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Are There Exceptions to the “Pre-Interview” Rule?
No, but there are variations you can try.
How much of a hardass should you be when it comes to asking things of your guests?
Sometimes the guests we want don’t have flexibility. In general, this appears in theee ways:
Equipment flexibility (money/resources)
Time flexibility (access)
Some guests may not have access to quality audio equipment for remote sessions or have a time/access limitation where scheduling a pre-interview.
This is different than people completely refusing your request, because they think it’s “not necessary.”
So yes, maybe there are exceptions to the “pre-interview” rule.
But you still need to consider your audience when a situation like one of these comes up. Audio quality still matters and the content of your episode still matters – listeners don’t understand (or need to understand) the behind-the-scenes aspects of what you go through to provide these things.
Fortunately, you have options to bring guests (and the quality of the episodes you do with them) up to speed …
If a remote guest doesn’t have quality audio equipment to use, consider mailing a mic, or sending somebody with the proper equipment to record the session locally.
If you can’t get a pre-interview with a guest, for whatever reason, and you really want to interview this guest, do a similar pre-interview call with the guest’s co-worker, assistant, family member, or somebody else who can help you get the information you need.
And if you can’t do that, go to your audience and bring them in on the pre-interview work. I did this with an interview I did with Dolly Parton and I talk about the experience here.
Do whatever it takes to get the audio quality and quality content that you need and your audience deserves.