Best of Season 1: How to Make the Most of Your Podcast
Lindsay Tjepkema: Hi, I'm Lindsay Tjepkema, CEO and Co- Founder of Casted, the first and only podcasting platform made specifically for B2B marketers, and this is our podcast. We just wrapped up our first season of the Casted podcast, where we explored behind the mic stories of some of your favorite B2B podcast hosts. But before we jump into season two, and trust me, it's going to be great, we're talking about how to use great content in sales and marketing, you're going to love it. But before we do that, we're taking a look back at the big takeaways from our first season. This episode is all about how to make the most of your podcast. If you're going to put in the time and energy to make a show, make a great one. Make sure people know about it and love it and share it with others. Here are five of our favorite clips pulled from season one, all to help you make the most of your podcast. Key takeaway number one, commit to greatness. If you've got a podcast, how are you going to make it great, truly great? Something that people will choose to listen to instead of anything else. Here's some advice from the one and only, Jay Baer.
Jay Baer: It's so true because, and I think a lot of podcasting is actually starting to get a little bit of a bad name in some spaces because it's, oh, everyone has a podcast. Everybody wants a podcast. Everybody starting a podcast. And that's beautiful. It's a beautiful thing. It wasn't that long ago that, that's where we were with blogs, right? And everyone can and should have the ability to do this thing, but set your expectations accordingly, right? If you just want to have a podcast for the sake of a podcast, fine, but if you expect it to make any significance on your brand, just like anything else, any other content strategy you have, what's in it for your listener? Would they listen to you instead of literally anything else?
Speaker 2: Yeah. You've got to have a better mousetrap, not just a mousetrap. And with so many more podcasts coming online, this sort of average quality of a successful podcast is going to go up and up and up, right? So you've got to have good audio. You have to have a good host. You can't just take Bob and make him your host because Bob happens to be in charge of product marketing. Being in charge of product marketing and being a good podcast host is not the same job, right? Now, you might be lucky and Bob happens to be incredibly loquacious and great with a microphone, and so Bob is the right person. But I see this all the time, it's," Well, we're going to put a podcast host based on job title." What? That doesn't make any sense.
Jay Baer: Mm- hmm( affirmative).
Speaker 2: Or we're going to have a different host every week because somebody different from the company is going to talk about each topic each week. I'm," No, that is terrible for the listener." There's just, people have to realize fundamentally that podcasts are of course very informative on the B2B side, but it's still entertainment, right? And even YouTube couldn't, be," Yeah, the new album is just us playing cigar boxes and kazoos. This is our kazoo album and it's going to be fine because people-"
Jay Baer: We just really like kazoos now, and-
Speaker 2: Yeah, right.
Jay Baer: ...it's all about us and that's what we want to do is just-
Speaker 2: Yeah. But I feel like a lot of B2B podcasts are essentially a kazoo album, right? It's just," Yeah, we have a podcast, ergo, we've succeeded." No. If you don't have a good podcast, you will have no listeners. You have no listeners, you have no value, all you've done is waste money. What I see, especially in B2B, is people start a B2B podcasts because they feel like they should. As you mentioned earlier, it's sort of like the new blog," We got to have a blog because everybody else has a blog," and now it's," You've got to have a podcast, because everybody's got a podcast." Okay, and I think you should have a podcast, but be really, really clear on why and how you're going to measure success. And it can't just be listens, it can't just be downloads because you can't pay your employees with downloads. So understand what you're really trying to achieve, and then measure the podcast and your satisfaction with it after awhile based on that, right? What I see a lot is people start a B2B podcast and they do it for six months and then they kind of reassess it and say," Well, we're not really sure what it's doing for us so maybe we should stop doing it." Number one, it takes a long time to find an audience, right? So if you're out in six months, you're doomed to fail. And number two, understand what it's really doing for your business, look at your spike in SEO, look at your spike in people mentioning the show to your customer success team. There's all these other signals that indicate that the show is doing something for your brand beyond just how many people downloaded the show.
