While holidays may be a break for you, the same does not go for your guests. In fact, we have noticed that the number of plays of podcasts during those time periods increases and not decrease. The reason is people tend to have more time to catch up and binge listen. Take advantage of this information and prepare your podcast for binge listeners and podfasters without giving up your vacation. We teach you the ways you can plan ahead and have things in order before you take flight. We also discuss the reasons why you may see a dip in your downloads, the difference between downloads and reviews to your ranking, the general turnaround time of submitting an episode, and more.
This is something we do monthly and sometimes we do some additional subjects mid-month if there’s something good and important to talk about. Usually monthly toward the end of the month. We cover a range of different topics. We have some things we’re going to share with you and then we’ll open it up to questions.
We have some questions that we got emailed in, which is another way to participate. If you know you can’t make this month’s call or the next month’s call and you want to send some messages in, this is where we can address them for you. Email them in and we’ll get them, so you’ll have a transcript of them as well.
That’ll be in the help resource section of our customer dashboard.
In this episode, we thought we’d talk about holiday schedules and how to manage that off time that happens occasionally when like, “It’s Thanksgiving Day and I normally go live on Thursdays. Is that still a good plan?” We thought we’d talked through because we’ve been doing this in our podcast for a few years. We tried a lot of things over the years and some of it worked and some of it didn’t. What’s happened for us is that when you have an actual holiday and that’s the day that your podcast airs and you have one. This is assuming you have one and you’re planning to air it and you are taking a break for a holiday or anything like that. Air it on that date. If you feel you want to, air it the day before but do not deviate from your schedule if possible.
Even though it’s a holiday, people who look forward to it or might be traveling for that holiday will still download it and take it with them or listen to it later in the weekend. We had once that happened on Christmas day and we had one that has happened because ours is a Thursday, so it always happens on Thanksgiving. Our interview episode we air on our on our 3D Print Podcast always airs on Thursday. We’ve never had it have low listenership ever. It may not have it exactly on that day, but it has it by the end of the weekend. It has the same listenership over the course of the week. You don’t want to lose that. You don’t want to mess up the schedule and people think, “They flaked out on me,” especially if they are counting on it.
In fact, I would argue that usually during holiday time periods, the number of plays of podcast guests will increase, not decrease. People tend to have more time to catch up, to binge listen if they find you new. I would not alter my schedule just because of a holiday. However, I would plan ahead and this is going to be a note for all of you in terms of your upcoming production schedule, especially in December. November, it doesn’t affect things as much because most of our production team doesn’t even celebrate Thanksgiving. It’s not any different production-wise for us but coming up in December just about everyone in our production team celebrates Christmas in some way, shape or form or will be taking some time off.Be animate as you speak because that passion comes through your microphone. Click To Tweet
One thing you want to think about is submitting those episodes that we’re going to air in late December and maybe even that first week in January, to submit them early if you can. If you aren’t already that far ahead, I know some of you are. Some of you have many episodes recorded ahead. We have some people who’ve recorded out through May 2019, believe it or not. Some of you are a little more in time in terms of recording and submitting your episodes. If that’s the case, by that second to the third week in December, you want to try to submit everything for production that you’re going to need through the rest of the month and then through New Year’s Day.
I want to mention to everyone that there are three issues on the side of what is a holiday schedule. There’s the production side. There are also guest interviews. You could get easily behind if you’re scheduling interviews because there are lots of holidays and it’s hard to get them scheduled. We try to compact up early in December and open up more dates. Normally, we would only allow two dates for recording and we force all of our interview subjects into those two dates on purpose and it’s so that it manages within our schedule. In December, we open up more so that we can get a little ahead because there are many holidays there and the production schedule and we want to make sure. We might open four days and allow broader booking and we might invite eight guests instead of four that we normally would in a given month.
For us, we do that in November because December’s episodes for us are recorded in November. It’s a month ahead of time. You have a guest impact, you have your recording schedule impact, and you have the production schedule so be thinking about that overall. From all around, listenership is up. We think we believe in every sector. We haven’t had a single industry sector or category that has been low during holiday times. That’s the same thing for my Inc. articles. This is the largest readership we have. The good thing is that there are lots of other podcasters out there who aren’t as committed as you are or as we are. This happens with my Inc. column. Other writers are lazy during the holidays and they don’t submit as many articles and other podcasters don’t commit to the time schedule and don’t continue to post during the holidays, take it off.
