How To Pitch, Book, And Be The Perfect Podcast Guest

How To Pitch, Book, And Be The Perfect Podcast Guest
Audience
How To Pitch, Book, And Be The Perfect Podcast Guest
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Episode March 05, 2020 00:39:38

Hosted By

Matt Medeiros Stuart Barefoot

Show Notes

Pitching, booking, and being the perfect podcast guest takes persistence and practice. Appearing on different shows is a tried and true method to growing a following, but there's a lot that goes into the process. This week on Audience, we sat down with Kai Davis who is an expert on how to get the most out of podcast guest opportunities.

 

Davis been in the industry for over a decade. Through appearing and booking podcast guests, he helps podcasters, business owners, authors, and more achieve their marketing objectives. He's the authority on how to standout from the sea of pitch emails, why your pitches are being ignored, and how to help listeners become customers.

 

In this episode, Craig interviews this professional podcast guest and learns a lot along the way. Listen to the full interview above then read on for our favorite Kai-approved tips.

 

 

What's The Biggest Pain Point Of Finding Podcast Guests?

 

Frustration.

 

Davis' clients primarily come to him understanding the general pitching process but aren't receiving any bookings. Or worse, no response at all. The time it takes to research, write an email, and find the host's contact information is a commitment. And when that effort doesn't bear any fruit, it is easy toss this strategy aside.

 

But there's a better mindset to approaching podcast guests. Instead of a sprint, it is a marathon. Allocate a set amount of resources you can put towards booking guest appearances. Break it down by categories to keep yourself on track. Categories could include:

 

  • Researching podcasts and finding the right contact information
  • Refining and improving the pitch email
  • Following up with potential podcast guest bookings
  • Fielding guest requests for your own show

 

 

What's The Most Common Mistake When Pitching Podcast Guests?

 

The primary way to get in touch with a host is via email. No matter if you're pitching yourself or asking someone to appear on your podcast, the request typically follows a pitch template. This pitch is where most podcasters make the biggest mistakes.

 

To fix poorly worded pitches and standout from the crowd, Davis recommends approaching the process with more empathy. So what does empathy in pitch emails look like? It boils down to two main components.

 

 

 

 

 

The pitch angle

 

Being a guest requires providing value to both the host of the show and their audience. How and why you can provide that value should be the angle of the pitch. Follow these three steps to get started:

 

  • Research the show's back catalog to find topics or themes that are referenced often. This likely means the host enjoys talking about that subject matter and the audience likes hearing about it.
  • Analyze how you can improve upon that topic and add more to the conversation. Are you an authority in a specific area or have experience overcoming a similar challenge? Figure out where you voice fits.
  • Focus the pitch on the value their audience gains and why you're the only person to deliver that value. It's also important to relate how what you have to say relates to the overall theme of the podcast and aligns with the host's vision.

 

All together, the perfect pitch has three legs. It's composed of the thing you want to talk about, the overall theme of the podcast, and the interests, passions, or troubles of the audience. The legs need to be aligned, otherwise the guest opportunity won't be successful. It doesn't make sense for a guest to promote their new vegan cookbook on a podcast about barbecue

 

For example, you want to talk about your new vegan cookbook and found a podcast all about barbecue. While on the surface, it doesn't appear there would be much overlap between each other's audiences but you've done the research. The show's host and audience are interested in grilling techniques and unique sauce combinations. You've noticed the host throws in ingredient substitution ideas throughout an episode to help listeners recreate the recipes with what's already in their pantries.

 

Instead of angling the pitch around your favorite vegan dishes to directly promote the cookbook, you pitch the host on talking about popular meat substitutions and how to grill them to perfection. The audience wants doable recipes and techniques, the podcast's theme is centered on barbecuing a range of foods, and you're the authority on vegan eating. All three legs are aligned and the podcast guest spot is booked.

 

 

Invite the no and keep it brief

 

You may be reading "invite the no" and think we've lost it, but stay with us. Inviting the no means giving the recipient an out if you're not the right podcast guest for them. While it may sound counter-intuitive, it actually helps the pitch stand out.

 

When Davis pitches podcast hosts, he always includes this one-liner: "If this isn't a fit, let me know and I'll hold off on following up. But if it is, please reply with [details he needs to secure the booking] and we can continue chatting."

 

This line does invite recipients to respond with "this doesn't sound like a fit". But on the upside, this is a response many pitches don't even receive. With a "no" comes an opportunity to improve future pitches and reduce some frustration that comes along with never hearing back. Another bonus is not wasting a follow-up email on someone who has no intention of speaking further. You'll avoid clogging their inbox with repetitive requests and can pop back up after refining your pitch with a better angle.

 

The last key piece of advice to pitching with empathy is respecting the host's time. A pitch email is meant to get to the point and isn't the time to craft multiple paragraphs to slowly request a podcast guest spot. Instead, keep the email under 400 words and use paragraph breaks or bullet points to break up the text. Guide the reader to the most important points of the pitch and drive your value home.

