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Podcasting is one of the top modern channels to connect with people. At first it may seem less engaging than a video or other form of content, but in reality it connects with your listeners on a deeper level. Your followers can listen to your episodes almost anytime because audio is not restricted like a video is. They can listen while actively doing other tasks: grocery shopping, running, driving, etc. No other media form allows for this kind of engagement.
Over the past several years there has been a large movement towards voice. We’ve seen it all around us from Siri to voice assisted devices like Alexa and Google Home. These voice devices come out of convenience. Some tasks that we ask them to do could be done in the same amount of time overselves. But we don’t have to which is the attraction. We can do other tasks while our devices do it for us. And the capabilities of these devices are only improving to accomplish more complex tasks.
The growing trend in voice has also shaped how we consume content. In a world that seems to get busier by the day we typically can no longer sit down and watch a one hour informational video. However, we can listen to a one hour podcast episode while we complete our to-do list. Podcasting has also shown a deeper connection to the end-user. They feel like they are having a conversation with you.
Podcasting and Business
With a trend that is growing with this much speed there are of course people that want to capitalize for business purposes. However, in my experience there is a fine line. No one wants to listen to a podcast that is all about self-promoting. It just is not interesting! People want to learn or be entertained, they don’t want to be sold something in the podcasting space. That is not to say you cannot sell, but it must be done correctly and strategically.
When creating a podcast you should set forth clear goals for it and the main one should not be to promote your business. That is a secondary outcome not a primary goal. For example, my primary goal for my podcast, Business for Designers and Developers, is to teach creatives the business side of freelancing. I share my experiences and knowledge without self-promoting. Let the podcast promote for you by presenting you as an expert. So, here are some ways you can utilize podcasting to grow your business without directly self-promoting.
Podcast for Your Clients
By this I mean create a podcast that your potential clients would want to listen to. If you are a realtor, create a podcast that talks about the ins and outs of buying or selling a home. Design firms can discuss the benefits of good branding as well as current design trends. This is providing listeners with the information they want and presents you as an expert. If you give accurate and useful information maybe when they are looking for a house or a new logo they will think of you. You’ve already built a relationship without even meeting the person.
Interview Ideal Clients
Another great way to podcast for your clients is to podcast WITH your ideal clients. This involves interviewing previous clients, potential clients or other relevant people in your clients’ space. These types of interviews provide your listeners the value of hearing you work with someone just like them. Getting interviews is not as hard as it seems, especially in a local market. Just ask, you never know who you might get.
Be a Guest on Another Podcast
Alternatively, you could choose to be a guest on someone else’s podcast. Again, this promotes you as an expert in your field. Just make sure that it is a relevant podcast to your industry. A lot of podcasts are looking for guests, so it is similarly not so hard to find one to be a guest on.
Leverage Your Current Audience
Your podcast is a great resource and takes effort to produce. Make sure that you don’t forget to promote to your existing audience. Include social media posts about new episodes. Send an email to your mailing list. Keep yourself on top of mind for people that already follow you in some capacity. I cannot stress enough how important referrals and repeat business are to sustain a business. It will be easier to convert someone who already has a relationship with you.
There are several methods to gain new clients but it is important to reiterate that you should not go for the hard sell. No one wants to hear self-promoting content. Make sure that your podcast is interesting and not a dry podcast about your business. Remember that organic podcast growth takes time but even one client gained from podcasting can make an entire year worth it.