Podcasting is big business. Don’t believe me? Then check out the data! According to statistics compiled by the site Convince & Convert in 2020, more than 100 million Americans listened to podcasts at least once a month! And if we look at the numbers compiled by Daniel J. Lewis courtesy of the My Podcast Review service, upwards of 90, 000 new podcasts joined the medium in the last 30 days. That’s pretty massive! And with more and more people lending their ears to podcasts, marketing strategists and entrepreneurs alike are paying attention to podcasts as a competitive form of brand advertising. And that is exactly why a business-focused podcast is growing in popularity amongst businesses and brands of all shapes and sizes.
Not convinced by the facts and figures? Well, let us give you some irrefutable reasons why a podcast is a great marketing strategy for a business!
1. Low Barrier to Entry
With just some basic know-how, it really is possible for anyone to start a podcast. This is not to say that podcasting is plain sailing, but the low barrier to entry does mean that podcasting is a more accessible form of media communication to use for business marketing when compared to other channels, such as television, or even radio.
2. Less Expensive than Video Marketing
Besides there being a low barrier to entry to getting your voice out there via your podcast, podcasting is also a cost-effective form of marketing. Yes, you will need to invest in some equipment, and you might also have to budget for the services of a podcast editing company, but compared to the costs involved in producing high-quality video content, podcasting is a much more reasonable marketing avenue.
3. Podcasts Are Surging in Popularity
And while the above-mentioned videos are a hugely popular marketing strategy, particularly on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, the podcasting medium is continuing to enjoy its own surge in popularity and shows no signs of slowing down. (Just take a second look at the statistics above!) In fact, all signs point towards podcasts enjoying “A Golden Age” for years to come.
4. Effective Way to Boost Brand Awareness
Through your podcast episodes, you will be able to share your business vision, your goals, and your ideology. Your listeners will really get to hear your voice and be better able to connect with you and your brand via your podcast. And through building this relationship with your listeners and strengthening your brand awareness, you will increase the likelihood of conversion from listener to customer.
For more, check out this post on Why Your Small Business Needs a Podcast.
Okay, so I’m sure you can see that there are definite benefits to be gained by starting a podcast for your business. But now that you’re onboard the Business Podcast Train, you need to be able to actually leverage this platform effectively to help market your business and build your brand.
And so to help you use your podcast successfully, we’ve put together 6 key strategies that aim to give you practical ways of using a podcast to grow your business. Put these into action, and you will see a great return on your investment into the podcasting medium.
1. Connect with Your Listeners
First and foremost, you need to use your business podcast to connect with your listeners. And the first way to do this is to not use your show to push advertising material down their ears! One of the primary focuses of your podcast should be to really make connections with your listeners, and not turn your episodes into advertisements! Your aim must be one of converting your loyal listeners to loyal customers. Always remember that one of the trademarks of podcasts is the relationship that develops between host and listener. Even though they may never meet, podcast listeners develop very strong connections to the hosts of shows they frequently listen to. And so it follows that your business podcast can help grow your business by using it as a platform upon which to build authentic relationships with your listeners, and so make real connections with your customers. But this is not done by constantly pushing your products and brand at your listeners. It is achieved by putting in the time and energy it takes to build authentic connections with people. In our opinion, nothing can compare to the connection that is made between podcast hosts and listeners, but this connection is built on trust. Use your podcast episodes to show your listeners that they can trust what you say, and you’ll be that much closer to converting your listeners into customers.
2. Gain Insight into Your Customers
Strategy #2 for using your podcast as a way to grow your business focuses on finding out more about your customer. As you create content for your show, think about ways you can intentionally use your podcast to gain deeper insight into the wants and needs of listeners – who will likely represent both your existing as well as your potential customers. As we have mentioned, podcasting creates an incredible space for meaningful connections. And through these connections, you will glean phenomenal insight into who your listener/customer is, what they need, and how you can better meet those needs. But remember, these connections will not just happen. Not only do you need to consistently create valuable content for your podcast, but you need to put some serious thought into the ways you can use your show to gain more information about what your customer wants. Ask for listener input, provide a space for them to ask you questions, or even ask them what they would like to hear more of on your show. All of this information is incredibly useful when it comes to gaining a deeper understanding of your customers.