 

 

How Do You Consistently Pitch Podcast Guests?

 

Remember Kai's first piece of advice: shift your mentality to thinking about podcast guest pitching as a marathon, not a sprint. From there, create a more sustainable interview system using the right tools.

 

The key to a consistent pitch process is delegating as much of the process as possible to a tool. Trying to keep track of everything in your head is a recipe for disaster. He recommends Pipedrive, a customer relationships management tool that can manage contacts and track their journey through the pitching process. A quick review of the dashboard is quicker and easier than clicking through hundreds of old email threads to find where you left the conversation.

 

Booking podcast guest interviews requires lots of back and forth so finding the right CRM tool can be critical to your success.

 

pipeline crm

 

 

How To Use Podcast Guest Interviews To Achieve Your Business Goals

 

Being a podcast guest is an opportunity to further a marketing or business objective. Davis argues this being a guest is a brand awareness play and not a strategy that will drive thousands of new customers in the short run. But how do you encourage the podcast's audience to take the next step with your brand? The right catcher's mitt.

 

Kai says it's your job as the podcast guest to catch the audience and provide the path to interact with your business. The catcher's mitt should be a landing page specifically set up for the interview episode. Contextually mention the interview, include show notes, and organically weave in what action you want the audience to take when they land on that page. No matter your business objective, from email acquisition, to purchasing your new book, to attending a live show, this set up will work.

 

Once the landing page is set up, don't forget to mention the URL in your sign-off. Kai recommends something like, "The best thing to do after listening to this episode is to go to [URL], and [action you want the audience to take, like sign up for my newsletter]." When the audience goes to that URL, the action you asked them to do is front and center.

 

Set up the landing page before sitting down for the interview. This way, you'll have the URL secured and can include it in your call-to-action.

 

 

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

 

 

 

