Below is part three of a podcast series that we recorded in order to create our book, Talk Marketing – How to Gain Authority and Expert Status, Even If No One Has Ever Heard of You. In this episode, John McDougall and John Maher talk about the various ways you can use your podcast content, including blogs, writing ebooks and books, and social media.
Following the audio file is the transcript of the podcast, which we would normally simply edit and add sub-headings to in order to create a simple blog post from a podcast. However, here we’re presenting the fully edited, prose-version of the transcript that we used in the book.
The last chapter covered how to create a podcast, and in this chapter, I go a step further and explain how to maximize the value of your podcasts. I will cover where to put podcasts on your website and how to repurpose podcasts into eBooks and social media posts. Then, I explain how and why you should interview experts on your podcast.
Where to Put Podcasts on Your Website
You can put podcasts anywhere on your site. Don’t just put them on your blog. Also, use them to beef up your services and about us pages. Podcasts encourage people to stay on your site longer, so you need to put them on the pages that tend to get the most visitors.
This helps with branding and relationship building. When someone reads your bio, they learn a little about you, but if they also listen to a podcast or check out a video, they hear your voice. They get a sense of you as a person, which can make your website more powerful.
Additionally, the extra time will show up in your Google Analytics. Time-on-site is actually an SEO ranking factor. When people stay on your site longer, Google assumes that you have relevant information, which can help increase your rankings for web searches.
How to Make a Popular Podcast
When you’re picking topics for SEO purposes, ultra-narrow themes or niches based on keywords tend to do the best, but if you want to create a popular podcast, you should also cover broad or trending topics about your industry. This helps to draw in more listeners. For example, with our client Cape Ann Savings Bank, we did podcasts on the different kinds of trusts and got loads of SEO ranks from them, but the podcasts might have an even broader appeal with a show about saving money.
We also did this for a client called Bank5 Connect. It’s a Massachusetts bank that’s been in business since 1855 and now provides online personal banking services. We recorded a podcast, and NerdWallet found it on social media. This led to a major feature article and hundreds of new customers for the bank.
The podcast also generated the bank’s largest depositor in its 100-year-plus history. Many skeptics think these tactics only get low-end leads, and I’ve heard people say things like, “I only need good leads, and the internet doesn’t do that.” But it’s not true. This banking customer is a great example. I believe he deposited around a million dollars. I’ve even seen clients sell $75,000 paintings from SEO.
You can also pay for social media ads to promote your podcast. That can give you a big boost of ‘likes,’ but often, these fail to translate to listeners.
Just be aware that these days with organic social, only about 5% of your followers see your content, so you could be spinning your wheels a long time wondering why social is barely reaching your audience, much less bringing in a new one. If you go the free social route, join groups, and be helpful to others — that can eventually draw people to your podcast. But do not blast people with links to your podcast or website because that can get you kicked off.
There are also audio ads where podcasters can pay to run ads on other shows or platforms like Spotify. The problem is that this tactic requires potential listeners to do some work to hear your show.
Overcast may be a better use of your money. Overcast attracts power listeners who want to go beyond Apple Podcasts and Spotify, and it allows podcasters to advertise their shows in the app. Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Podchaser, and being on more than one host like Soundcloud and Libsyn are other great ways to extend your reach.
Podcast guesting is great for relationship-building and is an easy way to promote yourself with the power of your voice to new audiences. Where can you find shows to be a guest on other than the obvious places? Listen Notes is a free podcast search engine with millions of podcasts and over 100 million episodes. If you want to step up your game and gather even more in-depth information on a show, check out paid podcast search engines Rephonic or Podchaser Pro.
You can also syndicate your podcast and blog to niche publications in your industry. For instance, if you’re a lawyer, you can pay for your posts and podcasts to be fed onto much larger sites like the National Law Review and JD Supra. Paying for audio ads on other related podcasts can also be a great way to get more exposure.
