Telling Stories: The Power of Interviews

Think about this. Every 60 seconds, 72 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube and more than 1000 posts are published on WordPress. Podcasting is on the rise with more than 39 million episodes being downloaded monthly according to Edison Research

With increases in content being published and the need to get your (brand) messages heard, what makes your content stand out from the rest? 

BuzzFeed headlines? Listicles? Strong visuals? Maybe.

But what really keeps you riveted to a page or continually tuned-in to your favorite podcast episode? How about emotion and the human side of content. The story about someone we know, or would like to know.

The interview

When you think about the greatest piece of content that you have ever read, watched, or listened to, what made it great? 

In a world where we’re being guided away from long reads and towards listicles, storytelling and the power of storytelling through interviews is like mining content gold in so many ways.

But besides the all the good interviews can bring in reaching new audiences or brand building, interviewing skills are life skills. You can put them to good use in your next job interview, networking event or dinner party. 

Interesting side note backing up the power of longer form reads and interviews that I found in Doug Kessler’s newest post: according to BuzzSumo, the majority of the content published on BuzzFeed is less than 3,000 words, however the long form content performs significantly better with an average of 38,000 shares.”

Hitting gold

Hitting interview gold to reveal the stories that will touch the heart and win attention requires a certain knack. So what if you don’t have it? Can it be learned, loaned or borrowed? 

I’ve been told I have the gift for the gab, but when it comes to knowing the right questions to ask my questions tend to fall flat and short of hitting the mark. It is a skill I am continuously working on and I am still learning. 

A few years back when I was working with Liz Wilson, I asked her how she was able to always hit the sweet spot with her interviews. She said to me “Everybody has a story to tell. Be curious enough to discover it.”

Let’s do that!

This week on #BizHeroes

I’m really, (really) excited to welcome Chris Barrows from #WhyISocial to #BizHeroes to talk to us about the Art of the Interview. Chris runs the relatively new podcast, Why I Social, which is taking off like wildfire. 

Similar to #BizHeroes, WhyISocial focuses on shining the spotlight on lesser-known alongside more well-knowns people.

What I love about the Chris, and his interviews, is his ability to tease out a good story time after time. You can learn more about the guests and the podcast here.

Join us this Tuesday, May 5th at 2pm ET to meet Chris, buff up on interviewing skills and techniques and add your experiences tips to the conversation.

Just follow the #BizHeroes tag to find us!

Chat Questions:

Q1 Everybody loves a good interview, but few people do them well. What makes an interview good or standout?

Q2 What’s the business benefit of the telling someone’s story? Why invest the time?

Q3 What are the steps (or what is the process) for getting someone to tell their story?

Q4  How do you find the rights questions that will create a spring board for great conversation?

Q5  What role does your audience play in the interviewing process or research?

Q6 What is the link between interviews, storytelling, and the future of marketing?

Q7 Interviews come in many flavors (podcast, HOA, written, Vine…). How do you determine which format is best?

Q8 Bonus question: Share your favorite interview, or interviewer, and tell us why!

Kelly Hungerford
Kelly's a Digital Operations Specialist and Social Brand Strategist. She helps Startups and SMBs build lean marketing operations leveraging Social Media to support business goals and connect with the people who matter most. As former Head of Community and Communications for, she was responsible for building community-centric operations to support's rapidly growing user-base and founding #BizHeroes,'s Brand Twitter Chat that takes place Tuesdays at 2pm ET.

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