 
View Full Transcript

Episode Transcript

Speaker 1 00:08 Hello there and welcome to the audience podcast. I'm your host Craig Hewitt from Costos. In the last few episodes we've talked a lot about this idea of cross-pollinating you and your brand and your ideas with other people's shows and their audiences and today I have a special guest on Kai Davis to talk about being guests on other podcasts, so pitching yourself and getting on other podcasts and similar or related niches to your own as a way to spread the word about you, your podcast, your brand, your message to other people's audiences. I think this idea of leveraging other people's audiences and getting exposure to people outside of your normal sphere is a really powerful way to increase the reach of your podcast and your brand. And Kai has some really great tactical strategies that we can all follow to do this in a more effective and consistent way. Speaker 1 01:00 But before we get into this episode with Kai, I want to share with you a really cool giveaway that we're running with our friends at podcast insights squad cast and headliners. Probably three of my favorite resources in the podcasting space. Along with our partners there. We're giving away about $3,000 in podcast awesomeness everywhere from a subscriptions to headliner and squad cast to a really great course that the folks at podcast insights have put together for kind of podcasters, beginners and experienced veterans. Head on over to <inaudible> dot com slash giveaway to enter for your chance to win as well. Again, it's about $3,000 of podcasting awesomeness tools that you'll use for your show every week and we're giving it away for free at already at <inaudible> dot com slash giveaway and with that, let's dive into my conversation with Kai Davis. Um, so, so Kai, can you explain to folks who don't know you, like what, what you do in the podcasting world? Speaker 2 02:01 Absolutely. So my name is guy Davis. I help a podcast I work with, get more listeners for their podcast. And I also help my clients who might be podcast hosts, might be business owners, might be authors or entrepreneurs. I help them get onto podcasts as a guest. So I've been working with podcasts since working professionally as part of my business in 2014 but I started playing around with podcasts with a friend, just recording one in my office back in 2011 or 2012 so I've loved the industry for almost a decade now. Holy crap. And uh, it's been great just to grow along with it and help clients figure out, Hey, how do I achieve these marketing objectives or achieve these business objectives with podcasting? Speaker 1 02:42 I think I, you know, a lot of businesses are getting into podcasting. We like to use the term brand because I think certainly it doesn't have to be businesses. It can be religious organizations, sports teams, uh, you know, gamers, we have a lot of gamers on the <inaudible> platform. And so we'd like try to generalize, generalize it a bit to brands or organizations cause it can be anybody. Um, but from like from what you have seen when, when people try to get on podcasts as guests and do it badly, what does that look like from, from your perspective, both as like a, a host of a successful podcast and like working with your clients and the things that have maybe not been successful from their end? Speaker 2 03:26 Really, really good question. I think the one, the first thing that comes to mind is a frustrating experience for everybody involved. If you know, you were the owner of a podcast and you're getting guest pitches but they aren't written that well or the person isn't following up or it doesn't really have a pitch just as I want to be on your podcast, end of message, it's frustrating for you as a host. You could have dozens of them in your inbox and you flip over to like the brand or the individual who's saying, Hey, I want to get on podcasts to uh, share my message or grow my business or just connect with people if you are pitching but don't really have a framework for it or know how to follow up or what to say it to is frustrating your spending this time, finding these podcasts, writing these emails, sending your emails out with hope and then nothing or an occasional no. So frustration is the real thing that comes to mind when you're trying to get onto podcast as a guest, but it just isn't going well. Speaker 1 04:16 Yeah, I can relate. I mean we've done a, uh, a bit of outreach for this show for me, getting on other podcasts to, to talk about kind of what we're up to with this show and with our brand and, uh, and when it fails, it is frustrating. I think anytime you kind of reach out to somebody in a, uh, you know, sales or propositioning kind of perspective and it doesn't work out, you're like ologies I'm the fact getting Dodge ball again. Here we go. Speaker 2 04:40 And yeah, specifically about like reaching out and not hearing back. It's so hard even when you don't get a no in my experience with outreach, when I send that email and people write back and you're like, no, not a fit. At least I know you close the loop. But if I've just sent out those emails and I don't hear anything back, it's just, it's hard. Since you don't know whether you're pitching wrong or you're pitching the wrong podcasts or your email client is broken, Speaker 1 05:02 what does pitching right mean do you think? Speaker 2 05:04 I think it means being aware of the topics that are relevant for both the audience you want to reach and the podcast you want to guest on. If I wanted to say, come on to this wonderful show and I pitched you saying, Hey Craig, I've got a great topic about my new, a vegan cooking book. It'd be like, yeah, okay. How is that relevant to the people listening to the show? How is this relevant to the people? Listen to the back episodes in a year. So pitching right really means approaching the process of guesting on shows with empathy for both the host and the audience. If you don't understand what that audience is looking for, what challenges they want to overcome, what information they're searching for, your pitch just isn't going to hit the Mark. So with any podcast or either one, I coordinate for myself or a client, or when I advise on, I always try to start the process from understanding who we're looking to reach, understanding who those listeners are and understanding what information those listeners are searching for, what you know, solutions to common problems, what challenges they're experiencing or what quick fixes they're looking for to help them move forward. Speaker 1 06:08 We get a a metric ton of these pitches every day, as I'm sure anybody who runs any kind of successful podcast gets a, and most of them are terrible. Uh, like you said, they don't have empathy. And I, I've never, I've never thought about empathy as the right word for this, but it really is spot on because, um, most of them come across as really selfish. And I think that would be like the opposite of empathy, empathetic, um, is that's all about them as the person who