These days it seems like everyone and their grandmother has a podcast… but should you, as a business, be creating one?
They’re a great way of showing off a passion in an interesting way, as well as promoting yourself as a thought leader along the way. It’s easy to see why businesses are jumping on the bandwagon.
Have you ever thought about dipping your toes into podcasting and making your own business recording? We’ve included our top tips to get set up below, as well as some benefits which may help to convince the sceptics out there.
1. It’s pretty cheap
One of the best things about podcasts is that they are relatively cheap to make. For a business, this is generally a pretty large tick in the positive column. Considering the high pool of potential listeners and the relatively low amount of money needed to get a podcast going, it can be a bit of a no brainer.
It is worth splashing out on a decent microphone – but even then, a small budget can go a long way.
Depending on the nature of your podcast, you might want to get some guests lined up. This is a great way of increasing the appeal, providing increased validity to its subject and keeping things fresh and interesting. With this in mind you might want to keep some money aside to incentivise new guests; however, with a bit of string pulling or demonstrating your podcast as mutually beneficial promotion, you might be able to bypass this.
2. It’s a way to show off your business’s fun side
Did you know that Netflix has a podcast called Netflix-tion, where they get actors from their popular TV shows to read short stories they wrote when they were children?
OK, that isn’t true – but you can see how it could be (Netflix if you want to pick this idea up, call me).
Instead of using podcasts as a sales tool, the best podcasts find their own personal niche. One that inspires great content from the people on it, and one that listeners ultimately find entertaining.
Podcasts are a fairly unique medium, in that some of the most popular ones around have subjects as random as pornography written by family members, or blow by blow crime investigations. Podcasts are your chance to think outside the box.
Struggling to find your niche with a more business-focused podcast? Think about specific aspects of the industry (interesting stories, people, dramatic moments), record it in a weird location, or really focus on the quality of guests you have.
We have all seen speeches, interviews and TV talk shows before, but the ones that really stick with you are the ones that break the mould, take their participants out of their comfort zone, and try something new and fun (carpool karaoke anyone?).
3. Know it and show it
Having a podcast gives you a great platform to show what you know and care about. The longer it runs, the higher the quality of guests and the higher the production quality is, the more it will reflect on you and your business’s ability and skills.
It is also important to mention that just because you have a platform to talk about your specialist subject, that doesn’t mean people necessarily want to listen. Nobody likes a show-off. Be humble, focus on making your podcast entertaining and helpful, and converse with your audience.
4. Build relationships with other people and businesses
I have only ever been on one podcast in my life (so far). It was called Geekamania and basically involved me and my friends sitting around a microphone talking about what films we had seen that week. I was a latecomer to the podcast and I still remember feeling excited and a little pleased that they wanted me to come talk about my opinions.
Inviting people that you work with, (or want to work with), to be guests is a great way to build your relationship with them. It also provides a fantastic environment to engage in casual conversation with people you admire.
5. Find out what people really think
Once your podcast is a few episodes in, you should have a few loyal listeners (hopefully) that you can start to turn to with questions and feedback. From a business perspective, this provides a great opportunity to get live feedback from people in your industry.
Top tips for starting a business podcast
Now that we have hopefully convinced you that starting a podcast is a good idea, it is time to bring you back down to earth with some sad news about podcasts.
- There are thousands out there
- Just because you have a podcast, it doesn’t mean people want to listen to you
- It can be very hard to prove any kinds of ROI on podcasts
If you are serious about starting a podcast, then it is vital that you put the time and effort in to make it good and stand out.
To help with this, here are a few tips:
- Pick your niche
We have already spoken about the value in finding a particular niche, and really it shouldn’t be understated. Whether your niche is to ask famous marketers questions whilst they ride bikes (A Wheely Good Podcast), or asking Chefs the worst culinary disaster they have ever seen (Cooking Hell), zero in on what will make your podcast unique. You can have those two titles for free.
- Pick your host
Some people have great radio voices – others, sadly don’t. Don’t go easy and pick Larry to be your host just because he doesn’t have as much work to do this month. There is a reason no one wants to talk to Larry. He is boring. Sorry Larry.
- Pick your platform
There are tons of platforms for podcasts out there. You could upload your podcast as a Youtube Video, or upload it to Spotify or iTunes. Our advice is to try out a large variety of platforms to start until you see where your listeners come from.
- Promote it
If you have spent time and effort on your podcast then you want to make sure you give it the opportunity to be seen. Share it on social channels, talk to people about it, and maybe even put a bit of budget behind boosting it.
- Invest in good quality equipment
A little budget for equipment can go a long way when it comes to recording your podcast. You don’t have to have the best products on the market, but spending a little will help make your podcast sound more professional – and help it stand out from the other amateurs.
Hopefully, this advice gives you a good head start with your podcast. Get out there and make something cool – and If you ask nicely enough, we’ll be on it. We’re nice like that.
Check out the podcast a member of our Brand & Marketing team, Amber Vellacott, did with Digital Women & Lucy Hall.
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