Make sure that your audio or video includes an easy to remember phone number, because many people will be listening to your offers while they’re driving or working out. They won’t be able to simply click through to your website. That being said, make sure you also include your URL in your call to action so that those that are listening on their computer can immediately visit your site.
Keep your advertisements short. Listeners can easily ”fast forward” and not listen to your advertisements. If you keep them to 10-15 seconds they won’t make the effort to skip over them. Additionally, you should transition into them as you’re speaking so that the listeners aren’t immediately aware that they’re listening to an ad.
Make sure that you keep the ads free of time constraints. Due to the nature of a podcast, a person can listen to it today or six months from now. If your advertisements have a “limited time offer” call to action, then you’ll miss out on a lot of potential customers.
Hook your audience with interesting content before you insert your ads. Placing your ads in the beginning of your podcast can cause some listeners to tune out; however, if you’ve already hooked them with interesting information, they’ll listen to a quick plug to hear the rest of your information.
• Instructions or training manuals of your products
• Company news
• Commentary on your industry or industry analysis
• Creative endeavors like singing, reading poetry, reading fiction
• Behind the scenes information
• Interviews with experts
• Seminars or workshops
• Reviews on products or services
• “How to” guides
• From the field information
• Meetings or mastermind group discussions
• Call in shows
• Dialogues or conversations
• Quiz shows
• News magazine format
Like any online tool, content is king. In your podcast you absolutely must provide content that offers a benefit to your customers and target market. A podcast that is simply an advertisement for your services may get listened to once but it won’t be revisited, and it won’t be forwarded to friends, family and associates. However, a podcast that entertains and informs will grow and build your sales and your online presence.
Make sure that the content that you offer via your podcast differs from the content that you offer via your blog, newsletter or on your website.
Marketing your podcast:
The best way to increase the number of listeners you have is to tell everyone about your new podcast. If you have an email newsletter, then promote, and link to your podcast in your emails. If you have a blog, promote and link to your podcast there. Include a signature “visit my podcast” or “listen here” in every email. And of course, don’t forget to promote your podcast on your website! Place a link to your podcast on your website, with a headshot photo, a call to action like ‘listen here” and an intriguing headline.
Linking to and from favorite podcasts or other relevant podcasts is also a great way to increase your audience. And don’t worry if the number of listeners you have is small in the beginning. Podcasts are a medium and, like e-zines and blogs, tend to grow as word gets out. The key is to get listeners “hooked” on your podcast so that they’re listening to every podcast regularly and talking to their friends and associates about it. The best way to get them hooked is to provide great content.
How to Use Podcasting: Tips and Suggestions
Tip #2 Make sure that your broadcasting frequency is consistent. You want people to make listening to your podcast a habit.
Tip#3 Offer variety. Include different guests and formats if possible. This will keep listeners intrigued and engaged.
Tip #4 Make sure that your podcast content is different from your blog content, articles and e-zine content. Chances are that listeners will explore all of your content, and if it is redundant they will lose interest.
Tip #5 Focus on content, not sales pitches. Your listeners will readily listen if you’re providing content that offers them a benefit. However, if it’s merely a sales pitch you’ll lose them immediately.
Tip #6 Plan on Podcasting for the long haul. Podcasters who “test” the medium with one or two podcasts lose out on the opportunity of building an audience. Podcasting is a medium that builds an audience over time and a “test run” won’t give you the results you’re looking for.
Tip #7 Don’t read directly from your script. Practice it a few times so that you know what you’re going to say and then let the podcast recording flow naturally.
Tip #8 Invite others to contribute to your podcast by calling in, speaking, or contributing topic ideas.
Tip #9 Include music at the beginning and end, and use the same music each time so that your audience begins to identify the music with your podcast.
Tip #10 Give each podcast a headline or title. Make sure that it offers your audience a benefit such as “10 Tips to Lifelong Happiness.”
Tip #11 Podcasting is a very personal medium. Talk to your audience like you’re talking to a friend, as if you’re having a one-on-one conversation.
Tip #12 Podcasting, like any marketing tool, needs to be tested and evaluated from time to time to make sure that you’re getting optimal exposure. Track downloads and test headlines for open rates. Track click through rates by sending audiences to specific web pages. Many audio/podcasting services give you important statistics on downloads, play time and listens to completion. This makes it easy to know if people are listening and enables you to make quick changes to meet what your audience demands.
Tip #13 If you’re uneasy writing a podcast or audio script, you can outsource the project by hiring a freelance writer to create your script. Remember to personalize the script when you make your recording.
Tip #14 Before you begin Podcasting, research your competition’s podcasts or audio files. Find out what they do that you can do better and differently.
Tip #15 Before you begin Podcasting, visit and listen to numerous successful podcasts inside and outside of your industry. What makes the good ones good? What can you take away from the successful podcasts and make your own?
Adding a podcast to your marketing mix and to your website is a valuable and economical marketing tool that can bring you fantastic results. You’ll grow your target audience, build a community around your brand, product, or service, and – best of all – you’ll help people learn more. Podcasts are a win-win for both you and your customer.