First of all, before you start to record anything, you need to work out the purpose of your podcast. There are a few key areas to think about. Do you want to generate an audience to engage with yourself and each other about a common topic? Do you want to establish yourself as one of the main sources for information on a specific area or one of the main brands for a product line?
You could want to use the podcast as a platform to network with other content creators, or even just to have a little bit of fun. It is important to understand exactly what you are looking to get out of the experience, to know exactly what to put into it.
Benefits to having a podcast
It’s a great way to build an audience and create awareness of your brand and topics
Like with all budding media sources, it may take a bit of time to increase numbers, but you will grow a core audience that loves your content and will share it with others, eventually expanding your listener numbers.
You can grow the size and value of your network
It’s a great platform to leverage your content to people that may not have seen it otherwise. A significant way to do this is to interview guests who are important and influential in your field. As you grow, your ability to get into contact with these individuals also increases. Each guest is valuable, as they will not only bring their own audience to you, expanding your possible listener numbers, but will also be able to give you insights to different aspects of specific topics and discussions. You could invite them back and even have regular guests, massively boosting the content you create.
They are an excellent place to either promote sponsors or your own products
Whether it’s for a business gain, or as a way to monetise the show, podcasts create a platform that will reach many different people. The Drum states that according to ACAST (The largest global podcast company) ‘76% of people said they have followed up on an ad or sponsored message they heard in a show.’ It’s a relatively untapped market with incredible potential.
You can gain authority in your field
When you take the time to research your field and develop your content, more and more people will begin to listen and you will be able to establish yourself as a leader in your chosen field. This, in turn, will mean that your opinions will gain weight.
It can be available on-demand
People are not always going to be free whenever you release a podcast. The ability to pick and choose whenever they want to listen, increases their chances of listening to the entire podcast.
You can build a community around your brand or niche
The people who listen will have an interest either the brand, or the topic being discussed. If you can make the listeners think that they are actually in the room listening to your opinion, with the way you engage with them, this will create a tight-knit community of followers, all with you, your brand and your podcast as a common interest.
In most cases, it is free to listen to
Everyone loves free stuff, right? This means that you are way more likely to have a larger audience as nobody will be having to make the choice, whether to part with their money to listen to what you have to say.
Availability of your podcast
If you have a podcast timetable (i.e, released every Wednesday,) it can provide a constant communication chain with your listeners, as they know when you will be publishing content and are more likely to engage. Depending on the type of podcast you’d like to produce, audience engagement could be extremely important. Whether it is answering their questions, receiving suggestions to debate in your next podcast or even reacting to their creations/submissions. This is why it is imperative that you give your audience as much information about when and where they can listen.
Making sure your podcast is available on as many different platforms as possible will also increase the likelihood that somebody who has never listened to you before may find and engage with you organically. People can listen to you whilst working, driving, at the gym and almost every other time as well.
The long-form audio blueprint allows people to be getting on with their day, whilst also listening to what you have to say. This, in-turn, will also increase numbers quicker, as each individual doesn’t have to take time out of their day to solely focus on one thing, it can enhance their current task. According to Backtracks, in the UK, podcasts are largely consumed in conjunction with driving/travelling (44%), relaxing (32%), and working/studying (25%). As well this, 67% of consumers listen to podcasts on a smartphone, meaning your podcast has to be available via iOS and Android.
Podcast metrics can be hard to track. This is because of the nature of the content. Of course you can tell how many people have watched in a YouTube video format, or the number of downloads, but the thing that makes podcasts so convenient, is also a slight hindrance when it comes to tracking real listeners. Once the podcast has been downloaded, there is no way of telling how many people actually listened, or the length of time they listened for. This is why it can be important to set definitive Key Performance Indicators.
Even though downloads are not necessarily the best indicators of listeners, the closest possible way of working out individual listeners would be unique downloads. These would be downloads for unique IP addresses, discounting all of the consumers that downloaded on multiple devices. This has to be taken with a pinch of salt because, as stated before, there is no way to tell exactly how many times somebody has actually listened to your content.
When it comes to subscribers, platforms like YouTube display excellent data on demand, however a lot of other platforms don’t actually display this data, so what do you do in an absence of subscriber data? Well, one key factor is to look at the consistency of your downloads. This acts as a rough indicator on how many people are waiting for, and engaging with your content i.e. A subscriber.
This metric is mostly based on having guests on your podcast and can be measured over time, as your podcast grows. Industry influencers are the individuals that are at the forefront of the social media marketing revolution and can have a large impact on your brand. If you can create a positive bond with these influencers, not only are they more likely to share your content and their ideas about your products to their own audience, but they can advise other influencers to come and get involved with your projects. To measure these metrics, you could look out for the potential revenue that these partnerships have brought in for you, as well as how many new opportunities can arise from previous partnerships.
These can be what you are looking out for when it comes to dissecting the results of your podcast and the areas you can look to improve the most. You may also possibly have a specific goal or goals in mind already, and it is important to set them out early so you know what you are looking to stick to. These could include:
- Setting a goal of a certain amount of unique downloads and watch them hopefully grow as your podcast progresses.
- Collaborating with a certain amount of companies or influencers.
- Reaching a certain number of followers by a certain time.
- Generating a certain amount of money in sales by a certain time.
If you can keep your flow of content consistent, and have the goals and KPIs in mind to track, you can create a strong base on which to build a really good podcast.
Stay tuned for our upcoming article!