Related read: How To Build a Strong Podcast Community
3. Build Brand Trust
As we have stated, a business podcast is an effective way to build brand awareness. But more than that, a business, or brand-focused podcast can help your business establish solid brand trust with your listeners. By using your podcast to generously and passionately share your knowledge, your niche expertise, or even your unique point of view, your listeners will begin to understand more about you and your business, and consequently, they will learn more about the type of brand you are aiming to build, and hopefully, will pick up and internalize your passion for your brand. By using your podcast to build brand trust, the result is often better conversions to your brand overall, or to a particular product or service you are offering. The time spent listening to your show has laid the foundation of trust within your listeners for you and your brand. Again, how you do this will differ from business to business, but you can never go wrong with consistently sharing valuable content, making sure your podcast episodes are of a high-quality, and doing all you can to make your show something your listeners want to tune in for. Do this, and there will be little need to overly push advertising material on your show, as once that brand trust has been established, the conversion to loyal customer will be a natural next step.
Related read: 8 Strategies To Build Authority In Your Podcast Niche
4. Establish Yourself as an Industry Expert
Our next strategy for using your podcast to grow your business is a big one. If you want your business to experience growth as a result of your show, you need to establish your voice as one of authority within your industry, as customers will be far more likely to choose products from a brand they view as an “authority” vs one that they know nothing about. And that sounds great! But how exactly do you achieve “Industry Expert” status? You start, as with all our strategies, by generously sharing valuable information via your episodes. Freely sharing your expertise is one of the most well-known methods of establishing yourself as an authority, but there are other strategies you can employ to help you reach Status: Expert. If it fits within your episode styles, invite guests to join you on your show. Particularly, look at inviting people who are, themselves, considered industry experts. Sharing the mic with other authorities not only helps your show reach new audiences, but it elevates your authority by demonstrating that you feel confident in what you are able to offer as you are willing to share your space with others.
5. Create Networking Opportunities
You can also use your podcast to grow your business by creating networking opportunities. No matter what line of business you’re in, the industry you’re in, or even your niche, networking will always contribute to the overall success of a business. Networking creates wonderful opportunities for relationship building, opens doors for collaborations, and allows you to make the necessary connections to help you move your business forward and expand the reach of your brand. And those in the podcasting industry know how to network! Whether it’s through establishing Facebook groups, hosting or attending conferences or live podcasting events, or even through being strategic with who you invite onto your show, the podcast industry has a healthy networking culture that you can leverage to help grow your business. As you create content for your podcast, as well as for your social media accounts, and your blog, if you have one, constantly be on the lookout for ways in which you can create networking opportunities that will not only strengthen your podcast community and your authority within your niche, but which will also, by extension, help you grow your business. Reach out to other brands for collaboration opportunities, look for other entrepreneurs who you could host events with, or invite industry leaders to contribute to your blog or other platforms. All of these are effective ways to open up your business to some great networking opportunities.
Related read: How To Write Stand-Out Blogs For Your Podcast
6. Generate Traffic to Your Website
Our last strategy for using a podcast to cultivate business growth is to use your podcast platform as a way to generate increased traffic to your business’s website. When actively utilized as a part of your marketing strategy, a branded or business-focused podcast can be a really effective way to get more clicks on your website and eyes on your content, which can then lead to more sales. Use creative call-to-action prompts in your episodes to direct your audience to your website, share a discount code via your podcast that your listeners can use for purchases on your online store, or ask your listeners to give you their input and opinions on a new feature or product you’ve added to your website. If you’ve put in the time and effort to build up trust between you and your listeners, then more and more frequently, the traffic to your website and setting eyes on your content and products will lead to conversions and sales.
Growing your business is hard work, no matter your industry or niche. And now, more than ever, with so many people looking for ways to generate second (or third!) streams of revenue, or finding ways to turn their side hustle into something more, it is imperative for entrepreneurs to find effective ways to really connect with their audience and establish brand authority and trust. Podcasts are a great way to grow your business and we’re firm believers that they should definitely be part of your marketing strategy. Not only do they enable you to reach a whole new audience, but through the special medium that is podcasting, you’ll be able to form strong, personal, relationships with your listeners, and have the potential to turn your listeners into loyal and passionate customers. By actively applying these strategies, and by consistently creating valuable content and high-quality episodes, you will be able to establish yourself as an expert in your field or industry, and greatly enhance your opportunities for meaningful business growth.
Related read: Top Podcasts For The Entrepreneur