The pandemic has started an explosion of new podcasts in the creative industry – specifically among creative entrepreneurs.
Since podcasting is audio – rather than visual – medium, it can be trickier to track traffic (say that three times fast!) and see how listens equate to inquiries which equate to booked clients.
Before we evaluate the ROI (Return On Investment) of a podcast, we need to define the R – what are you hoping that return actually turns into? Are you looking to grow your social media followings, book more clients, collaborate with podcasts that have a larger audience than your own?
Usually, your goals will be achievable via choosing one of two types of podcasts.
The first is topic-specific, the second is audience-specific.
Let’s help you determine which route to go down;
Topic-specific podcasts allow you to tap into various categories in which you talk about the business of what you do. For example, if you offer graphic design services you could engage in podcasts about entrepreneurship, art, marketing, web design etc. This allows you to broaden your audience because you’re not only talking to the target market of aspiring graphic designers but to other artists and those interested in marketing.
Audience specific podcasts appeal to the ideal client. Essentially the podcast will speak to that ideal client. So, again, if you’re a graphic designer, speak to creative agencies and production companies. This time around, rather than hoping to appeal to a percentage of a podcast’s audience, you can be fairly certain that everyone listening falls into your target market.
Now, let’s talk about how to effectively track traffic:
Set up a new page on your website
It’s as simple as that. Create a new page on your site (which should be in the bios of all your socials) and title it the name of your podcast. Any traffic that goes to a simple link like yourwebsite.com/podcastname can be linked directly to a specific episode.
Buy a unique domain for your podcast URL
This costs a little more but the great thing is that it makes your link more memorable to listeners rather than a xyzabc type of link. You can even go a step further and purchase vanity URLs that are unique to each episode.
Join Google Analytics up to your podcast
If you don’t already have Google Analytics, it’s a great all-around dashboard to monitor your traffic and individual page analytics. When it comes to podcasting, you will need to set conversion goals in Google Analytics to track the traffic and inquiries that result from a specific URL. This URL could be a Spotify link or, even better, a separate page on your website where users subscribe to a form in order to receive notifications. Since the form is podcast-specific you’ll be able to determine how many actual inquiries you’ve captured from each episode and thus track traffic easier.
Another perk of choosing this method is setting up Autoresponder emails. If you set up an automatic email to send to each listener after they have signed up to the form on your podcast webpage, you can easily track how many new listeners you have via your inbox. You can then measure open and click rates for each email, as well as conversion rates for the final email.
So, are podcasts really worth it? Well, there’s only one way to find out and that’s to try and test – the proof is in the pudding, as they say, so get cooking! The beauty of podcasts is that they can have a wide variety of benefits. They may attract traffic, put your name on the market, amplify your message and get the word out to new audiences and if they fail, well, they’re a test on which medium makes you the most ROI. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, eh?
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