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The fake podcast interview tactic has to stop

There's a marketing tactic that's been driving me absolutely bonkers, and it's time to call it out. It's the whole "fake podcast interview" thing that's been spreading like wildfire in the B2B marketing world.

Listen to this article's companion podcast here:

Here's how this scam typically goes down: A company sets up a podcast and then reaches out to a list of potential customers—people they'd usually never get the time of day from. 

They tell these prospects, "Hey, we'd love to have you on our show! It'll be a great chance to showcase your expertise." The prospect, flattered by the invitation, agrees.

The company then interviews the person, acting all interested and engaged. But the whole time, their real motive is to use this "relationship" to get the prospect into their sales funnel. 

A few weeks after the episode airs, the company reaches back out, saying, "Hey, we loved having you on, and we think there might be some ways we could work together." 

Surprise, surprise - it was all just a trick to get the person on the hook.

Now, I know what some of you are thinking—"But Guy if it works, who cares? It's effective marketing, right?" 

Yeah, I get it. This tactic can generate leads. But to me, that's missing the forest for the trees. While it might deliver short-term results, in the long run, I believe it does real damage to a brand's reputation and credibility.

Think about it. How would you feel if you were the target of this kind of deception? 

You thought you were doing a nice, genuine interview, but it was a ploy to get you into the company's sales process. You'd feel betrayed, wouldn't you? Like your time and trust had been taken advantage of. And I can guarantee you that's not the sentiment you want your brand to be associated with.

Because here's the thing - people aren't stupid. They can smell a fake a mile away. And once they realize they've been duped, that distrust will stick. 

They're not going to forget that experience, and they're way less likely to engage with your brand again in the future. You might get a few leads out of it, but you're torching your long-term reputation.

Instead of resorting to these underhanded tactics, why not approach marketing and sales with more humanity? How about we focus on creating content that people actually find valuable rather than just trying to trick them into becoming customers? It's a crazy idea, I know.

So, let's leave the fake podcast interviews in the dust, where they belong. Let's figure out ways to build real relationships and deliver genuine value rather than just hunting for leads.





Picture of Guy bauer, founder of umault

Guy has been making commercial videos for over 20 years and is the author of “Death to the Corporate Video: A Modern Approach that Works.” He started the agency in 2010 after a decade of working in TV, film and radio. He’s been losing hair and gaining weight ever since.

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