Originally posted on newmediaeurope.com, the official site of the New Media Europe conference, taking place in London, June 18th and 19th.
Connecting with clients in a meaningful way is essential to growing your business, and it can also prove to be one of the most difficult tasks. Podcasting is a great solution to building that bond, adding a deeper dimension and personality to your brand.
And who could resist, when the tools to get a podcast up and running are so accessible and affordable? The barriers of expensive equipment and studio are long gone, it’s nothing you can’t accomplish without a computer and a decent microphone.
So what’s holding you back? Here are 5 reasons to stop what you’re doing and start your podcast now. The benefits are hard to deny:
Podcasting is crazy popular at the moment. In fact, last April the Pew Research Center released this little nugget, that “the percentage of Americans who have listened to a podcast in the past month has almost doubled since 2008, from 9% to 17% by January of 2015. The percentage listening in 2015 was up two points over 2014 levels (15%).” Edison Research also told us 33% of all Americans 12 years of age or older have listened to at least one podcast. That means there is already an audience out there ready to look for and consume your content, and who could be willing to share it with their friends and colleagues. With hosting and distributing through social networks and podcatchers costing next to nothing (in fact, it’s usually free), you get to reach thousands of potential clients while spending zero dollars. It doesn’t take much more than submitting your RSS feed to iTunes or Stitcher, or publishing the link to your latest episode on Facebook or Twitter. Some services even automate that distribution for you, like Spreaker, through simple account integration.
Podcasting has an intimate quality to it, more so than some of the other new media around. Listeners feel connected to podcast hosts, as if they’re in the middle of a one on one conversation. Even Pat Flynn has made mention of it: “I’ve been able to make a much deeper connection with my audience.” That intimacy leads to a feeling of familiarity, trust, and even loyalty with you and your business. All this leading to…
3. Higher Conversions
Of course, a listener that feels connected and trusts you will feel much more comfortable working with you, and will be more likely to convert as a valuable client. You’re always going to be much more likely to get an audience member who’s been following you and your content to buy. The results speak for themselves; recently Midroll, an advertising agency for podcasts, reported that 61% of the people who listened to an advertisement converted, purchasing the item advertised. That is an incredibly high number!
4. Deep Networking
One aspect that’s sometimes taken for granted when it comes to podcasting is the ability to establish connections with influencers in your line of work. By simply asking someone to come onto your podcast to be interviewed, you’ll be able to break the ice more easily. Coming back to that contact later on will be that much more comfortable, too. Real estate podcaster Brandon Turner really drives the point home with this:
“Because of the podcast, I feel comfortable calling up almost anyone to get them on our show and dive into their thoughts and ask them all the questions I had while reading their books….It’s not just famous authors either. I am able to dive into the business strategies of some of the smartest real estate entrepreneurs in the country and learn directly from them in a way that I could never do before. Each week I learn something that helps me grow my own real estate business while forging relationships that will help me grow to reach their level.”
Lastly, podcasting is a great way to enrich your brand. It’s a reference you can always point to when networking or reaching out to new clients. Most importantly, a well produced podcast shows you’re invested and passionate in what you do, which reflects well on your entire business. Take heed, though, as the opposite will have (obvious) adverse effects. Shoddy audio quality, episode formats that lack any planning, and just poor production in general won’t reflect very well on you or your company.
Podcasting is a commitment, and listeners want to listen to good content – they have to want to subscribe to your show, download it, listen to it during their commute or while working out at the gym. It can sound intimidating, but it shouldn’t. With some preparation and passion (the same passion you have for your business), you can get a quality show going, and when it’s really going, it’s great.
The time to start a podcast is now, there’s no reason not to try it out for your business!
So get it to it. We want to hear you!
Will you be attending NMEU next week? Let us know, we want to meet you!