Podcasting for Business: Why Now is the Right Time to Start
April 8, 2020
April 8, 2020
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Podcasting for Business – Tips and Goals You Should Follow
Podcasting your business ideas and products can be a lifeline to survival during the COVID-19 crisis. If youâ€™re like the majority of adults in the United States, youâ€™ve probably listened to a podcast in the past year. In the past five years, long-form audio content in the form of podcasts has exploded â€“ now you can find a podcast on nearly any topic, ranging from financial expert opinions to fictional stories read by professional voice actors. In combination with the rise of streaming services like Spotify, iTunes, Soundcloud, and Apple Music, podcasts have never been more accessible to more of the population. And people could certainly use enjoyable, informative content to listen to in these uncertain times, with social distancing limiting contact and keeping people from the places they head to daily.
The podcast industryâ€™s growth forecasted to continue, with models projecting over $1 billion in revenue created for podcast creators by the end of 2021. As a small business owner, manager, or marketer, you may have heard some business podcasts and thought to yourself that you could take on the media form for your business. This is absolutely true â€“ but before you dive headfirst into your own podcast, youâ€™ll want to understand how useful the format can be for both you and potential customers. Youâ€™ll also want to understand how to leverage this platform to communicate brand messages and â€“ more importantly â€“ truly connect with your target audience.
From identifying where you can act as an authority figure to developing marketing plans to convert listeners into real-life customers, there are essential parts of the business that youâ€™ll need to understand to be successful. Thatâ€™s why youâ€™ll discover some of the most important aspects of podcasting to mull over here.
One of the reasons that podcasts resonate so well with listeners is our attraction to good stories. When podcast episodes are structured like a story â€“ whether fiction or non-fiction â€“ the human brain responds much like it would when reading a book or watching a movie. That means listeners get more involved and engaged in the content, picturing the outcome of whatever the narrator is talking about more vividly than they would through other social media channels. This engagement is significantly higher when compared to non-podcast-related email blasts or blog posts since listeners are so engrossed by the content theyâ€™ll continue listening far longer than theyâ€™d read text on a page
Speaking of the narrator, this medium provides an intimate way to communicate for you as a business owner. Think about it this way â€“ listeners are usually on their own when they click play, whether thatâ€™s out on a run with their smartphone or cooking alone in the kitchen. By creating an almost one-to-one experience where listeners are directly connecting with you, youâ€™re able to create an atmosphere where customers can feel close to you.
Youâ€™ll also be able to use this as a way to communicate authenticity and authority on the topics your brand is all about. As long as youâ€™ve structured your podcast in a way that you can dispense advice, listeners will tune in to hear that advice. And because the podcast format is generally less scripted than a TV show or audiobook, youâ€™ll be able to communicate that advice in a more relaxed and realistic way than you would through traditional marketing tools.
Itâ€™s no secret that some podcasts have serious money coming in through routes like ad placements and sponsorships. But these types of revenue can be somewhat unpredictable and arenâ€™t that important until you hit the upper echelons of great podcasts. However, there are many less obvious revenue streams that you can utilize effectively as a small business. Some of these include:
As your podcast grows, so does your online presence â€“ meaning that the business you work for or own will also experience growth. This growth is something to harness, as sling-shotting your companyâ€™s webpage to the top of its keyword rankings can massively improve online sales.
Think of it this way: the second you mention a product in a way thatâ€™s interesting, listeners will Google that product to see what it is. This happens quite often with popular pod-casters who talk about movies or TV shows that are not mainstream â€“ you can actually see a boost in Google analytics shortly after the podcast has been released. This principle applies to your products (or the products of your collaborators) as well. Without being too obvious, bringing up products can be a great way to drive natural traffic to your company website.
Once youâ€™ve established your brand as a pod-caster, you can also start appearing as a guest host on other shows. With marketing campaigns already running, this distribution of your podcast, the podcast youâ€™re appearing on, and the concurrent marketing campaign for a product create SEO benefits beyond what you would be capable of otherwise. And with these podcasts hosted in perpetuity on streaming services, those links will be accessible by users and search engines forever.
While itâ€™s clear that podcasts are fantastic ways to communicate your products and business to a wide audience, many factors could stall your podcast efforts before they start. Like any audience, podcast listeners donâ€™t appreciate many of the traditional advertising tactics â€“ so a key factor youâ€™ll have to consider is whether you can create standalone content that isnâ€™t entirely product-focused so you can gather an appreciative audience. Some other important factors you might want to focus on include:
Podcasts are absolutely an opportunity for entrepreneurs and employees alike to get information to consumers in a unique and intimate way. If youâ€™re able to create useful, positive emotion-inspiring content that wonâ€™t drain your marketing budget, then youâ€™ll be well on your way to diversifying revenue streams. Thereâ€™s no better time than right now to start, too: with more and more of the world enacting policies to work from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more people online will be actively seeking out new content to listen to.
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