You should also push to get people to review and subscribe when you record your podcasts. Make sure that you do that in every episode. Simply saying, “Don’t forget to leave a review or remember to subscribe,” can have a significant impact on your podcast’s popularity.
Last, stick to a consistent schedule, whether once a month, weekly, or daily.
How to Turn a Podcast into an Ebook or Print Book
You can easily recycle podcasts into eBooks or print books. We usually have a writer turn the transcripts into prose. That’s usually easier to read than a transcript. But simply using a cleaned-up transcript can also be effective, especially if you give a nice introduction explaining the book’s point.
I recently saw an interview with Tony Robbins where he said that he’s gathering a lot of his content from interviews with experts in various fields. For instance, he did a book on finance, and I think he interviewed a hundred finance experts. His latest book was on health; again, he interviewed fifty or so doctors to create the book.
In my office, I have an awesome old marketing book, “Blogging Heroes,” a collection of interviews with writers on blogging and blog marketing. I can flip through the book and skip around. If I get excited about an interview with Neil Patel, I can skip to that section.
This shows that you can turn transcripts into books by making them into prose or using the Q&A type of transcript. Both options can work.
How Podcasts Help with Social Media Efforts
Your podcast can also help to improve your social media efforts. When it comes to social media, you have to feed the beast. In other words, you have to post a lot, which can lead to a lot of fluff, like posting “Happy Donut Day” or sharing too many gimmicky posts.
Sometimes, people post unrelated things that alienate their clients. For instance, we had an HVAC client where the former marketing agency owner’s son was in charge of their social media. He kept posting pics of Baby Yoda, which didn’t do anything beyond clutter up their page and annoy their followers.
Businesses desperate for social media fodder often create social media pages that don’t reflect their brand or services. When someone’s getting paid to do social media, they have to come up with stuff to post constantly, and it often ends up being a lot of BS. They get a list of holidays, and then, the next thing you know, a lawyer’s Facebook page has every single holiday with cute and funny quote graphics, and that isn’t effective for drawing in new clients.
Anyone who wants to see that type of stuff can go to a comedy site. Your law firm customers don’t care if it’s National Paperclip Day or some other novelty holiday. I’m not saying that you should never post about holidays. You should post on major holidays or holidays that are important to you. But if you’re posting about Taco Day for the eighty-ninth time, you’re not using your social media account strategically.
Rather than using an agency to create random posts that don’t reflect your brand, post a quote graphic and a link to your podcast. This keeps your social feed focused on your content and helps position you as a thought leader. With this approach, your powerful insights become the cornerstones of your social activity, which is much more effective than unrelated posts.
You can add a personal photo once a week or post about things you’re doing around the office or community. Those posts help to personalize your page. But the posts based around your blogs and podcasts should hold down the fort. To make it easy, break it down into two parts. Feed your podcast and blog content into your social media stream automatically, and then add a little fun spice with personal photos and things like that.
Why You Should Interview Experts on Your Podcast
Interviewing experts can draw extra attention to your podcast and your business. I’ve seen this in action with several different clients. I’ll share just a couple of these stories.
When I was doing SEO for the National Law Review, they wanted to get better coverage about being part of the Legal Marketing Association’s yearly conference. That’s the largest of all the legal marketing conferences. So, I interviewed that year’s keynote speaker Diana O’Brien on their podcast. At the time, she was the marketing director for Deloitte, a huge company.
The podcast ended up on the homepage of the conference for a month leading up to the event. It was shared and re-shared a lot. That allowed the client to expand their exposure from their site visitors and social followers to everyone who visited the conference’s web page. It was really powerful brand coverage.
When we talked with our client Preowned Auto Logistics about that interview, they wanted to take a similar approach. So, again, we interviewed someone from a conference that they attended. The podcast was a huge hit. It was featured on the conference website and lit up social media at the event.
They were really psyched about the results, and they said they had people coming up to them all weekend. People were excited about the podcast but also wanted to be interviewed on future podcast episodes. Our client was thrilled about that.
