When you’ve got a lot to say about your business or your industry, podcasts are a unique way to connect to your audience. Think of your podcast as your opportunity to sit down for a great one-on-one conversation—even though you can be talking to many thousands of people. With your podcast you can develop your thought leadership, convey motivational messages and humanize your business and the people behind it, giving customers and clients a new way to think about you—and themselves.
Adding a podcast to your brand’s marketing strategy is a smart move. Still, starting a podcast may feel daunting, so here are some simple steps to getting a podcast up and running successfully.
Be true to what you want to talk about
A podcast is a talk show, and every good one has a theme and a point of view. The first step is to key in on what you want to talk about, the subject where you have expertise, on which people always turn to you for advice. Perhaps you’re a contractor with guidance to offer on home renovations or a restaurant owner with experience offering regional cuisine. Maybe you’re a salon owner with beauty and styling hacks. Ask yourself these questions as you develop your idea:
- Can I come up with a host/guest format listeners will respond to?
- Will I be giving customers ideas they won’t find in other places?
- Do I have enough ideas to keep this going?
- Can I add value to my business without being too salesy?
Get the right gear
Once your topic is secured, it’s important to acquire quality equipment. Crisp audio with a good microphone with a broadcast arm will do wonders when it comes to the performance of your podcast. There are plenty of resources online where you can learn the specifics of achieving a professional sound, which might include placing affordable foam panels on your walls. You’ll also want to have high-speed internet access for uploading podcasts.
You may want to invest in a handheld digital recorder to record remote interviews from a reputable brand such as TASCAM or Zoom. To edit your episodes, you can upgrade to podcast-tech software like Adobe Audition or Audacity. If you feel unsure about editing, think about hiring a freelance podcast editor through a platform like Upwork.
Decide where your podcast comes to life
Podcasts can be housed on a number of hosting sites, including Blubrry, Libsyn, Buzzsprout and Podbean. They all offer a lot of features and capabilities and make the process easy, letting you auto schedule publishing and providing analytics, so you can gauge performance. Your hosting site can submit your podcast to iTunes and other podcast feeds. You’ll also get an embed code so listeners can link right from your website.
Promote your podcast
Let people know about upcoming episodes through all your social media channels like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Add a podcast mention to your company newsletters, direct mail and website homepage. Consider reaching out to local media to do a story about your new podcast, as this can also help grow your audience. The more you talk about your podcast publicly, the more traffic you’ll drive to it.
The first few podcast episodes may be trial and error, so it’s vital to remember that success doesn’t usually happen overnight. By keeping an eye on your podcast or website analytics, you’ll get a good sense of the numbers. You can also see which topics perform better, and this can help you narrow your future focus. If the numbers aren’t where you want them to be, continue tweaking your content and schedule until you find that sweet spot. A successful podcast will have steady audience growth and engagement, so if you notice you’re hitting a plateau, it may be time to revisit your strategy.
Growth may be slow at first, but be patient with your podcast and give it time to grow roots. In due time, it will serve your business well.
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