Every podcaster’s inbox is bursting with emails from folks telling them how much they love their show (followed by a request to come on as a future guest). It would be nice if any of them were sincere, but seeing as I run an audio drama, I’m confident none of my listeners think the series is a good place to promote their self-published self-help ebooks.
Collaborating with other podcasters is a fantastic way to grow not just your own podcast but the creative endeavours of others and your topic as a whole. This can’t be a cynical, one-sided strategy. It requires mutual respect, trust, and a willingness to cooperate.
In this article, I’ll show you 18 ways to grow your show through working with other podcasters. This includes tips on monetization, asymmetrical collaboration, and ways to team up outside of the podcasts themselves. Let’s get into it:
9 Ways to Promote Your Podcasts with Collaborative Episodes
When you promote a podcast through collaboration, you don’t just introduce another host to your audience. You accept each other’s perspectives on your podcast topic and build something new. Here are some ideas to get started:
1. Episode Swap
Do you have an episode that’s a good point of entry for new audiences? Ask other podcasters in your niche if they want to swap episodes. Here, you and your collaborator would record your own special intros to the other’s episodes, then play it on your own feeds. Let the listener know where to find the other podcast, and reassure them that you’ll be back fully on the next episode, too.
2. Longer-term Podcast Cross-Promotion
Agree to promote each other’s podcasts in your respective shows. This could be through shoutouts, recommendations, or playing each other’s trailers.
3. Sponsorship Swaps
You can have another podcast in your niche “sponsor” you. Here, you’d talk a bit about them at the beginning or middle of the show. But instead of money changing hands, they’d do the same for you.
4. Co-hosting Episodes
Partner with a podcaster to co-host an episode. This joint effort can blend the best of both shows, attracting fans from both sides. Co-hosting can add a fresh perspective to your usual topic. Like an episode swap, the episode would be played on both feeds.
5. Live Streams
Host a live stream or webinar with the host of another podcast on platforms like YouTube, Twitch, or Facebook. It can be a Q&A, a discussion on a common topic, or a fun, interactive session. When you promote a podcast through collaboration in live events, you’ll also get input from the audience.
6. Larger Content Collaboration
Mini-series, joining resources to examine a topic that might be “too big” for one podcast alone. This is akin to the co-hosted episode idea but can be used as an entire season.
7. Panel Discussions
Organize a panel discussion with multiple podcasters on a topic of mutual interest, then play the episode on every feed, with clear links to each podcast involved.
8. Creating a Podcast Network
Joining or forming a network of podcasts can help in cross-promotion and leveraging each other’s strengths. This can also make podcasts more appealing to advertisers or sponsors.
9. Guest Appearances
This is a reliable way to introduce yourself to other podcasters and their audiences. Invite podcasters to be a guest on your show or offer to be a guest on theirs. The key here is to be great. We have articles on how to get booked as a guest on another podcast and how to be the best interviewee, which can help you on this front.
Collaboration With Bigger Podcasts
Next up, these two methods give you a good reason to reach out to podcasts that may have bigger audiences. Promoting podcasts through collaboration means you may get some promo from the people involved.
10. Montage Episode
Ask other podcasts in your niche to send clips from their shows around a certain topic. Or, ask their permission for you to seek out and use them. Then, edit them together into a montage. You promote their podcast and others while promoting a shared topic. In turn, these bigger podcasts might promote you to their followers.
11. Best Podcasts in Your Niche
This can be similar to a montage episode, but the “topic” is introducing your listeners to other great shows in your niche by spotlighting them. You can use clips, or, you can talk about why you love each one.
Collaborating Outside of Your Podcast
Tired of promoting your podcast the same way over and over again? When you collaborate to promote a podcast or two, you may make something better than the sum of its parts.
12. Newsletter Collaborations
Your newsletter is a good spot to promote others’ shows. Other podcasters may also be willing to swap your promotional copy into their newsletters. Or, you can swap takeovers. You can write and edit an episode of their newsletter, and they can do the same for you.
13. Social Media Takeovers
Allow a fellow podcaster to take over your podcast’s social media for a day, and vice versa. This can create engaging content and introduce each podcast to a new social media audience.
14. Joint Contests and Giveaways
Organize contests or giveaways that encourage listeners to engage with both podcasts.
15. Community Engagement
If your podcast has a community, ask other podcasters to share their expertise, such as hosting a live Q&A or training session. You can do the same for their community.
16. Shared Survey
Learn more about your topic and wider audience by co-running a survey which both audiences can respond to. Then, pour over the data together.
Revenue Growth Through Podcast Collaboration
Collaborating with another podcast can help you grow your download numbers. But it can also throw up some decent monetization opportunities.
17. Affiliate Marketing
If another content creator has an affiliate marketing program, you can promote their merchandise, services, or content directly. This might, in-turn, lead to them promoting or sharing your show.
18. Exclusive Content Swaps
Just like how you can swap trailers, episodes, or hosting, you can also swap bonus or exclusive content. If both podcasts have memberships on a crowdfunding platform, you can swap exclusive, bonus, or behind-the-scenes content. This gives an extra incentive for both sets of listeners to sign up.
Tools to Find Podcast Collaborations
Now that you’re armed with 18 great ways to collaborate with other podcasts, you just need to find a few willing partners. Maybe you already have a couple of shows in mind, but what if you don’t? Well, there are a couple of tools from Rephonic which can help.
- The Podcast Audience Graph lets you look up any podcast to see the other shows its listeners also enjoy.
- Discover New Podcasts lets you enter a list of podcasts you like and spits out some recommendations based on them.
Try them out, create a shortlist, and then you can start to dig deeper, checking which podcasts are still active and the best ways to reach out to them. Feel free to send them a link to this post, too!
Best Practices to Promote a Podcast Through Collaboration
The most obvious reason to do this is to promote both shows to new audiences and improve your listener numbers. The less obvious reason is your shared focus, and that’s the secret sauce. The promotion isn’t about you or them but about the topic. What can you do to raise awareness of your common interests?
For example, Wild for Scotland, an immersive travel podcast, collaborated with 1000 Better Stories, a climate action podcast. Host Kathi Kamleitner used her love of wild places to shed light on How Seawilding is Rewilding Loch Craignish. Both podcasts benefit from each other’s insight, and so do their audiences.
And, as a final piece of advice, be sure to get the expectations in writing up-front when you plan to collaborate with another podcast. A simple email saying what you’ll do and when ensures there are no misunderstandings later.
Teamwork Makes The Dream Work
So much of the popular wisdom about podcasting puts success in competitive terms. Instead of thinking about download numbers, chart placement, or average star rating, think about cooperation. Collaborating with other podcasters is fun and opens up more opportunities. Our Indiepod Community can help you meet and share ideas with other podcasters. Plus, we have discussions, live training sessions, and more. Come join us and build your next productive relationship.
And, if you’re looking for a full range of podcast promotion strategies to grow your show, from advertising and email marketing to in-person events, then be sure to check out our comprehensive guide!