wants to get on your podcast to advance their objective. Uh, and not anything about, Hey, I can help you and your audience and serve the purpose that you have with your show. Um, but, but kinda like tactfully when you're, when you're reaching out to other podcasts to get on as a guest, what does that look like? What is empathy and and outreach look like? Speaker 2 07:00 Anything in outreach for me always looks like a combination of a couple of different tactics. So one tactic is in my outreach, I'm always trying to invite the now and this is a concept I brought across from sales outreach, especially to large organizations. And it looks like in practice, just saying something like, Hey, if this isn't a fit, no worries, let me know if it is great reply with dah, dah, dah, dah, dah and we'll move it forward. But I'm explicitly saying, if this does not work for you or does not work for your audience, tell me. And you know, I won't follow up after that because obviously it's not a fit. When we include something small like that, it just makes it so much easier for the person receiving that first outreach email or the fifth followup email to say, thanks so much. It's not a fit. Speaker 2 07:42 And now they don't have sort of an emotional barrier that they need to get over to clearly communicate, Hey, it won't work out here. So one of the first parts is inviting the know. Another part that comes to mind is being respectful of the host's time. So writing a short email, maybe 300 or 400 words max instead of a multi paragraph, 2000 word email with every possible citation it looks like investigating the website and the podcast or the host to see, okay, do they have other guests on this show? What topics to guests usually talk about? What are common questions that come up in the last six or so episodes from the description or the title or the transcript or the audio itself. So really putting yourself in both the shoes of that host. Okay. They have a podcast shape like this. What would help them move it forward or putting yourself in the shoes of that audience. Okay. Listeners seem to care about these topics. Which topics do I have that are relevant that I'd like to share here or that would make sense to share here Speaker 1 08:40 from a lick, from a process perspective, when you're working with your clients or for yourself to to go get on podcasts to to you know, talk about what you, which know a lot about and help other kind of audiences out. How do you approach doing this? And like creating a system so that it's not a flash in the pan. And by that I mean you don't get on three episodes in the next, you know, six weeks or something like that and then it's nine months before you do it again. Cause I think that's something that, well I run into and that's very selfish maybe of me saying like how do I make this more sustainable? But maybe I think other people do too to say like guest outreaching and guest appearances and other podcasts is a longterm strategy I want to use to, to get my message out and, and kind of cross pollinate what I'm doing with other people's audiences. But it is hard work and it's a hard day to stay organized and stick with it. I have you, have you run into any good ways to make this easier to stick with and longterm? Speaker 2 09:41 Yeah, two things immediately come to mind. And, uh, the first one is using the right tools and that might be using something like a CRM just to manage who the contacts are and what stage of the pipeline they're in or when you need to send that next email. One of the major challenges I've always experienced, especially when I got started with podcasting, was trying to keep track of all of this myself in my head and it quickly gets to be way too much to uh, keep track of. So the first part of making it sustainable, delegate as much of it to a tool as you can. I love pipe drive a pipe, drive.com as a CRM. It's established, it's a great piece of software and it works really well for just saying, okay, let me make this slow and sustainable and make sure I'm remembering who I need to follow up with. Speaker 2 10:26 The second part is mentally thinking of it as a marathon and not a sprint. And that often requires answering some hard questions like, okay, month to month, how much time and I will, am I willing to put into this? Maybe I only have a free two or three hours per month and I need to split that up into both the outreach, the followup and the recording. That means you might only get one episode out a month, which is absolutely fine. If it's realistic, you might say, Hey, guesting on podcasts, this is the thing that's going to make the boat rise, so I'm going to make sure I have four to six hours per week to invest into this and that'll let you consistently follow up consistently do outreach and make sure that you're appearing on shows regularly. I too have run into that sort of peak and Valley effect of a guessing on podcasts. Speaker 2 11:10 Guest on sixth over here, guest on zero for a few months and it can be a bit frustrating or feel frictiony, Hey, I got started and then life happened and I wasn't able to guest anymore for a bit, but honestly leaning into that is a good approach. There are effects from being consistent and appearing on a podcast say every week or two or three per month. But if all you're able to budget for time wise is one podcast per month and then a little bit of a break doing it that way we'll still provide benefits compared to throwing it overboard and saying, Hey, you know what? I can't do it at the level I aspire to where the frequency I aspire to better not get started with this at all. Speaker 1 11:48 Kind of like flipping, flipping over to the other side of the experience. So, so you, you outreach somebody in a, you know, well-crafted email, organize things and you're getting ready to get on the show. Um, being a good guest is, is a bit of an art. I'm finding, uh, we have guests on this show that come in totally unprepared. We have guests come in that are super prepared and actually give us a document about how to interview them, which I think is a really interesting concept. Um, when you are preparing your clients to guest on other podcasts, what are some of the things that you'd really try to make sure that you do to make them successful or set them up for success? Speaker 2 12:30 One is identifying the topics we'll be pitching ahead of time and writing out a short, short briefing doc document or topic list just to say, okay, we're in alignment. These are the four things are the six things we're going to offer to these hosts and these are topics that you do, your guests know about. And so there's a confidence issue there. One is doing a bit of, I'll call it coaching, but that's not the perfect term for it, but basically recording one or two test mock podcast episodes of somebody. I'll just put on a persona and be like, hello, welcome to the Kai Davis podcast and walk through a 15 or a 20 minute show to see how do they respond on air, how do they respond if we fake a technical