Why on Earth should you consider launching a podcast for yourself or your business?
I was on a flight from Kelowna to Toronto four years ago, and halfway through the flight, I discovered I was sick of my own music. Despite the fact I had thousands of songs downloaded on my phone, I kept skipping forward, song after song.
I had heard about podcasts from some of my close friends, but for some reason, I assumed they weren’t for me. Desperate to find entertainment other than the music I had become sick of, when I arrived at the Toronto airport and waited for my connecting flight, I posted on my Facebook timeline asking my network of friends what business podcasts they would recommend.
Within 20 minutes I had more than 30 suggestions. I downloaded one episode from each podcast recommendation I received, and on my next flight, I quickly realized what all the podcast fuss was about.
No longer was I just killing time. I was simultaneously being entertained and educated. Instead of listening to brainless Top 40 songs on repeat, my mind somehow felt healthier after listening to podcasts.
The habit of listening to podcasts went beyond my trip. To this day, podcasts are part of my daily routine.
I decided to launch a podcast for the company I work for – RE/MAX of Western Canada – in 2019. My own audio consumption taught me podcasts are a powerful tool for capturing the attention of your audience.
In a time when people will glance at Facebook, Instagram and Twitter posts for mere seconds while judging if its worth their further attention, they will also generously spend 20 or even 40 minutes, and in some cases several hours, listening to podcast episodes from start to finish.
Now it’s important to understand how audiences consume podcasts. Is a listener sitting on the edge of his or her couch listening to a podcast from start to finish? No.
They might listen to 10 minutes of an episode in the car, then 30 more minutes during their afternoon workout, then finish the episode while cooking dinner that evening. But, even though the sessions are broken up, informative podcasts have the power to keep audiences coming back time and time again.
Going back to the original question of why should you launch a podcast? Simply put, podcasts are one of the most effective ways for capturing an audience’s attention.
A secondary benefit for podcasts or YouTube series that feature guest interviews is the concept of leveraging your guest’s audience.
As an example, let’s say you plan to announce a new podcast episode on social media, and you have 500 followers. When you publish an announcement post about your new podcast episode, a small percentage of those 500 people will see that content, and an even smaller percentage will take the time to listen to the interview. But, if you interview influential people in your community (or anywhere in the world, depending on your podcast’s subject matter), they will most likely want to share that episode with their audience as well.
Even if they only have 500 social media followers, you are still doubling the number of potential listeners. If they have thousands of social media followers, it could help you gain a significant audience much quicker than it would if you solely relied on your own existing network.
If you’re interested in launching a podcast or YouTube interview series, check out my eight-part YouTube series that walks you through key elements such as: What equipment to use, how to syndicate your podcast, how to edit audio and much more.
The video with this column is Part 1, covering why you should launch a podcast.
The entire eight-part video playlist can be found here.
If you’re interested in learning more about being an impactful communicator, subscribe to my YouTube channel.