How to Use Podcasts to Scale and Amplify Your AgencyNov 23, 2021
As a marketing agency owner and diehard content marketing believer, you already know how crucial it is for your clients to become an authority in their niche. And deep down inside, you know you need to produce and execute marketing strategies for your own company in the same ways you try to get your clients to become omnipresent in their niche.
We've found that podcasts have been a quick, easy, and fun way to provide value and to start amplifying our own company to gain brand trust and authority. Not only are podcasts a great way to make a personal connection with your audience, but they are an effective lead generation tool–an inbound marketing dream! It's all about providing value and engaging your audience.
Here's what you'll learn in this article:
- How to create a content strategy to build your authority
- Simple podcasting equipment for niche agencies just getting started
- Best podcast platforms for business marketers
- How to identify and invite experts who will engage your audience and amplify every episode
- How to efficiently schedule and onboard experts
- How to come up with valuable topics for your listeners to increase your agency's authority
- Create a Master Production Checklist for each show
- How to build and optimize a podcast landing page
- Repurpose the content to become omnipresent in your niche
BONUS: Our number one secret for successful and worthwhile podcasting
How to create a content strategy to build your authority
As you begin your podcasting strategy for your business, start with good ol' evergreen content based on your client's most common pain points. You'll be able to effectively repurpose its contents throughout various channels for months, continuously reaching your audience. Listen closely to some of your favorite podcasters to get a feel for the voice and flow you want to have as a host.
You don't have to start with a weekly podcast. All you need is a consistent podcasting rhythm that's simple. You could publish on the first Monday of every month, and with good content and consistency, people will begin to listen to your show. As the host of your own show, you get to tell your company story in a way that will provide value to all who are listening.
As you build your brand authority with relevant content marketing strategies and more potential clients approach you, you will build the resources you need to outsource and hire more help to produce more frequent shows.
And if you're curious about how to build a comprehensive content strategy, have a quick read with 10 Steps to Creating Successful Content.
Build as you go, and you'll find your unique brand voice with each new story. Here's a quick checklist to help you get started with a content strategy and brand story for your company:
- Choose an overarching topic for listeners based on the niche market you serve or would like to help if you're just beginning to niche down.
- Give your podcast a name that includes relevant keywords for your brand.
- List the top 3 most common pain points your clients experience.
- Identify three experts for each of those pain points–that will give you nine people to reach out to as potential guests on your show. If all nine experts respond with a "yes," then you'll have nine months' worth of podcasts and content already scheduled!
- Generate topics that provide value for listeners based on which experts accept your invitation and combine it with your clients' pain points. Keyword it, list 3-4 talking points, and you're ready to go.
- Publish monthly. Repurpose the content–which we'll dive into more later. Keep reading!
PODCAST SUCCESS TIP: Have fun with your show. Fun is our favorite strategy. If we're having fun doing it, we're more likely to keep doing it, and your audience is more likely to stay engaged and trust your company like a friend.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR CREATING A PODCAST STRATEGY: Podcast Content Planning in 4 Exhaustive and Quick Steps from Improve Podcast
Simple podcasting equipment for agencies just getting started
There's plenty of technical suggestions for podcasting equipment, but we found out really fast that since podcasting wasn't the core of what we do, then we needed something simple just to make sure we hit the record button regularly as the host.
You're likely busy working on fulfilling all of your client's needs, not spending your time as gear head polishing sound quality for endless hours for an audience that doesn't need audio perfection. If you want to geek out and buy the latest and greatest really technical equipment, we really love Buzzsprout's helpful tutorial videos.
In the meantime, here's our list of essentials–mainly because they keep us producing weekly shows without needing to invest a crazy amount of money, nor do we have to rearrange our offices or restructure our entire company:
•Microphone: Blue Yeti USB Mic
• Camera: iPhone with Camo app
• Neewer Ring Light Kit:18"/48cm Outer 55W 5500K Dimmable LED
• Ethernet instead of WiFi to ensure a stable connection
• Zoom for recording
• Veed to edit the video
• Adobe Audition to edit the audio
• Canva for the intro/outro graphics
• otter.ai to transcribe the audio
You'll find out how forgiving your listeners can be when it comes to a good versus perfect show. Most people who have listened to a podcast intuitively understand that interviewees often have lesser quality equipment, so your audience has become accustomed to all kinds of sound quality. Listen to a few other podcasts to get a feel for what we're talking about. That said, always ask your interviewees to use headphones and a mic to keep the sound quality as good as possible.