That’s totally fine if that’s what you want to do. The ones who do, they find new listeners. They find people who are lonely over the holiday. You’re bored with your family. There’s lots of fighting and plugging in and it sounds like a nice way to get away. All of those things are to your benefit if you want to keep going. That’s what we found is that it has served us well and because we record far ahead for us, it’s been a little easier to be able to maintain it. Those that are just in timers, when you do that, it’s little harder. A little planning and a little pre-thought in this can make a difference for you. There’s something that we’ve tried one year and I want to throw it out to you. Reruns do not work. In fact, you get a lot of nasty backlash from dedicated listeners. We thought because we had a lot of episodes and at that we had 300 or something like that. We thought we had 300 and they don’t all show on iTunes. They had dropped off.
Once you get over 300, they will drop off. Anything 300 or higher, your first episodes would no longer be there. There’s a way to do that. That’s a discussion for another time. I don’t think any of you are near those 300 thresholds yet. We’ll save that for a future discussion. We had new listeners who then couldn’t hear some of the older episodes and we thought, “We’ve been doing five episodes a week for a long time.” We wanted to dial it back to three. We thought, “Two days a week, let’s run one of our best episodes, highest download episodes.” There are some people that appreciated that, but all the longtime listeners preferred not to have that happen.
You’re not rerunning it in your blog and it’s not rerunning via Google because there’s only going to be one blog post and one Google indexing of that. It doesn’t do anything for you there. It’s only happening in iTunes that they’re seeing it or Stitcher or TuneIn or whatever the listing is. You’re seeing it in your listing of podcasts. There is an exception to that and that is if your episode is timely and important. We did that. What was the name of the company that we did it for? I’m referring to the company that did the 3D printing in disaster locations.
Is it Field Ready?
They go into disaster zones and 3D print replacement parts and all sorts of things to help the grid get up or the water system get up, replacement joints, whatever might be needed. They print it on the ground there rather than have to wait for parts to get shipped in. Disaster area zones can get them up and running faster. It’s a great mission. It’s a total nonprofit. It felt like it was worth our while when they reached out to us and said, “There have been all these hurricanes. We need more funding. Could you push out a message for us again?” We didn’t have time and the Field Ready CEO couldn’t do an interview because he was in the disaster zone fixing everything. What we did was we recorded a new introduction and a new bit of information about what they were doing and why they needed new funding. We added onto that the original audio. We essentially created a new episode but replayed that audio.
New listeners could listen to the whole thing and those that may have remembered it, although it was 200 episodes ago. You might’ve wanted to refresh because it was timely and important. That’s a good time to rerun something or replay it and it’s a good way to position it. If let’s say you are a relationship coach or something like that and you run an episode on Thanksgiving about getting along with your in-laws and getting along at the dinner table and you might want to run that the following year, that’s perfectly fine. We think that’s a great idea, but rerun it with something new in the beginning, some new insight or some new introduction to it. People won’t mind that once in a while. They would mind it with the way that we did it, which was every Monday for two months we repeated the episodes and they did not like that at all. That’s a plan for how to handle it if you want to do something like that for another year in the future.
Something happens in the news and it makes sense to renew something. It makes sense to rerun something because of that. If you record that new, you’re making it a whole new episode and you let our team know that part of it is reusing old audio. They will not duplicate that part of the content on your blog post so you don’t get any Google trouble with that. They know better than that. That gives you something, an introduction section on it, to have that audio play and still have that be indexed even though it might be shorter than your normal post which is totally fine once in a while. We didn’t talk about taking an actual vacation though and how you set that up. We should mention that briefly. There are many podcasters who do seasons. TV shows do it all the time. They take the summer off. We don’t recommend taking long hiatuses.
We’ve done it, but we don’t recommend it early on when your show is established. We took a few months off because we got busy with our daughter’s wedding and everything going on and it ended up being more than we planned. We thought it would be a month, but it ended up being longer. While we got lots of messages saying, “Are you coming back?” and everybody panicked about it. We sent them nice messages back saying, “We’re consumed with our daughter’s wedding, but we promise we’ll have a great episode when we return about it,” which we did and they appreciated that. Having a plan and letting your readers know that you’re going to be off is important. If at all that you even want to and you can, if you’re going to take a month off or longer from publishing.
Everybody takes time off. You can store up a bunch of episodes and let them publish while you’re on vacation, but this is if you’re really taking a break from publishing.People that aren't listening are not going to keep serving up and downloading. Click To Tweet
If you need to take a break from publishing or you want to take a break from publishing, you can change the description to your iTunes and have that last sentence of it say that you are on hiatus. You’ll be returned such and such a date because otherwise when people look at this, this happens all the time. They’re searching for episodes in a topic and they go to someone’s listing and they go, “They haven’t published in a month. They probably aren’t going to do it anymore. I’m not going to go to theirs. I’ll pick this other person to listen to.” You don’t want that to happen. If you at least have that message up there that says, “We’re on vacation but we’re going to return on this date. Catch up on the archives in the meantime or catch up in the back catalog.” That’s fine that you can do that. As soon as you return, you can change that description. It’s not a big deal. It pushes through from our site, from the Brandcasting You dashboard.
