Podcasts have become powerful business tools to connect with customers, establish yourself as an industry expert and thought leader, and generate sales leads. Savvy small-and medium-sized businesses and entrepreneurs are incorporating podcasts into their digital marketing strategies. Read on to learn more about how podcasts can help your company and how to best utilize podcasts as marketing tools.
The Growth of Podcasts
The format began as audio blogs in the 1980s. In 2004, the adoption of personalized listening devices, such as iPods, led the format to become more popular. During the past six years, that trend has only continued. Everyone from celebrity hosts to amateur sleuths have launched shows. Spotify has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in the booming industry; its gambit legitimized the format and galvanized its further growth.
In 2021, some 120 million listeners tuned into podcasts in the U.S. That number is expected to surpass 160 million by 2023. The value of that market is incredible. It’s estimated to be $94.88 billion by 2028.
How Podcasts Benefit Marketing
Here are a reasons podcasts are useful for marketing your business:
- Podcasts deliver a message to a captive, targeted audience.
- Podcast audiences are primed. They must seek out and engage with a podcast. Rather than swimming in a sea of social media messages on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, your message is delivered directly to the potential customer or advocate.
- Podcasts are a great way to build your community.
- Podcasts demonstrate servant leadership by helping, guiding, and informing (not selling, though they may lead to that, too.)
How to be a Podcast Guest
Many podcasts are interview-based. These shows are constantly looking for subject-matter experts to be guests. Serving as a podcast guest can establish your credibility and expertise in your field, introduce your business to a new audience, and form a connection with new potential customers. Here’s a quick guide to becoming a podcast guest:
Identify podcasts that are relevant to your field.
You may want to speak about business in general or your field, for example, breweries or the solar industry. Whatever your subject matter, there are numerous relevant podcasts.
Listen to previous episodes.
Before you reach out, do your homework. Listen to at least three episodes of the podcast to 1) make sure your expertise is a fit, 2) make sure your approach is unique and the host hasn’t already done a similar episode, and 3) get a feel for the show’s format.
Find the host’s contact information.
Many podcasts have dedicated websites; others may be a subcategory of the host’s website. Either way, the section of the website devoted to the podcast will often describe how, when, and where to reach out.
Have something to say.
Whether you plan to talk about unique business tips based on your entrepreneurial experience or tips to provide a potential customer based on your subject-matter expertise, make sure you have something distinctive to share.
Pitch the host.
Find the host’s contact information and send him/her an email that briefly introduces yourself and establishes your expertise. Most importantly, share a few examples of tips or information you could share in a potential interview. Podcasts hosts will want to know how a potential guest will serve their listeners.
Once accepted as a guest, prepare.
Develop your talking points and offer them to the podcast host if they want them.
Be open and forthcoming with information during the show. Bring good energy and engage with the host. Once the podcast airs, be sure to share it on social media.
How to Start Your Own Podcast
Here are a few essential tips if you’re planning to start your own podcast
Know your audience.
Half of Americans over the age of 12 have listened to a podcast, but not all Americans listen to every podcast. Your podcast audience should match your current audience, or if you’re trying to grow your customer base, who you want to reach.
Make sure your branding is consistent across platforms.
Your visual identity should be consistent — though not necessarily identical — across social media, your website, and your podcast. Your podcast cover art should be easily readable — even when sized down to a thumbnail as it will appear often in lists.
Let your audience know when episodes will be available and keep to that frequency. Whether it’s twice a week on certain days, once a week on a Tuesday, or once a month on the third Saturday doesn’t necessarily matter. What’s most important is letting your audience know when they’ll hear from you and showing up with an episode when they expect one.
Provide additional resources.
The podcast notes are a great place to provide additional value for your listeners. Add downloadable items that provide further information. Bonus! These downloads can act as lead generation tools by driving listeners to your website where you can capture their email addresses in exchange for a free resource.
Top Podcasts to Inspire You
Here are a few things we’re listening to:
– How I Built This: Produced by NPR and hosted by Guy Raz, this podcast takes you behind some of the biggest brands. Interviews with top entrepreneurs from cosmetics maven Bobbi Brown to Audible founder Don Katz explore how these founders established their businesses.
– Business Boutique: Host Christy Wright offers practical advice to new founders and existing business owners.
– Social Media Marketing: Since 2012, host Michael Stelzner, of Social Media Examiner, has been discussing the latest social media trends and offering actionable tips on this podcast.
How LuckyTamm Digital Marketing Can Help
LuckyTamm stays up to date with the latest digital marketing trends and can advise you on how to best podcasts into your marketing strategy. If you’d like to know more, we offer free consultations. Connect with us, today!