(By Matty Staudt) Unless you have a massive social media following or the support of a big company, your first few podcasts probably won’t hit the numbers you want. Like most creative endeavors, podcasts take patience. Low numbers don’t mean your content is bad, but there are things you can do to push through the early times and make it to a breakthrough. Here are five things to think about early in your podcast journey.
1- Promotion- All great content needs promoted. Make sure you have a real promotional plan for your podcast that includes social media, promos on other podcasts, and aligning yourself with shows that have similar audiences. People will not just find your content on it’s own, you have to make them aware of it. I also suggest finding Reddit groups and Facebook groups devoted to your genre and promoting there.
2- Listen Through Rates- Most good RSS feed providers will provide you with data on your listen through rates. Are people listening to your whole show or checking out after a few minutes? If they are checking out, then you need to rethink your content and how you are structuring your show.
3- Make Goals– Before you launch, make realistic goals for listenership. Everyone wants a million downloads, but most likely setting a goal in the low thousands or hundreds for the first few months is more realistic.
4- Enlist Friends and Family- Self promotion is everything and nobody will support you more than friends and family. Send them links and sample social media posts to have them help promote your show. Make it easy for them by giving them directions on leaving reviews and sharing your links.
5- Have Fun- The best content and podcasts come from a place of love for the process. If you are not having fun and getting disheartened by your numbers, then maybe a podcast is not the right fit for you. Knowing when to stop is important, but must come from a place of losing passion and not disheartening numbers.
I always say, that you can’t call yourself a podcaster until you have done at least 50 episodes. If you have not done that many and are worried about numbers, then re-evalute your strategy and goals, Don’t give up too soon.