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There are a huge range of reasons why Podcasting can help to grow your business – in this episode I talk about the ones which are, to me, the most compelling.
If you run a business and you're not podcasting yet, then listen to this podcast to find out why you should be!
This section provides a rough, incomplete transcript of the episode. It's written as notes, so please excuse grammar and writing errors!
This episode might not be for everyone – only if you run a business.
Why are podcasts getting so popular? Podcast stats currently show a huge amount of growth. I believe smartphones are the big cause. There's now no need for a computer. Apple releasing the podcasting app had a massive effect on podcasting numbers, and potential for future growth. Android podcasting apps are becoming more and more popular too, plus further podcating search engines such as stitcher and more.
So, what are the big reasons why you should be using Podcasting in Business?
Reason 1 – Engagement
Nothing engages audiences like a podcast – a voice is so much more personable than text. It's intimate, with the presenter speaking directly into your head. It builds a relationship that makes you want to keep listening. You begin to believe that you KNOW the person, and if you KNOW someone you trust them, and are much more likely to buy from them. TRUST is the key here: podcasting builds trust in people, in brands and in companies more so than any other medium, thanks to the personality and the duration of engagement.
All of this is enhanced by the transparency intrinsic within the medium. Pat flynn for Smart Passive Income, for example, talks all about his life in a really honest way, and comes across as someone who is completely genuine as a result. It wouldn't be the same in a written article.
Reason 2 – Attention
You don't skim a podcast like you read the web. Instead, you hear the content at a normal, spoken pace. You also don't need your full attention on it, or to set aside time to do that alone. You can listen to a podcast while you're walking, cooking, exercising, driving… As a consequence of both, Podcasts get far longer attention that either writter or visual content. Can you imagine someone reading an article on the web for half an hour, or sitting watching a video on their PC for an hour? Those timescales DO happen with podcasts, week on week. You have your listeners' attention for a longer duration with a podcast than any other amateur medium.
Reason 3 – Flexibility
As mentioned in the attention section, Podcasts allow for on-the-go consumption. So much of our time is wasted – in a queue, waiting room, on the bus, etc. Podcasts can fill this wasted time, allowing you to reach your customers/fans when they've got nothing else to do and will appreciate you for entertaining and informing them.
Reason 4 – Innovation
Podcasting is cutting edge, and shows you're up and coming, innovative. A Social Media Examiner (from Michael Stelzner) study showed that only 3% of marketers were using podcasts. Social media is a noisy media and so it's very hard to get your voice out there. Blogs are noisy too. Many, many businesses have a blog today, and therefore it just doesn't stand out any more. But podcasting remains relatively unexploited, and is still very open.
Many topics have very little coverage, especially in the UK, and so there are huge gaps to be plugged by innovative companies. Even if there are others podcasting on your subject, the competition is much lower in this medium, and the perceived innovation benefits remain. You will stand out in your market.
Reason 5 – Learning Styles.
This is the science bit, the concept of different learning styles, or multiple intelligences according to Howard Gardner from Harvard. If you already release material by text, then podcasting is another medium that will reach people with different learning and media processing preferences. Many people prefer to consume info through listening rather than reading.
Reason 6 – Credibility
Because podcasting is still an uncommon medium, if you create one that sounds reasonably good, with only a little audio production, you'll instantly sound very professional. You're in the ring early (as perceived by the mass market), so people are automatically impressed. I know people in the industries I work in that have become famous through their podcasts, and that's still easy to achieve in a small community. You can become a thought leader very easily – people listen to you and talk about your opinions, marketing your business for you in the process.
Reason 7 – Exposure
Podcasting will increase your exposure. By creating a podcast you're marketing yourself on another full range of search engines, ie. itunes/stitcher, etc. You can also easily re-purpose it to be found on YouTube, the world's second larger search engine. This type of video can work really well for promotion.
Reason 8 – It Works for Anyone
Podcasting can work for any niche. A lot of people think their topic is too niche, or too boring, but there are always some people interested. If you have customers, they're interested in your offerings, and so could become fans.