Marketing can make or break your company.
Make it, and your brand becomes a piece of the culture. A verb, a noun, and commands respect from the masses, Choose poorly, and it won't matter because no one will remember the name of your company inside five years. One avenue to reach toward legendary status in your audience's mind is to build a podcast.
A podcast, yes, I said that.
They are everywhere, and they cover so many topics it can feel like anything you could contribute would be lost in the noise. If every creator thought that way then there would be no new podcasts, no new anything, so don’t let the naysayers and the numbers stop you. If they haven’t, then you have to be asking yourself, “What does it take to start a podcast?
You've got something to say.
Whether you are a solo freelancer or in the marketing department of a Fortune 500 company, the podcast you create has to say something. Pick a theme, a topic, and stick to it. It can be a variety show of sorts that covers a spectrum of issues weekly, or it could be a short term series that lasts a finite amount of episodes. Whatever the theme is, it needs to feel like it's a natural fit for your brand. If you're Nike and your limited series podcast is about the evolution of flight, that might be interesting to listen to, but folks will be baffled as to why Nike is doing it. Now, if they picked a podcast series about the evolution of shoes and talk about various methods of production that have changed over the years, that would be fascinating and on-brand.
Point is, pick a topic that interests you and feels natural for you to talk about because your audience will notice the difference. Passion is the backbone of every creative endeavor. If it isn't there, then your podcast will fail.
Remember, it shouldn't be all about you.
Microsoft has a podcast called .future, which is a great title, that centers on advancements in technology and other fields that are affecting our today and our future. While they may occasionally mention their research, the show primarily deals with people and companies that are not Microsoft. Unless your podcast is a personal growth podcast, it shouldn't be about solely about you. To be seen as a leader in a given industry, you have to talk about that industry, its advancements, and the other personalities that populate it. Take this route and you are guaranteed to find footing in your audience's mind, mainly because you're referring them to awesome people or things. Building trust with your audience via your podcast will also build confidence in the brand. Being seen as an expert takes trust, and you get both when you make a show that highlights everything other than just yourself.
It must be well produced.
You got your idea. You got your approach. Now you need to make sure your podcast isn't garbage for the ears. To give your show the best possible chance of survival, you will need starter equipment:
Mic: I recommend Audio Technica as they are robust, easy to work with, and are perfect for first-time podcasters. You will need audio cables to connect the microphone to a USB powered mixer.
Mixer: Behringer is easy to use, accepts any microphone, and will improve the audio quality of your show.
Editing: Audacity is great for when you're starting as it is free. It's a robust tool that gives you a lot of options, and while it can be a bit intimidating to navigate, there are numerous tutorials on YouTube that will help you figure it out.
Whether you are setting out to be the next 99% Invisible or want to talk about your love for Chia Pets, the podcast that you make must be fueled by passion, cover topics that are not just you or your brand, and not sound like a voice talking through a tin can. Doing those three things will help give your podcast the highest chance of success. Get out there, make choices, and have fun!