Everybody’s got a podcast these days.
It seems like everytime I open up LinkedIn, I discover that somebody is launching a new podcast series where they have weekly chats with their colleagues.
And there’s nothing wrong with this.
The Benefits a Podcast Can Yield
If used correctly, a podcast can accomplish the following:
- Personalize your organization and internal network relationships
- Create a stronger connection between you and your audience
- Grow your network
- Introduce your audience to other thought leaders
- Educate an audience through strong storytelling and helpful insights
- Become a source of revenue for your business
Here’s the catch: These things are only possible with proper planning. Opening up the voice memo app on your phone and rambling for an hour can actually do more harm for your business than good.
A poorly planned and executed podcast could give you less authority with the audience you’ve worked so hard to build.
In this article, I’m going to talk about how to roll a podcast out using my experiences with BW Mission’s own podcast, One Away.
Make Your Podcast Personal
At the heart of every good podcast, is a connection between you and your audience.
When people open up their podcasting apps, there are no shortage of listening options. There are interview shows, true crime shows, news programs, and the list goes on.
The shows that rise to the top of the charts are the ones that are able to connect with people in a meaningful way. They’re the ones that educate us or challenge our views. They’re the ones that make us laugh or reflect.
Podcasts provide a unique opportunity to connect with your audience in a way that other mediums don’t. They allow you to tell your own story, respond to your listeners, and continually iterate in an intimate way.
Through these personal conversations about pivotal moments in guest’s lives, you tap into questions and areas of life that would normally never arise.
Podcasts allow you to engage with your audience, provide a deeper understanding of your values, and create a connection.
Grow Your Network
Who doesn’t want to be interviewed?
Having your own podcast opens doors that might have been closed otherwise. It gives you a reason to reach out to those people you’ve always wanted to talk to, but have never had a real reason to.
These could be authors, speakers, people you’ve always looked up to, or potential business partners.
Having your own podcasts allows you to interact with some of the brightest thinkers and entrepreneurs today and introduces your audience to their work. You expand their reach and yours.
Through podcasting, I have been able to have in depth conversations with those I am close with in my network and those who I have never had a conversation with before. Each conversation I have leads to a new perspective, discovery and or revelation about the individual or myself
If done properly, podcasting can become another source of revenue for your business.
It’s no secret that podcast advertisements can be lucrative. Podcasting as an industry has evolved to the point where there are entire companies like Gimlet Media and Pushkin Industries dedicated just to producing podcasts.
The important thing to keep in mind when it comes to producing a podcast is that money should not be the primary reason you start a podcast. The first and primary goal of your podcast should be to add value to the lives of your audience.
Money is a short-term motivator.
Unless you are a celebrity or have the built-in infrastructure of a large organization, you are more than likely not going to have hundreds of thousands of listeners on day one — meaning that most advertisers won’t be interested in spending their budgets on your program.
If you want to sell ad spots, you must first build a large audience.
And audience building is all about long-term thinking.
Podcasting can become an additional source of revenue, but first, you have to put out a product that people actually want to consume. Add value to the lives of our audience. Revenue comes later.
With that said, understand the type of business you are in and how a podcast elevates it.
For us, we realize building a large, robust, and engaged podcast audience will take many years. Therefore, our podcast is currently a tool for us to feature our clients and individuals in our network to spread missions that matter. We turn each podcast into a transcript and then an article to distribute in our newsletter and then into our social feeds. We want to create maximum exposure for our clients so their message can be heard and exposed to a built in audience.
Planning & Strategy
The benefits of podcasting are numerous.
Compared to other sources of media like television, podcasts are incredibly cheap to make. You can get a good microphone for around $100, there’s plenty of free music online, (YetiBlue) and there are sites that will host your podcast for free.
What determines the success of a podcast isn’t the barrier to entry — it’s the ability to plan ahead and be strategic about how it’s rolled out, who it’s catered to, and how you add value to the lives of your audience.