Everyone always talks about how powerful a podcast as a marketing tool can be, but how do you gain the right audience? Where/how do you promote yourself without coming across as desperate? And how can you actually accomplish your professional goals using your podcast?
I’ll start with the first question because I think there is a common belief among new podcasters that it’s crucial to grow the audience of your show, and that’s the only thing that matters, getting recognition from the listeners. But what if we shifted our thinking in this regard? What if, instead of focusing on growing the audience, we focus on interviewing the people that we want to talk to, the people that can really make a difference in our lives?
It’s all about how we frame success.
First, we need to figure out exactly why you wanted to start the podcast in the first place. For most people, it’s not to simply grow an audience. Is it because you are passionate about a specific topic? Maybe you just want to talk with other people in your industry.
Let’s use this as an example.
You have a business designing office spaces for young startups. You feel like you’re confident with your expertise in the field and you feel compelled to start a podcast because you can always learn more about what entrepreneurs are thinking when picking office spaces, and it would be interesting to talk with other people in the industry, but also entrepreneurs.
You start the show with virtually no one listening, but you gradually get more and more interviews under your belt talking with entrepreneurs and other office space designers.
There’s a new startup in Silicon Valley and a young entrepreneur who wants the perfect space to become the most productive business in the city. She starts doing some research on what it would take to hire an office space designer and asks some of her friends if they have any recommendations for designers. Her friend was just interviewed on this show about that exact subject and they loved your energy, loved how passionate you came across. She visits your website and calls you up for a quote.
This entire scenario had NOTHING to do with the audience size.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t work on growing your show, but it should never be in the front of your mind. Create a goal for how many listeners you want to have by the end of the month/quarter/year whatever, and then do your best to forget about that goal and focus on the process of making the show and learning as much as possible!