Best podcast hosting platforms for content marketers
We use Podcast.co for all of our hosting needs. Here's what we wanted in a hosting platform:
- Ability to distribute to multiple outlets: Apple Podcasts*, Spotify, and Amazon Music were at the top of our list because that's where most of our audience and customers listen. Podcast.co allows us to do so without even thinking about it.
- Soundcloud player to embed episodes on your podcast landing page.
- Transcription generation. You'll really want this for creating brand articles from your podcast.
- Analytics. It's fun to see the numbers as you publish and reach new podcast listeners via your guests' channels.
Anchor.fm: We've also tried Anchor.fm. The benefit is it's free for your podcasting needs, and it hits 3 out of 4 of our above requirements. It's missing the ability to generate transcripts from each of your shows. If you choose to use Anchor.fm, you can subscribe to otter.ai for an inexpensive way to generate transcripts.
* You will have to go through a separate process to set up your podcast on Apple. You'll need 3-4 shows already published to apply. You can learn all about how to get your podcast up and running on Apple here.
How to identify and invite experts who will engage your audience and amplify your podcast
Don't be shy. Reach out to anyone who has insider knowledge that could help your clients and podcast listeners succeed. Don't hold back because someone or their brand is too well-known.
But also don't overlook the experts who have more modest yet substantial audiences. Find experts who have already built a good following and audience, and reach out to them or someone on their team. You'll be able to leverage their audience when it comes time for promotion.
We've found that experts are most responsive to Direct Messages via LinkedIn or Instagram. Cold email can work too, but be sure you've done your research and send a customized email to each person, so you don't seem like spam.
Make it short. Make it personal. And wear your enthusiasm on your sleeve.
For example, tell them why you really want them on your show (like because they seem like a rad person).
How to efficiently schedule and onboard podcast guests
Once an expert agrees to be on one of your podcasts, you can quickly send them a link to your onboarding page, which will make life easier for them as well as for you and your team. Here's what we include on our onboarding page:
- A brief paragraph describing our podcasting brand and premise.
- A bullet point list of things/topics you'll ask them about.
- Important tech stuff for them to consider (let them know if they'll be on video, ask them to be in a quiet place, avoid being backlit, etc.)
- A button that clicks through to a calendar scheduling app.
- A notice about cancellations or rescheduling.
- As they schedule their interview, we also ask to collect the following info and assets:
- Social Media handles/links
- Company/brand bio
- We ask them to refer another expert they think we should interview
- A note for them to send a high-res headshot to your email address
We found our onboarding inspiration from a business podcasting queen, Doone Roisin of The Female Startup Club, in her article Zero to 130k Downloads in 12 Months - the blueprint and AMA.
How to generate valuable podcast topics to increase your agency's authority
What will you and your team talk about month after month with your podcast listeners, let alone week after week, on your agency podcast?
You'll be surprised at how this is probably the easiest part of the entire process of any of your marketing strategies–especially if you run a niche marketing agency.
You know your clients' pain points almost just as well as they do. Many of you might feel like a therapist more than a marketer. This is your chance to discuss these content marketing pain points broadly with expert professionals in your clients' industry. Here's where it's crucial to remember that your clients are your podcast listeners.
And most pain points in all industries are fundamentally about money and time, right?
We can all relate to that. Your listeners will definitely relate. Resource management provides an endless rabbit hole of really engaging topics.
For example, suppose you have a niche marketing company for landscape companies. In that case, you could make podcasts about How to Save Money On Equipment Maintenance by interviewing a local mechanic who services yard care equipment.
Or, if you're a generalist agency, you could interview a sales or business coach for a show about about about How to Efficiently Qualify Leads for Your Small Business to help your clients save time in the sales process.
Creating a master podcast production checklist
When we first got started with our podcast, The Amplified Agency, we tried out all sorts of tools as we refined our process to tell each company's story better. We got messy and had some fun with the process with each new podcast. Our content marketing souls were ready to get in and get it done with every show.
