So You’re on a Podcast…Now What?
When podcasts come up in conversation, people are more likely to discuss which podcasts they tune into, rather than if they listen to them at all. The assumption is that most people have long accepted and enjoyed the podcast as a medium to receive news, entertainment or inspiration. Podcast Insights reports that there are 1.75 million podcasts on just Apple’s platform alone, offering over 43 million episodes as of January 2021. To put the podcast medium’s growth into perspective, in June 2018 there were 550,000 podcasts — so in less than three years the number of podcasts has more than tripled.
Podcasts give brands yet another avenue to consider in their marketing-communications efforts. Advertising opportunities are plentiful, of course, or if you’re lucky enough to score an invite to be a podcast guest, that can become an even stronger way to deliver your brand’s message, if done with a bit of planning. Here are some tried and true tips for being a pro podcast guest:
- What’s your story? Being a podcast guest without a story or experience to share will lead you to Ramble-ville quickly. Think about what listeners might find interesting, entertaining or educational about you and your brand, and then create some loose talking points around those messages.
- Warm up! Spend some time with the host (or a producer) ahead of time, exchanging ideas of what the discussion can be around. Ideally it’s via a phone call, but even an email exchange will help set up your session for success.
- Don’t over-script yourself. Once you’ve crafted your talking points, become familiar enough with them that you can express them several different ways without relying on notes. A podcast is a conversation that is shared with the listeners – and they do not want to hear you reciting from your notes. Invest a bit of time in prep and it will pay off in the way it’s delivered to the audience.
- Don’t marry your notes. A skilled podcast host will guide you in the conversation — follow him or her. Be ready for questions that may seem off-topic — a host knows his or her audience. Of course, stay true to your brand voice, but be flexible with what you talk about. Sprinkling in some anecdotes or off-the-cuff stories can be real gems when storytelling. Don’t obsess about covering 100% of your talking points — it’ll never happen and that’s OK.
- Do not multi-task. Recording a podcast is not a time to catch up on email or hope that others in your office space will be quiet. Be intentional about giving the host your complete, undivided attention. In general, people are more forgiving about video quality not being great, but less likely to forgive poor audio quality. Find a quiet place — whether your home office or elsewhere — where you can ensure you have excellent audio quality.
Once you’ve recorded your podcast, the host or producer will let you know when it will be live. Be sure to alert your marketing team, so they can share in your firm’s outgoing communication to clients and partners. The podcast will already be distributed by the media channel, but don’t overlook the value in sharing it with your own stakeholders.
P.S. While we’re on the podcast subject, I thought I’d recommend some of my favorite insurance industry podcasts:
Laura works with Aartrijk clients to identify goals and create marketing strategies to achieve them. She has nearly 20 years of insurance marketing experience, having previously served as VP, sales and marketing, at American Collectors Insurance, where she worked with Aartrijk as a client. She is experienced in growing organizations through client engagement through the use of consistent branding, leveraging content marketing and social media, and articulating brand differentiators. A native and proud New Jerseyan, she lives in Houston where she continues to search for good pizza and fun places to watch Philadelphia sports teams.
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