It seems like podcasts are everywhere these days. People listen to them in the car, at the gym, while running errands, or doing household chores—they’ve become pretty ubiquitous in just a few years. This constant presence also makes them a key part of any modern content marketing plan. How might a podcast launch boost your content in 2023?
Let’s take a deep dive into the ins and outs of using a podcast launch as part of your content marketing strategy. Why are podcasts so uniquely helpful? And what steps can you take to ensure a successful podcast launch? As always, we’ve got your back here at WriteForMe.
Why Podcasting is a Powerful Content Marketing Tool
The primary advantage of a podcast is the fact that consumers can access it anywhere. When you launch a podcast, you put your message on the airwaves for listeners to access wherever they are. They can consume your message on the go, rather than stopping to read lengthy blog posts. By giving audiences control over the terms of engagement, you boost your potential audience.
The format also helps build rapport with customers. Podcasts are unique among marketing collateral in their informality—they flow with the ease of a conversation. A lot of hard work goes into editing the perfect podcast, yes. But the listener receives the finished product like sitting in on a casual chat with two industry experts.
The looseness of the medium can build deeper relationships than formal white papers, as it brings listeners into a community. Additionally, podcasts are a great way to incorporate user-generated content (UGC)—such as listener questions or feedback—which can further engage your audience.
This all differs substantially from the rigid, static structure of a blog post. Even the most dynamic writing follows a set plan, especially when you are disseminating thought leadership–level info. Podcasts help you position yourself as an accessible expert in your industry—as listeners hear industry insights right from the horse’s mouth.
Another handy feature? You can also repurpose that podcast content to generate more content in an array of other media! Transcribe the chat into blogs and social media posts, package videos out of the recording session—the options abound. One (relatively cheap to produce) podcast then becomes a content factory.
How to Launch a Successful Podcast
So you’re sold on the benefits and want to launch your own podcast ASAP, right? Not so fast. Although podcasts seem like they follow a breezy, natural flow, it takes a lot of prep to sound so loose on the mic.
A podcast launch requires a great deal of research and pre-planning, gathering your sources into incisive questions and well-considered answers. You still have to hit all the beats that grab an audience’s attention, after all.
And on top of planning your content, you also have to make sure you have an appropriate tech setup. Do you have the right equipment and software to record and edit high-quality audio—and then publish and promote it across platforms?
Let’s explore exactly what goes into a successful podcast launch, so you can deliver the best possible conversation for your listeners.
Research and Planning
Before we can even get to the technical parts of your podcast launch, we have to spend some time in the research weeds. You need to know your target audience intimately if you want to create content that resonates with them.
Use this market research to inform your podcast’s topic and format, set your goals, and develop a plan. You can use this wealth of research to target a series of solo episodes, for example, or prep a list of truly exacting questions for podcast guests. Just like with any content, your podcast exists to transmit knowledge to an audience—proper research and planning ensures it’s knowledge they’re actually after.
Using a Creative Brief
You may already use briefs to inform other collateral production; why wouldn’t you do the same for your podcast launch? A creative brief keeps all stakeholders on the same page throughout the production process. It ensures the end product aligns with the starting vision.
Briefs keep projects on track by providing clear expectations and deadlines. They also help reduce revision costs, as they provide an opportunity to flesh out the vision in full from the start—minimizing surprises does the road.
Your brief should include—at minimum—information about the target audience, objectives, expected results, budget, and timeline. These briefs also present a perfect opportunity for structured brainstorming; take this opportunity to flesh out creative direction as much as possible (while leaving looseness for improv—it’s a conversation, after all).
Equipment and Software
A podcast is an exclusively auditory experience. Thus, it only makes sense that you’d want to provide the best experience possible for the listener! High-quality audio can be a make-or-break factor for your potential audience, so iron out any problems before you launch your podcast.
Set aside a budget for equipment and software to deliver a crystal-clear listening experience for your listenership. Contrary to popular belief, this doesn’t have to break the bank! Once upon a time, perhaps quality podcasting equipment was niche and pricey. But with today’s technological advancements, you can find quality microphones, headphones, and recording software to suit any budget.
Recording and Editing
You’ve got your road map and your equipment ready. Now its time for you and your future podcast to set out on the journey to launch date. It’s time to hit record.
When it comes to recording, it’s important consider your ambient surroundings. Even the best mics and editing software can only do so much to raw audio spilling over with background noise. Even if you can’t set aside a dedicated studio, look for a quiet and controlled environment to ensure the best possible audio quality.
Editing the audio files afterward can help you polish the sound quality, removing any unnecessary background noise and modulating volume. This is also the time to chop filler (your “ums” and “uhs” as well as irrelevant tangents), arrange sections in a coherent order, and add any necessary effects or music. Just like editing written material, this is when you tidy the drafts into a professional piece of compelling content.
Publishing and Promoting
Once you’ve recorded and finished with postproduction cleanup it’s time to send it off into the world! This entails distributing your podcast on various platforms, such as iTunes, Spotify, and SoundCloud—and also promoting it on social media.
Just like with blog content, SEO optimization is key. Construct your titles, descriptions, and tags to make it as easy as possible for audiences to find your content. But don’t leave it all to the whims of the search engine: create a dedicated site or landing page specifically for your podcast to provide additional information and resources to your audience.
Promotion is also key. Podcasts build listener communities—and you need to engage them as such. Promoting your podcast on social media and interacting with comments and feedback helps you increase visibility and build a loyal following over time. It also feeds your research efforts for future podcast episodes.
Finally, it's important to remember that podcasting is an ever-evolving medium. As such it’s important to keep up-to-date with the latest trends and best practices. Be open to experimentation—adapt your podcast structure and content according to engagement.
Want To Be Interviewed For Our Podcast?
Content marketing is a bit of an “all the tools in the toolbox” approach—and podcasts are one of the freshest, most impactful tools in the kit! They take a fair amount of planning—but a successful podcast launch can help you spread your industry knowledge to wider audiences than ever before.
These steps will hopefully help you elevate your content marketing game down the line. But if you’re looking to reach new listeners now, why not make a guest appearance on another podcast yourself?
In our Business Ninjas podcast series, the WriteForMe team interviews leaders from a variety of different industries about their journeys: how they grow their business, their successes, and the lessons they’ve learned along the way. It’s the perfect way to spread your knowledge to new listeners ASAP!
If you'd like to be a guest on our podcast—or want to learn more about content marketing in general—we'd love to hear from you. Schedule an appointment with us today. While you’re at it, we’ll help build a free content marketing playbook custom to your business, to build a roadmap to future success.
Level up your content marketing game today—the WriteForMe way!