In times of turmoil, the greatest opportunities are not just revealed—they’re created. More than 37% of American adults are now regular podcast listeners, while leading professionals and entrepreneurs leverage their podcasts for tens of millions of dollars in annual revenue.
Even with the disruption caused by COVID-19, there has never been a better time to explore one of the fastest growing avenues for business growth. Here are three ways a podcast can transform your business.
1. Deliver a win-win.
As we all know, there are a lot of sharks out there happy to screw over a customer to make a quick buck. This focus on a single transactional element, rather than establishing a long-term relationship through a mutual exchange of value, is arguably the worst trait a business can have.
Voice humanizes your brand, so having your own podcast allows you to build trust with both your prospective audience and your existing clients, while even ensuring your staff keep your company’s mission front of mind. With each episode, your content will consistently add value to improve the lives of your listeners, whoever they may be, without you even needing to leave your home/office.
This value comes in many forms. For example:
- How I Built This reveals how leading companies were established;
- Serial uses investigative journalism to explore criminal cases; and
- The Joe Rogan Experience seemingly breaks every mold with its uncensored long-form conversations on civil liberties and current events.
In what should be good news for entrepreneurs and professionals everywhere, there is no box you must fit into. As the previous podcasts illustrate, you might even find the greatest rewards in the most enigmatic places.
Your podcast is also the perfect avenue to educate your audience. Regardless of industry, strive to deliver the best possible service to your clients and focus on establishing a long-term relationships—a win-win.
2. Align your brand with industry experts.
One of the easiest ways to grow your audience is to bring on interesting and engaging guests. Not only will it build your credibility, it will enable you to attract even bigger names, too, and then you’re only limited by your imagination. Think of it as a way to massively elevate your own personal network, while at the same time boosting your audience numbers.
Once you’ve secured your big-name interviews and established your captive listener base, it’s extremely important to not get complacent. It’s confused many podcasters, but the reality is that your audience won’t stick around out of loyalty—they’ll stick around if you keep delivering great valuable content. Remember, they’re your audience, so at the very least you owe them an ROI on their time. Always focus on delivering value, with both your guests and your listeners.
3. What to do with a successful podcast.
If you follow these steps, and focus on consistency, you’ll be well on your way to having a successful podcast! So, what can you do with it? That will come down to how resourceful you are. The top podcasters in the world leverage their shows for massive business growth in a whole bunch of ways. Eventually, you’ll reach a tipping point where high-profile guests will be reaching out to appear on your show, rather than you needing to chase them. But that’s only the beginning.
If you really want to make an impact, your primary goal should be to learn more about your growing audience and what problems they face. The more you understand what struggles they have, the easier it will be for you introduce solutions that alleviate those pain-points. There are an infinite number of products and services you can create, as well as virtual events, coaching programs and retreats.
A successful podcast will also give you a platform to highlight causes that are important to you. For example, perhaps there’s a charity that you want to raise funds for, or a crowdfund to support. Having a captive audience who believe in your spirit will give you the avenue to illuminate the world in whatever way you see fit.
Launching a podcast seems easy enough until you actually start doing it. In his quote “An hour of planning can save you 10 hours of doing,” Dale Carnegie reminds us of how a detailed plan can make any new pursuit easier. But, when it comes to launching a podcast, how do you start that plan?
First, you need to ask yourself some questions. With clear responses to these questions, the planning process—and launch of your podcast—becomes much simpler.
1. Why do I want to do this podcast?
This question might seem obvious, but seriously, why do you want to do a podcast? If you’re not sure of the answer, or you’re just going through the motions because “everyone’s doing it,” you may need to dig a little deeper.
For example, if you’re a family lawyer, your motivation for starting a podcast might be that you want other family lawyers to know they’re not alone in their feelings, doubts and anxieties. This mission would only have become more purposeful in the COVID-19 pandemic, as people throughout the world are required to stay self-quarantined in their homes—more alone than ever.
The family law podcast might be created not only to dispel your own feelings of being alone but to let other lawyers know they had an ally in you and your audience, too.
2. What do I want to achieve with this podcast?
We all experience stage fright prior to doing anything out of our comfort zone, especially if we’re exposing our emotions to the world. However, if you start your podcast for the right reasons, you will be bringing guidance and support to people in desperate need of it. Yet, only once your podcast is launched will you truly experience this validation.
To ensure it resonates with your audience, think about what you want to achieve with the podcast. In our earlier example, the family lawyer might want to give a voice to lawyers who are experiencing the same feelings of self-doubt and unhappiness. The podcast would be a safe avenue to explore those feelings, while introducing strategies to bring more happiness and fulfilment to their work and, ultimately, their lives.
What you want to achieve doesn’t need to revolutionize the world. In fact, it’s that pursuit of perfection that leads to inaction. Your goal could be something as simple as filling a need that doesn’t currently exist in podcast form.
As humans, we all have periods of feeling alone, so if your goal is to connect other people through a common experience, that might be enough.
3. Who is my ideal listener?
Once you’ve answered the first two questions, this one should be easy. Think about who your ideal listener is—for our family lawyer example, it would be lawyers who are feeling burnt out in their profession.
A great way to figure out who your ideal listener would be is just to start talking to yourself. Yes, talk to yourself. Start playing with some topics you’ve wanted to cover on your show and make notes on the key points. Once you see your talking points and intended messages on paper, it will be easier to imagine who would benefit most from those words.
Questions are how we navigate the world around us, and it’s no different when starting a new business venture or developing a podcast concept. Ask yourself these questions and listen to the answers.
The rest will fall into place.
We Are Podcast will be hosting the virtual event House Sessions on May 21-23, 2020. This will be the world’s first multi-speaker, multi-day, multi-stream live virtual podcasting conference for businesses and brands. House Sessions will feature renowned experts in podcasting, marketing, and entrepreneurship. Get your tickets here.
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