Lindsay Tjepkema: Key takeaway number two, structure your show for success. Make it interesting. Think about how your show is going to be interesting and compelling for your listeners. Let the master show runner and storyteller himself, Jay Acunzo, tell you how
Jay Acunzo: There's only three parts to a show by the way, a concept that sits across the whole show. So talking topics with experts, not a concept. Maybe at one point it was, but today that's been profoundly commodified in every niche. So being the first show about X, that goes away as soon as there's a second show, not a concept. So a concept is something like science versus, it's my favorite show level concept. It's from Gimlet Media, they are a traditional publisher, but we're trying to act like them. Science versus is a science show, and that's one of the most crowded categories in all of podcasting is science. But you know when they talk about organic foods compared to everybody else, it's the science versus the perception, the pop culture of understanding, the myths, right? I get it now, science versus, their name reveals the concept which is brilliant and ideal. So need a hook. You need to concede your angle. You have the concept that sits across the whole show. The second thing you need is an episode level structure or a format. That could be hidden from view, the listener has no idea that you have a structure. It could be overt, Sports Center on ESPN was famous for at one point publishing its rundown visible on the screen. You knew every section, what they called blocks and TV, you sometimes hear hosts say," A block, B block, C block." But you need a plan, and that could also mean even if you don't produce it per se, have a post production process and editing. You have a plan for the interview and you move succinctly through the interview, it's not an open- ended generic interview, hope this goes well, fingers crossed. So you need an episode level format and structure, and that helps you innovate with purpose because you don't have to overhaul the whole show or proceed on gut feel. It helps you scale because you can tell people this is the format. And it helps you stay consistent too, because every episode feels like it's your own proprietary type of episode. A great example of that is Hot Ones, which is a YouTube series actually not a podcast, but they eat spicier and spicier wings as an interview progresses with a celebrity. So it's one question- ish per wing, keeps getting spicier. And then halfway through, they have a little segment called, Explain that Gram where it's about explaining some kind of hidden picture deep in the Instagram archives of the celebrity. And at the very end, they have a concluding segment called, The Last Dab, which is kind of a will they, won't they add a last dab of extra hot sauce as they're dying, to the last wing. But they have this segmented approach it's visible to the viewer, it's on the table as the wings, right? Same idea, think like Hot Ones. What is the format of your episode whether or not it's highly edited? Show level concept, episode, format, talent. Talent is the most under utilized thing. If your host is beloved by those audience members, put them on stage, put her into your agenda for your own conference, create a video series around her or him. Have a plan for if something's going well, people build relationships, not with a celebrity that carries your brand banner, but with you, your company. I prefer always that it's an employee hosting. Show level concept, episode level structure, talent. If you focus discretely on those three things, you will create a far better show having a plan for those, than any competitor who is putting a microphone in front of two smart people and assuming it's going to work, and it never does.
Lindsay Tjepkema: I don't know what you're talking about, it always works. Works every time.
Jay Acunzo: Here's the thing that frustrates me though, Lindsay. Everybody knows this is a 3 out of 10 when we do it this way. Everybody, right? And people aren't changing their behavior. And I don't think it's because we don't want to change our behavior, I think it's because this is such a new muscle for so many people and we do have a million things going on. I predict that marketing show runner, like a show runner, will be a title people will have in marketing at some point. But until we get there where it's their full time job, everybody's sort of bringing other skills over to shows or taking a percent of their time and they're distracted by other things. And that's why they chase the next thing instead of reusing the episode. It's just, it's a new muscle, it's an important one, but it is something that's new. And so my goal with marketing showrunners is, let's break this stuff apart, not only sharing with each other, but also pulling from outside the echo chamber and seeing what works and what doesn't.
Lindsay Tjepkema: Key takeaway number three, plan ahead. Logistics may feel cumbersome, but being strategic and smart about how you're going to approach your show really matters. Here's how Heike Young planned ahead when she was creating her show, the Salesforce Marketing Cloud Cast. Tell me about time leading up to the show. How much was involved between the day you said," Okay, we're going to do this thing," and the launch day.
