Podcasts have grown in popularity exponentially over the past decade. From being almost unheard of by the general public in the mid-to late 00’s, the number of people listening has grown year on year, with 12% of UK adults now listening to a regular podcast every week, and podcast listenership having grown by 75% since 2013.
What is a podcast?
In the most basic terms, a podcast is on-demand talk radio. A podcast will usually surround a certain theme, and is presented as a series of spoken episodes, sometimes in a limited series and sometimes on an ongoing basis.
Apps are the most common way to listen to a podcast, making them easily accessible on-the-go, and so that they can go everywhere with you from home to work and during your commute.
Benefits of podcasts
For those thinking of starting to podcast, there are a variety of reasons that it is a great, modern way to reach people. Whilst traditional forms of media, such as newspapers and magazines, continue to die out, podcasting is on the rise, making it relevant and interesting to your intended audience. Other benefits include:
- You can reach anyone, anywhere. A lot of people today want to fill their time when they are commuting, working out or doing mindless tasks such as shopping and cleaning. This means that you have a captive, invested audience during a time that they can’t do anything else, but are completely open to being taught and entertained. Anyone with a smartphone can easily access podcasts, so they aren’t limited to certain groups and demographics.
- You reach a popular demographic. The most common demographic to listen to regular podcasts is the much sought-after 18-34 age bracket. Men and women also equally listen to podcasts, so you get the opportunity to reach a comprehensive range of your target audience.
- Speaking can be easier than writing. Not everyone is talented at writing, and it can be very time consuming. Speaking, either alone or with another person, can be much easier to do and flows much easier than a piece which is not well written, even if you don’t feel that you have great language skills.
Benefits of podcasts for marketing
Not only is podcasting a relevant and simple way of getting across a message, it also holds excellent opportunities for marketing. Whilst still a fairly new concept, podcasting for marketing offers businesses a number of benefits, that will only grow as your confidence and listenership does.
Ability to hyper target
You don’t need to create your own podcast to use podcasting to your benefit. There are podcasts out there for a range of different topics, across a huge variety of industries, allowing you to find a podcast which is popular with the exact demographic that you are trying to reach, and ask for a chance to speak on it.
Just a short conversation about something you are doing might be enough to interest thousands of potential customers, if you choose the right podcast to appear on.
You control the message
With a podcast it is easy for you to control the message that gets out to listeners, and reinforce your brand. During each episode you can choose topics, questions and guests that fit with the image you want to portray, with the added bonus of the spoken word making people feel more connected to you personally.
Podcasting has SEO benefits
For a start, podcasts which are available through iTunes offer excellent ranking opportunities, as it is a Page Rank One website. Each episode will link back to your own website or blog, as well as the website of any guests you have on, offering an excellent opportunity to increase your Google rankings.
Increased traffic generation
Once you have got a few people interested in your podcast, the likelihood is that they will keep listening and recommend your podcast to their friends and followers. The way that certain streaming platforms work, the next episode of your podcast will often be recommended to a listener after they have listened once, and this makes it more likely that they will subscribe as well.
Helps to give your business a personality
One of the key benefits of social media, audio and video marketing is that it helps to build an authentic relationship with your customers and potential customers. People start to feel as if they know someone when they can see or hear them, so even though podcasts are a one-sided medium, customers start to feel as though they really know you.
People are far more likely to buy something from a friend than a stranger, so your podcast helps to convert them from an interested party to a customer.
Positions you as an expert
Hosting a podcast is a great way to broadcast authority and position yourself as an expert in your field. You don’t even need to have your own podcast to do this. As mentioned earlier, appearing as an expert guest on another popular podcast can do the same thing, and even have new people come to check out your podcast in response.
Tips for business podcasting
Target your podcast
Don’t just use your podcast to cover various elements of your industry. This is too general and won’t appeal to your target audience. Instead be brave and risk putting off casual listeners by focusing right in on one specific subject, that correlates closely with what you do.
To do this you must ask yourself:
- Who is my audience?
- What are their interests?
- What do they want to know most about?
- What questions am I always being asked by customers?
- Which blog and social media posts are the most popular?
Create your podcast specifically to answer the questions and pique the interest of the people that create custom for your business.
Brevity is key
It is much better to have a 15 minute podcast that is short, snappy than interesting, than to waffle on for 30 minutes in order to fill time. You will probably find that the length of your podcasts increases over time as you become more involved and comfortable with the format, so a short and interesting start is fine.
Get guests to appear
Look for other experts in your field, people with popular podcasts in your industry or even local celebrities with a hand or interest in your business. A conversation flows so nicely as part of a podcast that it can help to bring in new audience members, and regular guests keeps your format fresh and interesting. Similarly, the appearance of someone with a different audience to yours helps you to reach people that you otherwise
For those who love to talk, and are involved in marketing or sales, podcasts are a perfect platform for you to impress with your knowledge and personality.
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Posted on Tuesday, July 23rd, 2019 in Branding.