Marketing professionals love hearing about the latest trends in advertising, the strategy behind great ads and the war stories of what it took to create them. If that sounds like your cup of tea, you might want to tune into a new podcast, Tagline, from iHeartMedia and Advertising Age.
The first episode launched last week, and after hearing a commercial for it on the radio I decided to check it out. Hosted by Rob Norman, chief digital officer of GroupM, the initial podcast featured Wendy Clark, CEO of DDB and Rob Reilly, global creative chairman of McCann. They tackled a variety of interesting topics, including whether advertising influences culture or vice versa (the answer from Wendy Clark was yes, to both); the importance of influencer marketing, the anxiety and excitement of creating a Super Bowl ad, and the personal taglines of these high-profile advertising executives.
When discussing the influence of culture on advertising, Rob Reilly explained that consumers accept brands into their lives now more than ever. But the trade-off for brands is they have a responsibility to be relevant, fun and interesting if they expect to remain welcomed. Wendy Clark noted the fact that consumers are exposed to 6,000 brand messages each day, so you must stay hyper-focused on answering the question of “so what?” Otherwise consumers will stop caring about your brand. And while politics can be a touchy subject, Wendy said it’s important to study the recent presidential election in order to stay current on cultural happenings – as the recent election changed everything.
I really enjoyed the first episode of Tagline and encourage you to give it a listen. As a whole, podcasts are gaining in popularity, with 21% of Americans age 12 or older report having listened to a podcast in the past month, according to Edison Research. Podcasts don’t have to be created by high-profile organizations or feature the biggest names in your industry. In fact, there are countless B2B-centric podcasts focused on a variety of industries and issues.
If your organization has interesting insights to share and a network of peers that can provide expert commentary, starting a podcast might be an avenue to becoming a larger part of your customers’ worlds. My colleague, Matt Helgeson, has some tips on what it takes to start a podcast. As the former senior features editor at Game Informer magazine, co-host of “Video Games Weekly” on KFAN radio in Minneapolis and creator of the Game Informer Show podcast, he has some thoughtful insights. Here is what he had to say:
Before starting a podcast, have a strategy for its focus, tone and structure
In order to stand out you need to have a unique focus or perspective to offer listeners. Ultimately, it’s your knowledge and insight about your industry that’s going to be useful to your audience. The closer your content is to your company’s core competencies, the better.
Create compelling content by staying current and collaborating
Using the internal talent and knowledge of your staff as the basis of your podcast, it’s helpful to tie your content to key events in your industry or the world at large as a way of piquing a listener’s interest. Use it as a “hook” to start larger conversations about best practices in your industry. Reaching out to peers at other companies – especially ones who are active on social media – is a great way to create interesting conversations, gain new perspectives and grow your audience. It also has the benefit of creating a stronger network for your business.
Determine the equipment you’ll need and your budget
You don’t have to break the bank to deliver a professional-sounding podcast. If you’ll be hosting a solo or two-person podcast and are on a budget, a multi-pattern USB condenser microphone like the popular Blue Yeti is a great choice for plug-and-play recording with free programs like Apple’s GarageBand or Audacity on PC.
If you want to do multi-guest, multi-track recording, you’ll need a USB recording interface like one from the Focusrite Scarlett series, PreSonus or Behringer. Most of these products also come packaged with free copies of recording programs like Pro Tools Essentials, Studio One or Ableton Live. Finish off your studio set up with affordable XLR condenser microphones like the MXL 990, Audio-Technica AT2020 or AKG P120 and some mic stands.
Distribute your podcast through multiple channels
The more accessible your podcast is, the better your chance of building an audience. Hosting it on your company’s website and distributing it through an RSS feed is relatively easy in most cases (especially if you’re using a common CMS like WordPress). From there, Matt recommends putting it on as many services as possible: SoundCloud, iTunes, Spotify and Stitcher are a good start.
Be sure to give Tagline a listen, and let us know if you would like to discuss whether starting a podcast is the right approach for your business.