Heike Young: Ah, yes, so many logistics. I could probably write a book just on what I did logistically to try to prepare for this and I probably still didn't do everything that I possibly could have to make this a real success. There was definitely a lot of that internal selling and pitching of the idea, namely my manager, I let her know with some numbers financially what this was going to cost the team. That even though a podcast isn't too expensive, it can certainly escalate in costs with the complexity and with, the more that you want to do things like run ads for it, do some paid campaigns for it, there's really no shortage of money that you could spend if you had the ability to do so, even though it's pretty cheap to get started. So kind of starting off with some of those initial numbers, crunching those, this is what we think that we should do. And then just really going into the logistics of where this was going to be published, all of the distribution tactics, our blog, our social channels, I mentioned those. We did a lot of work on the branding. So we did go through a process of working out a couple of logos, working on the title, making sure everybody felt good about that, all of the legal approvals necessary to make sure you can bring a new brand name like that into market. Licensing a bunch of music for things like the intros or commercials on other podcasts, outros, and so on. Getting all of the equipment together for the hosts as well as guests if they did need it and they wanted to borrow it. But yeah, also just some of the other logistics, things like transcriptions, pre- interview questions that you would send them, getting all of that up and running because once... The podcast, it's like a train, once it starts it just kind of keeps going, right? The train is moving and you are the conductor of the train, you've got to feed the beast. You got to be piping hot coals into that thing every week so that it's continuing to maintain momentum in the market, get more listens and downloads, at least if you're trying to do a weekly podcasting model instead of something where you drop an entire mini season at once. So really no shortage to things that you could consider, I would say if I had to think about the one or two that would make the biggest impact, it was really analyzing the strategy, analyzing the topics and just the types of guests that we wanted to feature, making sure everybody felt good and was aligned on that, and then aligning on the distribution. So all of the channels week to week that we would be using to promote it because there's nothing worse than creating something amazing, creating some wonderful content, and then nobody can help you promote it. They say," Oh, we're promoting another thing right now, we're launching this, so." Or," Oh, well we can't actually use that at this time because our paid budgets are going to this thing." Really the distribution arm is as important as the creation arm, so aligning on that as super, super key.
Lindsay Tjepkema: Absolutely. Absolutely. I mean, and one thing we talk a lot about here Casted is go create your show, once you hit, publish, you're just getting started, right? I mean, if you just hit, publish, you're leaving so much value on the table, it's what you do with it from there. Key take away number four, get crafty. Think about how to leverage the resources you already have to create really great content, and then think about how you can maximize the impact of your show. Here's how Sangram Vajre at Terminus does it with his show, Flip My Funnel. All right, so tell me a little bit about, you mentioned how every day is different, I want to dig into that. So what does that look like and how are you changing things up?
Sangram Vajre: So I totally feel like I got lucked out with that. So, the daily show doesn't mean I'm doing it daily, and maybe I'm taking a different approach around it, but the daily show means that there is something, people commute daily, a lot of people work out daily, I wish I was one of them. But I try to do like three times, but a lot of people work out on a regular basis but at least they commute. And the people are listening every day, so my thought initially, the reason I wanted a daily was," Hey look, this needs to be part of every inaudible people's," could be if it's good quality, could be part of people's daily routine. And there's nothing better than being in the head and ear in the morning or the evening when they are, if that's what they're looking for, otherwise I know my own podcasting habit, I would hop around because I just don't drive one day, I go to work every day. So that's one of the reasons why I wanted to do a daily and get in the flow. But every day's a different day, and the reason I say I got lucked out is because I'm not doing it daily. What I have is, I think literally do it once a week, and a lot of times I will stack a whole bunch of things, but every day's a different day. So Monday are typically the days where I personally am interviewing somebody, for example this week, I interviewed Nancy Duarte, who has 2.2 million views on TedTalk, is the number one communicator, one of the top communicators in the world, she's launching a new book. And I met her at an event, a practice a few months ago, so I interviewed her for Monday, and I typically at least, do it two weeks prior so that the inaudible media team has enough time to create graphics and blog and all that stuff to launch on