Have you tried podcasting? Maybe you should…
As an independently published author, I’m always looking for ways to increase my exposure and step up my marketing efforts. However, like many of us “indies”, I have learned that certain strategies work better than others. I’m not certain why this is, and why it seems to be different for each of us as authors, but one thing I have learned in my three years as a published author is that podcast interviews seem to provide me the most bang for the buck, so to speak.
If you’ve never done a podcast interview, or have yet to completely explore this avenue as a marketing option, I’d recommend giving it a try. But what can spending time working this angle of the social media globosphere do for you as an author? In some cases, it can help tremendously.
Podcast interviews are a great addition to your marketing strategy because in today’s world, podcasts are becoming more and more popular. People are always on the go. They spend more time in transit than ever before, and most will listen to audio broadcasts during at least part of that time. They’re connected as they move around so it’s is a great source of entertainment while on the road.
Being interviewed by a podcaster, particularly one with a large subscriber base gives you instant credibility. The podcaster agreed to bring you on the show, so listeners will view you as an expert, or at the very least, someone who will provide valuable information.
Podcasters need content so they are happy to bring on guests for free. You don’t have to pay out of pocket to be on the show, and there’s nothing better than free exposure if you are trying to build your brand.
Podcast interviews can yield immediate benefits. In my experience, I’ve seen a noticeable bump in traffic to my website, an increase in clicks on my Bitly links, have seen a jump in downloads of my free eBooks, and have realized increased sales as soon as the podcast has gone live or shortly thereafter. Essentially, doing a podcast interview gains me new followers on social media, and new readers.
Become a Podcast Guest
So how do you go about becoming a guest on a podcast? It may seem like a daunting task at first, but it’s actually easier than you might think. First, you will need to search for podcasts that cater to your genre. You can do this by going to some of the big content providers such as iTunes, Stitcher, GooglePlay, and TuneIn, and perform keyword searches to find shows that are good fits.
Also, point your browser to RadioGuestList.com and sign up for the weekly subscriber email. Podcasters looking for guests will advertise their shows here.
Use social media to find podcasters. In my experience, Twitter seems to be the site where podcasters do heavy advertising, so do some keyword searches there and see who you might want to follow and then contact.
Finally, don’t leave out your local connections. When pounding the pavement, attending author book fairs, readings, launch events, or author socials, make some connections. There may be a handful of people in your local community that do podcasts who might be interested in booking you as a guest.
Now that you’ve found a few podcasts that fit your brand, it’s time to make contact. First and foremost, if the podcaster has provided instructions on his/her website regarding booking inquiries, follow those instructions completely. Many podcasters receive hundreds of guest requests per week so if you follow the contact instructions as directed, there’s a better chance of the host reviewing your inquiry.
If you come across a podcaster that doesn’t have specific contact information on a website, or doesn’t have a website at all, I’d recommend emailing the podcaster at the address provided through his/her social media channels. I have used this strategy myself at times and it does work. You’re emailing the host directly and if your pitch is a good one, you will likely receive a message back indicating interest.
And speaking of “the pitch,” it’s important to remember to be clear and concise. Podcasters may have to sift through hundreds of emails a week, so if you come right to the point and describe how you can provide value to the show, you have given yourself the best chance at receiving a direct reply. Also be certain to provide your email address where you can be reached, your website address, and your social media links at the bottom of your email. The easier you make it for a podcaster to do the research on you and your brand, the better chance you will be booked as a guest on the show.
In summation, podcast interviews are a great tool to add to your marketing strategy, but bookings won’t come out of thin air. Even if you already have an impressive social media presence, you’ll need to do some work to lock down interviews. Research social media weekly, keep looking for podcasts that cater to your brand, be proactive by contacting the shows that fit what you do, follow up in a timely manner, and most of all, provide value. Give the podcaster a reason to want to have you on the show. That means you’ll need to keep your social media information current, make some free content available such as a sample of your work, and provide links back to previous interviews or guest blog posts you have done.
Finally, think outside the box. You may be able to go outside your primary genre to provide value in a different capacity. For example, maybe you write in the crime fiction genre, but also have experience researching true crime cases. Why not also pitch your brand to true crime podcasters?
As the number of podcasts continues to increase, the number of opportunities for indie authors to become show guest also increases. That allows us to reach bigger audiences and in turn, generates new followers and new readers.
Vince Guaglione is a guy who asks lots of questions, not only of himself, but of his society and the world around him. Although he claims he’s found no real answers, that hasn’t stopped him in his quest to gain perspective on a little something we call life. The core of Vince’s work lives in the personal transformation genre, but he also writes short fiction and dark poetry. His Narratives collection of works can best be described as his unique brand of personal journaling focusing on humanism, consciousness and thought, philosophy, and self-discovery.
This content was originally published here.