How To Interview A Top Blogger - IncomeScene

How To Approach A Top Blogger For An Interview

By God’s grace I have been able to conduct a sizeable number of interviews here at Income Scene and I received some really good feedbacks from readers. Now you may be left wondering why you’ve not been able to get enough bloggers to say yes to an interview request; I would list the six steps I took to catch their attention. But before I go on here’s something you should know:

Small things really DO matter

You cannot pull off a feat overnight; achieving something substantial takes days, weeks or in some cases months of detailed planning. You cannot become an Olympics star without the necessary preparation. It takes months of dieting, exercises, and body-building among other things.

Getting noticed by a big player in the blogosphere is a cumulative process not a one-off thing. The little comment today and the little compliment on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ tomorrow all add up. When you’ve made it into someone’s radar it wouldn’t be much of a problem requesting an interview.

Now What Exactly Did I Do?

1. I Prepared The Draft For The Request Mail

This part was not much of a task thanks to Josh Hanagarne of World’s Strongest Librarian. I came across the draft of one of the mails he sent to a few celebrities and top bloggers requesting an interview. He got amazing results with this mail so instead of writing my letter from scratch I followed his example, tailoring each letter to suit each person’s personality. Call that reinventing the wheel!

But don’t get me wrong here, I did my homework. I visited individual blogs, learnt more about each person and then I was ready to make contact. Below is the draft of Josh’s letter:

Hi Mr. ______. Thanks for taking the time to read a brief message from a fan. I am sure you are even busier than I think you are. This means a lot to me.

My name is Josh Hanagarrne. I’m a librarian in Salt Lake City, UI. I write a humble letter website called World’s Strongest Librarian, focusing on kettle bells and knowledge.

I’ve partnered with____________ a massive straight website, to create an e-book of brief interviews with various strength experts and champions. Currently I have completed an interview with a prominent old time strongman and an upcoming Trapeze artist. I would be honored to add your expertise as a____________ ace to the mix. If you are interested, here’s how it could work:

Interview will be between 1 to 10 questions. You can choose how much or little you want to share. Interview can take place by phone or e-mail, whatever you prefer.

Questions to ask in the interview will be chosen from fans of World’s strongest Librarian or Twitter. You could of course add any question you like, and I will add my own if the fan’s questions do not cover everything beneficial. If all goes well, the e-book will be released in December across a variety of sites. This would be a great chance to get valuable strength and fitness information out there to hundreds of thousands of readers.

I look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience. If you cannot participate for any reason, I would be very grateful if you could suggest any one else in your field I might contact – but I asked you first. I only want the best…

Josh Hanagarne

World’s Strongest Librarian

If there was something I felt didn’t resonate with someone, I left it out or made my own addition.

2. I Prepared My Questions

Coming up with questions is easy but here it wasn’t about asking just any question, it was about asking top notch questions. It was about asking questions that would cause my interviewee to go into details, and one that would carry the eventual reader along gently. Coming up with these questions took some time. I drafted some but I had to abandon them because I felt they weren’t good enough. And “more unique” questions seemed to elude me.

3. I Drew Up My List Of Possible Interviewees

I added some people I had never heard about; I just addressed anyone who had a good story or people that had made some kind of impact. As I write this I am looking at my diary and I can see that I initially planned to contact twelve people; as God would have it I ended up mailing almost fifty bloggers.

4. I Sent The Request Mail

I visited their blogs and I sent most of the emails using their Contact Forms. Though it looks so simple it wasn’t much fun. In the process of sending the emails to some people I forgot to include the individual’s name (In these cases I used someone else’s name).

There was a particular mail I sent to a lady but the name I included was that of a man. I had to quickly send another mail apologizing g for the mix up and that the mail was meant for someone else. To her credit, she wished me luck in my search for the said guy. This however wasn’t to happen again.

5. I Got My Replies

One thing I noticed about these people is that they want to be sent this type of request. I received positive responses on average form these people. Only about two of them mailed me telling me that would rather share such details with their audience alone.

The others generally accepted; some politely told me that would have loved to participate but for their tight schedules (in a lot of these cases it had to do with a product launch). Some told me to send over the questions at a later date when they had less busy schedules.

6. I Sent The Questions To Them

I sent the questions and I found out that most of them sent in their replies at a relatively early time. For instance, it took Chris Guthrie as little as two hours or so to send me his reply, and still his answers were loaded. His interview remains one of my favourites to date.  You can check out the interview.

Conducting interviews is a very good way to drive traffic to your website and to provide quality posts for your website. Most of the people that participated in these interviews have become either acquaintances or friends. Blogging can be a really fulfilling journey, you just have to find out what works and build on it. Then rinse and repeat the process.