June 29, 2021 | Article | Branding, Public Relations
How to Use Podcasts to Build Your Brand
Podcasts have major PR power these days. Their potential reach can directly connect your products, thoughts, and services to a broader audience. They can also help you get in front of a more niche audience through interviews and storytelling with your guests – or as a guest.
Podcasting took off during the pandemic. While some only podcasted to pick up a new hobby (ahem, amateur bread bakers) this powerful and fast-growing medium can have a major impact on your PR efforts. With forecasts predicting the number of podcast users to exceed 160 million by 2023 it’s wise to take a look at some ways podcasts can grow the exposure of your brand.
Position yourself as an expert in your field
There are two tactics here: hosting a podcast and being invited as a guest on one.
If you’re trying to achieve the latter, podcast pitching needs to be a key component of your media relations plan. Podcasts present valuable thought leadership opportunities for your subject matter experts and executives. Think of podcasts as long form interviews where your experts can connect with your company’s target audience. These are listeners who go out of their way to listen in and subscribe – so there’s typically an interest already.
It’s good to research the host, tone, and discussion topics. You’ll want to make sure the podcast you’re considering is right for both your business and spokesperson. Are you comfortable with the podcast’s recurring themes? Can your spokesperson stay on-brand while discussing non-industry topics? Who typically listens to the podcast? How many subscribers does it have?
These are all things to consider when looking for the right podcast to pitch. Your experts don’t have to be the next Joe Rogan or Dax Shepard, but they need to be engaging enough to keep people interested in hearing about what they have to say. And you want to make sure that what they’re saying is being said to the right people and on the right show.
If you are interested in hosting one – there’s work to be done. But first, stick with what you know and what you are passionate about. You’ll have to stay focused on this in order to establish a devout and interested listenership. Be specific with your topics and make sure the guests you invite are as passionate as you are.
Once you have an idea of theme, you’ll need to build the infrastructure: equipment, recording platform, syndication, content calendar, and more. You’ll also need to secure guests and establish a structure and flow. Aim to invite the most well-known leaders in your genre. Your podcast’s credibility will grow over time. And building this takes effort, thought, and strategy. Putting in the work can yield big dividends and be fun to produce.
Increase your brand’s reach and exposure
The opportunity for organic growth is boundless. Create a variety of ways for listeners to discover your podcast. For example, post video excerpts of upcoming podcasts to YouTube or social accounts as teasers for the main event. Encourage each guest to share their ‘appearance’ with their own social networks. Each of these tactics will help you naturally increase brand awareness and your audience.
You can also use your guests’ appearances to create additional PR opportunities. During or after each interview, highlight insights or quotes and use those for blogs, media pitches, and social posts. If your guest is really high profile you’ll want to leverage their status for media outreach.
In addition to earned media, it would be wise to invest in paid digital and social media advertising – this will help build an audience and increase subscribers. These ads can also be repurposed for blog posts or newsletter content.
Improve your SEO visibility
We couldn’t get through a piece on content without getting into SEO. There are a variety of tools you can use to generate transcripts of your interviews. Many times podcast platforms are embedded with a transcript service. If that’s not the case for you, sign up for one like Rev.com and make sure you are posting your transcripts on your website. These provide a trove of keywords that will help with your search rankings.
A pro tip is to increase the amount of metadata on your episode so that listeners can discover it organically. Add tags to each episode in your platform of choice – we use BuzzSprout. This helps maximize your organic reach and presents an opportunity for increased brand awareness.
An influential and fast-growing medium
Podcasting has quickly grown into one of the most influential mediums for PR and brand awareness. From controlling your own message to reaching your target audience and the masses, podcasts allow you to be engaging, personal, out of the box, and fun. It’s a way to show your expertise and personality on your own terms. Most importantly, it’s a great way to grow awareness about your business and thought leaders.