Podcast Like a Pro

Tips to create passionate subscribers

Jennifer Kirby, PentaVision Media
Podcasting today is what radio was in the 1940s. We gather around our smart speakers or use our smart phones, vs. enormous, ornate wood-plated radios, to listen to our favorite shows. What’s more, podcasts, like the 1940’s radio programs, are replete with sponsors who recognize the medium as an effective marketing tool. Consider this: A total of 60% of podcast listeners have purchased something from a podcast ad, according to Midroll, a digital media company.

         “The benefit of podcasts to business is that a podcast listener is deeply into the particular topic of the podcast and, thus, is not going to be distracted by the other digital mediums,” explains Evo Terra, an avid podcaster (“Podcast Pontifications” - https://podcastpontifications.com), business podcasting consultant (https://podcastlaunch.pro)and co-author of the “Podcasting for Dummies” books. “The listener’s attention is 100% on the message that’s going through their speakers or earbuds; it’s a dedicated audience.”

         But how does one acquire that “dedicated” audience? Mr. Terra provides some tips:

         • Provide quality audio/content. “Podcasters need professional-sounding microphones — not the run-of-the-mill in-expensive ones at Best Buy — that are going to capture the podcasters voice properly in the recording environment,” he explains. “Additionally, a pair of studio monitor headphones — not BEATS, for example — are needed so podcasters can, for instance, hear whether they are making lip smacking sounds and correct such distracting noises for the next podcast. The bottom line is that podcast listeners have discerning ears, thanks to the thousands of podcasts available, so you want to give them a reason to stick around right off the bat.”
         Mr. Terra adds that quality sound will fall on deaf ears if it’s not accompanied by quality content. This means knowing what the purpose, or intent, of the podcast is and crafting the show around that, Mr. Terra says.

         • Be authentic. “About 80% of my clients have said, ‘I don’t have the right voice for this,’ and they are almost always wrong because podcast listeners don’t want the professional radio announcer voice; they want to hear the person who believes in the podcast’s message,” he explains. “And with the right equipment, that person will not only get better — decrease their ‘ums,’ for example — they’ll also develop a style that the subscriber appreciates.”

         • Shoot for brevity. Mr. Terra says 20 to 40 minutes is often touted as the ideal length because it is the average work commute time, or when podcast subscribers tend to listen. He doesn’t go any longer than nine-and-a-half minutes on his podcast, however, because LinkedIn, for example, won’t accept content longer than 10 minutes, and he wants to reach as many potential subscribers as possible.
         • Seek multiple hosting platforms. One of the biggest mistakes I see is using just Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts,” he says. “I understand that this is because most listeners get their podcasts from one of these distribution platforms, but there are additional platforms, such as Spotify, that podcasters should look into as well because distribution is an important driver of success,” he explains. (See https://bit.ly/2XbxoXu.)  PV

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