Seeing below trending on twitter inspired me to write this article. Joe Rogan podcast Experience has completely disrupted and overtook the legacy media.
Rise of Podcasting
Podcasts are a relatively new media format, which has recently gained vast popularity. Its basically a series of spoken word audio files – available for downloading or streaming.
At the end of Q1 2021, Spotify had 2.6 million (!) podcasts on its platform as about 25 percent of its 356 million monthly active users engaged with podcast content.
Global podcasting market size is estimated at 11.5 billion dollars in 2020¹, with interviews and conversations being the top formats.
According to Statista, 41% of the US population listens to the podcast on a monthly basis.
Why do we like podcasts?
Unlike commercials or paid interviews, podcasts have to be engaging and creative in order to engage and maintain that audience’s engagement.
Focus is on teaching and educating and less on selling, which is appealing to professionals who are looking to get updated on their industry advancements or learn new skills or new industry. It’s a great opportunity for B2B brands to educate their audience about their products, give industry insights and share their opinions and commentary on the relevant sector news.
Busy executives and professionals listen to podcasts on their way to work or when they’re exercising. Major benefit here is saving time as listening to information could be combined with other activities unlike watching or reading content.
For B2B brands, this is a good chance key decision makers are listening to podcasts frequently,
Before starting your B2B podcast, think about the goals you are looking to achieve and start optimizing for it. For B2B brands, there are four general goal categories you can optimize for:
- Demand generation
- Industry influence
- Account Based Marketing- content networking strategy
- Customer Success
Four types of B2B podcasts
Here is a simple table summary about these four types of podcast categories by purpose, sized by audience, strategy and impact, along with some podcast examples.
|Demand Generation||Audience growth||Long-term||Thought Leadership||Solo or interview||The Unchained by Laura Shin|
|Industry influence||Making industry connections||Mid to long term||Content based networking||Interview or panel||This week in startups by Jcal|
|Selling||Client acquisition and deal accelerating||Mid term||Building relationships||interview||The Tony Robbins show|
|Customer success||Client onboarding||Short term||Brand affinity||Interview||Under the hood by Robinhood,Binance podcast|
- Demand Generation
If you are looking to optimize your podcast for demand generation, podcasting is an excellent channel for connecting with your potential audience and client base in real, intimate ways. You have to, however, understand that this is a long term strategy where you need to provide industry and domain thought leadership and as a host have deep expertise and network. Format could be solo but most of the time its interview with different guests who contribute their expertise and engage in meaningful discussion. Laura Shin who was the first full time crypto editor for Forbes and later launched her own few podcasts covering crypto is a great example. Massive undertaking and requires major focus.
- Industry influence
Here you are optimizing for making industry connections and therefore constantly engage in finding new content and new podcast guests. There are many industries that operate in silos and there is minimum discussion going on between the participants. VC community is one of the examples where historically there has been reluctance to share information and transaction details. This week in startups by Jason Calacanis is a great example of the podcast where the curtain to the mystery world of angel and VC investing has been lifted and Jason exerts tremendous influence on the industry by discussing things that are typically not being talked about.
Podcasts could be great to attract and engage phases of the customer journey. You can use your podcast to build brand awareness and establish thought leadership in your industry. Thoughtful, valuable content can help your brand stand out from the competition, and encourage listeners to build a relationship with the brand. This type of format is perfect for influencer marketing. Your brand can boost its internal subject matter experts from within the company, form deeper relationships with other influencers in the industry, and even feature your potential prospects.
Tony Robbins podcast does exactly that – he brings his clients and shares success stories during his podcast episodes.
- Customer success
In industries where lifetime customer value is high, the process of educating your prospects about your brand and your industry can be quite extensive, time-consuming and expensive. Your podcast could be an excellent education and onboarding platform. By the time you speak to a new client, there’s a chance they might already know about you from your podcast which ultimately means you could spend less time walking them through the entire process. Crypto exchanges and neo brokers like Robinhood built their own podcasts and use it as arena to talk about products, new launches, or provide their own commentary on regulations and firm’s news coverage.
The most successful B2B podcasts tend to be in the Q&A or panel discussion format. Hosts typically welcome new guests each week to share their insights. Before launching your podcast, think about the goals you are trying to achieve and optimize for it.
To be successful in B2B podcasting, consistency and high quality content are the key ingredients. If you are planning to launch your own podcast in 2022, do not, however, underestimate the effort it would take – planning, coordinating, recording and post-production. When I launched an Institutional FX: uncensored podcast in 2021, I certainly didn’t realize the effort it would take, but amazing Lynn Zhou did a job of probably 6 people to pull this through.
Have a great 2022, and if you decide to launch the podcast, make sure you love what you do and have fun in the process!