We wanted to make sure we were creating shareable assets for our own media outlets and website purposes and for experts and other podcasters who agreed to come on our platform.
Here's our current podcast checklist:
• Podcast Guest Outreach via Direct Message on LinkedIn or Instagram
• Send Onboarding and Scheduling website link to them once they agree to be on the podcast
• Record the podcast content on scheduled date and time
• Upload original video and audio to shared team folder
• Once you've listened to a podcast, take notes, and write an introduction and title for the podcast episode with key takeaways. Make sure to ask people to subscribe and download early on.
• Record audio introduction for the podcast that captures the overarching story
• Design video introduction using Canva
• Produce video (we use VEED.io for video editing and production)
• Edit video snippets of key takeaways from the interview for cross-channel promotion
• Design episode thumbnail image in Canva
• Publish full edited video to your YouTube channel
• Produce full audio episode (we use Adobe Audition) for podcast listeners
• Publish/schedule full audio file (we use Podcast.co) for your listeners on your hosting site
• Design a social media graphic using a quote from the expert to promote on all channels
• Schedule graphic quote image for different media channel posts via Sendible
• Generate transcript of podcasts (we use otter.ai)
• Edit and optimize the podcast transcript
• Write a blog entry from the transcript of your podcasts and publish/schedule it
• Bundle all image, video, and audio assets with your brand logo to share with guest to promote with their followers
• Send a thank you follow up email to your guest and their team to let them know the show is live on podcast platforms and your YouTube channel
Make a podcast landing page
First things first: keep it simple.
You want a visitor to your landing page to take one action. One. That's it.
First, you've got to decide what that action is. Perhaps it's one of the following:
• Subscribe to and download the podcast
• Sign up for your newsletter for all relevant and valuable content updates
• Leave a comment with suggestions for future episodes
We love this super helpful article from Moz that lists Seth Godin's five possible actions.
Here's how we've formatted our podcast landing page for optimization:
• Podcast Title and Description with a Subscribe button
• Thumbnail Image of Podcast Logo
• Description and image of our podcast host, Natalie Shahmiri
• Embedded online Soundcloud player of our most recent episodes
• Links to where podcast listeners can subscribe
• Another Subscribe Button at the bottom of the podcasts page
• SEO your podcast landing page so you rank high in search engines
• Make sure "Podcasts" is in your main navigation for your site
Repurpose your content to become omnipresent in your niche
The Dooder team has made podcasting one of our content pillars for our business because they're so easy to repurpose for any format, any platform. It's easy to get a valuable message to our audience while they're sitting at their desk and listening and an easy way for our listeners to connect. And most of the content is quality evergreen which feels like an endless goldmine for content creation.
Here are our favorite ways to repurpose content from our podcasts because they're efficient and effective:
• Use video snippets for Instagram Reels–these make a huge impact
• Create graphic quote images with your company logo to promote on your favorite media channels
• Use the transcript from podcasts to write a long-form blog entry
• Splice up the transcript to make shorter bite-sized articles
• Produce bloopers snippets to share on social media on a Friday for a light-hearted mood
• Start an email campaign with the key takeaways of the episode to connect with customers
• Write a social media CTA that asks your audience if they agree or disagree with your guest on a specific topic
• Merge your favorite snippets from different guests together in one video for a "best of" article or social post
If repurposing sounds like a huge time-saver, and you want to refine your content strategy, you can read through Repurpose Your Content: How to get more awareness from a single piece of content.
The secret to consistent podcast success? Keep it simple, keep it fun
Our team has done our best to keep our podcast process simple so that we continue producing and promoting podcasts that are valuable for our customers. The first few weeks were far from perfect, but we held on through all the trial and error as we realized how quickly podcasts were growing our network.
Tuck your agency perfectionist away, and just get started on your podcast. We're here to answer any of your questions along your business scaling journey. Feel free to reach out to our team and connect anytime. We love talking shop with other podcasters.
All it takes is that first step to get past that overthinking inertia. It's far more straightforward than you think to amplify your agency and build the brand authority you need in your marketing niche. Before you know it, you'll have hours and hours of content for your marketing agency to grow to the next level.
If you'd like to listen to other agency owners talk about what's worked and hasn't worked for them, you can subscribe to our podcast The Amplified Agency here.