Podcasts Cross to Mainstream: 5 Reasons Why Event Marketers Need Them

podcastsPost authored by Donna Kastner, Founder of Retirepreneur

There’s big news for event marketers from Edison Research in their latest Infinite Dial study: Podcasts have now achieved 50 percent reach.

“This is a watershed moment for podcasting – a true milestone,” noted Tom Webster, Senior Vice President at Edison Research. “With over half of Americans 12+ saying that they have ever listened to a podcast, the medium has firmly crossed into mainstream.”

As event marketing experts seek out richer digital channels to connect and convince their audiences to attend their events, podcasts offer a smooth and seamless way to reach busy professionals on the go.

Better yet, they tee up tremendous opportunities to extend the event value runway.


5 Reasons Why Podcasting is a Smart Move for Event Marketers

  1. Accessing podcasts is faster, easier, and device agnostic. Not too long ago, accessing podcasts was a bit of a chore, especially for Android smart device users.Listeners had to navigate a series of sometimes quirky steps to listen to these programs.Evidently, there’s been big advances on the podcast user experience (UX).While in prior years, iTunes had this UX thing mastered, Spotify and Pandora are two very capable cross-platform apps that make access easy for all, regardless of the device.
  2. Major improvements have also been made on listener data capture and analysis. On the flip side, gaining traction with audiences was tricky and once you did, there was still too much guesswork involved to gauge podcast consumption.Today, marketers have a richer set of dashboard tools to understand who’s listening and how long they’re lingering.These deeper insights are also very helpful in acquiring sponsors.
  3. Podcasts featuring event speakers can help boost attendance and engagement. Within the powerful 8 Phases of a Successful Event design framework, there are three pre-event phases—Announcing, Attracting and Anticipating—where podcasting can give event marketers a decided edge.Publishing a series of podcast interviews with keynote speakers in the weeks leading up to your event may convince the “fence sitters” to say YES.It will also help build anticipation and excitement about your event, right up to the moment guests arrive.
  4. Podcast listenership continues to rise for leadership audiences. With Bluetooth systems now standard in many late model cars, executives are now enjoying this audio on-demand discovery opportunity during their commute to work.While some events have struggled to earn (and sustain) C-Suite attendance, podcasts are now helping to close that gap.Keep in mind, when the leaders attend, others follow.
  5. The podcast subscription model is ripe for fostering year-round engagement. With live events serving as a pinnacle moment for learning and networking with colleagues, once attendees return to the office, they’re often consumed with other things and the gems they picked up at your event go to the side burner.Podcasts offer richer and more meaningful ways to refresh and extend content delivered at your live event.The key is to release new programs at a consistent pace. Best to start gradually with a monthly podcast.

    Then, study the data and dial up frequency accordingly.


The Game Has Changed

As for me, I’m an early podcast adopter – first as a listener in 2007, then as a producer and host in 2016.

One thing I know for certain: the more I study the data (both public and private dashboards) and connect the dots, the better the outcomes.

If you’re thinking about pitching this podcast idea to leadership, be sure to give the Infinite Dial 2019 report a closer look.

It will arm you with valuable data points to win their support.

PS: While you’re scanning this report, look at what’s happening with Smart Speakers. Nearly 25 percent of Americans own at least one. That’s the next digital frontier we’ll need to study and conquer.

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