Podcast Marketing: How to Use Podcasts to Promote Your Business
Podcasts have taken over the world. There are over four million podcasts, and the average person listens to eight podcasts per week. Podcasting is like radio, but it's much more convenient because the episodes are available at any time and on different devices.
Podcasters create content for businesses, talk about social and cultural topics, and make entertaining series of podcasts. As a marketing tool, podcasts are a native format that attracts a new audience and increases the loyalty of the existing one.
In this post, we will tell you how a business can use podcasting for promotion, how to create your own podcast. We will also give some examples.
What is a podcast and why do you need it
A podcast is a pre-recorded audio program that is uploaded to one of the digital platforms.
The process of creating and promoting podcasts is called podcasting. The word "podcasting" comes from a combination of "iPod" and "broadcasting". It was first used by journalist Ben Hammersley in an article for The Guardian in 2004. So it was not Apple who invented podcasts. It is just that the iPod was one of the MP3 players for listening to audio files. Although the podcasting boom didn't happen at the beginning of the 2000s, useful podcasts began to gain millions of listens in the 2020s.
People often compare podcasts to 21st century radio. The format is similar. Podcasters take interviews, have discussions with multiple people or record monologues on a topic. The only difference with radio is that you can save podcasts as mp3, aac or ogg/vorbis, and listen to them at any time. Separate episodes are released on different topics or set one per season, as in TV shows. Usually podcasts are only audio, but there are YouTube podcasts, where the conversation of the participants is also recorded on video.
Topics for podcasts are not limited by any rules. Podcasters talk about everything that is interesting to listeners: business, psychology, marketing, history, fashion, sports, cinema. They share the latest news and discuss other interesting topics.
Podcasts make it easy for users to get information. Listening to a recording is more convenient than waiting for an online broadcast in the fast pace of life and in a huge flow of information. This format does not tie the user to time, place and device: a person chooses when, where and how to listen to a podcast. Special listening platforms have desktop and mobile versions. Also, any user can download an audio file to the device and not depend on the network.
Through podcasts, people get news, learn, search for answers to questions, and just have fun while listening in the background, which saves time.
How marketers can use podcasts
Podcasting in marketing is an additional promotion tool that:
Expands the target audience of the brand. People find a podcast on the platform by interest or recommendation, listen and learn about the company that produces or sponsors the episodes. Then users go to the site — the business gets new leads.
Increases loyalty. Podcasts often show the informal side of the company, which humanizes the brand. Live stories of employees, their internal affairs form additional loyalty: people empathize with people. When people are listening to a podcast, they have a sense of presence, and customers become closer to the company.
Natively advertises. During the conversation, participants mention the company's products, tell examples and cases in the context of other stories.
Types of podcasts that work as marketing tools:
Branded podcast. This format sometimes replaces brand media or complements the usual blog. Podcasts analyze topics relevant to the audience that are related to the company's product: cases, news and trends.
Affiliate podcasts. The company's experts come to other podcasters with related topics and make a joint project or a regular feature from their brand. This is how the partner audience learns about your brand, and you get additional traffic to the site.
Sponsorship of podcasts. The company pays for the creation of the project, and the authors regularly advertise the brand. In podcasts, the audience is more loyal to advertising and doesn't scroll through it as often as in a video. Sometimes this is simply inconvenient. For example, when the user listens to an audio broadcast while driving.
How to create and promote your podcast
1. Looking for a topic
Think about what topic the brand will talk about in the podcast to promote your product. Broadcasts should not be only advertising, you should give your audience some value. For example, a fitness clothing brand may invite trainers, nutritionists and other professionals for interviews to talk about sports and healthy eating. Don't talk about everything, be specific about the topic.
2. Determining the format and preparing a plan
Decide how to convey information. You can do a classic interview, choose a format with one narrator, or come up with a detective audio series with musical accompaniment. Write an outline with the number of episodes and the names of the guests. Specify whether you want to add welcome music beats or sound effects.