I want to move on to a couple of issues. We’ve had a few customers who have noticed that they’ve seen a dip in their downloads of the podcast and the podcast plays. We have seen this across a few different shows and we have a theory as to why and I want to share it with you. Some people are like, “What’s wrong with my show? Am I not doing the right thing? Is my subject not resonating anymore? What’s going on as I had a lot of strong plays through the summer and I’m seeing a fall off?” A few things have happened. We had a major update. Apple had a major update of their iOS. They went to iOS 11 for all the iPhone and iPad users. With that, were some major changes for podcasting, especially in their podcasting apps. There were many changes, but one of them I’m going to share with you. If you have a podcast that you haven’t listened to in quite a while from your schedule, you hadn’t been able to download it. You might get a message. This is something new that the podcast app is doing. It says, “Are you not interested anymore? You haven’t listened to any of these episodes in a while,” so they stopped downloading them.
It takes up less space because it was set to normally download five episodes or ten episodes, whatever you originally set your settings to in the iTunes app. They’re not downloading them automatically if it’s been a long time since you listened to it.
If that is any of your listeners, as soon as they got this new iOS update in the new podcast app because they haven’t listened to you in a while. All of a sudden, their phone’s going to stop downloading your episodes and that’s why you may see a decrease in some plays across your audience.
Keep in mind that wasn’t really a play. If they weren’t listening to you anyway, it was a false play reading. We were showing up plays and listeners who weren’t listening to the episode, it was downloading to their device. The purpose of it is that it’s supposed to help avoid this auto download thing where no one ever listens to it and then eventually they realized they run out of room on their phone and they start unsubscribing.
Deleting them and never having listened. Historically, it still is true with other podcast players.
Stitcher doesn’t do that. Stitcher does not auto download. You have to physically ask it to download for the most part. There are ones you can place in a special list, but you have to physically put it in a special list to get it to do it.
What I was saying was that there are some podcast players that still are going to auto-download every episode you publish if they’re subscribed. That can give you an artificially high metric of how many downloads and plays you have. In some ways, this podcast app change with iOS 11 is they’re trying to make the play statistics more accurate. People that aren’t listening, they’re not going to keep serving up and downloading. There are the disc space savings on your phone, which is becoming less and less of an issue as every new phone seems to have 250 gigabytes of space now these days. That probably won’t be a big issue going forward, but in any case, they’re not downloading it. At the same time, while you may have a short-term effect of fewer downloads or fewer plays, as soon as somebody clicks that says, “I do want to keep getting them,” and it’s weeks or a month or two later, then they’re going to get a flood of downloads.
Unless they have set the restrictions, which is the last ten. They’ll get a ten, but you’ll still get a surge of their ten-episode downloads.
Most people don’t set those things unless they keep it with the defaults. You’re hyper detailed in that way, Tracy. While you may not get downloads for a while, you may get a flood of them at one point. We do see that. That’s something to be aware of. That’s been a big change and why you might have seen something.
We’re going to have air an episode about podfasters, which is something that’s a new term which I knew but I didn’t know how to term to it. It’s people who listen to it on double speed or higher and there are apps that allow you to listen up to 10x speed. I cannot imagine how horrible that sounds, but that’s like listening to chipmunks. 2x isn’t as bad as it sounds. I’ve listened to many podcasts on 2x and they still are understandable and okay and people do that. These are the people who will binge listen and like to complete your entire catalog.
I want to clarify for everybody reading now when Tracy says another episode, we’re talking about an episode of our Feed Your Brand podcast. That’s going to be upcoming. Podfaster, it’s pretty fascinating learning about these different classes or different markets of podcast listeners and how many podcasts they listen to on a monthly basis. It’s staggering.Reviews are a lot harder to get than downloads. Certainly, the more you have of each, the better you are. Click To Tweet
If your show is the right show, you’ll have binge listeners. That’s when you’ll see that spike over a weekend or over a holiday. You’ll definitely see those spikes and that’s where they are listening to all your episodes. They’re catching up and they are getting into all the archive episodes or the old episodes that they wanted to hear that are relevant to them and you will find them. Usually, when they’re done or part way through it, they’ll start messaging you. You’ll know that you have some binge listeners because we get that. It happens all the time. They get partway through and they’re like, “I am so excited. I’m happy I found this podcast. Thank you so much and I can’t wait to catch up so I can start listening to the new episodes,” or something like that. It’s a wonderful feeling. I hope all of you experience that at some point over the holiday.
