Podcasting has been around for years.
In fact, the first time the format appeared was way back in 2004. That makes it – as far as technology is concerned – ancient.
But it’s only in the last few years that podcasts have become somewhat ubiquitous.
It seems everyone either has or knows someone who has a podcast. This popularity extends to listeners as well. In 2021, more than 60% of US adults 18 – 34 listened to podcasts. That’s an incredible amount of potential buyers tuning in to shows in every niche.
While most podcasts aim at a B2C audience (true crime binge session anyone?), more brands are beginning to explore the power of podcasts. With so many potential buyers consuming content each day, B2B brands can leverage the medium to establish brand awareness in their market.
Let’s explore the mighty B2B brand awareness machine that is podcasting!
Brand Awareness 101
First off, what is brand awareness? Simply put, it is the ability to be recognized by your target audience. But even deeper than that, brand awareness can help build trust between consumers and brands.
For instance, when you see those glowing golden arches, you think McDonald’s, right?
Or if you hear the jingle “the snack that smiles back” (and you’re over a certain age), you probably think of Goldfish. That’s brand awareness at work.
Brand awareness helps you connect with potential customers. It enables you to stand out from the crowd and capture the attention of your ideal buyer personas. If you want to sell your product or service, people need to know who you are and what you stand for.
Podcasting can help you get there. Here’s how.
Podcasting is a Powerful Promotional Tool
Podcasting is a fantastic way to promote your brand and increase awareness.
Think about it. When you record and publish a podcast, you create a piece of content available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It’s accessible on phones, laptops, and even smart speakers in the home.
Your audience can download it, stream it, and – if you are using video – can even watch your latest episode from anywhere in the world. An on-demand channel with valuable, thought-provoking content? That’s a surefire way to build trust and deep connections with prospective buyers.
Because that’s what you need most to build valuable awareness – trust. Sure, you can score some short-term success on snappy marketing slogans and flashy ads. But if you don’t build trust with your audience it’s all for nothing.
The Importance of Brand Awareness
No matter your market, deep brand awareness has never been easier to achieve than with podcasting.
A casual scroll through Apple Podcasts or Spotify shows that more and more businesses choose podcasting as part of their content strategy. Zip Recruiter’s “Rise and Grind,” Basecamp’s “The Rework Podcast,” or even Mcdonald’s “The Sauce” are all creating valuable content to build brand loyalty.
Of course, those businesses were already well-established long before they began podcasting. But creating a podcast can help you build your customer base.
Countless small to medium-sized businesses are dedicating time, energy, and resources to producing their podcasts – to significant effect.
This focus on podcasting is due – in part – to the size of the potential audience. In 2021, an estimated 120 million people will listen to podcasts in the United States alone. That’s over one-third of the population, with headphones on, speakers turned up, and episodes streaming on their favorite platforms.
Suppose you couple the staggering volume of listeners with the fact that more people trust brands they encounter on podcasts. In that case, you have a recipe for incredible growth. 54% of podcast listeners say they are more likely to purchase from a brand they know from podcasts.
That’s a lot of potential customers to help your business reach its goals. If your brand isn’t podcasting, you are leaving a large share of revenue on the table.
Why are podcasts so crucial for brands and businesses?
The unique content format is a powerful way to connect with your potential buyers. While the benefits of B2B podcasting extend beyond brand awareness, there are several key tactics you can use to ensure maximum value for your brand.
People buy from those they trust.
Podcasts are a great way to build trust and loyalty between consumers and brands. You have an opportunity to reach your potential buyers on a 1-to-1 level. When they feel this connection, commitment follows. This improved loyalty means they will most likely come back for future purchases or business deals with your brand.
If you’re a SaaS company or subscription-based platform, try creating a podcast for your current users. Answer questions, solve problems and offer tips on how to achieve the desired outcome better. By focusing on the bottom of funnel contacts, you can increase user retention and keep them engaged with your platform. It will prove valuable and make you a trusted and invaluable source of ideas.
Each episode you publish, each teaser you post is another opportunity to engage buyers. The more you prove you’re a trusted source of information, the deeper connection you will create.
Podcasts provide a platform for companies to talk about their business and services to promote brand awareness.
However, it’s essential that you don’t sell. It would be best if you built value first (more on this below). Create an engaging and informative space that isn’t focused on sales.
Podcast listeners are typically very loyal, but they’ll quickly unsubscribe if you come out with a sales pitch.
Don’t just publish to podcast platforms.
One of the fantastic things about podcasting is repurposing the content for other channels. With many people listening to them at work, while commuting, and during their daily activities, remember to promote and share on social media.
Having a platform that allows you to create audio and video content will help you maximize your content output. LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram are the perfect places to share short snippets of your episodes.
Upload full episodes to YouTube to ensure maximum exposure for your brand.
Create Community and Value
Podcasts create communities of engaged listeners interested in your industry.
They’ve chosen your show, and they are more likely to want more information regarding the business or brand you promote through podcasting. Some companies even use podcasting as an additional way to communicate directly with their clients. You can augment traditional methods of outreach with a podcast.
Podcasts also give viewers another chance at hearing the podcast’s story and potentially converting them into customers.
Is It Too Late to Start?
We know what you’re thinking.
So many brands are already podcasting. Isn’t it too late for my team and me to start? Not at all.
Despite countless podcasts debuting each week, a large percentage of listenership goes to a small portion of shows. That means there is a supply problem. You and your brand can fill the gap and dominate your niche by creating a professional and thought-provoking podcast.
Finding the Right Tool
If we’ve convinced you to expand your B2B marketing strategy to podcasts, you’re probably wondering how to start.
The first step is finding the right technology to help support your new creative endeavor. When vetting platforms, look for solutions that offer easy and efficient production. You and your team are busy – the last thing you want to do is fiddle with miles of cables and clunky software.
You want to be able to go from concept to finished product in minutes – not weeks or months.
The Magic of Podcasts
There’s something about podcasts that make people feel like they belong.
Perhaps it’s the candidness of the format. Listening to another person’s ideas builds a deep level of intimacy unavailable in other content formats.
Or perhaps it’s the sense of community one gets from learning about their niche.
Whatever the draw is, it’s magnetic. And when brands do it well, they can ignite a passionate fan base that will remain loyal for years to come.