Podcasters thrive on the interaction and feedback they receive from listeners – it’s why we do what we do! Sure, some podcasters are happy with a small listenership and community, but most of us will admit that our fans are what keep us going. And for that, you want to grow your podcast.
At a certain point in your podcast’s journey, you will want to start growing that audience. Even if you already have a thriving and active audience, growth is always a good thing. Taking the time to grow your podcast and expand your audience can seem like a daunting task. Especially when you already spend so much time creating, editing, and producing. Finding the right strategy to grow your podcast will help you streamline this process. While advertising and social media marketing are excellent ways to find a new audience, word of mouth is much more effective at bringing on those lifelong listeners. Nothing beats word of mouth!
Collaboration takes this ‘word of mouth’ a step further. By working together with your fellow podcasters, a local business, or even online magazines, you’re boosting your profile and showing you’ve got the chops to be an expert in your field. Regardless of what your podcast is about, you can always benefit from collaborations. Remember the saying; ‘a rising tide lifts all boats?’ The same goes for podcasters – the more we can grow each others’ audiences, the more successful we’ll all become. It can be intimidating to put yourself out there, but you’ve got to be your podcast’s biggest fan if you want to get the attention of others. When reaching out to other creators for collaborations, you’re already getting your name out there. But, you have to start somewhere, and there are several ways to start building out your partnerships and collaborations.
Work with your fellow Podcasters
No matter how niche or specific your podcast topic is, there will be podcasts that you can collaborate with. The key is finding the best way to approach your fellow podcasters and showing them that you’re stronger working together. Together you’ll grow your podcast. The main ways podcasters unite are through cross-promotion, creating content for each other, and guesting on each others’ shows.
We’ve all listened to a podcast in which the hosts chime in to say, “If you love our podcast, then you will definitely like X podcast, so check them out!” One of the most straightforward ways to collaborate with another podcast is to ‘shout out’ one another. All this takes is reaching out to other shows and offer to do a promo swap. After that you only have to write your copy, or ask your collaborators to write the copy in their style. Some collaborating podcasts will even post each others’ entire episodes in their feeds! Before starting the actual promo swap, agree on how many times each collaborator will be promoted and how soon the promotion will start. Being vetted by a fellow podcaster is priceless, and you’ll start seeing new listeners streaming in.
One of the best ways to bring on new listeners is to be a guest on another podcast. You don’t have to stick solely to podcasts in your field, and you can get creative. Whenever podcasts feature guests that they are genuinely excited about, the audience can tell, and they are more likely to check out the guest’s work.
As we said before, there’s no better endorsement of a podcast than another podcast being a fan! Remember when we said that word of mouth is the best way to get long-lasting, dedicated listeners? Well, being a guest on a podcast allows you to speak directly with a brand new audience and spread the word yourself! Plus, it will enable you to break from the regular format of your podcast and talk about your work in a new environment.
Promo swaps and guest spots aren’t the only ways to collaborate with your fellow podcasters. Many podcasts, especially those that have already built up an audience and community, have a website to showcase their latest episodes and other content. They’re always looking for new ways to bolster their website, enhance their SEO and would welcome help with content production. Write a blog post or an article for their website, and link back to your podcast. This will encourage their listeners and fans to check you out and also show that you have authority in your topic.
Remember, everything you do should serve the purpose of promoting your podcast, so make sure they’re featuring your guest blog/article/episode on their social media channels as well. They’ll welcome the free content, and you’ll welcome the extra visits to your website and podcast.
Whether you choose to create content for other podcasts, guest on other shows, cross-promote, or a combination of the three, the first step is reaching out and finding a structure that works for you. Next, make sure you align with your collaborator. You both want to get as much as possible out of working together. We’re big fans of guest spots on other podcasts since it allows us to tell our stories on a brand new program!
Grow your podcast through the Media
Magazines, newspapers, and blogs are always looking for new collaborators and content producers for their publications. Reach out to some of your favorite content creators and offer to write for their website. For example, you can always reach out to a local magazine to write features in exchange for exposure and promotion, or you can offer to write the copy for a popular newsletter within your topic or niche. You can write articles directly related to podcasting itself or content related to your podcast topic. If writing isn’t your strong suit, you can consistently offer to create an audio piece for them.
You can also have their team members as guests on your program, or you can simply give them a shout-out. As long as the content links back to your podcast and reaches potential listeners, it’s worth your time. Think outside the box when it comes to finding new publications and creators to work with – look at some of your favorite podcasts and see who they’ve collaborated with to get some ideas.
Create content with Influencers and Experts
While we always joke that everyone has a podcast, this isn’t the case. There are countless influencers, experts, and celebrities who have no interest in podcasting but would love to be a guest or feature on your show. While you could simply have them as a guest on your podcast, it’s a great idea to take that partnership one step further. Write a blog post for them, offer a quote for an article, or simply have them shout you out on their social media channels. Find a way to collaborate that benefits both of you, and work to make this collaboration last. And who knows – they might even catch the podcasting bug too!
One of the biggest rewards of creating a great podcast is the fantastic community that grows around it – whether you choose to work with other podcasters, media, or experts. All of these avenues require different time commitments, planning, and development, but once you find a strategy that works, you’ll see your listenership grow even more. If you don’t have time to write blogs and articles for other platforms, that’s okay! Your content comes first. Work within your capacity to collaborate, and above all, make sure that you continue creating your fantastic podcast. If you do this, you will grow your podcast eventually.