Launching A Podcast: The Benefits for Your Brand
Around 7.1 million people in the UK now listen to podcasts each week. After the term was first suggested in 2004 by The Guardian columnist and BBC journalist, Ben Hammersley, there has been a consistent rise in podcast listeners. Transforming the way individuals listen to audio content, people all over the world can now subscribe to digital audio files via an app on their phone and listen to episodes whenever they are. In fact, they are now so popular, that regular podcast users listen to around seven every week.
So, why should podcasting be in your brand’s marketing strategy?
To showcase your forte
When a brand decides to start their own series, they will have the opportunity to discuss niche topics of interest. Nobody knows the value of a brand’s business better than its own people. By creating and sharing episodes, you will have the chance to deliver your own important message, as well as build credibility by showcasing your experts and leaders.
To reach new audiences
If you’re looking for new ways to connect with your audience, podcasting can be an effective tool for listeners to consume your valuable content. Traditional content marketing may only get you part way there, so utilising podcasts can help to attract new audiences. Plus, this form of content allows you to engage with individuals at any time of the day: when they’re walking their dog, exercising, or even on their commute.
To add value
Once your brand has a podcast, there are many ways you can utilise it. By repurposing it and turning it into written material, your brand will have access to previously untapped SEO value. Editing or cutting down the episodes before uploading them onto video sharing platforms, such as YouTube, will also allow your audience to listen or watch in digestible clips.
Additionally, your podcast can add value to your social media platforms. Powerful quotes can be transformed into visually pleasing imagery, episodes can be teased, or Q&A sessions can be held on Facebook or Instagram after an episode has been published.
What’s the most popular podcast format?
Before starting your own podcast, you will need to decide which basic format to use. Would you prefer to interview people? Or perhaps you would like to share stories from individuals doing amazing things in your industry? The format you decide on is completely dependent on preference. Here are some of the most common ways for a brand to share their message:
- Solo commentary: While technically fairly easy to do, solo commentary can often be harder than you think. Carrying the microphone on your own for any length of time is quite a skill, so you could always choose to note the most important things down and read the script as if you were speaking conversationally.
- One-on-one interview: Not only are these easy to record, but brands can invite big names to record with them who can then share the podcast with their large following. This will naturally help with brand awareness, as well as the number of downloads and listeners.
- Whole panel: If you can find a time that suits all your guests, a podcast featuring a whole panel can provide great energy. Listening to opinionated individuals share their thoughts on different subjects can be very entertaining.
Sponsorship vs podcast creation
Some of the world’s most popular podcasts make money through sponsorship deals which feature ads at the beginning, middle, or end of each episode. The company or brand will pay the podcast host in exchange for an endorsement.
Other brands, however, are no strangers to creating their own, and more and more often, we are seeing them establish their own podcast series.
But what are the pros and cons of both, and should your brand choose to sponsor a podcast or create your own?
- Choice: You can choose podcasts to sponsor aligned on your brand’s values.
- Time: Sponsorship requires less setup work and time on your part.
- Guaranteed audience: When you choose to sponsor a podcast series, you know that it already comes with an existing audience.
- Cost: A few minutes of airtime could be quite pricey, depending on which show you choose to sponsor.
- Waiting time: If you want to get your ads on a popular podcast, there could be quite a waiting list.
- Loyal following: Quality podcasts will help to build a loyal base of listeners that will continue to come back for more.
- Control: You can control your own message.
- Unique: Podcast creation can help you stand out from your competition.
- Time requirements: Listeners expect content to be delivered on a frequent basis, which means that you’ll need to put a lot of time into production.
- Building a name: Attracting and then growing your audience could take a while.
Tips to successfully launch a podcast (and make your brand stand out from the crowd)
With over 30 million podcast episodes worldwide, you might think, ‘how can I make mine stand out from the crowd?’ Firstly, you need to decide on what it is that your brand wants to accomplish with your new series. Do you want to entertain your audience? Provide vital information? Or perhaps delve deeper into different topics?
For your brand to shine, here are our top tips when launching a podcast:
- What are you experts in? Choose your niche before getting started.
- Decide on your target audience – what do they want to know? 67 percent of podcast audiences are made up of people between 18 and 44 years old. Taking that into consideration, it’s vital that a brand knows who their audience are before creating their own series.
- Define your style.
- Consider your resources before getting started and determine how often you will publish your episodes.
- Listeners expect regular episodes, and you need to ensure they keep coming back so be consistent once you get started.
- Use your social platforms to raise awareness of your podcast launch. If you have a huge following, use it to your advantage. Plus, if you invite guests to the show, ensure they share the episodes and look for sponsorships to extend your reach further.
- Keep a careful eye on the number of starts, individual episode performance, unique listeners and followers, gender, age and geography breakdown by tracking your listenership.
- Highlight your call to action – what are you hoping to achieve? Are you driving people to your website? Wanting listeners to buy your products? Make this clear.
Ultimately, you need to ensure that you create a show that you want to listen too. If you are interested in it, others will be too. When done effectively, podcasts can truly take off and monetise well. Contact the team to see whether you brand could be using podcasts or reach out to let us know your thoughts on podcasts playing a role in a brand’s marketing strategy.