It’ll happen at some point. It happens with every show when it reaches a certain level of maturity. On average, our podcast every day was downloading something like 2,000, 3,000 downloads a day. All of a sudden, we had this day where we had 18,000 downloads in a single day. It was like, “What the heck happened? Where did that come from?” It’s because it happened that a lot of people at that period of time were finding the podcast and then downloading every episode. We had 350 or 400 episodes at the time. You can imagine that starts to add up pretty quick. You only need so many new listeners every day that had downloaded a huge amount of them in order to start getting some big numbers.
At least with this change, you won’t have false. You won’t have people who are downloading them and not listening to them. They’re downloading them purposefully or they legitimately want the show. Doesn’t mean they always get to it. There’s still always going to be that where they didn’t get to listen to all the ones they downloaded to their phone, but at least they downloaded it purposefully.
If you do wants two episodes a week, the chances of your audience listening to every episode is a lot better. If you do five a week as we had done for a long time, then it changes that. I want to address a question that one of our clients had written in about. It was a question regarding iTunes and ranking of podcasts. Asking you about the importance of the difference between reviews and downloads. What’s more important? What would help your rankings, to have more reviews or to have more downloads? It’s a question a lot of podcasters ask. We’re talking about iTunes here because iTunes is by far the largest distribution channel for podcasts.
iTunes in the past has not shared with you how many subscribers you have. You only have your download statistics and how many of them came from iTunes. Downloads are the most important metric, although reviews also help a great deal. Reviews are a lot harder to get than downloads. Certainly, the more you have of each, the better you are. You do want to get as many reviews as you can, especially as a new show you want to get as many downloads as you can by the first eight weeks. That is what iTunes is looking at in terms of the new and noteworthy and what they’re going to put up there.
You’re competing against a lot of people whose PR firms or agencies who are working through them who are having them go live with 25 or more episodes. Which is what we do here because it’s manageable, go live with three episodes. We somewhat ignore the new and notable for almost every category. It’s not as critically important for the way that we do business because the majority of it comes from Google.
It also used to be a lot easier to be seen in the new and noteworthy than it is now. They’ve reduced the number of shows they show there. It used to be there’d be 1,500 to 2,000 shows listed there. Every new show basically that was under eight weeks old would be somehow listed there and you could see where you are in it and make a difference. Now, they show much fewer shows. They’ve changed quite a bit of that in the last year. It’s hard. The only way you’re going to get to the top of the download stats in the new and noteworthy with a new podcast is to launch with at least twenty shows and then to do five a week for 60 days.
You have to push in reviews. You have to get people to make reviews on you on a lot of those. Apple does not care almost all of those reviews are paid reviews. People are pushing in and getting reviews that they’ve paid people to do from a PR firm’s perspective. To me, it’s inauthentic. It hasn’t helped because people are coming in and that’s why I want to share with you what it looks like on Stitcher. This is the way most people search for shows. They don’t necessarily go to new and notable unless they are browsing. If you’re looking for something specific, if you’re looking for shows about pitching investors or shows about startups and VCs and things like this. I’m going to share with you John Livesay’s. If you see it, he’s listed under my client’s thing. You see up at the top where it has The Successful Pitch with John and it’s cut off. It shows the description there. There’s no review number. There are no stars. There’s no information on Stitcher about any of that. When it says details, it doesn’t even show that show description. It’s right into his episode, whatever that current episode is.
You can go to the episode listing is the other way that you do it. You see the episodes. Again, there’s no rankings, no pieces of information on there at all. You can see that mine are green and blue, which means I’ve either listed or not listed. That’s what it’s doing there, but this is the way that almost all of the other ones work. Google Play works similarly. TuneIn works similarly. You don’t see any of that information anywhere but on iTunes and usually only if you’re searching through the desktop version. It’s a lot harder to see and you definitely can’t make reviews and comments unless it’s in the new iPhone, which I haven’t tried.
In their podcast app, you can. The thing about reviews and the reason they’re hard to get is it’s not easy to do it. You have to go to the right place within the show’s listing in the app or in iTunes itself on your desktop and intentionally go to write a review. It’s not as easy as, “I’m listening to this episode. Let me right here type a review.” You’ve got to dump out of the episode. Go to a different part of the app and do it. That’s why it’s hard to do. Mark is asking, “Are there strategies that I can use to get more reviews beyond just asking on my podcast?” There certainly are.
I wanted to test out this like, “Are you paying for reviews?” thing and see if anyone caught it or there was anything or they D-listed it or did anything like that. I went to Fiverr and asked five people to give us a review and it worked and they’ve been there the whole time. People do that. Athena Rosette, one of our podcasters who has the Alter Ego Podcast. She did a great thing. She did a little screen share video to show people how to go about leaving the review and asked her Facebook fans to do that for her. She got a lot of successful reviews that way.
