If you already have a content strategy in place for your SaaS business, you are no stranger to the fundamental principles that guide it.
Ultimately, your objective is to reach new audiences and promote and market your intangible product that has the power to alleviate their pain points. There are different mediums, channels, and distribution methods to accomplish this.
However, many content marketing strategies stick to the basics, almost exclusively focusing on the written content and cultivating an email list. Podcasts are another (and increasingly popular) layer of content that you can provide to your audience.
What is a podcast?
Defined as a series of audio content pieces, podcasts are focused on a particular theme or topic, such as startups or cooking, and released at a set frequency in the form of episodes. Podcasts vary in length and format.
While some unfold as interviews, others provide an entire narrative experience. When you create a podcast for your SaaS business, you do not put other forms of content marketing on the backburner. Instead, your podcast will play well with others.
Not everyone has the time or inclination to read blogs and newsletters or check out YouTube videos. And some would not want to follow you on social media. To engage such people, podcasting can be an ideal option.
The rise and rise of podcasts
In this digital age, it is hard to ignore podcasts. In 2021 alone, there were 850,000 active podcasts, streaming a total of 48 million episodes. The global interest in podcasting has skyrocketed in the past 2-3 years.
Last year witnessed a 20+% growth in active podcasts compared to 2020. And yes, a lot has to do with the pandemic and extended lockdowns that confined the entire world to their homes. In fact, the most avid podcast fans listen to at least seven podcasts a week.
So, what makes it such a fantastic marketing tool? The following section dives deep into that.
Benefits of podcasting for your SaaS business
From a marketing point of view, podcasting delivers results. It helps you reach new audiences, sell your offerings in an easier-to-produce format (videos require a massive investment upfront), and build your brand beyond being just a business. However, there is more:
1. Attract new leads
One of the biggest advantages of podcasting is that you can market your products to your listeners in an authentic, less-salesy way. You can help them understand what your SaaS business does and how your offerings can help them minimize their pain points.
2. Offer convenience
Reading blogs requires you to stop everything else and focus. However, you can listen to podcasts on the go, keeping your eyes and hands-free. You could be driving to work or out for a walk. It is a lot easier to consume audio content. Listening to podcasts is convenient.
3. Boost your credibility
A podcast is not about just one person or a few people talking. It is about establishing yourself as an expert in your industry. Leverage the platform to speak authoritatively on subjects relevant to your product, SaaS community, and your target audience.
As cheesy as it sounds, you have the opportunity to become “internet famous” with a podcast. People who listen to your podcast and then check out your SaaS product are more likely to purchase from you because they “know” you.
4. Create a strong community
It is challenging to build trust in your audience. People are cynical these days, and having only a shiny website for your SaaS business would not cut it. You have to find other avenues to create a buzz about your product. You can create a strong community through podcasts.
People who have purchased from you still want to hear from you, and those who have not can benefit from the entertaining or informative content you offer. There will also be people who are not directly your potential customers but merely part of your industry.
The unscripted human voice is a powerful connector. Having all kinds of people tuning in to your podcast will help you build a strong community over time.
5. Build relations with subject matter experts and industry influencers
Your podcast can also open doors for you to create strategic partnerships with thought leaders. People you probably could not have reached otherwise are more likely to do a podcast interview, instantly elevating your brand credibility. Plus, you will expand your listening audience to people who also follow those influencers.
How to get started with your podcast strategy
The power of podcasting lies in its ability to provide free content that educates your target audience and builds brand awareness. You can offer a lot of value to your listeners in addition to showing them how to use your SaaS products.
Research predicts there will be 144 million monthly podcast listeners in the US alone by 2025. It proves that podcasting is growing, and it is essential to capture the attention of your target audience in this increasingly saturated market.
Using the right strategy will better equip you to strengthen the bond with your audience. Here are a few tips to help you get started with your podcast strategy:
1. Pick topics relevant to your audience
To create a podcast that your audience will love, knowing who will listen to the show is crucial. Use the buyer research you did when starting your SaaS businesses. An ideal customer profile should identify their job titles, age, and personal and professional motivations. It will help you tailor your podcast content accordingly.
2. Design your podcast branding
Next, you need to create a brand that your audience can relate to. Design a podcast cover that communicates what your SaaS business does. You could take the help of an in-house designer or use a free design tool like Canva or Visme.
Your podcast cover is the first thing your listeners will see, so design it carefully to make a lasting impression. Consider the interests of your intended audience when creating the cover art. Its colors, typography, and graphics should resonate with them.
Growth marketing agency, Advance B2B, makes prominent use of the color purple and uses the same font type for creating their podcast’s logo.
3. Brainstorm topics for your podcast episodes
Identify ideas that have a higher chance of attracting and engaging listeners and supplementing your SaaS business growth. You do not want to waste time and resources discussing something completely off-brand for you.
For instance, if your SaaS product is an AI-powered content generator, exploring the mechanics of crypto and its political ramifications on your podcast will not be helpful. In fact, that will leave your podcast listeners confused and would not result in increased leads.
