Streaming on Podcasts Everywhere
Podcasts are one of the biggest mediums of content now that the field has grown so much that you can find one on any topic you can think of. Have you ever wondered how to get on one or what it could do for your business if you did.
Recently, our CEO, Stacy Jones sat down with the founder of Podcastguests.com to discuss the benefits of podcasting. In this blog, Hollywood Branded examines how to get on a podcast and leverage it to build authority and establish expertise in your field from the advice of Andrew Alleman.
A Little More About Andrew
Andrew Allemann is the founder of PodcastGuests.com, a service he created after struggling to find new and interesting guests for his own podcast. He absolutely found success, as his service is now used by over 20,000 people to both find guests for podcasts and for experts to get booked on podcasts. As a podcasting expert, Andrew has been quoted by media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Fortune, Tech Crunch, and The Washington Post. He also knows more than a thing or two about podcast marketing.
Interview Transcript Highlights
Question: How did you arrive to this point where you have this massive booking platform for people to find each other?
Answer: I've been a podcaster for a long time, and about four years ago, I had been running a podcast about domain names of all things, so a very niche topic for about a year. It was a traditional interview style where I interviewed guests, and I pretty much tapped my Rolodex at that point. I interviewed the 50 people that I really wanted to interview that I knew, and so I wanted to find new and interesting guests, and I looked for a way to do that. There's some agency services out there that will help you find guests for your own podcast, but they charge a lot of money. So, I said, "Why don't I create something that's simple and free for people to use to connect podcasters with guests for their service?" And that's how I started the service. It started fairly slowly with just a couple hundred people using it, and it worked. It worked from the very first week. I was very nervous, but people started connecting and getting booked on podcasts, and over the past four years, it's grown to over 20,000 users.
Question: Tell me a little bit more about why people should be considering using the power of podcasting. What does this do to help them?
Answer: I think many people are aware of podcasting and it's taken off a lot in recent years, and in part that was because Apple put a podcast app on every iPhone. That certainly helped raise visibility, and also the quality of podcasts is increased as a number of companies, including traditional media players have gotten into it. Podcasting fits kind of this weird segment in media. So, you have written media like blogs and everything that you read on the web, you have video, so you have YouTube, you have television, and then there's the spoken word element, which is what podcasting effectively is. So, while we've had radio for a long time, we haven't really had on demand spoken content, so auditory content. A Lot of people like podcasts because they can listen when they're out for a walk or on the train commuting in the morning. Some time when they need to have some attention on what they're doing, but they also want to learn or hear a story or improve themselves, so consume media while doing something else.
Podcasting has taken off a lot, and for that reason, a lot of people that are trying to market themselves or their company have started paying attention to it, especially in the past couple of years. I know a lot of agency owners have told me that their clients have come to them saying, "I know I need to get on podcasts. Where do I start?" And I think podcasting is extremely powerful from a marketing perspective because of the relationship between hosts and their listeners. Podcast advertisers get great results because instead of just running a commercial, it's the podcast hosts that people know and trust that's talking to them, and the same thing goes for when you're a guest on a podcast, there's already this established rapport that you can tap into.
Question: How should someone, besides using your service, how should they best prepare to actually get themselves geared up to be someone someone wants to interview?
Answer: Well, the first thing I do is think about your objectives and what you're hoping to get out of being a guest on podcasts. So, we've talked a lot about marketing yourself maybe as a person, as being a thought leader in your space. Perhaps it's marketing your company, but think about also that the podcaster wants to get something out of this. They don't want you to come on and give an infomercial for 30 minutes. If I just came on and talked about my service for 30 minutes you wouldn't want me on, but we're talking about what my service does, and that's valuable to your audience. So, think about what you want to get out first, and then second, what you can offer to a podcast audience. Once you have that down, what people in this industry, it's kind of an interesting term, but they call it a one sheet, which is essentially a one page marketing document about you.
It typically includes your photo, a head shot on there, a professional head shot, it includes topics you can cover, accolades, awards or certifications you have. Then there are a few other things on there that I recommend having. If you've ever been on a podcast or have previous media experience, you can put that on this one sheet. I like to tell people to go ahead and put a few suggested interview questions on it as well, because this helps the podcast or out in a couple of ways. First it gets them thinking, "Oh, yes, this person can answer these types of questions." Second, it makes it a lot easier for the podcaster, and podcasters are busy. Stacy, I know you're recording a lot of these and if you can spend less time preparing while still putting on a good production that's valuable to you.
Finally I recommend on that one sheet also explaining how you can help the podcaster promote their own show. One reason that podcasters like to have guests on their show is that the guest will help them promote the show. So, for example, once this episode goes live, I'll promote it on my social media, I'll include it in my newsletter that goes out to 20,000 people, and that helps you, right?
So, we're all kind of in this together. We're all kind of the more exposure we get, the more we help each other out. And so very few people put that on their one sheet, but I was talking to a friend who had a podcast, and we were at an event at South by Southwest a few years ago and he said, "Everyone who contacts me and says, can I be on your show? It's all about me, me, me." Right? What can you do for me? It's never what can I do for you?
Question: Do you think Podcasting gives you a lot of experience without having to talk to national outlets?
Answer: I always tell people that generally speaking, podcasts are a very low risk endeavor as a guest. And so if you've been invited on a live radio show or a live TV show, that can be nerve wracking. TV more than radio even, but it's life, right? What if I say something silly or stupid? Whereas podcasts are, A, they aren't live, B, the audiences are generally smaller, especially when you get started. You're not going to be the hot commodity that everyone wants to talk to. So, you start small, and it gives you practice, it gives you public speaking practice.
It gives you experience with interviews, and these things, as you continue, it can become a great skill set. If you record a podcast with someone and you go back and you listen to it, you might find certain filler words that you use or certain colloquialisms that you use over and over and you're like, "Oh, maybe I need to practice not doing that so much." It's a great way to practice. I have one large publicly traded multi-billion dollar company that puts a number of people on my service because they want them to get media practice. And they'd rather have them get media practice talking to an audience of a few hundred people than a few hundred thousand or millions. Yes, or million. We all want to talk to millions of people, but we don't want to make a fool of ourselves when we do it.
Question: What are some of the common mistakes that podcast guests make?
Answer: First of all, I would say, please go buy a decent microphone. It doesn't need to be hundreds of dollars. You can get a snowball microphone for 30 or $40 on Amazon. I know some people show up to podcast interviews and are talking into the microphone on their laptop, and it's just not a good sound quality. You're not going to sound good. I talked to a podcaster recently who syndicates a show on radio, and he said, "Look, I might be willing to overlook the fact that someone's voice quality isn't good, but then my radio station says, "No, we're not going to run that interview because the sound quality is not any good," and so we're talking about a very small investment, 30, $40. If you want to get fancier, you can. You can go get a $300 or a $200 microphone. But anything basic outside of your laptop or your built in microphone is a good start.
Another mistake I see podcast guests make is around, I mentioned earlier, you probably have an objective, but they come in and they're all sales-focused, like, "Oh, well, let me tell you with my free week long course on how to make money online, blah, blah, blah," and it's a big turnoff, right? It's a turn off to the audience, it's a turn off to the podcaster, and you're probably not going to get invited on a lot more podcasts if you do that. Another thing kind of going back to sound quality is to make sure you take the call from a quiet place. It doesn't have to be fancy. You might notice for those of you watching, I have some sound baffling here. You can start in a walk in clothing closet and get excellent sound quality. The clothes kind of absorbed the echoes and it's almost like you're in your own studio.
So, you don't need to spend money on it, but be cognizant of it.
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