Other than what Mark is asking, other than asking for reviews on his podcast, which pretty much every podcaster does which is you should and we did too with our WTFFF?!. I don’t know if we do it too much with Feed Your Brand, but if you have something to offer. Coincidentally, I’m going to hold up here again. Ken Courtright who has Today’s Growth Podcast. I’ll use him as an example because he did something like this. He has a specific call to action. He had other tools he could use. He has books. He talks a lot from the stage and he has his own events he puts on. His events also, they charge for people to attend his events.The more you record episodes, the more comfortable you're going to get with it, and the better you're going to get at it. Click To Tweet
He put out a call to action on his podcast where he was saying, “Our Digital Footprint event that’s coming up. It’s going to be in Orange County,” and he has one on the East Coast another time of year. He said, “If you want to come to this show, the cost is normally $595. If you will go and put a review up on iTunes for my podcast and screenshot it and share that review with us.” There was a little bit of action they had to take and, “Email us with that information and then we’ll give you a discount code and you can attend for $1.” He does have other ways and people can be guests to the event and not pay. The money for the event wasn’t his biggest thing he was trying to achieve. He wanted to try to get more reviews to his podcast. He was using a call to action to something he was willing to give away for free to get people to review his podcast. It doesn’t have to be that extreme as an event or something worth hundreds of dollars. It could be a book that you have. If you’re selling anything, it could be a discount for something.
One of the things that he also did was he was also speaking at a CES-based event, one of the big long week-long forums. In both his keynotes that he spoke at, they have almost like a trade show booth thing at the end, was doing the same thing. I calculated because I measured it before he started and before he gave that throw, asking people if they got value out of his keynote would they please go give him a review? At the trade show, he did the same thing that if they’d made a review, then he would give the tickets for $1. He did the same thing there. In the keynote, he got three reviews. This was an audience of 150 to 200 people. He got three reviews out of it. It was not effective and not good. At the trade show, he got maybe a dozen people. It was a little bit more helpful, but it wasn’t tremendously worth the effort for him.
Over time he was able to get it up. He has 60 some odd reviews.
It’s been 60 something for over a year. Once he stopped trying, it stopped working. People don’t do it naturally. It’s not one of those things. Don’t be afraid about negative reviews, I rarely see them. People usually go in to reward you, to thank you for doing your show. They don’t usually go in to rant about you. I don’t see it that often.
The other thing is at the beginning of your show, which some of you are in that stage. In the first eight weeks, if you have a bunch of reviews within a short period of time, that can help your ranking on iTunes. After that, when you have a mature show, then you’re twenty, 30, 40 episodes in and you’re not doing it daily. You’re doing one or two weeks, when you’re twenty, 30, 40 episodes in, those reviews are not going to help you tremendously if you get a lot more of them. Once you have ten, twelve, or more, people are going to look through the first few. Unless they see a majorly negative review, they’re going to say, “People seem to like this show. I’ll go give it a shot. I’ll listen to it.”
When we talk more about the podfasters, you’ll hear more about this. One of the things their criteria are that they like to look for shows that have 100 or more episodes. If you have 100 more episodes, you’ve done a good job and you’ve committed to it. That’s where we say rather have you take your time, energy, and money, concentrate your effort on creating more great content. The faster you do that, the more reward you receive overall from Google ranking, from listenership, from all of these things that happen. It happens better than more episodes you have. You got to get them under your belt. That’s the best way to go about doing it. I understand the need not to have zero reviews at the beginning especially. Make that happen, but you can do friends and family. I had to. One of the reasons why I went to Fiverr to do that was because while I adore her and love her, my sister-in-law has the same last name as us. To have her rave about us and review it was nice, but it said, “Elsie Hazzard,” and I was like, “That doesn’t help us.” I wanted to push us down in the list, so it looked like she wasn’t the only person that reviewed, but she was sitting at the top for so long. That’s why I tried the Fiverr thing.
You want friends with different names or families that don’t share the same last name. Tap all those people first.
You can always email us at Hello@BrandcastingYou.com and we’ll get the message. If it’s urgent, we’ll answer it. If it’s these things that occur like, “I’d randomly like to hear more about this. Discuss more this.” If you have anything pressing, that’s another reason to join the call next time.
We have a question, “What’s the general turnaround time once you submit an episode?” You can tell this is a relatively new customer. We like to have a week of time ahead to be able to push your episode once you submit it. It doesn’t always happen that way. We can produce it within a few days, but it’s always best to leave us some more time. We have a question, “What if you submit five at a time?” We’re going to do one at a time.
