How to Leverage Podcasts for Ultimate Engagement
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Podcasting, formerly known as audio blogging dates back to the early 1980s. In 2006, it was reported that only 22% of the American adult population was aware of podcasting. In 2020, that percentage has jumped to 75%.
Although many factors have contributed to this drastic increase in podcast usage in 2020, it is no surprise that forecasts predict podcast usage to exceed 160 million listeners in 2023. With that steady increase in podcast listeners, many businesses have begun incorporating podcasting in their marketing strategy.
Increasing Customer Engagement
As a business owner in 2021, increasing the engagement with your current customers as well as your prospective customers is constantly at the forefront of your mind. You have likely reviewed old strategies and considered new ones to see what things you can do to improve engagement and allow your business some form of permanency in your consumer’s mind. Did you know that podcasting can do that?
Today, podcasting contributes to engagement throughout various industries. It does so by allowing each business to speak directly to an already captivated audience, which provides the opportunity to get personal with customers. When you establish a relationship with your customers, you increase traffic to your various routes of brand awareness which, in turn, leads to an increase in sales. But that’s not the only benefit of podcasting for your business.
Authority for Brands
Whether you have been in business for a long time or a short while, there is no question that having authority in your industry gives you the ability to be heard and trusted. That authority can be obtained through offering helpful and productive content that directly benefits your potential consumer. By making their life easier and saving them time and money with that content, you immediately put your brand at the forefront of their minds as a leader in the industry.
Podcasting allows you a little extra time to solve common problems your consumer may have, as it relates to your product or service–jumping over one hurdle at a time. Moreover, improving your SEO isn’t just a hurdle–it’s a beast. You can’t solve a problem your target audience has if you can’t be found by them.
Optimizing the Podcast for SEO
Transcribing each podcast episode posted on your website will help your target audience find you by increasing your relevant keywords and, subsequently, improving your SEO. Also, when selecting topics for your podcast, concentrate on keyword/SEO-rich topics. What are common questions asked by your audience? What type of message resonates with them? How are the keywords used in your podcast ranking? These are all important questions when determining podcast topics.
Creating a New Podcast
So you’re ready to take the plunge and want to know how to get started? Start by listening to some podcasts to get a feel for which ones you like and why they are engaging to you. Pay special attention to their structure, length, and topics covered. Once you have a general feel of the podcasting world, you can begin podcasting for your business with the following basic items:
Smartphone with video recording capabilities.
- Physical space to record your podcast – consider your brand and the message you are trying to convey when choosing your podcast environment.
- Audio/visual editing software if you intend to edit or film the production: iMovie, Windows Movie Maker, Adobe software, etc.
- Apps that will help you record and produce a podcast: Podbean (iPhones) or Pocket Casts (Android).
Before your big podcasting day, it is important to remember the purpose of your podcast. Whether it is to educate, connect, entertain or sell, remember to leave your audience wanting more. Also, ensure that you have covered your topic fully in an inadequate amount of time so that you do not raise new questions, but not so long that your audience checks out. A good rule of thumb is 15-30 minutes. We recommended the following general layout:
Introduce yourself to your audience and explain your “why”.
Example: “I want to show you this great new ‘XYZ’ that we now have in stock!”
Share your content.
Example: “The benefits of ‘XYZ’ are…”
Close the podcast with a quick recap and thank your audience.
Example: “I hope you found learning about ‘XYZ’ beneficial! Thanks for watching and we’ll talk to you next week!”
Each podcast you record should follow a basic procedure, such as the one listed above, to provide initial direction and structure. While following procedure is the key to making consistent episodes, don’t be afraid to improvise and let the conversation flow as you go! Did your podcast get too long? Edit it into manageable and relevant sections and then release the sections one at a time over the course of several days. Remember, you want your audience hungry for more content, not overwhelmed.
Social Media Best Practices
Once you have your first podcast recorded, it’s time to determine where you will post it. Make sure your podcasts are available where your ideal clients are already spending their time online. Consider releasing snippets of your podcast in different formats. Instagram, for example, has reels, IGTV, and stories where audio can be leveraged effectively.
Below is a list of popular platforms that you could release your podcasts on.
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Creating a High-Quality Podcast
With the right tools in your back pocket, you can create a podcast that acts as great content.
- Improves and strengthens social networking with interaction with your subscribers
- Improves SEO by discussing relevant topics that have been researched as a part of a greater marketing strategy
- Is portable and convenient communication
- Makes information personable
- Positions your company as an industry leader by releasing relevant and valuable content.
Too often business leaders have something to say but don’t speak up because they lack time and don’t want to speak to a disengaged audience. When you follow some simple podcast guidelines for your business, your conversations will become captivating, deliver value, build trust and increase traffic.