently

How to prepare for the interview

There's no requirement to send your guest a list of questions before the episode, but it's considerate to at least share the topics you plan to cover. It helps your guest think through some of their answers and sets you up for a successful podcast episode.

Preparation also depends on the kind of guest you have.

High-profile guests might want to see the questions beforehand so they can walk through them step-by-step through their team, but most are okay simply hearing your general vision for the interview.

85 Best podcast interview questions

It's not always easy to think up unique questions on your own. Use this list to help you pinpoint the right questions for your interview.

Icebreakers or intro questions

1. Where did you grow up, and did that affect who you became?

2. What is your morning routine?

3. What's your favorite funny story to tell people?

4. What's the best compliment you've received?

5. What is your favorite pastime and why?

6. What did you want to be when you were a kid, and why?

7. Are you an introvert or an extrovert?

8. If you had to describe yourself as an animal, which would it be and why?

9. If money wasn't a factor, what would you do with your time?

10. What's your favorite movie, and what does it reveal about you?

11. What's your biggest pet peeve?

12. What's your biggest passion?

13. What's your most embarrassing memory?

14. If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

15. What star sign are you?

16. What's your Myers Briggs type or number on the Enneagram?

17. What was the last thing you searched for on Spotify?

18. What would you do if you won the lottery?

Personal questions

19. What's one of your biggest challenges in life?

20. Why are you passionate about what you do?

21. Who is the most influential person in your life, and how did they impact you?

22. What do people misunderstand most about you?

23. What is your favorite thing about yourself and why?

24. Did you have siblings, and if so, how did they affect your life?

25. What were you like as a child?

26. How are you different than your old self last year?

27. How do you want to be remembered?

28. What character traits do you most respect in other people?

29. What would change about yourself if you could?

30. What is your biggest fear?

31. Where do you see yourself in five years?

32. What makes you passionate and gets you motivated?

33. What's something surprising you've learned about yourself?

34. What's the most important lesson you've learned in life?

35. What do you think is your biggest failure?

36. What are you proudest of in your life?

37. What was the most significant turning point in your life?

38. What is a unique thing about you?

39. What's something people would be surprised to know about you?

40. What things excite you?

41. Do you have any regrets?

42. How did you meet your significant other?

43. Do you have a life motto?

44. What is one thing you want to change about yourself in the next year?

45. What keeps you up at night?

46. What challenge in your life shaped you the most?

47. What's your favorite quote?

Expertise and career questions

48. When did you know you wanted to choose this career path?

49. What's the best advice a mentor ever gave you about the industry?

50. What have you learned from being in this field that people should know?

51. What's the most difficult part of being a _______ ?

52. When are you most productive?

53. If you could change one thing about your industry, what would it be?

54. What are the most helpful resources that have helped you along the way?

55. Do you have advice for those interested in your field?

56. What do you wish you knew before starting your career?

57. What is a common myth about your job or industry? (This is one of our favorite questions).

58. What's your favorite thing about what you do?

59. Who do you talk to when you feel stuck?

60. What gives you motivation?

61. What networking methods have worked for you?

62. Who do you consider to be your biggest competitor?

63. How are you different than other thought leaders in your space?

64. How do you define success in your field?

65. Are there any business podcasts that have helped you to succeed in your field?

66. What is the most crucial trait someone needs to possess in your role?

67. What surprised you most when you first started?

68. What's your top strategy for success?

Podcasting-related questions

69. What made you want to start a new podcast (or video podcast) about your topic?

70. How long did it take you to grow your audience to its current size?

71. What are your best content marketing strategies?

72. What's your best tip for consistent content creation?

73. Do you have any monetization tips?

74. What's your most successful episode and why do you think did well?

75. How do you make your podcast stand out from others in its category?

76. What's your favorite recording software?

77. Do you have any gear recommendations?

Closing questions

78. What's one piece of advice you can share with my listeners?

79. Can you share your top three book recommendations for the audience?

80. What are the best podcasts related to your field?

81. Is there any question you wish I'd asked you?

82. What's the biggest takeaway you hope listeners learn?

83. What's next for you?

84. Where can listeners sign up for your course or purchase your product?

85. Where can listeners learn more about you?

Learn more about how to become a great podcast interviewer with these podcasting tips from the experts.

Alban Brooke

Alban Brooke

Alban Brooke is the Head of Marketing at Buzzsprout and the co-host of Buzzcast. Have any questions about this guide? Reach out on Twitter.


What are good podcast questions?

Good podcast questions deliver value to listeners and stem from genuine curiosity. Good questions are also open-ended to encourage the interviewee to give a full answer instead of a "yes" or "no" response.

How do you prepare for a podcast interview?

As the podcast host, it's up to you whether you prepare questions for the interview beforehand. In general, give your podcast guest a good idea of the questions you'll ask, even if you don't send them an exact list.

What are 10 good interview questions?

1. How do your closest friends describe you?

2. What's your best advice for entrepreneurs or someone getting into your field?

3. Can you share your top three book recommendations for the audience?

4. Where can my listeners find you online?

5. Who has been the most influential person in your life, and why?

6. When did you know you wanted to be a _______ ?

7. What is a common myth about your job or industry?

8. What's the most valuable lesson you've learned in life?

9. What advice would you give your younger self?

10. Is there any question you wish I'd asked you?