Here are a few prompts you can get started with:
- What do people get wrong about your industry in general?
- What unique perspective can you provide about your SaaS product?
- Are there any specific subject matter experts or influencers you would like to interview?
Start an idea bank — maintain a Google Doc or use Airtable, Asana, or Trello. You could also use Notion or Evernote to dump clipped articles and jot down points and questions. Everything from your podcast topics, messaging, and prompts to the brand voice must be in sync.
Also, there are different podcast formats, and you must pick one that suits your topics and audience. Either start a solo show where you read or narrate from a script or a collaborative program to discuss topics in-depth with industry leaders. Whichever format you pick should be followed in most episodes of the show, as listeners prefer consistency.
4. Optimize your podcast web page for search engines
To ensure your podcast is found by as many people as possible, optimize it for search engines like Google and Yahoo! and podcast discovery platforms such as Spotify and Apple Podcasts.
With the help of key optimization techniques, you can significantly improve the searchability of your podcast. Start with researching relevant keywords. Use SEO tools like SEMrush, Moz, and Google Analytics to identify keywords people search to find information related to your offering.
Once you identify the keywords, use them in your podcast title, transcript, show notes, and metadata. It improves the searchability of your podcast by making it easier for Google to understand what your episodes are about.
Besides, remember to include your podcast transcript on every episode web page. It is crucial from your SaaS SEO standpoint as a 30-minute episode can easily reach over 6,000 words.
5. Select the right podcast hosting platform
There are several platforms where you can distribute your podcast, and each of them has varying functionalities. Since not everything on offer might match your needs, you must carefully pick the right podcast platform for your SaaS business.
Any business of today thrives on making data-driven decisions. Therefore, look at the global listener location and trends before selecting a platform. You can also take advantage of your chosen platform’s built-in analytics for optimizing your content.
To boost its reach, the platform must also automatically distribute your show on the RSS feeds of popular podcast players such as Apple Podcast, Spotify, and Google Podcast.
6. Promote your podcast on social media
Having a consistent and unified voice across all social media platforms will help engage your target audience. It will increase your brand awareness, and running a well-thought promotional strategy will attract those listeners who are more likely to buy from you.
Social media is beneficial for a SaaS business as 86% of consumers buy IT products after analyzing their reviews on the channels. Therefore, the best way to reach your audience is to be present where they are most likely to be.
For instance, those interested in purchasing B2B software solutions are most likely to be found on LinkedIn or Twitter instead of Facebook or Pinterest. Do your research. Here are a few things your social media strategy must focus on:
- Solve your ICP’s problems
One of the best ways to build trust and establish yourself as an expert in your niche is by posting quick value-added tips for your audience. It shows them that you know what they need and can help them save time, effort, and money.
- Get feedback from your audience
Audience engagement plays a crucial role in your social media success. You can engage your listeners by asking them for their opinions or topic suggestions. Using tools like LinkedIn polls keeps the effort low on the audience’s part while attracting participation.
- Post consistently and in conjunction with podcast releases
To promote your podcast on social media, you can set up new accounts dedicated to the show or use existing company profiles. If setting up multiple pages for this purpose, make sure all new accounts link to the original account.
It ensures you reach out to more potential listeners and even appear organically on search engines. Recording your podcast can be pretty time-consuming and daunting.
Therefore, you must pick a manageable schedule for the amount of work required. Commit to your plan and create content in advance to maintain consistency. Time your social posts to match the topics being discussed in your podcast.
- Publish smartly
Pin your episode tweet or Facebook post that features the iTunes URL. Identify quotes from the podcast and convert them into social media posts. Or take audio snippets from your podcast and design them into a post with an attractive image.
7. Use paid advertising
If you have the budget, run Paid per click (PPC) ads to expand your podcast’s reach. You can target an audience with specific interests and tap into their purchasing power by showcasing your paid posts on social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn.
You can also run Google Ads, which could be standard text ads, Dynamic Search Ads, and Video Ads. PPC ads allow you to pay based on clicks and impressions.
If done right, PPC marketing can help boost conversions by targeting ideal podcast listeners and compelling them to check out your podcast.
8. Leverage your network
Networking is an essential part of growing your podcast. By networking with other hosts or people interested in the same topics, you build awareness for your podcast.
Partnering with other podcasters is excellent because both parties will benefit from the exposure and new connections. Conduct thorough research to find like-minded podcasters to collaborate with.
Attend conferences or events related to your SaaS domain to connect with industry experts and thought leaders. You can invite them as guests to your show and boost the credibility of your brand. Make sure to have a good mix of experts.
Over to you
Podcasts are a great way to keep your audience engaged, and on track with the content you produce. Remember that they have limited time, so be concise and provide as much value as possible within time limits.
Starting a podcast may sound daunting, but it can be a great way to connect with more potential customers and grow your SaaS business.
Pratik Dholakiya is the Founder of Growfusely, a SaaS content marketing agency specializing in content and data-driven SEO.