Turner PR

How To Pitch Podcasts

The rise of podcasts was one of the major media moments of the last decade. And from the looks of it, podcasts in the ‘20s are only going to get bigger. Just last week, Vox Media announced a $20 million investment in their podcast business for this year. Meanwhile, the New York Times took a deep dive into the fertile ground of podcast fan groups, which are filled with highly engaged listeners.

In other words, podcasts are huge – and a great way to reach your chosen audience.

  • Podcasts build stronger relationships with consumers (listeners) than print/online.
  • Podcasts have higher conversion rates. Listeners of podcasts feel a more personal relationship to an article, or product feature than when someone simply reads a story.
  • Most readers skim online or print stories; that’s less possible on a podcast. Listeners generally want hear the full story behind a podcast (whether it’s highlighting a business, news headlines, or an innovator).

The podcast world may be relatively new. But tapping into its marketing potential remains old-fashioned. You’ve got to pitch! Here are a few tips on how to pitch podcasts.

Keep In Mind That Podcast Lead Time Is Typically Shorter

Researching a story, and writing it, takes many, many, many hours. On the other hand, a podcast typically takes however long the actual podcast is (let’s say an hour), and then a little prep (about two or three hours). That’s a lot less time than it takes to research, write and edit a story. This varies widely from podcast to podcast, obviously, but a lot of popular programs work on a very fast turnaround.

Check out five great podcasts for PR professionals.

Do Your Research

There are countless podcast formats, and if the podcast you’re pitching doesn’t take guests, you’re wasting your time. Demonstrate you listened to their podcast and understand its audience. Listen to as many episodes of your chosen podcast as you can. Once you understand their overall vibe and approach, you’ll understand who makes a good guest. Ask: How will my client’s knowledge be useful for their listeners? Pull together a list of 40-50 podcasts that would make sense for the topic and person you’re pitching.

Look for Common Threads

Who has appeared on the podcast who is related to, or closely associated with the podcast you’re pitching? Or better yet, if pitching a company expert, is there another similar company that perhaps started prior to yours, and who you can follow to pitch?

  • TIP: You can search on iTunes store too for appearances of a particular person. Using the desktop version of iTunes, type in a business or person and it will bring up any podcast they have appeared on.

Discover why (and how) to work with podcasts

Keep It Brief

Just like with any pitch, it’s important to keep your podcast pitch as brief as possible. Make sure to showcase that you’ve listened to the podcast and have a thorough understanding of what it’s about.

  • Example format:

I’d like to pitch X for your podcast.

Outline who they are and what they do.

1-2 lines about why this person would be valuable to this podcast audience.

List 5-10 potential topics for the interview.

Include the biography of person in the email pitch and links to relevant press hits. Provide potential guest’s social handles to give the host a good idea of voice.

  • TIP: If you don’t hear back, follow up in 10 days or so. Many podcast hosts have external obligations and other jobs.

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