By: Faiza Akbar
While commercial radio has been around longer than nearly the entire population has been alive, modern podcasts are a refreshing change to most other saturated marketing strategies. There are many reasons why podcasts are distinct, not only in their format but also in the way they operate and accomplish your goals. A podcast's approach is rooted in the dynamic user experience it offers that allows for flexibility and individual preference. So if you're exploring new ways to improve your marketing strategy, here are a few reasons that podcasts should be a top contender.
- Uniqueness Interest in podcasts is definitely on the rise but it is still an underutilized platform. Breaking into the podcast scene will set you apart from your competitors and allow your audience to interact with you in a unique, refreshing way. On the surface, it may appear that podcast listeners are a small, exclusive part of the population, but this statement grows more untrue each year. It is also important to note that most podcast listeners are highly committed, as 85% of them will sit through a majority, or the entirety of an episode. Once you garner an audience, they are very unlikely to bail halfway through your message. "Skimming through" podcasts is not really a thing. This allows you to provide more information, and overall have more of a presence in your listeners' day, making them more likely to return.
- Easy to Produce
Podcasts are extremely user friendly. You can listen to them at your own convenience, whether that be on the go, when doing other tasks, on a long drive, or even right before bed. Having all these options makes your target audience more likely to engage. Unlike visual and text-based media that requires your undivided attention, podcasts allow the listener to exert control, listening to the podcast at their own leisure, in their own environment, and at their own pace. Virtually all smartphones are equipped with apps that make subscribing and listening to podcasts simple. Once subscribed, your audience does not have to go on the hunt to look for new episodes. Additionally, avid podcast listeners will likely visit their podcast app of choice frequently, and even if this is to listen to an episode of another podcast, having yours in close proximity will make them likely to check it out too. Having a single app provides listeners with a familiar, organized, and comfortable user experience to reach all their subscribed podcasts and highlight new episodes.
Not only are podcasts convenient for users, but compared to text based counterparts, they are relatively easy to produce too. Equipment required does not go beyond a microphone and recording device. Additionally, podcasts leave room for flexibility. A strict script, which could take hours to edit, is not required. Podcasting formats are more conversational, so elaborating in a natural way is encouraged. If you decide to include guests or co-hosts, you don't have to worry about all being present in the same physical location. You could be miles apart and if your microphones are up to par, no one would even know.
Speaking to your audience directly is one of the most effective ways to gain their attention and trust. Podcasts give your audience a chance to actually hear your voice, which you could alter in tone and inflection where necessary, allowing you to express emotion and emphasis accordingly. You could use this to your advantage in order to build and reinforce a connection with listeners by taking a conversational, engaging approach to your podcasts. This way, they could remain informed and updated, but be entertained all the same. Simply reading off a typed script will seldom have this effect. This leaves plenty of room for the speaker to be creative and speak to the audience in a personal way that is likely to resonate with them more than a format that lacks the personal touch of audio.
Podcasts are an effective and efficient way to track the progress you are making. Having statistics on your monthly downloads or listeners adds credibility to your business as a whole. Seeing a rise or drop in your monthly audience is also a source of instant feedback that could be used to improve and modify your approach. If you choose to feature your brand on other podcasts, trackable statistics are a quick way to see which podcasts have a broader reach, and which ones to steer clear of, saving you time and money in the long run.
A majority of podcast listeners are active on other forms of social media as well. This means that while you may initially engage with your audience through a podcast, it could expand to them accessing your other platforms to learn more. As effective as audio is in being a compelling first point of contact, it leaves more to be desired. After hearing something of interest, your listeners may want to see accompanying visual information, which they can do by exploring your other social media sites. This is an excellent way to boost your other social media platforms, and your business as a whole.
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