Why (And How) To Work With Podcasts
By now, it’s old news: podcasts are huge. According to the Edison Research and Triton Digital’s Infinite Dial 2019 report, U.S. weekly podcast listeners averaged seven podcasts a week. There are more than 700,000 podcasts being regularly produced, with a whopping 29 million episodes available. 51 percent (144 million) of the US population has listened to a podcast – up from 44 percent in 2018.
But the big numbers only tell part of the story.
An Engaged Audience
Listeners of podcasts feel a more personal relationship to an article, or product feature than when someone simply reads a story. The human voice makes a difference! What’s more, most readers skim online or print stories; that’s not possible on a podcast. That means that listeners hear the full story behind a podcast, whether highlighting a business, news headlines or a personal story. And 80 percent of podcast fans listen to entire episodes – they’re in it for the long haul. To put it simply, the podcast audience is one of the most engaged audiences out there. Which means that brands should be getting involved.
Need a quick primer on podcasts in 2019? Forbes’s Joshua Dudley has you covered.
Matching Up With The Right Podcasts
So: which of the 700,000 podcasts out there are right for your brand? We’ve got some narrowing down to do. Society & Culture is still the most-represented top-level category on the Apple Charts. News & Politics, Comedy, and Business and also rank highly. When researching potential podcast matches:
- Look for Commonality: Who has appeared on the podcast who is related to, or closely associated with whomever 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?
- Explore New & Noteworthy Podcasts in iTunes: Since these are new, they often NEED guests. Since they’re noteworthy, they’re likely experts, and command good listener numbers.
- Check out Amazon Author Pages: Research authors who are authorities on similar topics who whoever/whatever you’re pitching and see what podcasts they’re appearing on. Then, reverse pitch!
Additionally, you’ll want to make sure that targeted podcasts are publishing new episodes with frequency (ideally an episode in the last month or so). Also, ensure that your chosen podcasts have a significant number of listeners. Sometimes, the easiest way to work into a podcast is to first list the topics you can provide an expert to speak about.
A Few Notable Podcasts To Check Out
Start here with your podcast research.
- Women On The Road: #VanLife: The Podcast! Host Laura Hughes lives and travels in a Ford Transit Van, interviewing fellow women adventurers. It’s a great resource for solo female travelers (and those who want to get in on the fun).
- The Splendid Table: Award-winning host Francis Lam celebrates food (and the way it touches lives) on this fascinating American Public Media podcast.
- Radio Cherry Bombe: Meet the coolest, most creative women in the world of food – chefs, bakers, pastry chefs, cookbook authors and beyond.
- Women Who Travel: Two editors from Conde Nast Traveler figure what it means for women to travel the world, “celebrating all the reasons why we refuse to stay home.”
- Sincerely, Hueman: Kindness counts – and this narrative podcast is all about doing good in the modern age. An inspiring listen!
- Armchair Expert: Dax Shepard’s blockbuster podcast sees the actor sitting down with some big names to discover what makes them tick.
A Growing Market
This past month suggested that podcasts will be getting even bigger. The reason? Google of course. According to Nieman Lab, Google Search “has begun indexing podcasts such that playable episodes would appear as actionable entries within relevant search results.” That means that podcasts are now even more visible for Internet users.