October 23, 2013
Do you have an opinion that needs to be heard? A hobby that you are passionate about? An interest you share with thousands of people? In recent years, people, businesses and other brands have largely taken to social media and blogging platforms to market themselves and communicate with a mass audience. While this has been successful, an emerging medium is starting to take the industry by storm and is a great, alternative way to enhance and establish your brand. Podcasting can bring your brand to the next level and provide you with a powerful way to get your voice heard. Here are 5 reasons why everyone should implement a podcast into their branding strategy:
1. Low Cost and Easy to Execute
Creating your own podcast couldn’t be any easier! All you need is a computer with Internet connection and a microphone (and a camera if you want to create a video podcast). The microphone can be built-in to the computer or it can be an external one. Essentially, you do not need to make any additional purchases to get your podcast up and running, unless you seek a higher quality product. Once you have recorded your podcast, all you need to do is upload the file to your website (if you have one) or a third-party website that’s capable of displaying audio/video content. From there, visitors can download your podcast directly from where you posted it. Newer technology and apps have even made it possible to listen to podcasts on your smartphone, which enables immediate streaming for the listeners. It becomes even easier and more immediate once listeners actually subscribe to your podcast, as the podcast will be downloaded automatically every time you upload one. Since podcasts are delivered and downloaded over the Internet, it is a very simple and inexpensive means of communication for both the creator and consumer.
2. No Limits on Creative Space
Unlike radio and television formats that have strict schedules, time constraints and FCC regulations, podcasts can be posted whenever and however you desire. You can make a podcast once or twice week and as long or as short as you want; it doesn’t matter! Your podcast content and habits should be whatever makes the most sense for your brand and audience. There are no sets of rules or regulations that explain exactly what a podcast has to be, which is why you can take a podcast in whatever direction fits best for your brand. Podcasts are a completely open media platform that covers thousands of different topics and genres. Podcasts cover everything from music and sports, to business and food. If you can think of a topic, there is probably already a podcast about it. This does not mean that you can’t create a podcast for a topic that is already covered, because you have unlimited creative freedom to make it work. You are the sole designer of your podcast and ultimately hold the most power in creating your brand.
3. Convenient and Accessible to Users
We’ve already talked about how a podcast subscriber receives your content automatically every time a new episode is produced, but this cannot be emphasized enough. In this day and age, convenience and accessibility are two of the most important factors in evaluating consumer products. Compared to other media formats where users must search for the content they desire, podcasts conveniently come directly to consumers. People who listen to a podcast are there because they want to be there, which creates a loyal fan base. Once a podcast is downloaded, you do not have to be connected to the Internet to listen to it. As a result, people can listen to your podcast while they are commuting to work, at the gym, walking their dog or wherever they might be. The listeners are literally bringing your brand with them wherever they go, with no extra weight or cost. Additionally, people can pause, rewind, fast-forward and re-listen to your podcast as many times as they want. Podcasts allow people to carry your brand in their back pocket and consume on the go, an increasing trend in today’s tech-savvy world.
4. A “Real” Voice Carries More Weight
How many times have you read a book or blog and then heard the author speak, changing your entire perspective of the written work? Whether it was a good change or not, why not cut out that middle step altogether and speak directly to your audience? Hearing a voice is a lot more intimate and personal than just reading a blog or post on social media, and listeners will begin to associate the voice with the brand. Podcast audiences are very loyal because the people feel as though the brand is speaking and interacting directly with them. As the producer, you can convey your personality in a way that written words cannot. You can emphasize things with the tone of your voice or with actions, which written words would be unable to accomplish. Hearing a “real” voice speak about or convey a brand is just that more powerful and influential. There is less confusion among your audience and you have more of a say in how your brand is perceived. Even if you are worried that your audience might lose or miss something by just listening to or viewing your podcast, you can provide a written transcript to go along with the podcast to ensure that the audience has everything they need to know. Attaching a voice to your brand not only gives it added personality but also connects with and establishes a more loyal fan base.
5. Can Offer Quality Information
By creating a podcast, you immediately become an industry authority within your niche. Since you are reaching an audience that wants to be listening to your podcast, you become a go-to person for that area of interest. If people didn’t think you offered quality information, they wouldn’t subscribe and continue to tune in. Your brand’s credibility can skyrocket and you can build a following more easily if you are a recognized figure in the community. Just think about every time you see a person on television or hear them on the radio. Regardless of what they say, you probably consider them an authority figure in the field they are discussing because they are on a public platform. In a podcast, it is your job to make sure you’re content is up to par and credible within your genre. But the podcast platform alone elevates your brand to a new level or respect and creates a passionate following among listeners.
The beauty of creating a podcast is that it can be for fun or part of your business. Either way, it is a fantastic tool in generating a loyal and focused audience, while establishing and enhancing your brand. For the five reasons stated above, I believe all brands should consider creating a podcast. Aside from the obvious branding advantages, podcasts are an enjoyable and easy way to share your thoughts with the world.
As always, I welcome all comments and if you like what you read, be social and share.