Here’s why podcasting is a powerful tool with many benefits for your struggling small business.
The popularity of podcasts has grown in the last couple of years, particularly spurred on by the pandemic where 22% of consumers reported listening to podcasts more during the lockdown. In Australia, 5.6 million people listen to podcasts at least weekly, an increase of 53% from 2020. More and more niche topics are also enjoying a spike in listeners. The benefits of podcasts are numerous and they are here to stay.
It is a powerful marketing tool that has proven immune to the effects of the ‘rona and is underutilised by many small businesses.
But what exactly is a podcast? Simply put, a podcast is an audio file that is downloaded from the internet. In more detail, it’s a series of audio episodes usually dealing with a specific topic. The word comes from an amalgamation of iPod and Broadcast. Niche topics that people wouldn’t normally find much information on the internet would attract a healthy amount of listeners in the podcast space.
It has been described as a mash up of your favourite blogs, topics and talk shows all wrapped up in a series of recordings you can download and listen to at your own time, ad free! Like a Netflix crossed with your favourite radio talk show. This is what makes it an attractive marketing tool for small businesses. It’s an excellent way to engage your target market, build trust and position you as an authority in your niche.
So why are small businesses not starting podcasts in droves? Because of 3 popular myths.
1. They have nothing interesting to say
One of the benefits of podcasting is the ability to highlight your expertise in a particular area. This is great for businesses such as life coaches, health coaches, eco-friendly products or anyone else who have a lot of knowledge in a niche topic. You don’t have to be an extrovert to have anything interesting to say. The beauty of podcasts is that they can be conducted as a conversation or just with you talking naturally about something that you are passionate and excited about. What business owner is not passionate or excited about what they do!
This is why podcasts come across as more genuine, rather than an obvious advertisement. More people are likely to listen to a conversation than put up with blatant promotions. The connection also allows you to personally connect with our audience as they hear your voice and get to know your personality and your values. It’s an excellent way to build trust with your audience and grow your conversion rate.
Podcasts are also highly interactive and highly engaging. If you lack confidence, it helps boost your confidence and you can record and re-record many times to suit you and best of all, if you’re an introvert you don’t have to show your face.
2. It’s too technical and too hard
Videos can be quite technical and time-consuming to produce, and there’s the cringe factor that people experience by being in front of the camera. Blog posts might not be everyone’s cup of tea, as their business might not need that type of content due to their audience type.
Starting a podcast, on the other hand, is not as hard as you’d think. All you need is a computer or laptop, microphone, mobile phone, software and a great internet connection.
Podcasting can help you reach new audiences that you might not otherwise reach through other platforms.
What’s even better is if you combine your podcasts with blog posts, and you can capture as wide an audience as possible.
3. It’s too expensive
As stated above, you don’t need a lot of equipment to start a podcast. What’s more, the equipment required is affordable and easily available. There are also user-friendly editing software that you can also try for free, such as Audacity, Alitu and Auphonic.
And even if you have to pay for the software, the return on your investment is well worth the expense. According to a survey of 300,000 podcast listeners, 63% of them bought something that was promoted on the show. What’s more, 71% said they visited the sponsor’s website and 63% said they’d consider purchasing the product or service being promoted on the show.
The key take-away
Podcasting has numerous benefits for your business. It’s a great way to reach a vast audience hungry for content and an excellent way to build trust with your potential customers. Not only is it easy to produce but the return on investment is also very high. It’s worth looking into and including as part of your marketing strategy.