When you bring in someone from outside your company, you also get access to their audience. If they share the podcast on their social media pages or website, it increases your exposure. The effect is particularly pronounced when you land a big-name interview.
How to Land Big-Name Interviews
It can be surprisingly easy to land big-name interviews. I once even got Neil Patel to do an interview for a blog I used to write, AuthorityMarketing.com. He’s arguably one of the top five SEO professionals of all time, but even someone at his level knows you must keep being in the media.
The podcast may be a new form, but the interview style of marketing has been around for decades. Jack Canfield, the author of the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books, is one of the best-selling authors of our time, but to sell half a billion books, he needed to constantly do radio shows. He says in interviews now that he basically never slept during that time.
I’ve found that people love to be interviewed. It appeals to their egos. It also gives them a chance to share their brand and discuss topics they’re passionate about.
You can also use interviews as a Trojan Horse sales or networking strategy. Imagine you’ve cold-called a law firm ten times about your marketing services. They’ve been sending you to voicemail. They won’t connect you to anyone because they know you’re selling SEO or marketing services and don’t want to hear the pitch.
But then, you call up and say, “Hey, I have a podcast. I want to interview with so-and-so.” At that point, they’re like, “What? Oh, oh, oh, let me get that message right to them.” Or they might transfer you directly to the person. You almost always get connected or get a callback by bringing up the interview. I had very high success rates with this tactic before I started getting more customers than I could handle.
If you take this approach, don’t sell them your services during the interview. Instead, just record the discussion and make it into great content. By doing the interview, you’ve created a relationship. You got past the gatekeeper, and now, you know the person. You can leverage the relationship for sales or networking.
You can see how effective the interview style of the podcast is when you look at the top podcasters. Joe Rogan, for example, focuses exclusively on interviews, and Spotify pays him $200 million a year for his work. This underscores how podcasting and interviews are changing the audio/radio landscape.
Again, you can create great content by doing interviews with team members or even monologues on your own. But if you want to take it up a notch, you should start interviewing experts or find ways to use the interviews to drive sales and build relationships. This can open new worlds for you.
How Long Does it Take to Get Results from Podcasting?
Once you start posting your podcasts and turning them into content, it should take just a few months to pique Google’s interest, but the timing varies widely. Recently, a Christian minister and blogger joined our class. He had an archive of about 350 podcasts, interviews, and other content that wasn’t visible. He’d been doing it for years but never posted a transcript.
Just a few weeks after joining our class and about two weeks into posting transcripts, he sent me an unsolicited email that said the following:
Great news. Your advice regarding transcripts uploaded to our website has resulted in a large upturn in organic searches. Yesterday, we had more users in one day visit our website than the previous month combined, with 170 users in the last seven days, with Transhumanism being very popular. This is the beginning, I pray, of sustained increase. Thanks, John. — Carl
That’s not a huge number of users, but it was a significant increase for him, and it was based on posting the transcripts for only about ten podcasts.
Then a few months or so later, he said:
Hey, thanks, John. Today we reached 2,000 visitors in a week, equating to 8,000 per month. God is good, and we couldn’t have done it without your assistance. — Carl
Imagine what can happen when he works through his entire archive collection.
We also had a student, Jill from byJillDiamond.com, who provides American accent training. When she came into our course, she had about 125 YouTube videos that had never been transcribed. People in this situation have a huge opportunity and typically see results faster than someone starting from scratch.
Take Action — Don’t Just Think about it
It can be tempting to study all of this information and never take action. But that doesn’t work. The phrase “I think, therefore, I am” doesn’t apply here. Google only sees what you publish, not what you plan to do.
You can’t just think about recording a podcast or writing a book. You need to take action. But how do you get started? The best way to do this is to build a manageable habit and stick to it. That’s why we emphasize setting aside short bursts of time regularly. That’s easy to work into your schedule, but again, you have to do it. If you don’t create a habit, it won’t happen.