Building Momentum for a Podcast
Updated: Nov 23, 2021
There are over 800,000 podcasts and that number only continues to grow. With each day, a new wave of episodes is published. It can be difficult to break through that noise to reach an audience, especially when a podcast first launches.
It takes time to start getting traction with a podcast if you start from scratch. Brands making a big investment in a high quality and creative podcast don’t have the time to wait for that traction to build. After months of producing episodes and getting things ready for the launch, they want to start seeing the value right away.
That’s why a podcast can’t just live on iTunes and Spotify alone, and it can’t wait until launch day to begin building momentum and engaging with its audience.
Through a strong creative strategy and what we like to call a “momentum campaign,” a brand can see immediate results and prime their audience so that the podcast is as successful as possible when it is released.
Strength in Diversity
For a podcast to realize its full potential to drive value back to the brand, it has to live longer than just one day and on more than just one channel.
Since audiences are active on multiple digital platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, website, email – and each platform has its own unique features and ways the audience interacts with it, a podcast needs to be strategically shared on each channel in order to maximize its reach to the target audience.
Followers don’t immediately come when new content is shared, though. A podcast posted on each platform when new episodes publish is not enough to drive the audience engagement and growth that produces value back to the brand. The podcast needs to be the pillar content that drives a full digital campaign that includes pieces like social posts, email campaigns, and blog posts that complement the podcast.
Building to the Launch
Depending on the type of podcast and how complex the production is, it can be a long process to get an episode ready to publish. In order to ensure there is enough time for each episode, it’s best to frontload the production schedule and have several episodes wrapped up ahead of the launch – in a perfect world, the podcast should launch with a trailer and three episodes, then have at least two more episodes ready to go.
During this time – which can be several months long – all of the effort is internal and nothing is being published. The brand is investing but not yet able to see any results or collect any information to help inform the success of the podcast when it launches.
This can be a huge missed opportunity. The creative strategy is already set, identifying the objectives, messages, and audience for the podcast, so there’s a clear direction from which to move forward. And, as I outlined before, that strategy should call for promoting the podcast across all of a brand’s channels.
While episodes are still in production ahead of the launch, a brand could share content that grows the audience on those channels and reinforces and primes the audience for the coming podcast. More people can follow on the social profiles, more people can subscribe to the email list, and more data can be collected – such as which channels are performing better, which types of content are resonating more, and how much the audience is engaging with the messages, which can be invaluable for optimizing the way the podcast is promoted.
Ambedo Audio’s Momentum Campaigns
Regardless of whether a client wants to build stronger relationships with its audience, establish itself as a thought leader, or raise its brand awareness, Ambedo Audio works with our clients to produce a high quality and creative podcast that helps them achieve those objectives and grow.
After bringing a client onboard, we immediately start working on two parallel work streams for the first six months:
Producing episodes for the podcast ahead of the launch; and,
A “momentum campaign” including blog posts, email campaigns, social posts, paid social advertising, infographics, relationship management, and monthly analytics reports.
One month after we begin working with a client, we are already publishing content and building momentum ahead of when the podcast launches, when the value driven back to the brand jumps to a new level. The content we produce and share through the momentum campaign signals to the audience the messages and values of the brand will then share through the podcast.
Given audio’s power to connect, inform, and promote, new podcast episodes provide a deep emotional context to the content the audience has already seen. It allows the audience to resonate with the brand and build a stronger connection, which ultimately leads to them driving more value back to the brand, whether becoming customers, donors, or whatever that is for each brand.
At Ambedo Audio, we know that success isn’t immediate. It’s the result of a strong creative strategy, a creative and high quality podcast, and a campaign that builds momentum and sets the stage for success when the podcast does launch. We bring that level of intention and creativity to drive results for our clients so they can engage with their target audience in a meaningful and valuable way and grow.
Originally published on Ambedo Audio's blog on April 27, 2020.