difficulty, how do we overcome bits that they don't feel confident about? So practicing with the guest is a great way just to help build up that confidence in their own skills and make sure that, you know, if something happens and Oh Whoa, the connection dropped halfway through the interview, the guests, my client doesn't feel too flustered or frustrated by that. It's part of doing podcasting. Sometimes things don't work out. Okay. Speaker 1 13:29 One of the things we talk about is like, I use the term leverage in the in the nicest possible way, but like leveraging other people's audiences by guest appearing on their podcast. Um, and so or, or, or vice versa really is you have exposure to someone else's world either when you're a guest on their podcast or when they come on as a guest to your show. And I think that only really makes a difference or an impact when you get good at promoting those guest appearances. Other you as a guest on someone else's podcast or you having someone else on your podcast that then goes and promotes it to their audience. What kind of like when you're working with your clients or you're doing it yourself, what do you try to expect from the promotional aspect of of guesting or like being a guest on other people's podcast specifically? I guess Speaker 2 14:24 I try to set the expectation with clients not low, but I try to be conservative with the expectations where I will help them understand that we are not going to see immediate short term gains from this podcast appearance. It won't be your record the episode on Tuesday it ships on Friday. By Monday the venture capitalists are calling us because they want to buy out. The company does not work that way. Think of a podcast guest experience as primarily a brand play. You are creating brand awareness. You are introducing people to what you do, who you are and how you could help them. You're pointing them towards your brand itself, like a call to action saying, Hey, check this out over [email protected] and you are building relationships with people who are in the niche or industry you're interested in the podcast host. Sometimes I will position a podcast guest experience to a a client as it's not a large audience. Speaker 2 15:16 It might not be completely in your niche, but the host of this podcast has written, you know, four books on this topic. We should invite them onto our podcast of step one of this longterm relationship building is your appearing on their podcast. But I very much like to frame it as primarily a brand play. You may get email subscribers from a podcast guest experience, you may get more followers and more engagement on social. You might get people saying, Hey, I loved hearing your beautiful voice. Tell me about how I could solve these problems. Please take my money and help me solve these problems. But those aren't as consistent or regular as the brand awareness components of it. So again, I very much like to set that expectation around this is going to be a brand play first and foremost and over time as we get a number of podcasts in place. As we refine our pitches, as we figure out what calls to action and make sense and people engage with, we'll start to see more secondary benefits like leads or email subscribers or social engagement or other things. Speaker 1 16:13 Are there things that your clients do or that you, you help your clients do to help increase the chance of success in that respect? Like if they're going to be on a podcast, are there things that you do to help optimize the chance for like business impact or organizational impacts and more followers, more leads, more people checking out your stuff? Is there, is there anything that you've seen work particularly well? Like when you're a guest on the podcast, if you do a thing, then it has a positive impact. Speaker 2 16:47 What I really love to do is I call it a catcher's Mitt, which isn't the best term for it, but it'll make sense in a moment. I'll set up a specific landing page with my client and this might be a landing page specific to a podcast. Hey, we are on audience. So go to you know, uh, <inaudible> dot com slash audience and check out this freebie or this lead magnet or this, whatever it is, and include mention of that both contextually in the episode like I just did there and in the show notes. And the reason I like that is it provides a clear path forward for listeners to say, Oh, I enjoy listening to this and that's the next step. I'll go ahead and take that step. And they could take that immediately by entering it in their phone or web browser or by checking the show notes and saying, Ooh, they have some links to their stuff. Speaker 2 17:35 Let me check it out there. And by making that clear path forward from there, our listener on the episode two, they are now taking this action, makes it much more likely that they will take that action. So with all of my clients, I'll go through initial a planning process to identify what we want to set up as their catchers. Mate. Hey, they might have a sample chapter of a book or a, a interview they did with someone else or some other cool thing. So we'll set that up. We'll figure out what that a URL is. Maybe it will be a custom branded URL that we buy from a domain registrar and just set up to forward. Or maybe it's a specific page on their site that we'll just set up with a short memorable URL. But either way, providing a clear path forward from listener to somebody taking this action really helps increase the return for that brand. Speaker 2 18:23 Instead of it being more luck based, I hope people will sign up for my email list. We could say the next, the best thing to do once he finished listening to this episode is go to this URL, sign up for my list and you'll immediately get an email from me and that provides some value and helps carry that conversation forward. So in this example, I pointed to the landing page and sign up for the email list, but we could very much substitute anything else in. Follow me on this social network. Uh, go over here and submit your information through this lead form and see if I could help you solve this problem. We just want to make a clear path forward to catch, here's where the metaphor comes in. All that audience or those listeners that are coming towards us. So the better catchers mate, we have the better path forward for people. The more business return we'll see from an individual or a collection of podcast, uh, appearances. Speaker 1 19:11 I think podcasters kind of by their very nature seem to be really outgoing people. We talk a lot, right? Uh, I think I'll record six podcast episodes this week. Um, but a lot of us are introverts by nature and I think maybe that's kind of like part of podcasting is like, I'm in my office on a computer and talking to you over the internet. Uh, and so I think that like, part of people's hesitation with outreach is, like you said, it's a sales process really. You're selling yourself and your brand and your ideas to someone else. And that's scary to a lot of people. Um, like