The Pros of Podcasting
Podcasts are one of the latest trends in media consumption. Subscription-based products and voice-activated platforms like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home are seeing significant growth, which led to 2018 being a breakthrough year for podcast consumption. Research shows the number of listeners will increase to 45 percent of the population this year. These listeners are affluent, educated consumers in the coveted 18-54 age range.
Podcasts are a great way to target a specific population and connect with your target audience. Whether you’re an online school, nonprofit, or faith-based organization already working in radio or you’re considering a jump into that medium, this may be the perfect addition to your communications strategy.
Why are Podcasts So Popular?
In its simplest terms, a podcast is digital audio content that’s available online to download to a computer or mobile device. It’s typically available as a series, and subscribers can receive new installments automatically. Podcasts feature content that digs deeper into specific topics and special interests that traditional radio formats can’t manage. This is what makes podcasts are so popular!
Podcasts can be as professional as you want them to be. Some are merely a group of people discussing different perspectives on a common topic, while others include theme music, sound effects, and professional editing.
Let’s look at the top four reasons why podcasts are the hot audio trend:
1. It’s Flexible
We all live busy lives. Live radio starts and ends at a particular time, and may not fit into your daily schedule. If you do have time to tune in, it may take a while to catch up with the conversation.
Podcasts are “on-demand,” allowing your listeners to download or stream the episodes whenever they want. Your audience can also pause and rewind if they need to take a break or want to listen to a specific section again.
When a live radio broadcast starts, that’s it. No edits, no changes. Conversely, podcasts can be re-recorded and edited as many times as necessary. That flexibility allows podcasts to sound clean and polished versus the unpredictability of live radio.
2. It’s Niche-Oriented
Radio and podcasting approach their audiences in vastly different ways. Radio stations must appeal to a mass audience to increase the chances of sustained tune-in. Podcasts, however, can hone in on a specific interest or niche subject.
If you’ve laid the groundwork with a multichannel marketing campaign, your target audience is already out there looking for your content. They should have no problem finding your podcast as long as you use the right titles and tags when uploading.
If you already have video or audio content available, you practically have a podcast! Converting this content and bringing it to a podcasting platform will make it that much easier for your audience to find you.
Organizations that aren’t quite sure where to start should consider this: You probably have a number of compelling success or transformation stories. These are the perfect building blocks for a narrative or interview-type podcast. If you utilize the many people who are passionate about your cause or program, it will help share your message.
Also, keep in mind that having people from your organization as guests on other podcasts is another great way to spread your message – and can lead to beneficial collaborations as well.
3. It’s Engaging
An engaged podcast listener often becomes a loyal follower. Typically, once someone has found and enjoyed your content, they will come back for more, helping you build a devoted audience. Since your episodes will live online forever, listeners will always be able to find your podcast.
Organizations can use podcasts to develop a more personal relationship with their targeted audience. Ask for feedback, speak directly to any issues, and offer behind-the-scenes insights that can’t be found anywhere else. Loyal listeners will be more likely to tell others about your podcast and share your message.
4. Another Way to Connect
Think of podcasting as another communication channel. Use it to distribute already existing material or to launch new messaging. You can also share podcast episodes as blog posts, email newsletters, or social media content. Always look for ways to put your materials out across multiple channels to reach the largest possible audience. Any live events, presentations, and lectures can all be released in podcast form.
Crafting original content takes time and resources. But taking existing content and bringing it to a podcast-friendly platform is an easy tool to add to your digital marketing arsenal.
Monetize Your Podcast
For podcasters, this might be the most exciting part! According to DigiDay, podcast ad revenues are expected to reach $514.5 million in the U.S. this year. Advertisers and sponsors of your podcast can become a significant source of revenue. Moreover, improved search capabilities allow host providers to catalog and monetize the highest-ranking content.
To Podcast, or Not to Podcast
There is no doubt that podcasts can help position your organization as a thought leader in your field. Tapping into this market can be a powerful element of your marketing strategy. Not only will it build brand awareness and strengthen your network, but it will increase the impact of your organization’s mission.
If you are already utilizing traditional or online radio, taking your program to this platform is a natural progression. Consider using podcasting to present a recap of your regular program, or use it to bring to life the compelling stories and transformations within your organization.
There is an audience(s) on the podcasting platform just waiting to hear what you have to say – are you ready to reach them?