Podcasts are in. We all listen to them - whether it’s to catch up on celeb gossip or learn what’s hot in tech, there’s a show for just about everything. Earlier this year we discussed how audio-based PR would be on the rise and that’s nothing short of true. Thanks to tech such as Facebook Audio, Amazon Echo and the much anticipated Apple HomePod we can listen to podcasts anywhere, anytime. Whether it’s in the car, on the subway, while cooking dinner at home or in the office, today we can literally stream content 24/7. For publishers, podcasts represent another content channel for their audiences and so, with that in mind, here are five reasons why podcasts should be among your media outreach targets:1. 40 percent of Americans ages 12 and older have listened to a podcast.
According to this 2017 report by Edison Research, 24 percent of Americans have listened to a podcast in the last month. That’s just over 77.5 million Americans listening to podcasts on a monthly basis. This is a large and widely diverse audience, eager for audio content.
2. You’re capturing your audience’s attention longer.
While traditional text-based content is great, today’s on demand digital and mobile users are always ready to swipe right to the next thing. You can easily listen to a podcast while doing something else: checking social media, going on a run, during the commute to work, etc. The point being, with podcasts, you’re capturing your audience’s attention at different times and places from other forms of media. We lead busy lives so capitalizing on these moments to insert your message or story is a no brainer.
3. Generation smart speaker.
Smart speakers will revolutionize what we know today as radio making it an interactive experience for listeners. This category includes voice-controlled devices such as the Amazon Echo, Google Home and the anticipated Apple HomePod. Per Edison’s research, 63 percent of Americans aged 12+ are aware of at least one device in this category, while seven percent (an estimated 20 million Americans) live in households that have at least one smart speaker. As Apple races to compete in this hot new market we can expect these numbers to rise. “Alexa/Siri/Cortana/Google, play my favorite health podcast” is just the beginning.
4. Trade/industry publications broadcast new episodes regularly.
The majority of trade publications have launched podcasts such as Total Retail Talks Podcast, IoT Evolution Time Podcast and the Re:Learning Podcast - to name just a few and are always looking for industry experts to discuss current trends and breaking news. These shows are aired frequently and listeners can subscribe ensuring they won’t miss an episode. Like any media target, you need to know who the audience is when pitching podcasts. Pitching a topic geared toward an IoT show is going to be different than pitching a retail or healthcare segment.
5. There’s plenty of opportunity to amplify podcast coverage.
Podcasts aren’t a one and done. Once the podcast has aired, it’s yours to promote and sharing on social media is a must. Check out our recent blog post, Seven Ways to Promote Your Podcasts which recommends using rich media, soundbites, video, images, teasers, etc. Some other ideas on how to keep sharing include pinning your episode tweet or Facebook post, featuring the iTunes URL or amplifying your targeting and reach using paid social.These are just a few reasons why it’s important to pitch podcasts. This year alone we’ve seen drastic changes in how we consume news and information. As PR professionals, it’s our job to know what’s coming next, understand what’s working and think creatively when it comes to sharing a brand’s story. Be sure to check out InkCast, our own podcast show where we explore the essence, culture and business of communications.
Harrison is a core practitioner of media relations and content development across all of his accounts. He has experience in many different industries but has particular interest in higher education and FinTech clients. One of his favorite things about working in PR is helping new clients discover and formalize their story and initial messaging.