As podcasts increase in popularity, listeners
have more choices. So while you might be ahead
of the competition, you should still be thinking
about ways that you can make your podcast unique
and stand out from similarly themed podcasts.
1. Plan Accordingly.
When making the decision and commitment to podcast,
it is important to think beyond the moment. Before
starting, think about the time the podcast production
will take. How will podcasting fit into a current
schedule? How frequently will you podcast? How
will hosting of podcasting files be handled? If
the podcast is excessively popular, how will fees
be generated to pay for hosting? What is the common
theme that threads all podcasts in a series together?
Think not only of a broad theme, but also various
episodic themes that fit into a broader theme.
What will make you distinct or different from
others podcasting about similar content? By approaching
podcasting with a little forethought, you will
set yourself up for success.
2. Original Content.
Just like any media company, in order to attract
and maintain an audience, you will need to provide
original content, or at the very least, present
the content in an original way. Think about a
long term strategy that will help your show distinguish
itself from others.
3. Get to The Point.
Jibber Jabber is fun, but not to the point of
excluding quality content. Listeners in today's
society don't have time for incessant rambling.
If you have a point to make, make it in a reasonable
amount of time. Minimize the fluff and focus on
4. Do Your Homework.
Not only is faulty information a liability, but
incorrect information will hurt a broadcasters
long term reputation--just like a journalist's
credibility is paramount to their success. It
is important that the information that you provide
is accurate. While being a shock jock might have
short-term appeal to listeners, most will remain
loyal to a source that has properly vetted all
of their information.
The best content is consistent content. Podcasts
should contain compelling content with episodic
titles, that are united in common broad theme.
The format of the podcast should be consistent,
persistent and stable. Each show should be about
the same length and contain a common format.
6. Timeless Content.
Content that is timeless has a long shelf life.
Broadcasters will benefit more from content that
is timeless and can be effectively archived. "How
to" content that solves problems will often have
long term appeal and listening life. When choosing
topics, consider the long term effects of a specific
piece and determine whether it will fit with the
broad theme of the show.
7. Articulate Words.
The quality of the audio content does matter.
Think of the last time you heard a good song,
on a poorly tuned radio station; regardless of
how much you like the song, most of us would move
the dial along. Listeners will not want to strain
to hear a podcast; pay particular attention to
articulation. Another important item worth noting
is that Podcasts have global reach and often global
appeal. Minimizing an accent will often extend
the podcast's listening audience.
8. Optimize Podcasts.
Podcast titles should be optimized to incorporate
data that relates to the contents of the podcast.
Think about the themes when selecting a podcast
channel title and description. Use critical and
related keywords and phrases that relate to a
common theme. The text in the feed is important
for both feed optimization and for attracting
listeners. Many of the podcast directories index
the contents of podcasts using the information
contained in the channel and item's, titles and
descriptions. Use these text fields to effectively
capture the interest of listeners.
9. Listener Expectations.
Invariably listeners will come to expect certain
things from broadcasters. In order to maintain
a listening audience, it is important that broadcasts
are consistent and satisfy the expectations of
listeners. While it is okay to experiment, straying
to far from what a listener expects will often
Many new listeners will want to review previous
broadcasts. Consider ways to make older shows
available through archives. Archives allow broadcasters
another channel to benefit from the content. Maintaining
archives of older podcasts might bring in new
listeners and satisfy listeners who just can't
get enough. Podcasts require effort, but by following
basic guidelines and thinking things through,
podcasts can be instrumental in increasing web
traffic and communications within a community.
About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll
software for creating, editing, publishing RSS
feeds and podcasts. In addition Sharon manages
marketing for NotePage http://www.notepage.net
a wireless text messaging software company.