3. Writing a script
The best improvisation is good preparation. Even in a live conversation, you need a script, an understanding of how the conversation will be moderated. If the podcast is planned to be narrative (for example, in the format of a series), the script needs to be accurate.
4. Recording the broadcast
Broadcast recording is resource and capacity dependent. If the participants are in different locations, recording a phone call can be a way to go. If podcasters can get together offline, they go to professional studios, record audio in a quiet room using microphones, or even use voice recorders to get started.
5. Editing an audio file
The sound quality of a podcast is important. Clean up the recording from pauses, sighs, noises, and even filler words from speakers. The audience should enjoy listening to you. You can use one of the editing programs such as Audacity. Add a jingle. It is a short audio intro, that you can find on free resources or recorded by yourself.
6. Publishing on podcast platforms
The podcast is uploaded to a website or special hosting service via RSS technology. RSS feed connects to podcasting platforms and automatically submit content each time a new episode is published. You will also need podcast covers and descriptions in order to add a podcast to the service. Here are popular podcast platforms: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Castbox, SoundCloud.
Regularity is important for podcasting. This way platform users will see your activity. Set a rule to publish a new episode once a week or two, or set a different frequency of publications.
Here are the methods of promotion:
Through podcast platforms, that put new or interesting episodes at the top of the list. Learn the rules of the site: somewhere you have to pay for advertising, and somewhere you just need to explain why your podcast deserves attention.
Publication on social networks. Leave a link to the podcast on social networks: personal or brand accounts. Ask the audience to rate and share the episode. There are also ads on social media that promote any content formats.
Promotion through the media. Contact the editor of a publication that writes about your business niche. If the journalist finds the podcast interesting, you will receive free advertising.
There are thousands of podcasts on the platforms. Let’s take a look at some of them.
The podcast focuses on healthy lifestyle topics such as mind, move, nutrition, recovery and sleep. Host Jaclyn Byrer talks to athletes, psychologists, researchers, doctors, coaches and other experts.
The podcast explores the principles of good design and discusses tips on how to make great branding.
The Host discusses with leading health experts quick and easy health hacks you can do while brushing your teeth to keep your mind, body and mouth healthy.
On the podcast, John Lee Dumas interviews successful entrepreneurs, celebrities like Tim Ferris and Tony Robbins, as well as lesser known people. The episodes cover how to build a business with just an idea, how to improve overall productivity, and how best to use Facebook ads.
The short episodes highlight the concepts that major companies around the world are thinking about and using to increase their competitive advantage and productivity. Recent topics include how to manage someone who is too fond of interacting with their co-workers, challenges minorities face at work, and out-of-the-box ways of thinking.
In the podcast, Omar Zenhom teaches everything you need to know about building a business: how to invest in your business, how to set your rates, email list growth strategies, and a seemingly endless list of other topics.
In this podcast, Neil Patel and Eric Siu, CEO of marketing agency Single Grain, cover a wide range of marketing topics. The duo discusses NFT in relation to marketing and why Web3 is the future of marketing.
Here you will find a variety of themes presented. For example, cold email tactics with Laura Lopuch or buying and growing a Shopify SaaS app with Daniel Mitchell and Andrew Gazdecki.
A podcast is an audio program on a specific topic in the format of an interview, discussion or author's monologue. This type of media content is similar to radio, but episodes are available at any time on different types of devices. Podcasting expands the brand's audience, natively advertises the company's products and increases customer loyalty. When it comes to marketing, businesses can create branded podcasts, partner projects, or simply act as sponsors.
To create your own podcast, you need to come up with a topic, think over the format and write a script. The next step is to record an audio file, edit it and upload it to hosting platforms via RSS (a technology that automatically shows a podcast from a host on connected sites). Then all you have to do is to promote your podcast on podcasting platforms or through social networks and media.
Podcasting is easy-to-consume content that doesn't take up a lot of your time. Users often listen to recordings in the background when they are doing other things, so they are less likely to rewind ads.
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