the same day. Then Tuesday, I think, you know this on my podcast I would say that there's one statement every time, without a community, you're simply a commodity. I truly believe that, that's why Flip My Funnel exists. That's really boosted the growth of Terminus in the early days because we built and invested in the community. So Tuesday I literally offer, I give the mic to somebody in the community. So Katie Bullard, who's the President of DiscoverOrg. She essentially ran a four week series, on every Tuesday she interviewed four different people on how you transition from a CMO to CEO. Or John [Ruggie 00:16: 02 ], he just interviewed four different CEOs to talk about category leadership. Or Ethan who runs, who's the VP of Marketing at BombBomb, he interviewed Guy Kawasaki on the podcast talking about evangelism. So, I literally opened up the communities saying that without you, this doesn't exist. This is not a Sangram show, this is really important for all of us to be part of. So Tuesday I literally have, that's where I set up to the next year, people lined up for each month to go ahead and do the interview. And then, once they do the interview, I literally give everything just like I did, to Sweet Fish Media and they create all this stuff. So it's a win- win situation from their perspective, they don't have to worry about platform and doing it, and I don't have to worry about content every day. And I've been amazed with the type of, and the quality of information and the interviews they do. So that's Tuesday, Wednesdays I do LinkedIn Lives, so we just play the recording of LinkedIn live every week. On Thursday, we have done inaudible our conference for last about 10 conferences. So we have over a thousand or so recordings of sessions from the event that we have done. So we literally replay, with the permission of the speaker, which is in very high quality audio of their session on Thursdays. And then Friday, I literally do a five minute, one big idea, what is top of mind for me, something that I'm really trying to improve on is what kind of words I'm using or what's happening in the business. Something that is really personal to me, but really five to seven minutes, which I can literally do anytime of the day. So personally, I'm only investing maybe an hour a week for the daily podcast to happen and the community, the conference, and the LinkedIn Lab, all of these things are just now parts of the pieces that make this wheel run the way it's running right now.
Lindsay Tjepkema: And here's key takeaway number five, be strategic. Consistency, persistence, and patience are important. Here's how Sam Jacobs gets really strategic in the promotion of his show, the Sales Hacker Podcast. What are some of your big takeaways for people who are listening right now, who either are on the brink of starting a podcast or kicking around the idea, or maybe they already have one? What's the advice that you would share?
Same Jacobs: Well the one thing... What advice would I ever share? First of all, just be very intentional about dis- aggregating the components of production so that you can try to make them repeatable. Because doing one podcast really is not useful. Doing anything one time is not useful, it's really about your ability to demonstrate. You can do it consistently and show up every day and expect that it's going to be a two to three year, maybe I'm being a little conservative, but expect that it's going to take some time to start seeing the results that you seek, that's thing number one. And then thing number two, which we haven't really talked about because I mentioned that plugged into Sales Hacker already, but it is, you have to be thinking about what's your promotion strategy and how are you going to get it out there. I think one of the things that we didn't do well enough that we still probably don't do well enough that we need to do, is we need to push the guests on the show to promote themselves. We have a limited source of new audience. We have the listeners, our current listeners, we have the listeners on our show that are telling other people, and then we have the guests on our show that are telling their audience and their communities about their participation in the podcast. And we really need to make it easy for them to share and easy for them to tell the rest of the world about the fact that they were a guest, and we need to... But that all starts with just simply making sure that they will do it and that you ask them to do that explicitly and directly when they are a guest. I guess the last thing, it's not just about getting lots and lots of people to listen, it's about providing thought leadership opportunities to your target accounts and bringing them onto the show as a way of establishing some kind of executive relationship with them.
Lindsay Tjepkema: Mm- hmm( affirmative). Yeah. So I think it all could fall under the big umbrella of be strategic, right? Think longterm, make sure you have processes, make sure that you are thinking with the end in mind and how you're going to promote this thing and how you're going to be strategic about the guests that you bring on in a way that's relevant to your audience, but also to your business.
Same Jacobs: Absolutely.
Lindsay Tjepkema: That's it for today's show. Thank you so much to today's guest, and to learn more about them and see Casted in action with clips of today's show and related content visit casted. us. Thanks so much for listening.