I try out new podcasts all the time. It’s something you do when you produce several of your own, to see if you’re missing a trick, to check out what competitors might be doing, to hear how different industries might be using them. I don’t often become a frequent listener, and perhaps one thing, more than anything, will definitely put me off new and established shows: talking about your products within the opening moments of your podcast.
But, I recently listened to the first episode of a new podcast from a prominent geek brand and that is what they did. After saying “hi” they were straight in there with the damn sales pitch. I didn’t stick around to find out how the rest of the episode went afterwards, because I couldn’t handle being talked at for over two minutes about their new product.
I could tell that this particular brand had started their podcast based on things they’d heard about content marketing (they’d been trying out different formats as part of their content mix to reach fans running up to the first episode): after all, why have other shows talking about you when you can do it for yourself, etc. But they’d obviously missed the part about what content marketing isn’t: “me, me, me”. Like Doug Kessler said on a recent Q&A takeover of TMF&A’s Twitter:
Applying what Doug said to what I experienced: that podcast should have been, for me as a potential customer, starting with information that hadn’t already been trotted out as part of a national ad campaign. I wanted something that I couldn’t get anywhere else: insights on their creations and the wider field they operate in as a company.
If you need to sling in an advertising or sponsor message, don’t lead your podcast with it: stick it when you’ve already delivered insights that I can’t get elsewhere, so that I know it’s worth staying tuned in. If you make your podcast sound like it’s just a platform to advertise, then I’m not going to stick around for over 45 minutes worth of what seems like an advertisement.