Our team will also trump them if you have the dates. They’ll level out, which the due date or the episode air date will override it. It doesn’t matter what order.
You always have to choose the publication date when you submit an episode. Make sure you’re choosing the publication date you want, but make sure when you’re submitting it if you can give us a week at least, that’s ideal. If you give us three or four days, we’ll probably still get it done. The closer you get to that date, depending on the workload at the time in production, it can sometimes be too much to get done in a certain period of time. In that case, we give people options like, “We can get your audio podcast produced within 48 hours and publish it, but your blog post may need to wait and publish a day or two later when it gets done.” More of the work that we do is in the blog posting part of it than it is in the audio show. The audio show stuff comes first.
I always think about this in terms of if you’re submitting a bunch at a time or whatever and it’s going to go in the order of when it airs. If you’re thinking about it and you’re like, “It’s a little tight,” or if this is an important, critical episode that you want to review the text of it. If you want to go through the blog post and review that and have enough time to do that yourself, you need at least seven days in advance. Otherwise, it may not go in until midnight the night before it airs. It’s because of the timing wise of our production schedules and you don’t get that advanced look at it the later you put it in the schedule. That’s the critical factor is how much review time do you want? Our team will work hard to make it happen for you and if it’s not possible we will let you know right away and give you those options.Position yourself in a place of authority as a podcast host and get yourself interviewed on other podcasts. Click To Tweet
Some people like to review their stuff. We’re happy to accommodate that. We put blog posts up in a draft and then you can review it before it publishes. When you don’t leave us with a lot of time to do that, you don’t end up having a lot of time to review things and make sure there aren’t any minor changes that need to be made.
We have a question, “If you scheduled to when you want to review it or when you want to air it?” If you’re a person who wants to review it, that’s notated in your show. That’s something that we did at the early intake or it’s something that comes across as we start to set up your show and work together that, “You like to have it 24 hours or 48 hours ahead of time because of that.” You’re also on the practice of sending it in a week ahead of time so it works for you.” We note that in your overall who you are and what your show’s about. When you go to enter that episode, you must enter the air date, the date that you want it live.
If you have any special notes that you want to tell us. Maybe you don’t usually need to review your shows before they publish and you have a schedule when to publish. Maybe you’ve reviewed them for a while and then you get to the part where you’re more comfortable with our team and you let them write, “I don’t need to review it. Schedule it and it’s fine.” You have a particular one you do want to review in advance for whatever reason.
Maybe it’s a critical guest, a picky one.
All you’ve got to do is in the edit notes section, there is a button there on our new episode request form on the customer dashboard where it says, “For edit notes.” You can put any notes in there you want to. There’s a button you push and it brings up a text box. It doesn’t have to be a particular edit note about the audio show. You can say, “Can you please get this one to me to review by such and such a date. I’d like to review the transcripts,” or whatever it is. Whether it’s the audio show or the transcript or any special requests, indicate them somewhere in that edit notes field is what I would do.
She asked earlier about bumping one for another. You have to address that one because that happens all the time.
It does happen a lot. For instance, Tracy shared with you from John Livesay’s podcast, The Successful Pitch. This guy is an animal and he records so far ahead. What’ll happen is he’s planned it all out. He wants that to be his air schedule and that’s it, but then he gets a really important guest or something more timely that he records now. He doesn’t want to wait to air it the next year. He’ll bump the schedule but what he’s taken to more because he likes everything to be organized and know when things are going to publish. He was publishing once a week every Wednesday and then he had four episodes he recorded that he wanted to happen sooner. Instead of bumping the schedule, which you can do, you just need to indicate when you submit it in the notes the publication date and, “I want to replace such and such an episode with this one or I want to move the whole schedule out and insert this one.” You can do that. What he decided to do is, “I’m going to make these bonus episodes. For four weeks, I’m going to do two weeks.” He was doing one on Monday and one on Wednesday. You have a lot of options there.
I want to say that while it’s great to be booking out in that far distance and it’s a great idea. When you’re doing these guest interviews and you’re building rapport with these guests, this is why it sometimes feels more urgent that you want to bump it. It happens to me all the time with my Inc. articles that I switch up the publication schedule. I push something up ahead of time because either it’s timely or I want to serve back to the person who I interviewed and air them sooner because it would help them. I know it’s going to build a better relationship with them. When you have these long lead time on your schedule, then what happens is they forget about you and you forget about them. You may have lost that momentum from that. While we are all about and advocates about getting your topic episodes recorded, the interview ones we don’t like to go too far out in. We try to keep a month ahead of time. We don’t like to record too far out on the interview ones because it loses that timeliness and that momentum of them being excited about being on your show and pushing it out. It sometimes can have a lag. You can be careful about that and that’s why John pushed up those episodes. He didn’t want to lose that momentum and that relationship building because it was critically important to him.
