In recent years, the popularity of podcasts has skyrocketed in the US. In 2019, 51% of the US population (aged above 12 years) listened to a podcast. Out of this, 32% of the respondents (approximately 90 million people) revealed that they had listened to a podcast in the last month.
That’s a lot, right?
Image via Edison Research
If you’re a content marketer or an entrepreneur, podcasts can be a great vehicle to market your brand. Benjamin Shapiro, producer and host of the MarTech podcast, has some tips for those who are interested in podcasting.
How to Create a Successful Podcast and Grow Your Audience
On Shane Barker’s Marketing Madness Podcast, Benjamin Shapiro revealed that his podcast gets around 10,000 downloads in a month. He also earned close to $200,000 of revenue in terms of sponsorships in 2019.
So, how can you replicate that kind of podcast success? Here are some tips from Benjamin:
1. Produce Lots of Quality Content
If you want to attract listeners, you need to give them quality content. That is a prerequisite to achieving success with podcasts. Whatever niche you pick, make sure you’re not producing run-off-the-mill content.
Currently, there are over 250,000 free podcasts on iTunes. If you want to stand out among the sea of podcasts, you need to focus on your content quality.
To get an idea about what works for your target audience, you can take a look at the most popular podcasts in your category.
However, quality alone won’t take you far. To build a podcast community, you need to be consistent with your content creation process.
Before you make a schedule for submitting your podcasts, think of the time it will take in the production process. Right from scheduling interviews to producing the final edit, how long does it take? Based on that, zero in on your posting frequency.
To speed up the process, it’s a good idea to outsource some of the production parts. Find a manager to schedule interviews or an audio editor to take care of editing. In this way, you can focus on creating more content without compromising on quality.
2. Produce Clean Audio Files
Your podcast audio quality can make or break your reputation. If your listeners can hear a lot of background noise, it can be off-putting for them. Or even distracting. If you want to produce a great podcast, you need to create clean audio files.
The first step is to buy the correct equipment for recording. Buy an effective microphone that picks up only your voice, not the background noises. If you’re also planning to upload videos, make sure your video is clear and well-lit.
Before you upload, fine-tune your audio and video files so that there are no awkward silences or inaudible parts. If you’re not comfortable with the technical aspects of podcast products, get a professional editor on board.
3. Optimize Your Podcast Content
You’ve recorded high-quality content with professional editing. But what’s the use of spending so much on it if your target audience can’t find your work? To get more visibility, you need to focus on search engine optimization.
To leverage SEO, the first step is to write a relevant title for your podcast episodes. Not only should it be compelling, but it should also provide a clear idea of what your listeners can expect from it. It’s a good idea to use your main keywords in the title.
To boost your reach and visibility, you also need to write SEO-friendly meta descriptions and YouTube descriptions. In addition to this, publish show notes and key takeaways with your audio file. To add in text-rich content, you could also post the transcript.
Once your podcast is ready, share it on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and other social media channels. Not only can it help you boost reach, visibility, and engagement, but it can also help you with your SEO indirectly. Virality can take your SEO game to the next level.
You can also use various podcast analytics tools like Podtrac and Anchor to measure your success and optimize your strategies.
4. Monetize Your Podcast Smartly
You’re going to be putting a ton of sweat and hard work into producing your podcasts. So, it’s only fair that you earn some revenue out of it. With some insider insights, you can easily find out ways to monetize your podcast.
Here are some ways you can explore podcast advertising:
This is the most common way of monetizing a podcast. It’s simple — get a sponsor on board and promote their products naturally.
Joe Rogan, who has one of the most popular podcasts on iTunes, uses this strategy. At the beginning of his podcast, he talks about the sponsor of the episode and what their brand does.
Image via JRE Podcast
Alternatively, you can also invite guests to your show who represent your sponsors. In this way, you can promote their product without sounding too promotional.
Retargeting is an indirect way of monetizing your podcasts. People who have listened to your podcast have a good understanding of who you are and what you do. With retargeting, you can leverage that familiarity.
You can help the sponsors retarget their ads to this audience. In addition to this, you can also create lookalike audiences on social media channels to reach out to more people. As a podcaster, you can create an audience that your sponsors can re-engage and re-target. You can also create content on their behalf, sell ads, and give them attribution.
In addition to this, you can also explore programmatic ads, sell branded products, sell slots on your podcasts, or charge people for premium subscriptions.
To create a successful podcast, you need to invest a lot of time into producing quality content consistently. To keep your audio crisp and clear, make sure you’re using the right equipment to record. For post-processing, it’s a good idea to work with a professional editor.
Make it easy for users to find your podcast episodes by using the right keywords in your titles and meta descriptions. You need to leverage SEO to boost your visibility and reach. In addition to this, monetize your podcast to earn a sustainable income from it.
Do you have any questions regarding growing your podcast? Please share them in the comments section below. I’ll try my best to help you!
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, product launches, sales funnels, targeted traffic, and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.