I have a background in sales so it doesn't scare me that much, but, but I'm also like an introvert and so it does scare me some. Um, with, with your clients that are introverted or haven't done a lot of sales, what's the, what's the, the talk track like with them to say like, you know, you got to get over yourself. This is a good thing. This is going to help us, you know, achieve our objectives. Um, if, if by their very nature they kind of like to just live in their box and not venture out too much. Speaker 2 20:17 It's a really, really good question. And what immediately comes to mind is most of the clients I work with for a done for you podcast store are pretty much coming to me either because I already know this process and could do it for them in my sleep sometimes. But also they might not want to face the chance of rejection by, you know, sending a dozen outreach emails and getting a dozen no's back. And so they'll work with me to say, Hey Kai, you handle that part of it. Knock on my box and let me know when we're ready to record an episode and I'll come out a record that episode with the host and then you'll take care of following up with them, figuring out the promotion and handling all those details. So in a sense, the service I'll offer a done for you podcast tours is one of the best options for those people who have more introverted leanings and feelings. And I'm very much one of them, but it's a nice way to allow them to experience the benefit of guesting on podcasts without facing the hurdles and challenges to get booked on those podcasts themselves. Speaker 1 21:15 With Alek with your clients, what kind of success rates do, I'm sure it varies wildly based on, uh, industry and niche and things like that. But what kind of, uh, like success rates do you typically see? I'll say generally across the board, Speaker 2 21:31 uh, inter in terms of replies from podcast, we're looking to start over. Speaker 1 21:36 Well, I like your book, booking success rates or whatever. Yeah, Speaker 2 21:39 booking success rates. I'd say it's between, depends on the niche, depends on the industry and depends on the client's pitch, but roughly in squinting at it, I'd say around 30% of the podcasts we contact will say, yes, let's book an episode sound like a great fit and with clients that are just starting out or we have a bit of a weaker pitch, maybe it's one out of 10 podcasts we'll say, Hey we're in, we'd love to have this person on over time those numbers definitely do increase and we get more placements out of an outreach attempt because the client and I understand the pitch or the topic or the niche better or sometimes I've started out with clients in like month one we've contacted folks and we get zero responses back and I very much take that in stride and say the most likely cause here is our pitches aren't in line with what they're looking for. And so I'll do a combination of working with my client and investigating the podcast we're reaching out to to better understand the pains and problems and challenges listeners are experiencing and craft a new pitches with my client. And then we'll go back and say, Hey, you know, following up again, we've got some new pitches. Here's one that I think would be excellent for you and your audience and see if we could restart a conversation there, but maybe 10% or 30% turn into placements and that number will grow over time. Speaker 3 22:53 <inaudible> Speaker 1 22:55 as Kai mentioned, he's been in the podcasting game for a years now and as a veteran of the industry, I wanted to ask him what things that he has seen recently that that he believes will be changing the industry as we go forward. I think these kinds of thought experiments are helpful for us to do now to prepare our shows for success in the future. Speaker 3 23:16 <inaudible> Speaker 2 23:20 it's been fascinating to see both parts of the industry or I guess all three legs of the industry grow over the last couple of years. As more podcast hosting platforms are coming into play, as more podcasts are coming into play and as more people are looking to get on podcasts as a guest, there's an interesting balance between, uh, how, how resilient podcast hosts are when it comes to receding pitch after pitch pitch from people. And as the industry grows, it definitely has become more challenging to break through that noise and connect with a podcast host. So it's interesting to see that change over time. Small tactical things like a, I can't remember the name of the platform, but one of the recent, maybe its anchor, uh, platforms is now putting a dummy email address in on the podcast pages, which has made it a little more challenging to figure out how to get in touch with these podcast hosts through email. Speaker 2 24:15 It might nudge it over to more of a social outreach at first it might involve using some other tools, but it's been interesting to see the shape of the landscape, uh, change. Probably the biggest change I can think of over the last few years is podcasting becoming less of a what the heck is that a reaction from people? If I jump back mentally to like 2016 and I described my business as I help people get on podcast as a guest, people would just be like, what? Why? Why would somebody want to be on a podcast? But now since people see like, Oh this is like radio but there are fewer barriers and I could do it from my office, people are like, hell yeah, I want to be on a podcast or I want to start my own podcast. So it's interesting just to see the industry change as it becomes more popular and learn what helps cut through that noise and what doesn't. Speaker 2 25:01 I thought going into 2019 and 2020 that this growth would make it exceptionally harder to get my clients on podcasts as guests. But what I discovered is there are more people pitching, but there are people pitching poorly or incorrectly or roughly and not following up. And so just showing up with a couple of decent emails, an understanding of their audience and the topics of their shows and empathy for them. Dealing with all these people, emailing them really makes it easier to stand out. I pitched one show recently and they're like, eh, not a fit, but Hey, I liked your email and this was a great conversation. And so it's positive to see responses like that come in where the host might acknowledge, Hey, this is not a fit, but you're doing a good job at starting these conversations and following up in a polite manner. Speaker 2 25:48 Thank you for that. One thing I'm enjoying with the more competitive aspect is it's definitely making shows be a little more niche and focus. So it's, I'm seeing fewer, this is the business podcast and more, yo, we're going to help you who own a bakery, get more people buying your cakes by interviewing these people who also own bakeries. And I just love as a listener and as somebody who works in the industry, more niche focuses just saying like, Hey, we're not going to be the podcast for everybody who have business. We're going to be the podcast for this