We’re just going to put it out there:
If you’re planning on making a sale with your podcast guest directly after the episode, you’re going to be disappointed. That’s the cold, hard truth.
Don’t worry. There is a luminous silver lining to this dark cloud.
- The purpose of a podcast is to be an authentic platform for conversation.
- Podcasts inspire community over customers.
- Podcasts foster borrowed brand affinity.
Keeping these three purposes of a podcast in mind will help you generate…
… a larger listener base.
… credibility in your industry.
… invaluable relationships.
… borrowed brand affinity.
… thought leadership.
… ultimately more customers.
Let’s break it down.
1. An Authentic Platform for Conversations
As a podcast creator, your main concern should be to deliver meaningful content related to your industry. A natural way to do this is to be genuinely interested and knowledgable in your guest’s objectives. Doing some research on your guest beforehand is a must for organic conversations to occur. Your guest will notice the preparation you’ve put into the interview and appreciate your effort.
Additionally, your listeners will be able to tell if you’re getting “sales-y.” Don’t try to pitch your services unless they naturally come up. Even then, strive to be totally educational, not persuasive.
Any ulterior motives will be seen clearly by your guests and listeners, giving your podcast and brand a thick film of inauthenticity.
2. Community Over Customers
In a recent study, it was found that 73 percent of millennials are willing to spend more money for sustainability. Plus, millennials are beginning to make up the majority of the workforce, giving them more buying power.
Ronny, whose goal is to start dialogue around corporate social responsibility (CSR), realizes the value in creating a 360-degree experience for this age of industry followers. He understands that potential customers are searching for a community to be a part of, not to be sold to.
A podcast is an especially effective way to cultivate a community of followers and influencers alike. To build a strong community via podcast, Ronny suggests:
- Slowing down the conversation
- Discussing high-level topics within your niche
- Discussing topics related to your guest’s goals
- Having the goal in mind of becoming a thought leader and building a community
Your guests and listeners will appreciate your effort to generate a complete, authentic experience.
3. Borrowed Brand Affinity
Brand affinity is a metric that allows market researchers to predict consumer behavior. When that information is exchanged between industry influencers, both parties benefit, as do their followers.
Brand affinity is closely related to customer loyalty. The trust and loyalty followers have for your guest can more easily transfer to your brand and vice versa. This is why it’s important to find guests who are involved in your part of the industry.
When you recognize what your listeners are interested in hearing about, it’s easier to identify guests that will add to the overall experience you’re providing. Those guests can give you valuable insight into your target market in addition to exposing their followers to your ideas.
With that being said, exchanging brand affinity will only prove successful when you’re authentically building relationships. Once guests and listeners can trust you as a genuine thought leader, people will be excited to be part of the community you’re nurturing.
Ronny has seen growing success with his podcast, The Impact Exchange. Not only has he invested in his podcast, but he’s also implemented several supporting elements to create a holistic experience for his followers. Podcasting is one pillar of the diaglogue he’s building around corporate social responsibility.
Though it’s only one pillar of a larger structure, there are countless possibilities for content to branch off of a podcast episode in the form of…
… blog articles.
… a mini series.
… a native advertisement.
… news stories.
… a video.
… social media updates.
… almost anything you can think of!
One lasting piece of advice Ronny wishes to share with aspiring podcasters is to find a niche in which you can excel. General topics don’t do well unless you already have the following.
As you move forward in your podcast expedition, keep in mind that it’s OK not to make sales with your guests right away. A podcast’s purpose is to generate genuine, organic content and build a community around your mission.
Keep it authentic and the sales will follow.
You can find this interview, and many more, by subscribing to the B2B Growth Show on iTunes.
If you don’t use iTunes, you can listen to every episode by clicking here.
James Carbary is the founder of Sweet Fish Media, a podcast agency for B2B brands. He’s a contributor for the Huffington Post & Business Insider, and he also co-hosts a top-ranked podcast according to Forbes: B2B Growth. When James isn’t interviewing the smartest minds in B2B marketing, he’s drinking Cherry Coke Zero, eating Swedish Fish, and hanging out with the most incredible woman on the planet (who he somehow talked into marrying him).