Everybody loves a good story. It is as if humans are pre-programmed to tell and share stories with one another. The art of storytelling can be traced back to Earth’s very earliest attendants. Even the most ancient of civilizations told stories using cave drawings and etchings. In marketing, storytelling can create confidence in a brand’s ability to deliver a solution and make potential customers become ideal customers. One rapidly emerging opportunity for brands to tell a story is capturing the attention of marketing professionals worldwide.
Podcasting is a highly effective method for brands to use the art of storytelling to reach consumers with a message and convert listeners into customers. Podcasting allows for increased flexibility and accessibility when targeting key audiences and permits longer conversations than blogs or social media posts. Podcasts can hold an audience’s attention fourteen times longer than video media alone and have the benefit for users to listen while driving or performing other tasks. It is becoming the new “drive-time” media channel. While a traditional radio advertisement often lasts 15 to 30 seconds, a podcast can span from five minutes to more than an hour in length. The listening public is showing increasing favor for podcasts and is participating in significant numbers.
More than 464.7 million people are interacting with podcasts every day, a 40 million listener increase in just two years. Those who are keeping tabs on such statistics predict that 504.9 million internet users will be interacting with podcasts around the world by 2024. According to data shared by Statista, 62% of all US consumers listen to podcasts. But before you rush into the podcast community, some basic fundamentals to creating a podcast should be considered.
The media requires at least a modicum of how it works. There are numerous formats and channels of distribution including YouTube, Pinterest, Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram just to name a few. Selecting the right channel is important in order to ensure your message is reaching the right audience. Podcasting is a creative endeavor requiring critical skill sets in communication, organization, and production techniques.
The focus of any podcast effort should center around telling the brand’s story in a production that reflects quality and some level of credible polish that does not overshadow the delivery of the message. Speak openly about an area of expertise and share a genuine love for the brand and its mission. Preparation is perhaps the most critical element of any podcast project.
Identify who the targeted audience includes. Who are you talking to and are they an ideal customer? Identify key elements of the brand’s talking points and the subject matter that relates to the intended listener. Focus on gaining immediate attention with two or three sentences that outline the key components of the content. Get to the point and avoid over-pontificating.
Perform comprehensive research in advance and don’t get caught sinking the entire effort by being unprepared. Create consistent high-quality, timely content and scripts that will reflect the presenter’s passion and energy around the subject matter. Strive to be a unique voice and select visiting guests that are relevant to the podcast’s topics. Develop interesting themes for each individual podcast and pretest each session before going live. Better to overspend time editing potential failures and misspeaks in the back room before broadcasting it to the masses. Don’t pull an “Elon”! Break your unbreakable glass in the back room away from the eyes of the world.
Broadcasting equipment is expensive but cutting corners on visual and audio equipment can turn a valiant effort into a massive annoyance to your listeners, creating audience fatigue and misunderstanding. Encourage audience participation in the discussions and avoid boring listeners with personal and boisterous comments and distracting declarations. While the commentator may be a skilled communicator, it will be best if they check narcissism and ego at the studio door.
As with every marketing effort, consistent and regularly scheduled episodes over time will generate the best outcomes. Prepare five to ten episodes in advance of the first broadcast release. This will allow for adjustments to subsequent scripts to create consistency and help identify what is being received well by the forum and what is not. Still a little apprehensive about including this medium in your strategic marketing plan?
At Junction Creative Solutions (Junction), we use powerful short and long-form storytelling across numerous broadcast media channels to drive discovery and increase conversions for our clients. For more information on how we can help develop an effective podcast strategy for you, call 678-686-1125 today.