Every podcaster’s dream is to build an audience that is so committed to the show that they go out of their way to evangelize and share it with everyone they know! Essentially, they become die-hard listeners who adopt the show and the podcast community as their own.
So how do those top podcasters achieve such an incredible following? What is their secret? Well, it all starts with understanding the concept of branding. Brand strategists will tell you that the great brands out there have created loyal customers by building such a strong connection and such a strong belief that the consumer takes on their brand identity as their own. Eventually, they even use the brand to help define who they are as an individual.
Now, how do we apply this to podcasting? First, you have to understand that your podcast is ultimately a brand and that the brand is defined by the listener’s overall perception of your show. In order to reap the benefits of building a strong brand, you have to apply the principles of branding. The process of branding can be described as the forming of memories, emotions, and relationships around your brand in the minds of the listeners.
Creating these deep connections is not always easy and certainly does not happen overnight. However, by implementing these core branding principles to your podcast and taking the time to invest in your podcast identity will turn your listeners into die-hard fans who are absolutely loyal to your podcast “brand”.
1. Focus On Your Podcast Audience
When building a podcast brand, the number one place to start is with your audience. As the podcaster, you have to know exactly who the listeners are that you are targeting with your message. Who are you speaking to? Identifying your focus audience is the foundation for building your podcast brand and the most important thing to remember is that you simply can’t be everything to everyone – so niche down and really identify your ideal listener. The key is to get really get specific. Figure out detailed behaviors and lifestyles of your listeners to create that avatar in the forefront of your mind. Solidify this picture of your listeners, then learn how to create a brand identity that they can understand and relate to. By understanding precisely who you are trying to reach, you will be able to tailor your message to meet their exact needs. Once you have identified your target audience, one of the most powerful things you can do next is to give your audience a “brand” or an identifier name. For example, the listeners of Entrepreneur On Fire are called “Fire Nation”. This gives your audience a clear community to belong to, further establishing that bond between them and the show. So focus on your target listener, adapt your message, and give them a place to belong.
2. Define Your Podcast Mision & Vision
Creating and launching a successful podcast is hard work, but having a clear mission and vision will certainly help you along your journey. You have to be absolutely crystal clear as to why you are doing this and what the core drivers are behind your show. Define this in your mission, which should encompass what you will accomplish, your core values, and how you want others to perceive and talk about your show. This single, purposeful statement should capture the essence of your podcast and the value it will bring to your listeners and community. From there, make your mission the core aspect of all your decisions. With every guest that comes on or every topic that is discussed, make sure that it lines up with what you set out to achieve in the first place and that it will help you get one step closer to your overall vision. As your podcast brand and community grow, have your tribe adopt the podcast mission as their own. Deepen that podcast-audience connection even further by allowing them to come alongside you on the journey and advocate for achieving your podcast’s mission and vision.
3. Establish Your Podcast Brand Voice
Establishing your podcast brand voice is critical to creating your podcast brand personality. Every podcast and it’s podcast host has a unique style, so let yourself be creatively and uniquely you! Find ways to personalize everything you do on your show, really letting your own brand voice shine through. Bring this voice and personality into everything related to your podcast, including your website, any products you put out, and even the spirit of the podcast community that you create. Really integrate your brand voice into every aspect of your podcast. Use brand-specific language unique to your show, that only your listener tribe will understand! Again, make sure that this language is consistent and evident in everything you do for and about your podcast. This podcast brand-specific language can even include a tagline! Overall, the idea is to be unique and creative. There is only one of you, so don’t try to make just another podcast. Be memorable, exciting and full of fresh ideas, really finding a way to help others through your own perspective and letting your brand voice and personality ring true.
Related post: 7 Strategies for Building a Strong Podcast Community
4. Solidify Your Brand Presence
Along with creating a consistent podcast brand, you also need to make sure that it is well represented. Solidify your podcast brand presence within the press and media by getting featured on other podcasts or even by writing feature pieces for well-known blogs that capture audiences who are aligned with the mission and vision of your podcast brand. Join podcasting groups that share your views and establish a presence in those communities, making your podcast brand visible to listeners who may be interested in your message. Make it easy for newcomers to get to know your podcast brand by creating a document of all the places they can find the show, places that you have been featured, and any content that you have created especially for your audience. Also, make it easy for guests and listeners to share details about the show and specific episodes. Share your podcast brand across your social channels, making sure that your message is once again crystal clear and evident in everything that you put out. Be your podcast brand’s biggest advocate and get it established everywhere that you go!
Related post: 7 Tips to Market Your Podcast on Instagram
5. Consistently Create On-Brand Content
Creating a strong podcast brand voice and presence all comes down to being consistent! Your podcast brand should be reflected in your podcast artwork, your website design, and all across your social media platforms. Consider your podcast brand whenever you are creating new content, whether that is for the show or your blog, and be consistently on-brand! Keep your podcast brand identity top of mind when choosing podcast guests and finding the ideal featured topics for your show. Your podcast brand should be visible and reflected in everything that your listeners can see, read, and hear. To ensure that your podcast brand looks the same everywhere, create your own unique brand style guide that identifies your brand-specific visuals such as your color scheme, your logo, the fonts you use, and even the types of editing used in your photos. Incorporate your voice, message, and podcast brand personality into your content time and time again. The key is to consistently stay true to your brand in every aspect, really letting your podcast personality shine through!
Related post: How to Setup a Guest Interview for Your Podcast
6. Create The Ultimate User Experience
As you may have heard, your podcast is ultimately “alive” solely because of your listeners! How will your listeners interact with the show, and what type of engagement are you creating for them with your podcast brand? Make the experience with your podcast as enjoyable and easy to listen to and access as possible. Giving your listeners the opportunity to interact and engage with the show allows that relationship to grow even stronger, which comes full-circle with the core principles of building a strong and loyal following for your show. Creating the ultimate user experience, whether that’s through a personalized podcast app, sending out weekly emails, or giving your listeners exclusive content, is the root of what will deepen that relationship even further and strengthen your podcast community overall. Just as your podcast brand is unique, so too your listeners are unique. Envision their journey as they discover your podcast and really get down to the details of what it will take to make their experience with your podcast brand unique and enjoyable!