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Cross promote with other podcasters. Generate new listeners with the help of your fellow podcasters. Appear on each other's program as an expert guest interview. Trade :15 second commercial time with colleagues where they can promote their podcast on yours, and in turn, you on theirs. The promotion can help to grow your audience and, best of all, it doesn't cost you anything.
Better sounding interviews. One way to attract listeners to a new podcast is through interviews with compelling guests. However, scoring quality interviews can be difficult for a newer podcast. Whenever you can, in-person interviews are better than those done over the phone. Not only is the audio quality better, but in-person interviews can help your guest feel more comfortable and can make for a more natural conversation. Ever notice that you’ll rarely hear a phone interview on National Public Radio? In-person or in-studio just sounds better. Don’t expect your guests to come to you. Be prepared to grab your recording equipment and hit the road.
Do your homework. It is not uncommon to hear a show host say they spend two hours of prep time for every one hour of their program. The effort needed to research your topic, schedule any needed guests, prepare production elements, and edit in post production does take time. One can only imagine how many hours of prep went into the making of just one hour of Serial. When prepped properly, the investment of time can result with a compelling podcast that keeps your listeners coming back for more.
Test your ideas. Use social media to gather feedback on your podcast. Ask how a particular segment or interview resonated with your audience. Share highlights of your most recent podcast and test content ideas for future programs. You’ll be amazed about the quality of the feedback and input, if you pick the right topic.
Self critique regularly. A regular self examination of your podcast can help to keep your podcast relevant, industry state of the art, and improve the overall appeal of your podcast. Here are a few questions to ask your self on a regular basis.
How will my on-air persona best compliment this subject or help to tell a story?
Does every guest pass the "who cares" test?
What audio elements can help to keep my listeners engaged?
Will the subject matter and approach motivate a listener to share my podcast with others?
Does my show open immediately grab the listener?
What type of music intro and voice-over announcer will be used in the show open?
Is it appropriate to use bumper music coming in and out of commercial breaks?
Will soundbites and audio effects help tell my story or keep the podcast moving?
Is the technical quality, and that of my guests, comparable with higher-bar industry standards?
Does my show close compel the listener to come back for future episodes?
There is an app for that -- you! Listening to a podcast is a personal decision and podcasters could benefit by making access to their programs more individualized. One way to accomplish this is with a custom show specific app for your podcast. With an individualized app, fans can easily download your app from the Apple Store and listen at will from their smart devices. Unlike the big-box-apps, there are no menus of hosts to search through and no pop-up adds, just easy access to your podcast. A custom app can strengthen your brand and drive traffic to your social media sites.
Podcast listener phone calls? Even if the initial version of your podcast isn’t a live broadcast, you can still take listener phone calls. Simply promote a phone number that will be answered by either a live person or voice mail. Call these listeners back (using an off-air producer) while you are producing your podcast or pre-record a phone conversation for insertion into your program. This technique will not only provide you with listener interaction, it will give you complete control over caller quality and content.
What is your positioning statement? Just as terrestrial broadcasters utilize a positioning statement to promote their radio shows, so should your podcast. Positioning statements can help to define and enhance your brand, promote awareness, and help aid recall which can lead to more listening sessions. A good positioning statement should articulate the essence of your podcast while highlighting a listener benefit. For example, Mike's Home Improvement Show. Advice and tips, so you can do-it-yourself.
Aircheck your podcast on a regular basis. Listening to your shows after the fact is a great way to polish your performance. Evaluate the pacing of your delivery, the amount of time you spend on “who cares” content versus the meat of your subject matter, technical quality, and overall on-air confidence. Aging your shows a week will give you a whole new perspective for self-critique. And remember, your performance was never as bad … or as good … as you thought.
Have questions on what is the right strategy to boost your podcast's visibility? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or
480-993-3150 for answers in a non-selling environment.