7 Easy Ways to Grow Your Podcast Audience

It takes a lot of investment to get your podcast off the ground. Coming up with content, recording, editing, and then publishing. Not to mention buying all the equipment, paying for hosting, and trying to promote it.

 

It also doesn’t help that most podcasters don’t know how to self-promote.

Not to worry, though. I think this list is gonna help you out. Here are 7 ways that my podcast clients have used to successfully help promote themselves.

 

1. Be Consistent

If you want your listenership to consistently grow, you need to consistently deliver.

This means, drop an episode on the same day, every week. You, in essence, have a “contract” with your listeners, that you will produce, record and publish your invaluable content on an agreed upon delivery schedule.

If you’re listener tunes in on their Monday commute, and you fail to deliver, they’ll find something else to listen to. Then you have to work twice as hard to earn them back. Better not to lose them in the first place.

 

2. Share Where People Care

Sharing your podcast to your social media is a no-brainer. That’s where your friends, fans, and family are. They care about what you’re doing, and it makes sense to share it with them. But is that enough?

To reach a wider audience, it’s not enough.

So, where else should you share your podcast?

Where people who might care will be, of course.

Seek out forums, blogs and facebook groups dedicated to what your podcast is all about. Join those groups and start being a part of the conversation. Once you’ve become a part of the community, let people know you have a podcast that they might enjoy. Invite them to check it out.

You have to give enough in advance, so your contributions or recommendations of your podcast episodes don’t come off as shameless self-promotion.

 

3. Mail Your List Every Week

If your podcast doesn’t have a mailing list, get one started.

Invite your listeners to sign up for your newsletter, and send them a reminder, every time a new episode drops.

If they’re like me, they probably subscribe to a lot of different podcasts. New episodes can get lost in the mix. I get 10-12 new podcasts added to my playlist in every morning, one of them is likely to get passed on. But the topics will draw me in if I see that email reminder.

If you have an email list, inform them of every new episode, the day it drops.

 

4. Invite the Right Guests onto Your Podcast

Podcasting is the new media.

Invite people who your listeners would want to hear from to be a guest your podcast. You might be surprised by who will say yes.

Having big names in your niche will definitely bring in new listeners. So don’t let your fear of rejection keep you from inviting them on.

Use it, and watch your network start to grow.

 

5. Get Yourself Booked as a Guest on Other Podcasts

This is probably the best way to get new listeners. But it’s also one of the hardest to pull off.

Keep this in mind; like you, other podcasters need guests for their shows as well. The easiest way to reach out to them is through social media or email. But, just like when reaching out to a potential guest, your email or private message needs to be personalized. DO NOT copy and paste a generic message to other podcasters, asking them if you can come pitch yourself to their listeners. They will refuse you.

Instead, pick out some podcasts that you know you’d be a good fit for. You can find these by searching iTunes for the category of the podcast that you do, yourself. Remember, podcasts with the most ratings and reviews also have the most engaged audiences. Pick five, and then move on to the next step.

Download and listen to at least 3 episodes of each podcast you picked out. This gives you a good idea of what their show is like, what you could add, as far as value goes, and if they even do interviews.

Once you’re sure you’d be a good fit for their show, reach out to them. Tell them how much you like their podcast, and make mention of something only a true listener would know about. Rate and review the podcast.  Like and follow them on social media. Then, introduce yourself, and ask them if they’d be down to have you on as a guest on their show.

Make your pitch in terms of why how it would benefit their listeners and you’ll face a lot less resistance. “I’d love to teach your audience about…” or “since I’m already a listener, I’m betting your other listeners would love to hear us talk about…”

Ask them to come on your show, and in exchange, you come on theirs. That way you can cross promote each other. This type of arrangement almost always works out great for both parties involved.

 

6. Don’t Forget Your CTA

At the end of every episode, include a Call To Action.

You just poured your blood, sweat and tears into providing something of value.  It’s not unfair for you to ask for a little something-something in return.  In fact, they will want to know what you want them to do next.

So ask.

Ask them to subscribe on iTunes.

Ask them to rate and review the show.

Ask them to join your newsletter.

Ask them to share the show with someone they know who would enjoy it.

Never end an episode without asking your listener to do something that will help grow the size of your audience.

But don’t go overboard.

Don’t ask them to do all the things I just mentioned. Pick one. You can change it up each week, or hammer home on the most important, but only ask for one thing as your call to action.

Then thank them for listening, and tell them you’ll talk to them again, next week.

 

7. Patience and Dedication

And lastly, have patience and dedication.

It’s a marathon, not a sprint. These things take time.

Most podcasters give up before they even have a chance to succeed. This is the biggest reason many of them fail; because they didn’t give it time to take root.

Most successful podcasts don’t see the cumulative growth until year number 2 – really.

If you show up and do the things listed above, your podcast will have steady growth. If you have patience and let your podcast take its course, you will hit a stride.

There’s no saying what the one thing will be that works for you, but when it happens, you’ll know it. One day, you’ll check your downloads, and see a huge jump in downloads.

And when that happens, it starts to snowball. So be ready.

 

My call to action to you – subscribe to my free Open The Mic newsletter.  All I need is your name and email address, and you are ready to see short daily emails with social media tips, podcast production tips, podcast news, tips to help you monetize your podcast, and my suggestions on what podcasts you should binge on over the weekend.

About the author: Brett Johnson

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