Other "media" has a lot to teach podcasters. Are you listening?
Other "media" has a lot to teach podcasters. I did a series of articles about what podcasters can learn from broadcast radio on my podcasting blog, but we really need to look beyond just broadcast radio if we want to maximize our impact, listenership, and income.
You've probably heard of the online newsletter, Morning Brew, which uses direct referrals by readers to grow. And it's working – they have 3,500,000 subscribers!
You've seen the teasers for television news, which tease what's coming, rather than give the whole story. This is SO EASY to do for your podcast and you can find many example of this on the Big Podcast Instagram page.
Many magazine "subscribers" aren't actually paying for those subscriptions, but those free issues boost ad revenue. They can also be used to get publicity... For example, every month, Hustler is mailed, uninvited and for free, to each member of the United States Congress.
Consider how you can "borrow" marketing strategies from other types of media as you read this issue of Big Podcast Insider.
Spotify and Delta Air Lines In-Flight Partnership
A (literally) "captive" audience – this is a great opportunity for podcasters. It doesn't include every podcast Spotify has either, which makes it better for those who are included.
Limited choices work for you, as long as you're one of them.
That's the opportunity. And it's not just limited to passengers on Delta Air. You could create a similar arrangement for yourself by partnering with a related organization.
I'll give you an example:
Let's say you have a podcast on yoga. Assuming you've actually got a good podcast that's worth listening to, the first thing I'd do is partner with an established organization, such as Yoga Alliance, and work a deal to get access to that audience.
Maybe it's a sponsorship or branding deal. Maybe you make it so your podcast becomes the "official" podcast of Yoga Alliance and do some kind of in-kind promo agreement.
It doesn't matter how to do the deal – the point is, you connect yourself with an already-established group of people and make your podcast the "only" option.
Get the concept, not just the specific Spotify deal. The Spotify deal is done, but there are literally a million other deals like this, that you can create yourself, which will work better for you.
Need help making something like this happen? Here's the best way to work with me.
How "Ungating" Our Content Increased Downloads by 102%
I talked about the value of "free" in last week's issue. Here's more on the subject...
The bottom line is there's value in having a big audience, even if that audience is getting your stuff free. Why do you think Microsoft allows users to update bootleg copies of Word without penalty?
I'll connect the dots for you – it's because "everybody" using Word means you have no choice but to use Word too. People may write something on Google Docs, but absolutely no professional is using it to edit.
So don't worry if somebody is "taking advantage" of you, by reading/listening to all your stuff and never paying you anything.
Related... You can get a free audiobook of my book on podcast marketing, Big Podcast - Grow Your Podcast Audience, Build Listener Loyalty, and Get Everybody Talking About Your Show when you try Audible.
What Your Podcast Can Learn from "Free Samples" at Costco
I knew a guy who loved the free samples at Costco so much (and went so often), he knew the little old ladies who gave them out by name.
Like a lot of middle-aged, white guys, I love Costco, so I'd often see him there, chatting it up with the ladies as he went from station to station, sampling whatever they had for the day. Black rice, granola bars, Bagel Bites – he didn't care.
No joke, this guy probably spent $30,000/year at Costco. Not only was he buying what was being sampled, he bought a car there, gutters, glasses, computers, vacations, and just about everything else he needed (or thought he needed).
This is the power of sampling. Not only does it showcase what you have to offer, with little risk for somebody – it also gets you incorporated into the lives of these people.
And it's easy to do with podcasting...
The first thing you need to do to take advantage of the "Law of Free Samples" is to have a "best of" option that you send people to. This can be done via an initial email you send to your mailing list, with the "best of" content linked. Or you can have a "start here" episode that gets listeners up-to-speed on what you do and lets them hear you at your best.
Don't have a mailing list? This is the cheapest way to start. Do it. The biggest and most profitable podcasts have mailing lists that can be used for listener outreach as well as an additional place to sell sponsorships.
Pro Podcast Editor Checklist – This Will Make Your Show Better
There's a saying bodybuilders have when it comes to six-pack abs, "Abs are made in the kitchen," meaning that it doesn't matter what you do in the gym if you don't have your diet in order.
The same is true for your podcast. Great podcasts are made via editing. And if you're not doing a good job of editing your podcast episodes, you are losing listeners.
"Better shows get more listeners."
This is what Jon Christensen says. And he's right.
If you want more listeners, the best way to make that happen it to create a podcast that's worth listening to. Forget all the fancy tricks and marketing techniques – in the end, none of those things work if you don't have a good podcast. So get the checklist and start making better episodes.
5 Ways to Convert Your Podcast to a Powerful Income Stream
Podcasting and newsletters are very similar when it comes to building an audience, quality content, and making money. This is one of the reasons I beat the drum that you should start a newsletter for your podcast – you're already doing 90% of the work, so why not repurpose it to an additional format and make what you're doing more effective?
Here's how to go about monetizing your podcast (and newsletter):
- Sell ad space
- Offer premium content at a subscription fee
- Sell your product or service
- Become an affiliate for the products and services or others
- Sponsorship from readers (such as Patreon)
It sounds easy, and it is pretty obvious... So why haven't you done it yet?
The Wrap Up
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My goal is to better empower podcasters to be more successful spreading their messages and make more money with their podcasts.
I'd love it if you'll help me spread the word about this newsletter by sending your podcasting friends to bigpodcast.com/newsletter.