tiny, small sliver that turns out to be tens of thousands of people and help them solve these problems or learn more about this. And I think that's one of the best ways to stand out as somebody either starting a podcast in 2020 or working on growing a podcast in 2020. See if you could shrink that audience, focus from everyone to just a small slices liver, stand out for that audience and over time in the coming years, work on expanding out. But if you could own a specific niche shore, become the trusted advisor in a specific small niche, it will pay out in dividends for you and your podcast. His listeners say, Oh my gosh, this is the podcast meant, especially for us. Thank you. Let's share it. Let's tell other people about it. Speaker 1 26:57 I find that, um, talking about podcasting is, uh, I hear a lot of the same stuff. You know, like I hear a lot of the same advice and maybe it's because I've been doing this for five years and, and maybe it's because it's just like this is, this is what it is and it gets down to like actually implementing these strategies and ideas. Um, do you feel like the, the knowledge you have about podcasting has evolved recently or do you feel like we're at this point of saying like, okay, this is a well understood process and problem and industry and we just have to go execute to get my customers on, on as guests or I need to create a better podcast by doing XYZ that's, that's more creative or I don't know. How do you feel about that? Curious to hear your opinion because you've been doing this a long time. Kind of like I have. Speaker 2 27:53 As the industry becomes a little more established or competitive, there are, it's more clear what steps need to be taken to grow a show or get on podcasts or just start a podcast, which is good in a sense. A lot of the 100 level things have been solved for now. There's clear guides or parameters or coaches or professionals out there to help with it. What I find a lot of learning opportunities in is when we start moving up to like the 200 to 300 the 400 level of this knowledge and starting to say, okay, all it takes is an email account and I can start pitching these shows. How do I stand out in this crowded marketplace? How do I have my podcast handout when more and more people, I think 23 or 30% of America now listens to podcasts a about the same as percent that use Twitter, and so the landscape definitely changes as it becomes more of a popular media vehicle and I'm finding a lot of joy in just figuring out how to refine that craft even further or say, okay, outreach is the standard play here to build these relationships. Speaker 2 28:55 How can I make my outreach more innovative, more attention, getting more empathetic, more in line with what a host is looking for, and so it's really in seeing those ways to take the 100 level scales and find the 200 or the 400 level application of it. That feels like the fun edge of podcasting right now. Speaker 1 29:15 Yeah, I would agree with that. I would agree. I haven't thought of it in those terms, but I would agree that the simple problems have been solved. Hosting an RSS feeds and Spotify and all this stuff is not the problem anymore. It's, it's how to, how to create really interesting content, how to connect with your audience better. I think that's still the one thing that a lot of us struggle with is like to create an interesting podcast is pretty straight forward. Uh, and then to grow and engage with your audiences. Still the, maybe it's the thing with like the the biggest potential. It's that blue ocean, right? It's like I have a thousand listeners. I could have 100,000 listeners easily and so how do I get from there to there? I'm not going to have a hundred times improvement in the quality of my show where my audio will sound that much better or something. I think, I think the reach and the potential is in is in reaches in exposure. Speaker 2 30:07 Completely agreed. My mind has been starting to turn towards a communities associated with podcasts and it really starts to feel like one of the best growth potentials for podcasts is in creating a, maybe a private community, maybe a semi-public community with a small barrier to get in, but maybe it's a Facebook group. Maybe it's a forum on discourse. Maybe it's a Slack or a discord channel, but just some way for people who raise their hand and say, yo, I like what you're doing. Is there a spot for people who are like me to hang out? And just having an opportunity to directly engage with those people through another medium, learn more about what those representative listeners are looking for or the questions they have and then seeing if there are organic ways to say, Hey, thanks so much for listening, for being part of this community. Speaker 2 30:52 We just released this new episode we're super excited about. Would you be okay with telling a friend or three about it and finding a natural symbiotic way to both provide value to these listeners in a community and have those listeners really become, as much as I dislike the term brand evangelists or ambassadors of the podcast to say, yo, you know, I'm a freelancer and I love this freelance podcast. Hey, you're a freelancer to check this out. I think it'll help your business. So that's an area that I feel is both fun and sort of untapped so far. Speaker 1 31:22 Yeah, we had a Jack reciter. I don't know if you listened to the dark net diaries podcast, we had an N on a couple episodes ago and he was telling the story of how one of his fans actually created a, I think a discord channel or discourse group or whatever, uh, for his podcast. So it was like really organic, like second level organic, like one of his fans created this and now that's where I think a lot of his two way engagement goes. He's really active on social media, but that's one to one a lot of times. Uh, and but this is like a true forum where his audience created it for his show and now this is the place where he goes to collect kind of feedback in mass about the podcast and connect with people in between episodes. That's really cool. Yeah, that is super cool. Speaker 1 32:08 We have a pretty active Facebook group and yeah, it's great. It's where a lot of our, our feedback comes, uh, both like from a product perspective, um, and for the podcast people hearing, you know, Hey, I listened to this episode, I want to hear more about this. Or they come up and you know, they raise their hand and say, I have this problem. And so that lets us know, Hey, this is a, this is something that we're not covering on our blog. This would make good content for a podcast episode. Maybe this is the kind of thing that can only be talked about in a podcast episode where we shouldn't be writing about certain topics. Kind of like this. I think this is a soft topic that is better covered in the audio medium than, than in written form. Speaker 2 32:46 Here's a question for you. Uh, how have you seen podcasts start to interact with email or email marketing starting up a list? Uh, are you seeing it as more of a