by Lorraine Ball
Two weeks ago I attended She Podcast, a woman’s podcasting conference. The attendees included professional podcasters with huge audiences, niche podcasters with shows like More than a Few Words (MTFW), new podcasters and hobbyists. We talked about growing our audiences, the pros and cons of sponsorships, telling a unique story, and the tools of the podcasting trade.
One of my favorite sessions was conducted by Erica Mandy creator of The NewsWorthy podcast. She shared her story as well as some solid tips on how to treat your podcast like a business. Her model included four C’s which every business owner should pay attention to if they want to have a successful business.
Success starts with the belief that your endeavor is going to work. Let’s face it, if you don’t believe in your idea, no one else will. So even if you are suffering from imposter syndrome on the inside, you need to learn to “fake it till you make it” and project an air of confidence, even if you don’t feel it on the inside.
Once you understand what your primary objective is, you can begin to outline action plans and select the appropriate first steps. If, for example, your primary objective is to generate revenue, then your first priority is growing your audience. Why? The bigger your audience, the more prospective advertisers will be willing to pay for ads. If you jump to the second step without paying attention to the first, you will fail.
The other thing clear goals will do is help you decide what is really important, and that gives you permission to skip certain activities. Most podcasters are fixated on their downloads (how many people listened to a particular episode), but if your primary goal is using it to enhance your credibility as a professional, then perhaps tracking the relationships you build and the podcasts on which you are invited to be a guest are significantly more important than the downloads.
The bottom line – clear goals help you select the right metrics as well as the right actions to drive you to success.
Commitment and Consistency
Most podcasts, and for that matter, most businesses don’t become an overnight success. It takes time and a sustained effort. It is about doing the hard work when no one is looking. So many podcasters, me included, give up just a little too soon.
I did that with MTFW. I had a solid audience but didn’t really understand how it fits into my overall business, so I became more sporadic in the shows and promotions. When I decided to bring it back to the forefront it was a long road back.
Today, we are taking a different approach. First off, this time around it is ẅe. I am still the voice, but I am relying on the entire Roundpeg team to support the program in different ways. We have a process to reach out to potential guests, create featured images and social shares, edit episodes, build individual landing pages, send links to the guests, add a feature in our newsletter, promote on social media, and track results. That is a lot of work, and most of it happens when no one is looking, but it is what has helped us regain our audience.
Chart the Results
The final C is the most important. Yes, you need to believe in yourself, know where you are going, and commit to the process but at the end of the day it is about results. This final C is what tells you that you are heading in the right direction. The data will give you insights into what is working and what isn’t. Then you can adjust your strategy and try again.
And you can’t measure everything so be sure you focus on the numbers which align most closely to your goals.
Bring the 4 C’s into your business.
So if you are a podcaster or a business owner, these four concepts are a simple formula for setting yourself up for success. Need some help getting started? Give us a call we would love to help.
by Lorraine Ball