Why Podcasts Are Powerful For Small Business Marketing
By Lana Richardson
In case you haven't already heard, podcasts are kind of a big deal.
Conversations that used to be dominated by 'have you seen that new TV show?!", have now evolved into 'have you heard that new podcast?!' And, as iTunes racks up a staggering one billion podcast subscribers, this once-cult form of media is quickly swimming towards the mainstream, with shows like Serial, This American Life and How Stuff Works becoming household names.
In this on-demand information era, tuning into a podcast is the ultimate way to consume knowledge, be educated or entertained, as there's a show dedicated to almost every kind of interest and subculture imaginable.
Naturally, with a large and fast-growing audience, podcasting is therefore developing into a powerful communications tool for businesses, in terms of branding, advertising and marketing.
It works particularly well as a content marketing platform. Whether you're hosting one, advertising on one or making a guest appearance on one, having a presence on a podcast is becoming an exciting and effective way to increase brand awareness, grow a fanbase and acquire customers.
So if you're not already familiar with this underground-turned-overground phenomenon, it's time to get acquainted.
Why Does It Work?It's New And Shiny
There are so many reasons why podcasts work as a content marketing tool, the first being that it's fairly new and is somewhat unchartered territory in terms of advertising and marketing.
There are only handful of companies that have treaded the podcast-sponsorship water and, naturally, they have fared well in what is a pretty uncompetitive landscape, They have the monopoly.
Furthermore, whereas consumers of TV, radio, online and other traditional media are almost blind to advertising at this point, marketing there is still finding its feet within podcasts, so the listener is naturally more attentive and curious to the messages being broadcasted.
Where video and blog posts struggle to retain the attention of users past the five minute mark, the average podcast listener stays for an incredible 22 minutes.
Podcast listeners aren't just fans – they're fanatical. As most show are broadcast or uploaded episodically, this makes it a great way of building a loyal following who are guaranteed to come back for more. It also gives advertisers the opportunity to experiment with serialised marketing campaigns.
Podcasts listeners tend to form trustful virtual relationships with the hosts, as it's an intimate form of media. Therefore, any recommendations they make in terms of sponsors are more likely to resonate.
If you're marketing through podcasts, this is an opportunity to create dedicated brand followers. Podcast audiences are more captive than any other; you're in their ears during their commute, when they're taking a walk or doing some house work. You have their undivided attention during their otherwise wasted time, making them so much more susceptible to your message.
It's Highly Targeted
Unlike TV shows which tend to appeal to mass audiences, podcasts tackle niche interests and specialist topics, making their audiences highly targeted.
Wrestling podcasts, for instance, are hugely popular and attract a large but specific audience of mostly adult males aged 21-45. So male-focused brands have a great chance of successfully snaring their target audiences by advertising there. Car manufacturers, breweries and mens fashion retailers have all fared well.
The Options1. Advertise
There are a few options when it comes to utilizing podcasts as a marketing strategy and the most obvious one is to advertise.
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