One great way to promote your brand is to appear on a podcast as a guest. You get to connect to a new audience at no cost.
Further, the opportunities are endless; current estimates are 700,000 podcasts and almost all are looking for guests.
If your phone is not ringing off the hook with invitations, then you will need to follow this six-step approach to get invited on a podcast. Develop a list of potential podcasts, get a feel for the tone, connect with a well structured email, and take advantage of that opportunity.
1. Make a list of twenty target podcasts
In 2019 Google started indexing and ranking podcasts. This means that it is easier than ever to find a podcast that includes your target audience. Go to Google and type in “podcasts on your area of interest. ” For example, let’s look at “podcasts on cybersecurity”.
Create a spreadsheet in Microsoft or Google Sheets with these columns: company, website, name of the podcast, moderator name, email, and quick details on the last show.
2 Find the show notes page
The show notes page will give you the website URL and the name of the moderator. 80% of company podcasts should be on Apple Podcasts. A Google search can yield the website easily.
If there is a link to the show notes page from there, it should have the correct spelling of the moderator. Sometimes it doesn’t.
You may have to listen closely to the moderator’s name and try some spellings. From there, you can try to find her on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. If you still have no luck, many podcast moderators do public speaking, and their names are on the prominent trade show promotion sites.
You can also flip this technique. For example, the RSA Conference has 2700+ speakers. Chances are many of these subject matter experts have a cybersecurity podcast. The name of the podcast is just a Google search away.
3. Understand the audience
Listen to three episodes to get a feel for the style, mirror that style in the email. If it is serious, give a grave and somber pitch; light-hearted, then have a fun pitch. Most podcasts have some kind of informal structure where a standard question is included .
Kind of like, “This is the time of the show when we ask you what book you read last week.” Preparing your answer can prevent the proverbial deer in the headlight syndrome.
Sometimes, the podcast loses funding or the moderator moves on to other projects. Also, some run out of steam. Many podcasts stop eight episodes. The term in the industry is “podfade.”
You may find a great fit, only to discover that the podcast is on hold. Double-check the dates of the last podcast. “Forticast” is good fit for cybersecurity, but it sure looks like the podcast is held in abeyance. Put this date into the spreadsheet.
4 Get the email for the moderator
Once you have the moderator name and URL, then you use publicly available tools to get the email to fill in the spreadsheet. Dozens are available. Once you have the name and the website, it is trivial to get the email
Here is a tool called Viola Norbert.
5 Create a personalized email
Write a personalized email that does not sound like a “canned” message. Use the specific name of the podcast in the subject line.
Send individual emails. Use the first name.
No matter what you pitch, make it short, text-based, have one link, and have benefits for the listeners. NO CAPITAL LETTERS. Misspelling may gain open rates. Vary the send time. Try 7 PM weekday send time.
One way to prove your competence is to link to a previous podcast appearance. That way, a producer knows you can speak in front of a microphone – kind of a proof of concept.
When doing cold emailing, please put your street address and connect to your LinkedIn profile in the signature file. That will reassure the reader that you are a human being.
6 Leverage that appearance
Why bother with getting on a podcast if it has no value for your company? Start with communicating with the producer to see what kind of a call to action is allowed.
The accepted format is for the moderator to ask you at the end of the interview something like, “Well, Nahla, how can listeners reach you?”
Podcast listeners are in their cars or jogging. If your company name is hard to spell, you may have a problem. For example, I have interviewed companies that have names like Xgility, Centauri, and Qlik. Wonderful, profitable companies, but hard to spell when on the run.
Had a guest on my podcast from a company called Qmulos, it sounds like it starts with a “C.” Spell out the URL during the call to action. One option is to register an “ear-friendly” URL and redirect it to your company.
I have used Howtopromoteapodcast.com and johngilroy.com with success. You can easily redirect an easy-to-remember website to your company.
If giving a website is good, then a better approach is to come up with a lead magnet, or a freebie, that goes along with your website. Something like, “If you want to register for the free, live webinar, the go to johngilroy.com/webinar.”
From my experience, there are several levels of permission when using a call to action. They are more based on the success of the podcast than any hard-and-fast rule.
One of the best podcasts I have ever heard is Amy Porterfield’s Marketing Made Easy Podcast. Clear voice, direct examples, and she gives terrific advice. The way she allows guests a call to action has changed over the years.
Early in her podcast, Amy had Marie Forleo as a guest. Amy would allow Marie to direct listeners to Marie’s site. “For the freebie, go to marieforleo.com”.
Several years into her podcast, Amy realized the power of the call to action. Now, a guest must use Amy’s site for the giveaway.
Rick Mulready is a world-renown expert in FaceBook advertising. Recently, he was on Amy Porterfield’s podcast and she said something like, “For the freebie, go to AmyPorterfiled.com/rick to get the guide to Facebook ads by Rick Mulready.”
When the listener reaches Amy’s site, she can pixel the visitor for re targeting and collect the email for the lead magnet.
Ask the moderator or producer what the unwritten rules are for a call to action during a show.
Appearing as a guest on podcast is as easy as an email away. However, setting up this contact requires a methodical process.
Develop a list of target podcasts. Acquire the name of the moderator. Listen to the tone and vocabulary of the interviews.
From there, take advantage of Apple Podcasts to reach the show notes page to get the name of the moderator. Email the moderator with an individualized message stressing how her listeners would benefit from your appearance.
Finally, know the rules of the game. Develop a call to action like a checklist that a listener can get very easily. They reach your site, the listener gives their email, they get the lead magnet.
From there it is your job to engage in the customer journey and develop a relationship with the listener.
How can I get a list of podcasts for my audience?
Google began indexing and ranking podcasts in 2019. All you have to do is type in “podcast” and the topic. “podcasts on cybersecurity” is a good example. “podcasts on space and satellites” works as well. Create a spreadsheet that includes podcast name and show notes page.
How can I contact the podcast moderator?
Go to the show notes page, from there you can get the (correctly spelled) name of the moderator and the URL where the show notes reside. Then, you a service like Viola Norbert to get the mail address.
What should I say in the email to the moderator?
Stress value to listeners. Include the name of the podcast in the subject like. Use a first name and engage from the first paragraph. Text only. One link. Short. Always individualize the email.
How do I take advantage of my podcast appearance?
Listen to previous shows to get a grasp of the tone, flow, and vocabulary of the moderator. Match that level during the interview. Rehearse talking points so you can say them conversationally. Have specific points and short stories. In the story, you are the guide and the customer is the hero. If you company has a hard-to-spell name, spell it out in the interview.