When you think about new ways to market your company, “podcast” may not necessarily be the first idea that pops into your head. But with their easy accessibility and convenience, podcasts don’t get discussed as often as they should.
So what, exactly, are they?
Podcasts are a recorded digital medium in which segments are uploaded and downloaded from the internet, to be listened to on-demand, at the leisure of the listener. The medium started out largely as a platform for technology based conversations – only appropriate considering its very functionality depended on a certain level of technical know-how.
Podcasts are a great way to engage with thought leaders in your industry, which establishes authority. Your brand will appear to be representative of expertise in your field because you are in conversation with other established leaders, making customers feel comfortable that your product and/or service is borne out of not just profitability, but critical thinking and hard-earned experience.
As time has progressed, the realm of podcasting has reached into many other genres as well. The iTunes store boasts 16 major categories and many more sub-categories beneath those. One field where the medium has been trending upwards in the more immediately recent past is marketing. Content marketers are always looking for new formats with which to create valuable content, and podcasts are one of the more interesting of these. They benefit from their flexibility and offer business owners great opportunity to position themselves as brand authorities, and – perhaps more importantly – personalize the experience of interacting with their brand.
Education for Your Company – Not Just Your Audience
You don’t necessarily have to create a podcast in order for the medium to improve your overall marketing strategy. Not every company caters to a consumer base that would make a good podcast audience. However, even if your company doesn’t have one, you can still benefit from the countless podcasts out there that are about marketing.
These educational resources are a great way to bone up on marketing trends and strategies while you’re going about the other business of your day. Also, the fact that they’re prerecorded means that you can listen to them at your own consistency and convenience, whenever you happen to have the time. Here are some examples of marketing podcasts that provide especially good instruction for marketers, no matter how experienced:
- Marketing Smarts Podcast – This podcast – from MarketingProfs – excels by offering a wide variety of weekly guests to discuss the latest trends and best practices in the world of marketing. Previous guests have included marketing executives from companies like JetBlue, Ford, and LinkedIn.
- SEO101 – Whether it’s your particular strong suit or not, SEO is vital to your company’s marketing. If, like many, the technical aspects of SEO are a bit of a mystery, then this podcast is for you. Hosts Ross Dunn and John Carcutt do a great job of being educational and entertaining, without getting bogged down in technical details that aren’t directly helpful for you and your company.
- Marketing Over Coffee – One of the benefits of podcasting from a creator’s perspective is that they can be done in a very casual and stress-free way (more on this in a bit). For a listener, though, that can be a positive as well. Hosts John Wall (alas, not the NBA star) and Christopher Penn record the show in a coffee shop on a weekly basis, and while the tone is casual, the information discussed is extremely informative.
- Internet Business Mastery – This podcast comes from a pair of internet entrepreneurs who’ve benefited immensely from the still-developing landscape of online businesses. In t heir weekly podcast they discuss strategies to adopt and pitfalls to avoid.
The Power of Audible Longform
It’s no secret that long form content is a valuable addition to your marketing strategies. While short posts on blogs and social media sites are a good way to keep your content stream fresh and consistent, the longer pieces of content provide an equally important service. They are what prove to your consumer base that you genuinely do have expertise in your field and have grappled with the issues that are affecting them in a meaningful and intellectual way.
Usually, this benefit is represented by written content – an eBook, for example. These are great because they take the educational nature of a blog post and expand into further detail. It raises the stakes of engagement, because if you’re not genuinely interested in providing content that’s actually helpful to your clientele, you’ll be exposed by the lengthy platform of an eBook. Because of this, successful eBooks are a more memorable and meaningful interaction with your customers.
One thing they do not have is the convenience of the shorter posts. That’s where a podcast can step right in and provide the best of both worlds for you. They can be as long as you wish them to be, but clocking in around 45 minutes to an hour tends to be the industry norm. At this length you have time to really explore a topic and come to some helpful conclusions. If you’re writing a blog post about, say, email marketing, the scope of the post would have to be fairly rigid and narrow in order for you to draw a definitive conclusion (ex. “How to Add Alt Text to Your Email Images”). If this happens to be what a customer is looking for at the time that you post it, well great! But that isn’t always the experience that your average customer is looking for. The great thing about a podcast is that it can be centered on a general theme, and if you establish quality early on, customers will keep coming back to it regardless of where you go with that theme. That comfortable mix between educational and entertaining – personal and productive – will make it a valuable resource for your audience.
Also, podcasts are inherently more convenient than their written long form brethren. While reading in-depth written content requires relatively undivided attention, listeners can enjoy your podcast while doing other productive things with their day, or just in their car on the way to work. This encourages interaction with your brand in a casual setting, which helps give off the impression that you are not just an authority in your field, but also a friendly and welcomed presence. It proves to your consumer base that, as a brand, you provide value in an educational and familial way.
Podcasting occupies a very particular niche in the wide world of content marketing. It can be the perfect blend of authoritative and personal (not to mention casual and informative) that your audience is looking for. If your audience is hungry for that kind of content, recording a podcast and marketing it to your consumer base is definitely worth the effort.
Even if not, though, you can still benefit from the educational value of podcast for yourself. Marketing podcasts are wide-ranging in style and can be the perfect morning routine to get you in the marketing mindset!
Want to create a podcast for your audience, but not sure what they’d be interested in hearing about? Download the worksheet below to begin tapping into your audience’s mindset!
This article was syndicated from Business 2 Community: Should Your Marketing Efforts Include a Podcast?
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