commonplace these days or still a bit more uncommon for people to get in? Speaker 1 32:59 Yeah, I think it has to do with how integrated the podcast is with the rest of the marketing efforts that someone is doing with their brand. We have a, we have a fair amount of, uh, customers who start a podcast and it's the only thing they do. And I think for them it's a podcast only fly. So podcast only. Maybe they have a Facebook page or a Twitter account or something like that. Um, but when you look at the brands that we work with, uh, email is still amazingly here in 2020 is King. Uh, when it comes to engagement and the objective really of a lot like the first touch objective of a lot of brands is, Hey, go subscribe to our email us to get notified about every podcast episode or opt in for this thing or take our email course. Um, I'm amazed that that is still the big thing. Speaker 1 33:55 I'm not amazed cause I know it works really well and it's still a really effective way to reach people and communicate and engage. Um, I'm, I'm amazed that we don't have a better thing, but as what our society, um, email is still King. Not everyone is on Slack. Not everybody likes Facebook. Uh, email is ubiquitous and that, yeah, I guess that's the thing I would say is people that just start a podcast, talk about their favorite sports team or their favorite board game typically tend to just say, Hey, this is, um, this is where I'm communicating is on the podcast. Um, people that integrate a podcast with their, their greater brand use email heavily. And I would say the other thing that we absolutely see is that carries over into how people use our platform. Um, people be, so we have a, uh, a WordPress integration where you can connect your cast as account to your WordPress site through our seriously simple podcasting plugin. Speaker 1 34:52 Almost a hundred percent of the time people that have, I'll say a strong brand and like a multichannel brand, have a WordPress site and use our WordPress integration. Uh, people who have, I'll say, I'll say like a standalone podcast, um, don't have a site for their podcast and just use their, you know, the, the page that we create for their podcast. Um, that's definitely a pattern I see. And that goes, I mean that goes to say like your podcast needs a home and your podcasts home is not Apple podcasts. It's you know my show.com and if you don't have that you need to spend the $10 a year to buy that domain and either point it to your Castillo's podcast pages or you know, spin up WordPress site. If you think that your show is going to get bigger than just a podcast and they can grow into a brand or if it's already a part of a brand, then you're already integrating your podcast into the all their stuff you do in other content you have online. Speaker 2 35:51 I love that now. I think that's a beautiful approach to it. I have a lot of love for email. It's what got me into marketing in the first place and when it comes to podcasts, even for like the more amateur nonprofessional starting your first or your second show and you're talking about your four favorite sport or board game or similar, I like email there. Even if it's just, Hey, you could get an update when you have a new episode. Maybe an occasional lag cutting room floor or a bonus episode, but even beyond that, starting to build that audience up strikes me as a great way to set up your next podcast for success. If you know you have your board game podcast and you get 50 or a hundred people on the list who say, Hey, I like getting these updates, there might come a point in time when that first podcast just has lived its life. You no longer play those games or your cohost is moving onto something else and having that email list makes it so much easier to say, okay, Hey, we're starting a new show and if you want to hear about it, Hey, I'll send out updates here. If you don't want to, you could tap that unsubscribe link, but it gives you a nice amount of resiliency to be able to launch that next project with an already in place audience versus starting from square one. Speaker 1 36:55 Yeah, I think it goes back a bit to the two Oh one or three Oh one level stuff you talked about before that like creating an email list and landing page and an opt in offer and all these things are outside of the podcasting realm that, that we know of from the digital marketing world. But, but I think people that don't come from that world, from an offline business or from just a, you know, non-business perspective aren't familiar with that stuff. So I think, yeah, I think there's some education that we can do specific to podcasting around. Yeah. If you want to up your engagement, email is still the best way. Here's how you, you set up an email campaign, you know, ConvertKit or MailChimp or active campaign or whatever it is. What is the page on your site need to look like? What is engagement on email look like? I think those are all specific to podcasts. Those are all things that we should be doing to help our audience. Awesome. Kai for folks who want to learn more about what you do specific to podcasting, uh, and kind of reach out to to chat more, what's the best place to connect? Speaker 2 37:56 Absolutely. I'll rattle off a couple of things and they'll also be in the show notes, so if you want to say Hey or Hey, I loved your conversation with Craig, shoot me an email at <inaudible> dot com if you are interested in how you could do your own podcast tour and get on podcasts. I have a book I wrote called podcast outreach and that's [email protected] and I write a daily letter for freelancers and consultants on how to get more leads for their business at Chi data's dot com all three of those are great spots to add. Get in touch with me. Speaker 1 38:29 Yup. We'll include links to all of those in the show notes for this episode. Kai, thanks so much for coming on. I really appreciate it. Hey, thanks for having me and thank you to everybody listening. It's truly been a pleasure. I hope you enjoyed that conversation with Kai Davis. I thought he brought a lot of really great tactical and practical things for us to implement in our podcasting world about consistently getting ourselves out there to be guests on other people's podcasts. If you have any questions for Kai or want to reach out and get in touch, we've included his contact information as well as a couple of really great resources in the show notes for this episode that can be found at <inaudible> dot com slash podcast if you've been enjoying the show, we would really appreciate sharing it with someone who you think would enjoy it as well. A fellow podcast or someone that you know that might be looking to get into podcasting. And our goal here is really to to share the knowledge that we're all accumulating and making us all better podcasters in the process. So if you're enjoying the show, please share it with someone you know who you think would enjoy it as well. Thanks so much and we'll see you next week.

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