Podcasting 101: The Benefits of a Podcast

Podcast 101

The first question that may arise from this blog post is “what is a podcast?”. With much terminology being used within the digital world, it’s a great question to start with.

Accordingly to the dictionary, a podcast is:

a digital audio file made available on the Internet for downloading to a computer or mobile device, typically available as a series, new instalments of which can be received by subscribers automatically.

Therefore a podcast is very similar to listening to a one-off radio show online. An on-demand radio station. The show can be downloaded onto a digital device and listened to at a later date which also gives listeners the convenience aspect. A listener can usually subscribe to the channel that the podcast comes from in order to hear future shows and events.

So where does the word podcast come from?

It originally derived from Apple’s iPod digital media player and also radio’s broadcast term. Together making the podcast.

You can find podcasts everywhere, from iTunes to your favourite website. It is unique way to reach a large audience across numerous demographics.

And podcast provides a way to reach across the globe without spending a fortune.

Creating a Podcast

What benefits can using a podcast have?

Podcasts are an alternative to video. Although videos can benefit a business greatly in its marketing strategy, not everyone is comfortable with being on the face of a video camera. And not everyone has the best equipment to produce a good quality video that’s worthy to promote a business. Therefore a podcast is a great way for a company keeping up with digital and still using the latest means.

Podcasts can build customer relationships. Yes a podcast is one-sided but the listener feels part of that conversation. They engage with what the speaker is talking about and usually have something in common or in relation to the speaker. A podcast is something that you would choose to listen to, therefore it is something that you are interested in. Hearing and listening to podcasts builds trust and brand awareness – which is vital within any business, especially small businesses that are in competition with larger brands.

Podcasts are great for building confidence. As mentioned, a presenter may not be the best in front of a camera, however it is a great place to build that confidence and to learn new skills in communication. Being ‘out of sight’ when it is produce gives the speaker more leeway to experiment and correct mistakes. This in turn can build confidence for when faced with public speaking engagements and meetings where speaking-out would not necessarily be considered.

Podcasts create engagement. If marketed correctly and an good audience is present, a podcast can create real engagement for a business and the limits to what you can do with that are endless. The use of ads within a podcast is also a great way to engage with an audience too. In this Inc.com post it states that in a recent survey of 300,000 podcast listeners, that 63% of people bought something a host had promoted on their show. When asked if advertising within podcasts had affected their behavior, 71 percent said they’d visited a sponsor’s website, while 62 percent said they’d considered that new product or service.

This result is amazing and the benefits of producing a podcast simply cannot be ignored with figures like that!

How to approach podcasting

A podcast is a part of your marketing strategy and should be addressed as any piece of marketing would be. Therefore you need to plan your podcast:

  1. What will your podcasts be based on?
    Be specific to your niche and you will have better chance in reaching your ideal audience.
    Don’t forget that you are an expert in your field. You have the knowledge of your product and the experience behind you. Use this information to create your podcasts.
  2. Create plans and divide up content to make a series of podcast on a particular subject.
  3. Invite an industry experts to be part of your podcasts and interview them.
  4. Ask your audience what they would like to hear from you, ask for feedback and obtain suggestions on what material your listeners want to hear.
  5. What is relevant to your brand?
    Ensure that you stay on topic and keep it relevant to your brand’s message. If you go off track, listeners may get bored or decide to no longer follow you.

Did you know that there is even an International Podcast day? That’s right – find out more about the history of podcasts and how you can get involved.

There is lots of advice out there on getting started with podcasting and our advice is to stay authentic, be true to your brand and engage with your listeners.

 

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