Podcasts Matter in Communication and as Part of a Marketing Mix

You know when books on tape became popular to commuters and travelers … still are for many. Well, podcasts allow a similar advantage to that. A podcast is all in the listening, you don’t have to worry about watching a screen or scrolling through a social media feed. It’s just about listening, so it offers something unique in your marketing mix. For our PR firm, we realize more and more podcasts matter.

In early 2016, Edison Research published findings that of people 12 and older in America, 21% had listened to at least one podcast in the previous month – up 4 points from the previous year. To understand that percentage, it is the same amount of people in the US who use Twitter.

Podcasts can be any length of time too. Some are mini-podcasts lasting only a few minutes. In 2013 the University of Texas History Department started their 15 Minute History podcast and have released their 94th episode now. In less than a year after launching the podcast, it became Number One on iTunesU. They usually see at least 3,000-4,000 downloads of each episode.

For colleges and universities, using podcasts helps inform the public, may boost research efforts, can build a following for individual professors – or personal brands, and also keeps their school relevant with students in high school and other places since often teachers will use the podcasts in their class time. Making it more likely that the students could choose to attend their university.

Using Podcasts to Increase the Visibility of your Brand

First, you need to decide what you want to focus your podcast on so you can plan for the correct content and make certain it will be attractive to your target audience. When you have done a few of them, it will be time to measure your success regularly. Learn from what the audience has to say about what they like or don’t like, and make the necessary changes. Podcasts not only can increase your brand visibility, but it can build tighter relationships with your customers and potential consumers.

A Few Excellent Podcasts to Check Out

Politics: Trumpcast, Pod Save America, Brexit podcast, The Axe Files, and Real Time with Bill Maher.

Sports: Men in Blazers, The Forward with Lance Armstrong, and The Football Ramble.

Comedy: Answer Me This, No Such Thing as Fish, Le Show With Harry Shearer, and The Comedian’s Comedian with Stuart Goldsmith.

Society and Social Media: Coffee House Shots, Deserter Pubcast, Bigmouth, and Pop Culture Happy Hour from NPR.

Crime: They Walk Among Us and Serial.

Sci Fi: Imaginary Worlds.

But other interesting podcasts include Sodajerker on Songwriting, Blacklisted (about books published in the past), Myths and Legends, The Memory Palace (3-10 minutes long), and Stuff You Should Know.

Got three to 90 minutes to learn about something new and interesting, check out a podcast and while you’re listening, think about how you could use a similar process to build your business and attract new people.

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States.

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