Starting A Podcast Press Campaign For Your Business
All business owners are familiar with public relations, and what it can do for their business. There are many facets of public relations to consider: you can create an influencer campaign, reach out to blogs, send pitches to journalists, and more. But one area that’s often forgotten is podcasts.
Podcasts provide many business owners with ample opportunities, especially if you aren’t prepared take on video marketing or don’t yet have the budget to start a podcast of your own. With podcasts, you can reap the benefits of a guest appearance without having to create and manage a podcast in-house.
Podcast popularity is rising. The year 2015 was dubbed the “year of the podcast.” And according to Edison Research, more than 57 million Americans were listening to podcasts by the end of 2016––up 23% from 2015. With this in mind, it might be time to start reaching out to podcasts.
Benefits Of Reaching Out To Podcasts
Public relations as a whole is tremendously useful, especially when combined with marketing, PPC, and other efforts. According to Rocket55, a digital marketing agency in Minneapolis, “a successfully placed story in the media on your organization… can produce tremendous visibility with your target audiences. Beyond that, since it’s generally assumed that media outlets have stringent vetting processes, being the focus of — or simply included in — a piece offers instant third-party credibility.”
Podcasts are an important part of the PR wheel in today’s world. Podcasting can result in traffic generation for your business and reach an audience you may have not reached otherwise. Podcast hosts are also highly effective at building authentic relationships with listeners. Unlike reading text, your potential visitor can connect with you audibly, and you’re able to evoke your brand personality in a much more reliable manner.
Furthermore, people who listen to podcasts are generally regular listeners who are loyal to the host. When the listener trusts the host, you’re eliminating a lot of the guesswork and marketing you’d have to do for yourself: you’re already in. Lastly, when incorporating podcast PR into your marketing/blogging strategy, you’re able to leverage the type of audience that reads blog posts as well as those that listen to podcasts.
Researching The Perfect Podcasts
Before you start reaching out to podcasts, you’ve got to make a list of podcasts that are most relevant to your business. A simple Google search can help you hear. For example, if you run an ecommerce business that sells handmade candles, there would be a few categories you fit into. You could target ecommerce podcasts like eCommerce Fuel or Mixergy. Or, you could target podcasts that discuss homemade goods, like Dear Handmade Life.
You can also consider crossover niches. This means, in addition to the ecommerce and handmade goods podcasts, you could reach out to interior design podcasts to discuss topics like “how to create a better ambience in the home.” Or, you could reach out to dating blogs to discuss how fragrances set the mood. And then there’s science podcasts: after all, there’s a science involved in the way the mind and body perceive and translate smells.
As you can see, there’s plenty you can do here. While you’re conducting research, write a list of all the possible use cases for your product or service, and branch out from there. Once you’ve come up with a list of possible candidates, visit each site and look for key pieces of information. Note their downloads, whether they’re still active, who they’ve had on the show before, and their contact information.
You can also try reverse engineering this process by creating a list of your competitors and see where they’ve been featured. If they cover your competitors, you’re assured your business aligns with their market.
Begin The Outreach Process
If you’ve got the time and aren’t in a rush to spearhead the campaign, take a slow and steady approach by building relationships with your target podcasts before you begin outreach. This includes following them on social media, becoming a regular user, commenting on your podcasts, posts, and even leaving iTunes reviews as the business owner of your company. For the later recommendation, you can reference your review during the introduction to create a more personalized message. This will show them that your outreach is more than just a “cold email.”
It may feel strange for business owners to send out email after email to dozens of podcasts, but this is nothing out of the ordinary. Some podcasts owners can be overwhelmed with inbound efforts, while others struggle to find people and topics to include on their podcast.
At this stage, you should have accrued a contact list of relevant people to reach out to. Create a base template that details who you are and what your business is. This can stay the same from message to message.
The rest of your email should be tweaked across different podcasts. This is where you introduce your idea (can be the same idea for various podcasts, depending) and briefly discuss the value you can bring, as well as why it will do well on their podcast. This is the chance you have to sell yourself. If they’ve covered a similar topic or had a similar guest, mention this in your email. If they’ve had guests that are similar to yours but have opposing views, mention this as well. For example, as a homemade candle maker, you might want to comment on a big-box retailer’s views and discuss how certain mainstream candles have toxins and chemicals that are bad for you.
As you work through your outreach, keep in mind that you don’t have to target the wildly successful podcasts. Reach out to local podcasts and those that are just getting started, too. With less authority in the space, they’re more likely to take you on a guest than those that are inundated with guest opportunity requests dozens of times per day.