He certainly has a lot with the people he’s interviewed that are out four or five months. We have a relatively new customer named Paul and he has asked, “As a person new to podcasting, are there events or websites that I should be aware of in order to progress my efforts?” There certainly are.
Let’s qualify that. Paul, are you looking for educational events or websites? Are you looking for those that can help promote your show? That’s two different things. We’ll talk both. You talk about the first one.
There are a lot of resources. There are probably too many resources, unfortunately. You’re going to get overwhelmed. There are numerous podcasts about podcasting and mostly do-it-yourselfers learning to do all the steps in order to launch your podcast. You’ve already gotten through that, Paul. You’ve already launched. Maybe there are some things that can be tweaked and improved and we’re working with you to do that, but you’re already there. You’re not going to worry about that.
That’s why we developed Feed Your Brand as our podcast for you guys and for other podcasters out there because there wasn’t anything concentrating on that advanced podcasting after you get started. Most of it is focused on getting you started or how to get started. We felt there wasn’t enough out there about how to keep it going and how to get it to the stage at which it was building your business for you. I listened to tons of podcasts and I’ve stopped listening to almost all of the ones that I used to listen to that related to podcasting because they were repetitive at this point. I still find Pat Flynn massively interesting, but I find that the way that he podcasts are not useful to someone who isn’t smart passive podcasting. In other words, you’re not doing it to get affiliates.
The ones that are doing the affiliates and you can see because they have all the same guests that they all share. When you start seeing that happen, it’s a waste of time. You’re hearing repeats. What we see there is that a lot of them have started to admit how bad it is that usually, they have to sign up 60 to 100 affiliates to make any money. That’s not working for anyone. That’s not a model by which we have found works, at least not for any of the businesses that we’ve been working with. That’s where we feel it has fallen off, unfortunately. We’re trying to fill that gap. We’re trying to bring in people who do also fill that gap. I’ve got a couple of new ones that we’re exploring and seeing if they work. That’s one of the things that we like to do is we like to try them out and then let you know if they work.
The other thing I would say is whatever resources you may find, and honestly, Google is going to be a big friend to you here as well. You could search on iTunes for podcasts about podcasting, but you want to find the most recent and the most current information. Even something that’s a couple of years old is going to be outdated at this point in terms of podcasting.Content Inc.: How Entrepreneurs Use Content to Build Massive Audiences and Create Radically Successful Businesses
This book is a little bit older, Content Inc. and it’s by Joe Pulizzi. He has a podcast as well called Content Inc. This one’s good because there’s a lot more in here about how to do more with your content, how to repurpose your content, how to push it out on social media differently, how to do a bunch of things. Probably half the book is what we do for you in terms of getting your content to be working on your site and everything, but it’s how you push out those messages that you could do more with. That’s where I would spend more time focusing on and looking for. Digital marketing about social push, about promotion, about launching, anything around those areas, PR, and other things you can do in there. That’s going to be the most helpful to a new podcast.
The first part of the question which is about progressing your efforts to become a better podcaster. Number one, more mileage under your belt. Record more episodes as soon as you can. The more you do it, the more comfortable you’re going to get with it, and the better you’re going to get at it. I’m not saying you’re bad at it, I’m saying everybody improves over time. That’s the first thing is record more sooner. Go and listen to other podcasters. It doesn’t matter what the subject area is, go find some subject areas you have interest in. Type them into iTunes search and find a couple of shows to listen to. Spend some time listening to other podcasters, especially ones that have 50 or more episodes. Listen to them and how they structure it and their styles. Do you feel they’re being real and authentic? Do you think they’re putting up a front and they’re acting? I always think people should be more authentic and be themselves, and not be trying to be any persona. Become a listener of this product that you’re creating and it will inform you a lot about being a better podcaster.
I find many people are like, “I’m a podcaster but I don’t love podcasts.” In some respects, that’s a mistake because if you’re not even at least an occasional listener of them, you don’t see how it’s progressing. See what other people are doing. See how advanced they are. That’s where I find I get the most out of it because I am an avid podcast listener. I also think Paul, one thing for you specifically that is going to serve you the best is that thinking about your early episodes, especially the first 25 to 50. When you think about that in the scope of things, if you approach it with the mindset of, “I am serving my future listeners. I am giving to them because I know that will come back to me later with referrals. They’ll recommend my show to other people.” Thinking about it that way instead of, “This is a direct sale model. I’m directly going into.” When you think about your show as being a service to the audience you want to attract, it works every time. It does what it’s supposed to.
Paul’s show is already set up to be that way.
