While everyone seems to be getting excited about podcast players you can embed into Facebook – personally, I’m not sure they’re the next big thing. When I think about how and why people use Facebook, “listening to lengthy audio files” doesn’t really seem to fit.
That said, there is one kind of embedded media content that I think is wildly under-utilised and underrated when it comes to marketing podcasts – and that’s video. We know that Facebook is rewarding pages with extra reach and push notifications for using their native video functions (primarily, Facebook Live – unless people go to their privacy settings and opt out, they’ll always get a head’s up that you’re recording); and video is doing incredibly well on other social platforms too.
So: here’s a few ideas on how you can use video to promote your podcast.
Give people a look into your production process
It’s hard to find any clear stats or evidence on this, but from what I’ve observed: people love to know what went into a piece of media. That video where David Copperfield explains how he flew? Four million views. The outtakes from Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” video have been viewed twelve million times – not that great when compared to views of the video itself, but still nothing to be sneezed at.
If people can see the person behind the mic, if you make the effort to show them the rabbit inside your hat – that’s going to help them connect with you as a real human being. It’ll show them that you’re not just a voice in their earbuds, but a person who put time and effort into creating this podcast and really cares about producing and sharing great content. And that’s ultimately going to help you when you try and sell them something (they’ll trust you, because they’ll feel like they know you).
Whether you’re on Snapchat, Periscope, Beme, Instagram Stories or Facebook Live – sharing little snippets of what you’re doing and thinking is a great way to continue the conversation between episodes. Instagram Stories and Facebook Live are particularly great in terms of getting people’s attention – Facebook will send people a push notification to let them know that you’re live, and Instagram Stories has your face right at the top of the home feed.
Talk about ideas you have for episodes, feedback you got, thoughts you’re having post-recording or upload – it’s a great way to get people to become an active part of your wider conversation. And as with the point above – the real, raw and unfiltered nature of “going live” is (most likely) only going to help your brand.
Get on YouTube
I’ll just leave this here. But seriously – there are some cool things happening on that platform, and it can be a good way to make some latent income. Some people record themselves as they record their ep, some people just have an image, some have even made cartoons to go with the ep. See where your imagination takes you.
Use video in your Facebook Ads
Rather than just promoting a link to your episode – try recording a short video introducing yourself, what you’re talking about, and why you care about it. It doesn’t have to be more than thirty seconds to a minute, but it’s a great way to give people a feel for your voice and personality – which will give them an idea of whether they want to “hang out” with you at length. Make sure you include your ep or iTunes URL in the copy as well as in the website URL box when you’re setting up your ad – if you don’t, people have to watch the entire video to get your link (and you don’t want to lose people who do want to hear more, but don’t want to watch the whole video first).
And once you’ve started sharing videos with your audience – you can use those video views to create custom audiences, and do some really cool things with your ad targeting (check out this episode of Perpetual Traffic with Ezra Firestone if that’s piqued your interest).
If you haven’t forayed into the world of Facebook ads yet, I highly recommend downloading Dotti Media’s guide to getting started.
Give people a preview
Rather than embedding a podcast player into your feed – try a sneak peek video. Just something short, a little sound bite or outtake with a link to the entire episode, whether you just add a static image to the audio, make a slideshow of stock images, or have an actual recording of yourself. As I said above, video has great organic reach and it’s a way to get people to listen to a snippet of your podcast that’s coherent with the Facebook experience they know and love.
Do you use video to promote your podcast? How have you been using it? If you’d like to get really stuck into video but need some help or a confidence boost, check out what Lisa Corduff (one of our Rad Grads and all time favourite people) has to say. She’s built a successful online business on the back of creating and sharing video content with her audience (including videos talking about and promoting her podcast episodes), and her course Keeping Video Real will teach you how to do the same.