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Audio Creation

Enhance Your Async Voice: How to Sound Natural as a Podcast Host

There are some guidelines to help you in this journey to finding your voice and they consist of things you should do and others you should avoid.


People know when it’s fake

The audience has a sixth sense to assess the authenticity of a podcaster. Whether it’s the form (your voice features) or the substance (the content), people are fast to figure out others. And once they judge you in a certain way it’s difficult to change their minds. They’ll leave and rarely come back.

Sounding natural is especially important in asynchronous podcasts where the host and guest record remotely and each one in their own time. As service providers to over 1,000 podcasters and podcasters ourselves, we’ve dealt with the issue of finding your own voice in async interviews many times. We want to be alongside you on this journey.

The search for authenticity may take some time but it’s a fruitful endeavor. But you can cut some miles from this journey. So here are some guidelines that will help you reduce this trial-and-error process and sound natural in no time.

The do’s and don’ts

Establishing an authentic approach as an async podcast host requires doing some things and trying to avoid others.

Let’s start with the things you should do first.

Be consistent with your voice and sound

There are different aspects of consistency to consider but put together they enable a tight and cohesive podcast that your listeners expect from you tacitly.

Regarding your voice, you should accept your tone and accent and work with your natural voice. If you try to sound like somebody else, listeners will tell easily. For instance, our podcaster Laetitia wasn’t happy about her English accent and she thought listeners would move on once they heard it. After faking different accents she realized that the strength of her podcast relied upon her unique voice (both the good and the bad that came with it). Accepting it brought many guests to her show. They agreed to participate stating her genuine approach as a major reason to be part of her podcast challenge.

Also, choose whether you’ll address the guest or the listener. You need to decide if you’ll talk from the second-person or third-person point of view. If you sometimes talk to the listeners and sometimes to the guest or if you switch from the second (“you”)  to the third person (“he/she/they” or their name), this mix will be confusing for both the guest and the audience.

Good and consistent sound quality is imperative for the success of your show. A podcast is an audio-based form of communication and if the sound is not properly taken care of,  your listeners will soon move on. Now the quality doesn’t need to be great, it just needs to be good. You don’t want your audience to strain to hear your podcast or leave them confused because some parts were unintelligible.  

To achieve this, maintain a consistent audio environment for both the host and guest (if it’s possible). This means that you should record in the same place, the same distance from the microphone, and record all of your questions in one sitting (to avoid intonation changes). If you switch rooms, go outside, or record your questions (or follow-up questions/comments) in different moments, the audience will hear the difference. At least try to maintain this consistency throughout one episode.

Also, consider re-recording the questions once you get your guest’s answers if you plan on adding follow-up commentary so that you keep the same tone throughout the entire episode. When you have a live conversation, you maintain a specific mood and tone so even if async is not happening live, people are sensitive to those changes and it will feel strange to listen to so much variety over one episode.

Be honest with your audience

It’s not just about telling the truth and avoiding lies; it’s about being open and not trying to look like a know-it-all person.

Be prepared to admit when you don’t know something. Guests can dive into topics you’re unfamiliar with, and your lack of knowledge can help the audience learn even more from that interview by asking the questions your listeners would ask. Not knowing something can be the best excuse to ask something that other people in your audience might not know. Thus, look at it as a benefit instead of a handicap.

It would also help the audience to know that you’re recording your episodes asynchronously. Talking about this framework will give your listeners the context they need and know what to expect from a non-traditional podcasting format. Trying to simulate a live interview when the format isn’t made for that purpose will confuse your audience and miss the chance to take advantage of the benefits of asynchronous podcasting.

And lastly, don’t forget to smile when recording! Your body language influences your tone so remember to have a good posture (don’t compress your lungs!) and a smile on your face.

What are some of the things you shouldn’t do?

Avoid giving shallow feedback to the guest’s answers

In an asynchronous interview, there’s enough time to construct a well-thought answer for both the guest and the host and sometimes hosts fail to do so.

When you get your guest’s responses and you plan to add a follow-up comment or a question, don’t start with the same words or expressions like “ahh” or “interesting…” People have certain habits when they talk and if you put them in a recording, the repetitiveness becomes even more prominent. These words could also come after introducing your follow-up feedback where we tend to use word fillers like “I see”, “um”, “you know”, “actually”, and so on. We might not pay attention to them in regular conversations but on a recording, they become distracting for the audience.

We should also avoid always agreeing with our guests. We might be happy that we have them on our show and we want to show support but we might be missing out on other layers of conversations if we don’t inquire more about our guest’s ideas. Contrasting information, asking for clarification on certain points, or presenting a counter-argument to our guest’s response can enrich the conversation and bring more value to our listeners. You’re not attacking or diminishing your guest’s answers by stating another point of view. You’re adding value to the conversation.

Don’t ask questions you don’t understand (or aren’t interested in)

You might be surprised to see that the host can ask a question that doesn’t make sense, that contains misconceptions, or that’s not interesting to them.

There are several reasons to go down this path. Some people want to sound smart but they fail to realize that there tends to be an expert on the other side who can easily spot these errors. Others want to fit in and think they’re expected to be a certain way as an interviewer (e.g. asking difficult questions) but the risk can be high if you don’t get it right.

Then you have hosts asking questions they don’t seem to be interested in getting an answer to. It seems that they ask just for the sake of asking something. They might want to get as much content as they can or they just stick to a script and repeat it over and over again. There are many reasons to do so, but your guest and the audience will perceive that you’re not genuinely invested in the conversation. Why waste their time?

Don’t try to copy other podcasts

Many podcasts are amazing and you just want to sound like them. But that’s the wrong path to follow.

It doesn’t mean you can’t implement some of the things they do and learn to be a better podcaster through their example. But if you don’t have your own angle, something that can differentiate your show from all the others, people will turn elsewhere. They’ll look for content that adds value to their lives whether it’s entertainment, information, or any need they want to fulfill. Trying to copy others might have short-term success but it will erode your motivation and identity in the long run.

Great artists from the past would copy others while they were still apprentices. But it was a way to learn the art. Once they knew their way around the ropes, they would search for their own way of expressing art. Learn from great podcasts, but don’t stay in their lane for too long.


Finding your unique voice is especially important in asynchronous podcasting where there are no live interactions with the guests. There are some guidelines to help you in this journey and they consist of things you should do and others you should avoid. Once you go through these you will be better prepared for an authentic experience with your guest and audience.

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