September 30th is International Podcast Day. A day designed to raise awareness for podcasts and their creators. Podcasts have grown in popularity as technology has improved, and listeners discovered entertaining, and educational content in an amazingly flexible, on-demand format. Podcasts are as diverse as their creators–you can find podcasts on almost any subject. Passionate about guinea pigs? There is a show for that! Since most podcasters are creating content fueled by passion, and a dedication to their audience. It’s time to give back to these hardworking content creators that keep us company while we work, commute, clean the house, suffer from insomnia, or struggle through a workout. International Podcast Day seems like the most appropriate time to inspire us to give something back in exchange for all the hours of free entertainment and education that we too easily take for granted.
Share the episode you are listening to on your social media channels, and let your audience know why you enjoy the show. Be sure to tag the show in your post, and use any appropriate show hashtags. Don’t just do this once, but whenever you listen and enjoy an episode. Consider it a small tax to pay for the pleasure of listening.
Follow and engage with your favorite podcasts on social media. Twitter is a popular social media platform for podcasters, and an easy place to join a conversation with the producers as well as other fans. No chatter? Get the conversation started! If nothing else, share a comment on how much you enjoy their show. Hearing positive feedback from listeners is like a magical elixir that can give a podcaster the boost they need to keep producing their shows when they are exhausted, discouraged, and questioning their life’s choices.
If you purchase a product or service that you heard about on a podcast, let that business know that you became a customer because of a podcast. Many podcasts depend on sponsors to fund the production of their show. When their sponsors get solid evidence that their show’s audience responds to their ads, it helps solidify the sponsor’s commitment to the show, and increase the likelihood that your favorite show will stick around for a long time.
Financially contribute to a show’s crowdfunding campaign. If your favorite podcast has a crowdfunding option, they are looking for a friendly partnership with their audience. By supporting the show monetarily, you are helping to ensure the longevity of the show by helping the creators cover their expenses, and fund improvements to the show. Crowdfunding campaigns will offer several levels of support with various rewards associated with each support level–often levels start at just a few dollars a month. It’s not a huge financial burden for most, but a dedicated audience each contributing a little adds up to a successful campaign for the podcast.
Write a review! Podcasters depend on reviews to influence their rankings, and increase the chances of their discoverability in podcast apps. Reviews also provide social proof to potential listeners who have a vast choice of shows to choose from. Reviews do not need to be lengthy, and can be done in just a few minutes.
Contact the show! Podcasts are an intimate medium. Show hosts will often let you know how to contact them to provide feedback, ask questions, or even contribute something. Hearing directly from listeners is mega rewarding for podcasters. You can do this using the show’s email or private message on an active social media channel.
Super Fan Status Move : Donate your time or expertise. If you are a super fan, consider what you may be able to do to help your favorite show. Are you a graphic designer that can create a better logo or fan art for the show? Are you a social media whiz that can amp up their online presence? A video guru who can put a promo video together? A musician who can write a funky fresh show into? Reach out and let them know why you want to help, and see what happens! You may end up working with the people you most admire.
Sharing is caring. Don’t keep your favorite podcasts a dirty little secret. Tell your friends, co-workers, and family! Podcasts have a discoverability problem. Podcast players rank the top 100 podcasts in a category, and you really have to dig to find podcasts not in those lists. We trust our friends, and if a friend recommends a podcast to us, we are most likely going to give it a listen. Word of mouth endorsements are organic and effective marketing moves.
Using your phone, take a screenshot of the show your are listening to, and share it to your Instagram and Facebook Stories. Be sure to tag the show so they see your story. Here is how to take a screenshot on an iphone and android phones.
Super Fan Status Move : Organize a listening party for your favorite show. Think of it like a book club, but for a podcast. In fact, there are existing listening clubs like the Podcast Brunch Club that organize monthly meetings in chapters around the world to discuss a pre-curated playlist. So, if you think this idea is weird, it is, but in the coolest way possible. Invite friends you think will enjoy the show, and ask them to experience an episode in a social environment. If anyone is new to podcasts, you can teach them how to subscribe and listen, and afterwards everyone can discuss the episode. Be sure to set aside a few minutes so that the group can review the show. Let the show hosts know that you are doing this in advance. They may want to Skype in, or you can even turn all are part of your listening party into a Facebook Live event. You can keep the Facebook Live private to only specifically invited friends to keep it an invite-only event. Hopefully, the podcast hosts can join the party!