It has to do with the content too. Is it a business to business type show? Do you have a business to consumer type show? Is it a health and wellness show? Those matters as well and focus your efforts on the social that matches that.
We’ve always found one of the best ways to spread the word on a budget. Promoting your podcast can be a whole hour or a couple of hours of discussion on its own. I’m going to throw a couple of things out here, in particular in your case Paul, because you asked the question. Unless you’re going to go spend a lot of marketing dollars straight getting the word out in a traditional sense, which I don’t think is what you’re talking about doing. There are many ways on a budget to spread the word about your podcast. It’s about two things. You might want to go back and read some of our earlier episodes of Feed Your Brand if you hadn’t about guest strategies. Your show is about people in recovery from addiction.
If you’re going to interview people who have gone through that journey themselves, they’re probably not going to be people that have the highest social media profiles with the biggest followings to push out your episode to. It may not help increase your listeners. If you mix in interviewing those people, which is important to have people give their testimony of the journey they’ve been on and to help others who may need the same. If you have other people who are either more well-known professionals, maybe even celebrities who have come through it. You may find you can reach out to some celebrities and because they’ve been through their journey and they’re willing to talk about it, they would come on your show.
Whatever those people are, whether they’re other professionals in related fields, industries that have large lists, large following that you could interview, that’s going to help promote your show the fastest. They’re going to push it out to their audience, especially with Ego Bait™ that we do. That’s coming soon to you. The Ego Bait™ graphics are already starting to work. The other thing I would suggest and this will be the last one is position yourself in a place of authority as a podcast host and get yourself interviewed on other podcasts. You can probably do that on a bootstrap without paying to do it. If you’re not getting as much traction, there are companies that you can pay to get you placed on others’ podcasts. You’ll be surprised how effective that is for marketing your own podcast. Not in the short-term, but in the long-term. It’ll still pay off six months, nine months, a year plus down the road. We’ve done that to promote some of our stuff.There are many possibilities and options, and not all of them are going to be right for you, but some of them will be. Click To Tweet
It’s worked well. A friend of ours, Dustin Mathews, did 46 podcasts to promote his book launch and it worked well for him and got highly ranked. It depends on where you’re where you’re going with it. One thing that I’d like to add about how you structure the show in terms of getting these guests and other things is to pay attention to who is influencing the subject matter for you. There might be HR directors at various companies who have to figure out how to manage addiction recovery and other things within their corporations. That might be a great LinkedIn reach out. All you’re doing is you’re reaching out to them and saying, “I have this program that you can listen to. It’s totally free. You can offer it up in your HR newsletter,” which almost every HR department at big companies have where they recommend things like that. “If you’re having trouble with substance abuse or addiction or all of these things, here are some resources for you,” and you could be their resource of choice.
We have a podcaster who we did their back catalog for. They went the total corporate approach to how they marketed their podcast. They were an innovation podcast. They went to the heads of design and the heads of engineering at all of these companies and had them recommended in the weekly email or newsletter or whatever. They had tons of listeners from that. That’s an alternative way to go about it. If you know the type of person at a company, LinkedIn’s a great way because you can type that title in there. Find them, friend them when they connect with you back, all you do is to send them this message and to say, “This is my passion in life. This is what I’ve been doing with it. I think this might serve your employees well to listen to my show,” and that’s simply it and it’s free. There’s nothing for them to feel you pushed on them at that point. Usually, the response is good.
It’s probably no end to the concepts that we could come up with for how to promote. There are many possibilities and options and not all of them are going to be right for you, but some of them will be right for you. We can keep exploring that, keep thinking about it, and keep talking about it.
We like to check in and this is a new program that we’re employing as an audit and check-in process across. There are three of us in the main organization at the top here at this location. There are three of us at the top. What we decided to do is to take all of our podcasters and we’re splitting them up. We’re going to audit your podcasts and make some recommendations. If it warrants a strategy call, then we’ll have a strategy call with you to help get you to the next level. We want you all progressing. We want you all to make it past 100 episodes. We want you to feel it’s been adding tremendous value to your businesses. We have some great podcasters who keep telling us how fabulous it is. I’m still shocked at the local podcast where you have a doctor who’s in a localized area and because I know that podcasts are so international. I was pretty sure it would work, but I wasn’t sure it would work as well as it has been for them. We have one set work in that way and that’s a totally different strategy than you do if you want to get national visibility or international visibility.
You get international visibility, whether you want it or not with a podcast. It’s a matter of is it still going to be helpful for you? Thank you for sticking with us through the whole thing. Thanks very much.
Thank you so much.
We will see you on the next episode. We’ll have some more hopefully good and valuable subjects to cover and discuss with you.