If you’re a marketing leader and you’re building out your company’s content strategy, it probably seems obvious that you’ll need a blog, video, webinars, white papers, testimonials, etc.
Never mind that most of your competitors have those things, too, and that their content covers a lot of the same topics that you cover. You still gotta have those channels, because if you don’t, you’re not in the conversation.
But when it comes to branded podcasting … It’s a different story.
When we talk to B2B marketers about podcasting, we hear a lot of:
“Yeah, podcasting has come up a lot … it’s on our radar … we know we need to get into it but we just haven’t had the time or resources … we’re looking at podcasting for next year …”
Hey, we get it. In the B2B business world, podcasting is still the new kid at school, the red-headed stepchild, the family that moved in down the block that the neighborhood is still getting to know.
The upshot is that even though you may see the value of jumping on podcasting while it’s still relatively new, your leadership may not be totally convinced. Maybe they’re risk adverse or just don’t know enough to feel confident enough to greenlight a podcast.
Which is why we wanted to share a few tips for getting your bosses to see the light and jump into the podcasting arena with both feet!
Branded Podcasting Tip 1: Persuade With Data About the Skyrocketing Growth of Podcasting
The first thing your leaders need to know is that podcasting has become massively popular:
- In 2021, US listeners alone set a new record by consuming more than 15 billions hours of podcast episodes.
- As of 2022, around 109 million Americans (about 38% of the population) have listened to a podcast in the last month.
- About 74 million Americans (roughly 26% of the population) are devoted weekly listeners.
- Weekly listeners tune in to 8 podcast episodes per week, on average.
(Source: The Infinite Dial 2022)
In short, podcasting has evolved into a mass medium with widespread reach. Podcasts may not yet be as common as blogs and videos, but they’re catching up. And a bigger percentage of your audience is listening to podcasts.
Branded Podcasting Tip 2: Get Ahead of Your Competition
We often hear that there are already too many podcasts, that the market is saturated, that it’s too late to get started.
According to Buzzsprout, there are currently around 2.4 million podcasts in the world, but only about 465k that are still actively publishing. That’s tiny compared to other types of content:
- 600 millions blogs on the internet (Source: https://bit.ly/3csuz0A)
- YouTube alone hosts about 800 millions videos (Source: https://bit.ly/3pRynM8)
The takeaway is that podcasting is far from saturated!
Not only is it not too late to start a podcast, but there’s a good chance that in your industry there are only a handful of shows worth listening to … If there are any at all. Meaning that you have a golden opportunity to get ahead of the curve and start a podcast that you can develop into the best in your industry.
If you don’t, one of your competitors will. Why not be first?
Branded Podcasting Tip 3: Create Thought Leadership Content That Actually Leads
In “Is Your Thought Leadership Content Missing the Point?,” author Jonathan Crossfield makes the point that a lot of content that claims the mantle of “thought leadership” is really just repackaged ideas and facts gathered from across the internet. It’s not leading the discussion; it’s just repeating what’s already well known.
Crossfield’s antidote is to collaborate with subject matter experts by interviewing them and then turning the interviews into content that showcases their thoughts and ideas.
Which is essentially how podcasting works. Interviewing experts from within your company and from without will generate content that’s much more engaging and insightful than content cobbled together from already published sources.
If you’re good at asking probing questions and follow-up questions that prompt the experts you’re speaking with to think about the topic in a new way, or to challenge assumptions, or maybe even to challenge their own thinking, you’ll end up with material that’s new and fresh, because it features very smart people with deep expertise in a subject thinking out loud and reaching for greater understanding and clarity.
That’s the kind of content that really leads, instead of merely following an already well-worn path.
Branded Podcasting Tip 4: Create Authentic Content
Most–if not all–marketers would agree that for top-of-funnel content to actually succeed in engaging prospects to the point that they’re willing to dip a toe in your funnel, the content needs to be engaging and “authentic.”
But what does “authentic” mean? Not contrived. Not salesy. Not trying too hard to be funny or clever or controversial. Something like that.
Authenticity can mean different things and take various forms, but in some very basic sense it means content that’s conversational in tone, thought out enough to be coherent but not over-produced to the point of slickness, and engaging on a basic human level.
Podcasting has the advantage of ticking all of those boxes, because in its simplest form, a podcast is two or more people having a real, unscripted conversation about a topic of mutual interest.
When the host and guest(s) are engaged and game to really explore the topic, the conversation can and usually does take on a life of its own. It can go deep in interesting and unexpected ways. It can follow tangents that yield surprising insights. It can end up somewhere very different from where it started, in a good way.
In the end, there’s nothing more authentic than people engaged in an absorbing conversation.
If you’re looking for more ideas on how to get your leadership on board with podcasting, let us know! Contact Connversa founder & CEO Jeremy Shere directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.