2018 has been the year of the podcast. Water cooler conversations have turned from “What’s the latest Netflix binge watch?” to “Which podcasts are you downloading?”
The statistics indicate this momentum is not slowing down anytime soon. According to Edison research, 75 million people listen to podcasts monthly and the average listener consumes an average of seven podcasts per week — up 19% from last year.
There are an estimated 550,00 podcasts currently available on iTunes and approximately 8,000 new shows are being added per week, listened to by 73 million people monthly. Business owners are using podcasting as an effective content marketing strategy. It offers a platform to build brands by communicating messages in alignment with individual business philosophies. They can change the conversation happening in a specific industry by being positioned as an expert and hosting guests who provide additional professional perspectives.
How does podcasting provide a big benefit to your business?
➢ An engaged listener leads to a loyal customer. Hosting your own podcast opens up possibilities for your customers to feel closer to you and your business. They develop a more personal relationship with you and are more likely to want to do business as a result. Podcasting can be used as a way to open up a line of communication between you and your target market. Get feedback, speak directly to customer service issues, offer behind-the-scenes insights and build stronger relationships with those who are doing business with you.
➢ It creates a digital marketing content hub. Crafting original content can be taxing on time and resources, yet is vital to a robust marketing campaign. You can parlay your podcast content into a comprehensive strategy by doing a few simple tasks. Start with recording the episode and having that episode transcribed. Repurpose the content into social media posts, email newsletters, blogs, or e-book content.
➢ One step closer to being a published author. Get a head start on your book by generating the content through your podcast. The edited transcriptions can become the foundation for the future chapters of your bestseller. Books become bestsellers by customers buying books. Use your podcast as a way to build your audience before your book release and you have a leg up on potential sales right out of the gate.
How do I monetize my podcast?
The most successful podcasts consistently release an episode with great content and audio production at least once weekly. Business owners and marketing departments are beginning to allocate the monies for these podcasts out of their marketing and sales budgets since they are being used as a business development tool. Even so, the costs involved can also be offset by integrating monetization strategies of varying degrees.
The most common way podcasts are currently generating revenues is by selling ads, sponsorships, and inserting product endorsements into a show. The value of these campaigns can be increased by offering increased exposure by including them in additional social media, blogs, and weekly newsletters. You can offer to interview the founder of the product on your show as long as it fits into your regularly featured programming. These options allow you to deliver additional impact for your advertisers and sponsors. There is always the option of up-charging them for this added exposure to your fans and followers.
It is becoming increasingly popular to create recurring revenue opportunities with podcasting through the development of monthly subscriptions. These allow members access to VIP content, interactive Q&A sessions, and behind-the-scenes interviews. More podcast hosting services are integrating user-friendly technology into their platforms to make it easy for listeners to support their favorite shows. Patreon has successfully been the go-to online portal since 2013. Companies such as Anchor now have this service available.
Podcasters are leveraging their shows to generate traffic to their websites as a way to increase sales on downloadable products, online courses. It is also a way to increase affiliate revenues by promoting links on the show and on their websites. Branded show merchandise is an upcoming fan favorite too!
Clients investing in industry-specific trade show marketing can effectively increase traffic to booths by recording podcasts live from the show and interviewing guests on site. This method works well to drive new sales for authors going on a book tour or to increase ticket sales for businesses that produce multi-city events.
More innovative monetization strategies continue to evolve. We recommend internal business communication podcasts to our clients at Produce Your Podcast as a means of increasing efficiency of operations. It becomes a new way to share updated information across departments and remote teams.
The podcast market is not yet saturated, which makes it an energizing and resourceful marketing strategy going into 2019 to increase the bottom line of your business.
Traci Long DeForge is the founder of Produce Your Podcast, a podcast consulting agency. She can be reached at [email protected]