According to Edison Research, 24% of Americans have listened to a podcast in the last month. Not only that, the popularity of podcasts continues to rise. To say that podcasts are having a moment would be an understatement.
Beyond water cooler favorites like S-Town, many of the most popular podcasts fall into the categories of either business, news, or self-help. They have become a place where listeners go to gain knowledge and grow. For experts and industry leaders, podcasts offer a unique experience to provide valuable, in-depth information to their audience. Beyond short-form content like social media or blog posts, a podcast's long-form format allows you to cultivate a deeper relationship with your audience and grow your reach to new listeners at the same time.
If you're on the fence about starting a podcast, here are five reasons why you should consider it.
1. It's easy.
Let's get this point out of the way early. Starting a podcast sounds like a complicated venture, but in reality it requires a minimal up-front investment and is surprisingly easy to implement. Youtube videos like Pat Flynn's 6-part guide to starting a podcast break down all the steps to getting your own show up and running. There are also no shortage of microphone reviews online to help you find the right microphone for your budget. Sites like Fivrr make developing the introductory music fast and inexpensive. By starting out with some thorough research, launching and continuing the recording process will not be the daunting process you may expect it to be.
2. It allows you to produce long-form content.
In a world of information overload, we are bombarded with short-form content. Tweets, blog posts, news articles, and videos are meant to provide audience's with quick bursts of information and play a vital role in creating continued touch points between businesses and their audiences. But where blog posts and social media are limited to a few hundred words, or 140 characters, a podcast allows you to go deeper into your content.
According to Salesforce, "Three percent of monthly podcast consumers listen to the beginning of a podcast only. By and large, podcast listeners are loyal and committed to hearing out the full episode." This means that there is an enormous opportunity here to showcase your expertise in a way that other formats can't accommodate. For businesses with complicated products of a long sales cycle, such in-depth content may allow consumers to make buying decisions more quickly.
3. You're supporting your partners.
The most common format for a podcast is an interview. As the host of your own show, bringing guests on to interview allows you not only to expand the information you're providing to your audience by tapping into your guest's expertise but also to support industry partners. By asking someone to be a guest on your show, you're giving them access to your audience, potentially helping your guest grow their reach. Likewise, if your guests promote the episode to their followers, you also tap into their audience. Both you and your guests can benefit from the added exposure, and by thinking of them as a guest you may also deepen your professional relationship with them as well.
4. You build personal connection with your audience.
Successful podcasts are rarely scripted and only lightly edited. As such, the host's personality has a chance to shine through in a seemingly unfiltered way. Much like video, podcasts are one of the quickest ways to build personal connections and trust between a host and an audience. At a time when we have endless options for all of our purchasing decisions, trust is essential to building brand loyalty, and giving people a voice and a personality to connect to your brand helps to foster that trust.
5. It provides a repeat touch point for your audience.
At Greenleaf Book Group, we touch often on the value of a newsletter, primarily in providing consistent content straight to your audience's inbox. Similar to a newsletter, when listeners subscribe to your podcast, they are opting in to hearing from you on a regular basis. The key here is to stay consistent with how often you post and the kind of content you share. By doing so, you'll be able to stay at the top of their minds and continue to develop trust and personal connection toward an even deeper level of brand loyalty.
There are many benefits to starting a podcast. If you have the content to support it and some time to dedicate toward recording and promoting your content, a podcast can go a long way toward growing your brand.