Recently I had a great discussion with a Internet friend of mine. He is an internet marketer and had posted an article on a site about podcasting and it developed into a natural discussion about trying to use formulas to get a show to have the most impact and fastest growth. We talked in depth about podcasting being a marathon. Now my friend thought that phrase was just a cop out as to why podcasts take so long to be popular, and I laid these following reasons out as to why podcasting is a marathon
Where is your audience?
You don’t have one at the start. Most podcasters start with a new website and build it up from scratch. Many people are able to start off with close friends and family members, net several twitter followers, and other people from social networks. So the start off is “Normally” on the slow side. Many times people talk about they started off with over 1000 downloads a month, and many of these are bloggers who have an audience who visits their site on a regular basis. How long did that take? Often building that audience to “critical mass” takes in the area of a year or more. So, when a blogger who has a good following and is getting 50,000 hits a month on their site, then when the podcast launches there are lots of eye on their site and they can quickly build an audience.
That is completely different when you are starting your site from scratch. If you don’t have a platform then you won’t have the audience to go with it. If you look at this site I was about 3 or 4 episodes in before I got a couple of downloads. Not listeners just downloads and the size has grown and my actual audience has grown with it, as the site grows and more people become more aware of the site. Now each episode gets about 100 downloads a week. Not bad for a little over 8 months of episodes. Could that of been more? Sure but I had the 6 month dry spell and that hurt the size of my audience.
Use the Slow Burn mentality.
There are reasons as to why brand new podcasters often last only 7 to 10 episodes before they fade out. Lot of it is attributed to the work that is needed to gather all the information for that weeks episode. But there are those who want to sprint. Spend all their gas on getting into New and Noteworthy and when the perceived audience rush starts to fade the show fades too. Then the person either restarts with whole new branding or gives up. Both of these are results of thinking Podcasting is a sprint.
Have a slow burn mentality. Know that it is going to take a while to get your true core followers. Embrace each new person that comes in and get to know them. The saying of stop and smell the flowers comes to mind. Stop and genuinely shake the new guys hand see how you can help. You will be able to take that time to build that relationship because you are not busy trying get to the next big milestone. You will not be distracted and will be able to give your audience your full attention and there for cementing a relationship.
You also will not be as easy to give up. If you know that that this incredible show you have created is in it for the long haul, and the money or thought leader status will happen in due time.
Spotify podcasts – Yes Spotify is opening the doors. At the moment there are only a couple of avenues you can take to get into the Spotify podcast directory, but this will be changing. Right now the easiest is to use Libsyn because they were able to partner with Spotify and with just a quick request Libsyn can create a destination folder for your show and your show will be included in the new directory.