This post is courtesy of Sarah Donawerth with Carro.
An Instagram story captures someone’s attention for 15 seconds… that’s it. There is competing evidence to show that a person scrolls past Instagram images every 3–5 seconds. These smallest of blips don’t allow many opportunities for a brand to grab attention. What would you say if you had 30–90 minutes with that audience? That’s why podcasts are such a valuable tool for advertisers, brands, and influencers.
Podcasts may be the key to influencer marketing in the near future. They are growing at an astonishing rate. Spotify just spent $230 million acquiring Gimlet Media, the podcast startup. Luminary, another podcast startup, raised a staggering $40 million in funding. These dollars and cents prove that podcasting is being developed by big businesses and will continue to factor in digital marketing in bigger and better ways.
Jamie Laing, reality star and host of the popular podcast Private Parts, has said that podcasts are “the audio version of YouTube and Instagram.” In addition to creating a new type of influencer, podcasts also present opportunities to share brand messages in a new format.
Podcasts have been heralded as the revival of radio. This is not quite accurate. Instead, podcasts are replacing the radio with a similar media, but they go further than radio ever could.
Podcasts are reaching audiences in their homes, their cars, their commutes. These private spaces are unreachable by other types of advertising and brand marketers have long been looking for ways to tap additional advertising methods with their brand’s messages.
38% of Mozilla’s survey respondents listened to podcasts daily. However, 60% of respondents in the US were familiar with the term “podcasting” and many were infrequent listeners.
56% of listeners were male, while 84% were under the age of 55. 45% of listeners made $75,000 or more a year and 85% had attended college, according to Mozilla. In other words, these podcast listeners were educated and have disposable income, making them the perfect storm of desirable qualities for your brand’s marketing.
The Influence of Podcasts
Podcasts build up audiences of listeners. This is very similar to how influencers on other platforms build up their audiences and are able to influence them with their content.
Podcasts are gaining steam as a new medium to such a degree that podcasters can now build up considerable influence within the podcasting world, and that then has real-world applications. Podcasters focusing on niche subjects, like influencer marketing or even something as niche as pens (“The Pen Addict”), can turn their influence into speaking engagements and brand deals.
There are also influencers who are extending their multi-channel approach of content creation to include podcasts. An influencer who shares on Instagram, their blog, or YouTube, may also be adding podcasts to their repertoire. The Try Guys have a successful podcast through Ramble, Gary Vaynerchuk shares “The Gary Vaynerchuk Audio Experience,” and Sophia Amoruso extends her Girlboss empire with Girlboss Radio. Each of these influencers started on other platforms, then expanded into podcasting.
With these podcasts, influencers are able to present their everyday lives from a different perspective. In many ways, podcasting is a way for them to pull back the curtain of their other social media channels and to show an authentic version of themselves. Podcasting provides an alternative to the picture-perfect Instagram shot or the heavily edited YouTube video.
Why Should I Podcast?
- Authentic sharing. One of the main advantages of podcasting is its format. It allows you to be unscripted and informal, talking to your listeners, and having conversations with your guests. This builds trust with your listeners and allows you to really be honest with them. Podcasting doesn’t require the same level of editing that other formats do, like YouTube videos, and can take a more casual, everyday approach.
- To create multi-channel influence. If you’re only on one social media platform and trying to diligently build your audience there, then you’re only creating influence there. While a focused approach to growth is essential, it also places pressure on that one platform to perform well. If an algorithm changes or the platform itself changes, then you’ve lost your entire effort. Adding podcasting can be a great way to diversify and protect yourself from the ever-changing standards and rules of social media. You’ll be able to build up an audience of listeners that may also follow you to another social media platform as well.
- Networking with other influencers and industry leaders. If your podcast has guests, you’ll be able to invite and network with key players in your industry. Podcasts also go beyond the introductions. If they are a guest on your podcast, then you get to build up a conversation and get to know each other over the course of the show. This makes it possible to keep the conversation going after the podcast is over.
- To become a thought leader. If you build up your podcast, you’ll begin to position yourself as a leader within your industry. You’d be amazed at the opportunities that become available when you are viewed as a credible leader. Instead of seeking out guests and networking opportunities, people will begin to seek you out for advice and your thoughts.
- Low startup costs. If you’re looking for a way to establish yourself as a content creator, but don’t have the money for other ventures, then a podcast may be the solution. You can start a podcast with a laptop, a microphone, and headphones. That’s it! If you already have a laptop to work on, then the start-up cost could be as little as $100. That definitely beats buying expensive camera equipment, or creating a website, or investing in pricey editing software.
Podcasting as the New Influencer Marketing
Podcasting can help people gain an audience, which in turn makes them influential. With this influence, podcasters can help to share messages from brands in advertisements. Podcast advertisements are especially effective because they use the podcaster’s own voice and can typically incorporate some of the podcaster’s personality. In other words, all the things that make a podcaster successful with their audience can also be applied to the advertisements that they read within the course of their show.
Podcasting is real, authentic, and more laidback than some other influencer marketing campaign options. With podcasting, the listener is deeply invested for 30–90 minutes, allowing the podcaster to place advertisements strategically throughout the show.
Podcasting offers a unique opportunity for marketers to reach new audiences and really develop their brand’s message over the course of the podcast. Working with podcasters provides an alternative to the traditional influencer marketing that could prove very lucrative for early adopters.
Sarah Donawerth is the content manager for GoVyrl, Inc., the company behind Carro. Whether you’re a new brand or a well-established store on Shopify, we can help you find and work with the partners who already love your brand and can power your growth. Visit GetCarro.com for more information.