As a seasoned PR professional, you’re probably always looking for creative ways to help your clients gain momentum. You might help someone polish his press materials, and assist another client with writing a punchy social media headline, but there’s another P-word in your promotional toolbox — podcasts.
This option is one of many smart marketing strategies for 2017. According to data from the Pew Research Center, Libsyn, one of the largest commercial podcasting companies, has seen a steady increase in the number of hosted podcasts and amount of downloads for the past several years. Those statistics suggest now is an ideal time to take advantage of this audio publicity technique.
In addition to the value of the recorded conversation, most podcasts have a separate website that includes small write-ups of each podcast episode. These summaries include pertinent contact information and resources mentioned, and this link back to your client’s website or products is a boost to SEO.
Data has also shown podcasts create a form of search saturation on Android phones. Since more than 1.4 billion people use Android devices monthly, your decision to add podcasts to the press section of a mobile-friendly website could also increase search rankings result in a rise in rankings rise. You can expose your client to new prospective followers — those who listen to podcasts while commuting to work, embarking on long road trips and setting playlists, or keeping their ears happy while running errands.
Podcasts are excellent marketing vehicles because they’re so accessible. An interested person can download the latest podcast episodes in minutes through iTunes or other media hubs. Keep reading to learn how to expertly pitch your clients to podcasters.
1. Find the right podcasts to pitch
Many podcast hosts regularly book guests to share their views in an interview format. If you’re weary over the mere thought of writing yet another pitch to promote something for your client, consider the meaningful ways you could convert printed words into spoken ones by pitching your client as a potential podcast guest.
You can expect beneficial results by specifically identifying what you’re trying to achieve through a podcast appearance. Does your client have a specialty that suits a podcast’s focus? Have they recently published a book that aligns with the podcast’s genre?
If you can find relevant or geographically-oriented podcasts, aggressively target those before your client passes through the area, whether it’s for a musical gig, speaking engagement, pop-up shop, or any other obligation that places them in the public eye.
2. Write a Purposeful Pitch
Once you’ve identified solid podcast matches for your client, it’s time to prepare for outreach.
Just like any pitch, your goal is to introduce your client and demonstrate how they align with the podcast focus and how the partnership will help to boost listenership. If your client is an emerging personality and not yet extremely notable, angle your pitch to suggest they have innovative views; a podcaster would be seen as forward-thinking by inviting your client to speak out.
There are several pieces of information to include when writing a pitch to a podcaster:
- Give a specific benefit: Tell the podcaster how your client can benefit them and their audience. How does your podcast pitch specifically speak to the value your client adds by being featured on the broadcast?
- Give social proof and validation: Mention other podcasts your client has been on before, credentials, etc. Include relevant information such as YouTube video views, website visits and notable upcoming TV appearances, radio spots or conferences associated with your client.
- Ask for what you want: Do no use apologetic language in pitching — either speaking or writing. You have something of value to offer, so do it.
3. Spread the Word About Your Client’s Podcast Appearance
All the hard work you put into perfecting your pitch and landing a podcast spot for your client is useless if the target audience isn’t aware of the appearance.
Once you confirm a booking, promote the upcoming broadcast any way you can. Announce the appearance on your client’s social media pages and mention it on their official website. Tap into physical and digital communities. Pick up the phone.
Make podcast appearances maximally effective for your clients. Besides following the suggestions above, thoroughly prepare your clients (listening to a few previous episodes is good prep work) and make sure they can competently talk about topics that may arise.
In case you missed it, check out the recent PR Couture article focused on fashion & lifestyle podcasts for a quick hit of potential leads.
Sarah Landrum is a Penn State graduate with a background in Marketing and Public Relations. She’s also the founder of Punched Clocks, a career and lifestyle site for young women professionals. For more tips on happiness and success, subscribe to her career advice newsletter and follow her on social media. You can find her on Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Pinterest | Google+