Many people start a podcast with hopes of being able to monetize the podcast through ads. Not every host should have ads on their podcast. Some hosts should use their podcast as a lead magnet.
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What Is A Lead Magnet
An incentive that marketers offer to potential buyers for their emails. A lead magnet is an alternative to having ads on the podcast.
Ads Distract From The Content
Ads take away focus from a podcast because they have to stop and talk about another brand. People might even turn off the podcast episode before the ad. The host will lose them because of the ad. By not having ads, the full focus of the listening is on the host's content.
Provides More Value
When there are ads on a podcast that takes away from a listener's opportunity to hear more of the actual content. If a host has a 60-minute podcast with 5 minutes of ads. The listener only gets 55 minutes of value.
How To Use Podcast
Build A Personal Brand
If a host wants to become known in an industry, they can use podcasting to build a personal brand. The host can interview experts in the field. Discuss their experiences learning about the industry. Even discuss industry news and give their take on the news. Any of these formats can build a host's personal brand and provide value to listeners.
Extension Of Product
If a host has a product, already they can use the podcast as content marketing to promote their product. They can interview customers that have benefited from the product. Discussing the industry will lead to listeners knowing a host is knowledgeable. They will want to use the host's product as a result.
Giving information about a host's industry helps keep the host top of mind. When a listener needs the host's product, it will be top of mind because they listen to the podcast.
Less To Manage
When a podcast is being monetized, a host has to manage the relationship with the advertiser. Managing the relationship takes time away from creating content. The quality of the content may suffer because of the time needed to send numbers or data to the advertiser. That is time that a host can use to create content.
Statistics Do Not Matter
When a host is creating a podcast as a lead magnet, the subscriber count is not a factor. The reason is the podcast is to get the host's name or business known to people in their industry. Those same people may not need the host's product right away. The ROI is not reflected in the number of subscribers or downloads.
An advertiser worries about the content of a host's podcast. If an advertiser does not like anything, they might pull their sponsorship. There is no need to worry about language when a host has no one to answer to.
Give Podcast An Edge
The same companies advertise on podcasts. Most likely, listeners hear the same ads on different podcasts. Some listeners might have grown tired of hearing about a subscription for underwear. If a host does not have ads, this is a change of pace for listeners. This can be an advantage because listeners might enjoy not hearing ads on a podcast.
Lose A Potential Income Source
Ads on a podcast is a chance to make money. Using a podcast as a lead magnet is a situation where a host will not be making money from the podcast. But a host may make money from selling a product. Someone may offer a job to a host because they like the podcast's material.
Tracking Listener Conversions
A listener may not use a host's product as soon as they hear the podcast. They might not use the link a host puts in the show notes. Then a host might have difficulty knowing if listeners are using their product. A host can track podcast conversions by sending out a survey to their users. Asking if they listen to the podcast. Then, comparing the listener numbers with the survey.
Alternative: Listeners Pay
The listeners' pay model is the next best alternative to using a podcast as a lead magnet. While a host might have to find time to create extra content for those listeners that pay. Creating content is bonding with listeners, making it a good alternative to ads. Paying listeners are giving host money because they like the content as is. They will not want to make changes. Current listeners do not care about getting new subscribers. Then there is nothing to report to them in terms of data. A host will gain an edge with the listeners' pay model. They will be able to use the listener's money to improve the podcast in various elements. The listeners that donate will become more interested in the podcast. The reason is they are financially invested, creating an emotional attachment towards the podcast.
Comedians use podcasts as lead magnets for their comedy. They may develop material on a podcast or give a preview of the current material. They promote their shows on their podcast for their podcast audience to go to their shows.
Starting a podcast to use as a lead magnet is an excellent opportunity to grow a personal brand. Allowing a host to let their ideas out, become known in their industry, give them a voice, or to grow their business. Not every podcast needs to have an ad.
This post is an excerpt from the Open Podcast Community book. The book is available for purchase here.