Currently, over two million podcasts exist, and more than one-third of Americans listen to podcasts regularly. Given their popularity, podcasts have become a medium that organizations should consider for reaching target audiences and supporting communication objectives.
Though podcasts are a relatively new addition to the PR ecosystem, they are rapidly becoming a staple in building thought leadership and credibility for company spokespeople. Podcasts provide a conversational platform that humanizes executives and allows listeners to gain industry insight directly from the subject matter expert.
To get the most out of implementing podcasts into your PR strategies, consider the following:
- Connect directly with audiences. Almost every industry has a wide selection of industry-specific podcasts. For instance, there are marketing podcasts, IT podcasts and even agriculture and farming podcasts.
As a first step, identify podcasts that reach your target audience and will provide spokespersons with the chance to highlight their industry knowledge and expertise. Once you have landed a spot on a podcast, take note of the formatting of previous episodes so you can prepare the spokesperson for the conversation structure, questions and proper etiquette for the interview.
- Be conversational. The conversational nature of podcasts allows room for creativity for a spokesperson to voice unique commentary that can support their communication objectives.
It is essential to coach the spokesperson on responding to a podcast host’s questions in a way that stimulates the conversation and enables it to flow seamlessly. This includes open-ended responses, personal anecdotes, analogies, and expressions that help better explain your talking points.
- Reuse the content. The conversation spurred by the podcast host may lead to the spokesperson sharing new perspectives and one-liners that can be reused in pitches, audiograms, social media posts, blogs and articles. Consider creating transcripts from each session to make leveraging the content less time-consuming.
- Expand your network. Podcast hosts are often industry experts themselves. For instance, Tim Ferriss, CEO and chairman at Disney, and Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn, both host their own business-focused podcasts. Connecting with individuals like these can help you to expand your network and meet people from your industry.
Additionally, it is becoming more common for publications and news outlets to possess their own podcast networks. A podcast network is a collection of podcasts that are produced, distributed or made available through a single company. Oftentimes, once you connect with a reporter or editor from a publication that owns a podcast network, they can recommend your spokesperson to a specific podcast within their network that aligns well with what you are trying to achieve with the interview.
- Voice a call to action. According to Semrush, 20 percent of people have purchased a product or service after hearing about it on a podcast. Being featured on a podcast gives a spokesperson the perfect opportunity to pitch their company or product in a more personable way.
Coach your company’s representative on ways to strategically present key messages that support the company’s goals and highlight differentiators.
While incorporating podcasts into your PR strategies is a fresh addition to the PR playbook, they are extremely helpful in positioning a company’s executive as a subject matter expert. Allowing the spokesperson to speak in a more colloquial way opens the opportunity to access additional audiences, create compelling content and better personify your company to your target audiences and stakeholders.