In recent years, podcasting has become one of the go-to marketing methods of thought leaders, entrepreneurs, authors, and others who want to display their expertise. On average, weekly podcast listeners tune in to 6 podcasts per week. It has also been reported that over 50% of homes in the U.S. are podcast listeners. That’s about 60 million homes and about 155 million people!
With many people tuning in to podcasts weekly, it’s no wonder that more and more have started their own podcast. Since the number of podcasts being launched is growing, so is the competition for listeners. So, how can you make sure that you’re able to get people to listen to your podcast?
In this article, we’ll show you 6 ways you can drive traffic to your podcast, but before we do that, let’s take a look at what makes a podcast worth listening to.
What Makes a Podcast Great ?
Before you drive traffic to your podcast, it’s a good idea to make sure your podcast has something great to offer. Since there are numerous options for listeners, you want to make sure that your podcast offers something that listeners love and can’t wait to share with their network, followers, and friends.
Here are a few of the elements that make a podcast great:
1. Great Podcasts Have a Great Central Theme
Although it may be tempting to have topics ranging from politics to gardening, having a central theme is one of the best ways to keep audiences coming back. When you’re trying to attract an audience, you must keep in mind that they will return if they know what to expect. If your podcast is too broad, it may make it harder for your audience to identify what you’re all about.
2. Consistent Updates
Consistency is a key part of podcasting success. Publishing your podcast weekly gives your audience something to look forward to and gives new listeners a reason to come back.
3. Insightful Guests
Having the right guests can really help your podcast grow. Knowledgeable and notable guests can help make your podcast more interesting and exciting. Adding quality guests can help bring a fresh voice to your podcast as well as new listeners. Podcast guests often announce to their audience which podcasts they will be appearing on and the topic. Their promotion can help grow your podcast.
4. Audio and Visual Clarity
Even though starting a podcast is pretty easy and inexpensive, you don’t want to take too many shortcuts when it comes to audio and video quality. Luckily, there are a lot of easy and inexpensive ways to create great audio for your podcast. Check out the article 5 Tools for Starting Your Own Podcast. It’s Easier than You Think for more on this topic.
5. Great Hosts
No matter how good your audio and content are, it will be difficult to get (and keep) an audience if the hosts of the podcast aren’t engaging. If you’re hosting the podcast alone, make sure that you’re speaking to your audience in a way that’s captivating. If you’re co-hosting the podcast, it’s important that you and your co-host have great chemistry.
7 Ways to Drive Traffic to your Podcast
1. Leverage YouTube Clips
Almost 5 billion videos are watched on Youtube every single day. The site attracts nearly visits a day and over 34 billion visits a month! The sad part is only 9% of small businesses use Youtube for marketing. If you are serious about your podcast gaining viewers and listeners, there is no excuse for not leveraging Youtube. While standard audio-only podcasts can do exceptionally well on their own, podcasters who visually record themselves have an added edge by uploading to YouTube.
Being able to see the host or hosts attracts many because they’re able to see facial expressions and interactions (which is incredibly beneficial if there is a guest on the show), and the hosts also benefit from the exposure uploading to YouTube offers them. YouTube is a massive platform that millions of people use each day, and it can push your podcast into another realm of popularity when listeners know they can find you there.
2. Submit your Podcast to Main Directories/Aggregators
Your podcast needs to be available to listen to on nearly every available directory possible. If it’s not, you’re missing out on added listeners, subscribers, and fans. People aren’t likely to switch platforms for one particular podcast.
The main directories and aggregators you should focus on include Spotify, Google Play, and Apple Podcasts, since these are the most popular platforms people use to listen to their desired podcasts. To appeal to a wider range of listeners, you can also upload to lesser used platforms, such as Soundcloud.
3. Advertise on Other Podcasts
It’s useful to find podcasts that are similar to your own in format and topics, whether that be other fitness podcasts, sex and relationship podcasts, sport podcasts, or anything else. Once you have these in mind, you should work to build relationships and network with these podcast hosts through messaging, commenting on their posts or updates, or emailing them directly.
After a working relationship is built, it’s wise to try to advertise your own podcast on these other podcasts. You could do so by offering a deal in which you advertise their podcast on your show, and they advertise your show on theirs. This will be a win-win situation for both podcasts, as many people are likely to check out the other podcast if someone they admire or listen to regularly is recommending it.
4. Be a Guest on Other Podcasts
One of the most widely used methods of gaining additional listeners and subscribers to a podcast is to appear on other podcasts in the same niche, whatever that may be. Not only is doing this a great way to network and build strong relationships with other podcasters, but devoted listeners to the podcast on which you appear will likely check your podcast out after hearing what you have to say. This will in turn lead to more listeners and subscribers coming your way.
Here are some tips for pitching yourself as a guest on a podcast:
- Send an original email. Try not to use a template since the hosts usually get multiple, similar-sounding emails daily.
- Be empathetic to the host and their time.
- Be sure to let them know your area of expertise.
- Also, mention the topic you’d like to talk about on the show.
- Additionally, research to show’s past themes and topics and themes to understand what the show is looking for.
5. Build your Social Media Audience
In today’s world, nearly everyone interacts, engages, and learns about new products and services via social media. Your podcast should have its own page on the most popular social media apps, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and you should work to engage with commenters on these sites. Facebook Live and Instagram Live have been particularly effective as a marketing tool for podcasts.
You should also post regularly on these apps to gain more traction and engagement. Also, make it a point to ask for feedback or new topic ideas that listeners want to hear from you. This way listeners will feel heard, and they’ll be more likely to listen and subscribe.
6. Have a Dedicated Website for Your Podcast
This tip ties into the increased need to have an online presence. Having a dedicated website for your podcast is vital to attract more listeners and subscribers, and to provide a place your listeners and subscribers can go to for information about your podcast.
Your website could include the podcast’s upload schedule, merchandise offered, potential tour dates (if any), as well as an ‘about me’ section to learn more about the host or hosts. You’ll want to include direct links to all episodes to make it easy for potential listeners to check out the show. You can also include any press about the podcast or partners you have collaborated with on the site so that people will know how successful the show is!
7. Apply Podcast SEO
One of the latest ways to grow a podcast audience is by applying SEO techniques to your show. In 2019, Google announced that podcasts will begin showing up in search results. This means that your podcast can be found by people searching for information on a particular topic.
It also means that applying SEO to your podcast is becoming more and more important. Making your podcast SEO-friendly will include doing things like focusing on keywords, transcribing your podcast episodes, and creating chapters. Some of these techniques can be time-consuming, but it may be worth it if they make your podcast easier to find.