So you've just started a new podcast or are prepping to release one in the near future. What can you do to ensure you've already got a good amount of listeners going in? Many podcasters get discouraged by the low number of people listening to their episodes when they first start out. It's important to know that building a podcast following – especially when you're new to the game – is a slow, gradual process.
However, there are some steps you can take to guarantee you start off on the right foot. The five tips we offer below may not make you a podcast star with thousands of followers overnight, but they WILL help you grow your podcast following at a much faster rate than other beginner podcasters.
Are you ready to reach more people? Heed the five tips below and watch your numbers grow.
1. Launch with 3-5 Episodes Already Available
If you haven't released your podcast yet, we suggest holding off until you have about 3-5 episodes already recorded and ready to drop. Once you launch your podcast, don't just upload a single episode: release those prepared 3-5 episodes together. Then, when you're ready to upload the following week, stick to your regular uploading schedule (whether that be 1 new episode a week, twice a week, or 1 episode daily).
You may think sharing 3-5 episodes when you launch will make people confused about your uploading schedule or will discourage listeners from sticking around for the long run. But what it actually does is cast a bigger net for those who are deciding whether or not to listen to your podcast. If you only start with one episode, that's only one topic you cover: one single chance to win people over. But when you launch with 3-5 episodes, that's more topics, more ground you're covering. Chances are new listeners will be intrigued by at least one of your episode titles, and voila – you've just hooked in a new fan.
2. Post on Social Media, and Don't Forget a Link!
Podcasts are a byproduct of the digital age, meaning the technological atmospheres of social media platforms are the best places to promote your episodes. Post regularly about your podcast on every social media platform you can: whether you have a huge following or not. It's all about spreading the word about your show as much as possible to make it easily discoverable!
More important than mentioning your podcast in your posts? Including a link to your podcast within your posts. Promoting your podcast episodes without a link is a huge rookie mistake, as it makes finding your podcast episodes less accessible. Podcast promotion is all about making things clear and easy for prospective listeners to discover your podcast episodes. Even if you have to mention your podcast link is within your profile bio, it's a huge step towards success you wouldn't otherwise get if you just shared your podcast's name, description, and nothing else.
3. Create FOMO in Your Promotions
FOMO – an abbreviation for the term "fear of missing out" – is that feeling you get when you desperately want to be a part of something. FOMO may be a negative feeling, but it's the secret sauce advertisers use in order to get people to buy or try their products.
As a podcaster, your goal should be to try and inspire FOMO in viewers within every episode promotion. Why should people be listening to your podcast right now? What's something special about your show that isn't offered in any other podcast on the web? What important pieces of information will your audience miss out on if they don't listen to your latest episode? Answering those three questions within your social media posts will make scrollers click on your episode links much faster. Be the ultimate businessperson and persuade, persuade, persuade!
4. Post Your Podcast Episodes in Related Online Forums
This is a tip not enough podcasters take advantage of. There are several online forums related to topics and subtopics across the internet. We're talking Facebook groups, Reddit threads, and even Discord and Quora boards. Some online forums have strict rules against self promotion from members. But for the ones that don't mind, posting your podcast episode links within the chat can reel in dozens of new listeners you wouldn't otherwise get from social media promotion alone.
The trick is to only share your podcast episodes in forums that are relevant to the topics in your episodes. For example, if your podcast is about astronomy and you post about it in an Arts & Crafts Facebook group, no one is going to be interested. (Unless of course your specific episode is about making a space-themed craft!) Just use common sense when choosing the forums you post in, and you'll be hooking new people in no time.
5. Release Your Podcast on Multiple Streaming Platforms
Everyone has different preferences when it comes to where they listen to their podcasts. For example: some people prefer Spotify, while others listen on Apple Podcasts. In order to appeal to as many streaming tastes as possible, it's a good practice to release your podcast on as many platforms as you can. Remember: it's all about accessibility!
You don't have to tackle all of the podcast directories in the world; even if your show is on just a few popular platforms, that's all it takes to get your podcast to a decent amount of ears. In your podcast promotions, be clear about which specific platforms your show can be found on. Don't just say your podcast is on various platforms – actually list out the online streaming services where you can find your show.
Those are all the tips we have for you right now! Check out more of our tips for podcasters – including advice for starting a podcast in the new year and tricks for smoothly re-promoting old podcast episodes – on the Live365 blog. Happy podcasting!
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