Uncover the top 5 branded podcast marketing pitfalls you might be falling into. Learn how to avoid common mistakes and get expert insights for a winning podcast strategy.
But most of the time marketing mistakes aren’t nearly as obvious or large-scale.
To be blunt, marketing anything well is a challenge. Success is hard-won and typically arrives after many grueling months of executing your marketing plan. After that, we then have to maintain those initiatives and the hard-earned momentum we've built.
In other words, it’s safe to say that in today’s landscape, marketers have a lot on their plate.
Podcast marketing is a newer concept to marketers and creators, and because of this, it can be confusing to know what tactics leverage and what ones to leave at the door when it comes to growing a show.
To help marketing teams out, our team at Quill Podcast Agency put together a list of 8 common branded podcast marketing mistakes we see shows making and also how to fix them.
Picture this: You've painstakingly crafted a compelling press release for your latest episode or season release. It's picked up by numerous outlets and even featured in mainstream publications.
Then, it all comes crashing down with the last line: "Find the show wherever you get your podcasts." What’s missing? An embedded audio player!
With the average human attention span steadily decreasing to 8.25 seconds (that’s nearly one second less than a goldfish), marketers need to make their CTAs as effortless as possible.
That means, (when given the option) allow your audience to listen to your podcast right then and there. Offer a sneak peek, ideally a trailer, on your website and in press releases to eliminate barriers to sampling your content.
Or at the very least ensure that you’ve linked out to the listening apps where readers can tune in. Don’t make them open the app themselves to search for you because they likely won’t.
While social media is a valuable tool, relying solely on it for promotion is a common mistake.
Here are the top three ways people find their podcasts according to the BBC and the University of York:
With this information in mind, word of mouth continues to reign supreme, but podcast advertising and “more like this” recommendations aren’t far behind along with internet searches.
To improve your discoverability and reach, consider diversifying your marketing mix. Here are some of our favorite strategies to leverage:
Social media can be a valuable tool for enabling word-of-mouth marketing but it’s not the only tactic you should silo your podcast into.
Each social media platform has distinctive features, interaction styles, and audiences that you should use to your advantage.
As a general rule, most people on social media aren't looking to consume entire episodes. They're more interested in bite-sized content that captures their attention quickly. Here are some ways to achieve this:
Additionally, depending on your target audience, the social media platforms you leverage will look a little different. Here are some things to keep in mind when it comes to the type of content most conducive to these platforms and their average user demographics:
And please, please, avoid simply posting the link to your episode with a caption along the lines of “Listen to the latest episode of *insert podcast name* where we talk to *insert guest name* about *insert topic*!”
As social media has evolved, users are looking for content that educates them, inspires them, evokes emotion, and overall, provides value. As you share your content, keep this at the forefront of your mind.
VP of Marketing at The Juice and host of Modern Day Marketer, Brett McGrath, always shares new episodes on LinkedIn but the focus of the post isn’t even on getting someone to necessarily click on the episode. It’s on educating audiences, which a lot of the time, provides enough value to make them want to listen.
Here’s one of his posts from a few weeks back:
The opposite of boring, right?
Going back to our earlier point: Make sharing as easy as possible for your guests, fans, and employees.
While it’s a nice thought that people will take the time out of their day to create custom social media copy, research your show links on their own time, or dig up old posts to make sure they’re including your hashtag, the hard reality is that people are busy and are probably not going to go through all the extra effort.
Instead of assuming that your guests, employees, and listeners will actively promote your episodes, provide them with easy options for sharing. This can include things like social media copy, platform-specific assets, what hashtags to use, and details of who to tag including their @s.
Quill Tip: Is guest preparation stressing you out? Learn how to become your guest’s favorite host in our complete guide on podcast guest prep.
While podcast reviews and ratings are great on their own, many podcast marketers miss out on actually putting them to use.
It’s heavily debated as to whether podcast reviews truly impact podcast charts (we believe they do), we do know that podcast reviews and ratings can be repurposed in the following ways:
So although you hear it on pretty much every podcast, make sure you ask your audience to rate and review the show on Apple Podcasts. Being able to build a base of positive reviews will bring a myriad of benefits to your show.
Quill Tip: Thomas McKinlay of Ariyh found that seeing one negative review, among positive reviews, is enough to make people 42% less likely to buy a product. We believe this can also be applied to podcast reviews and ratings. So ensure that when a potential listener lands on your podcast, they’re seeing positive messages about your show.
We all know that quality branded podcasts don’t come without spend; however, many marketers are hesitant to put any additional budget out post-launch after they’ve already invested in a podcast agency to produce the show.
While organic tactics work very well when it comes to increasing awareness, discoverability, and brand recognition, sometimes they fail to push the needle when it comes to conversions and monetization.
We’re not condoning the “spray and pray approach” (actually… we kind of are), there are many strategic, targeted paid opportunities for marketers to leverage for their branded podcast.
Here are some of our favorites:
It’s safe to say that you’re likely an SEO pro, but unlike traditional web content, optimizing a podcast can be a bit elusive.
The audiosphere hasn't always been closely linked with SEO practices, primarily because search engines couldn't readily index audio content. That was until mid-2019 when Google began scanning audio files for relevance, marking an exciting new territory for podcasts and content marketing.
There are many ways to go about optimizing your podcast for SEO, but here are a few that marketers shouldn’t skip:
Quill Tip: We take a deep dive into podcast SEO in our complete guide that encompasses everything you need to know for a successful branded podcast SEO strategy. From keyword research and optimizing metadata to creating transcriptions and blog posts, we’ve got you covered in becoming a podcast marketing expert.
So, you’ve nailed down all these PR features, diversified your podcast marketing mix, and launched a new campaign for your show’s latest season, but what’s the use if you don’t understand the impact and ROI?
Here are some ways podcast performance tracking guides decision-making:
Podcast tracking tools like CoHost allow you to analyze listener behavior, such as the number of downloads, plays, and episode completion rates. This information helps you comprehend what content resonates most with your audience, allowing you to tailor future episodes to their preferences and interests.
Podcast analytics like Advanced Audience Demographics or B2B Analytics provide data on listener demographics, such as age, location, income, gender, pets, social media usage and behavior, lifestyle, hobbies, and companies that are listening. Understanding your audience helps you verify you’re reaching the right target demographic and customize podcast content to cater to your ideal listener.
Using Tracking Links, you can assess the effectiveness of various marketing channels by tracking your download sources. By examining the impact of social media promotions, email campaigns, or cross-promotions with other creators, you can optimize your marketing budget and concentrate on channels that yield the best results.
Monitoring reviews, comments, and listener feedback is crucial for improving your podcast. Podcast tracking enables you to gather feedback from multiple platforms and gain valuable insights into what your audience appreciates and what aspects need improvement.
By tracking industry benchmarks and comparing your podcast's performance against them, you can identify areas for improvement and set realistic goals for growth.
Remember, podcast marketing isn't just about getting the word out; it's an ongoing process that requires innovation, adaptability, and a deep understanding of your audience.
And perhaps more importantly, don’t be afraid of making the occasional misstep.
Marketing, like any other creative pursuit, thrives on trial and error. Embrace the lessons learned from your mistakes and use them to refine your strategies. In the end, success in podcast marketing, like podcasting itself, is a journey where adaptability and experimentation can lead to impressive results.
And although it’s a different and likely new medium, remember that you’re a seasoned marketer. Think of the podcast like you would any other product or service you’re promoting.
If you’re looking to spruce up your podcast marketing strategies, reach out to our team!
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