With our increasing reliance on mobile phones, coupled with the busy lifestyles we lead, we often prefer to consume media that will take up the least concentration and the least effort. What’s better than going about your regular housework while also being able to listen to your favorite author?
This is why podcasting has become so popular among everyone. In fact, according to Google Trends, during the past five years, podcasts have seen a considerable peak in public interest while blogs have seen somewhat of a decline. Each of these media plays a vital role in reaching new audiences, therefore investing time and energy in them will give you long-term results.
While podcasting may sound like a daunting task—especially for an author who is more familiar with the page—it is, in fact, not so difficult once you get the hang of it.
Why Authors Should Use Podcasts
01. Helps Build a Lasting Connection with Your Fanbase
Podcasting is a direct means of communicating with your readers. You speak to them in your own words and captivate them with your personality. This kind of connection would impact your audience deeply, and last for a longer time.
02. Expands Your Readership
Podcasts are famous among different kinds of people with different likes and dislikes precisely because they can listen to them whenever and wherever they want to. When listeners from across the world stumble across your podcast and are intrigued by your content, the chances of them reading your books are high. This will help you gain newer audiences and expand the readership of your books.
03. Relatively Cheap
Creating podcasts is fairly inexpensive when compared to other forms of advertising. You can easily start your own podcast with free software, a smartphone, headphones and some of the most basic setups—and then upgrade to a better quality when you have found your footing.
Podcast Advertising Tips
01. Invite Notable Guest Speakers
To spice things up a little, invite notable personalities to be guest speakers on your podcast. Give them a free copy of your book and let them speak to the audience about what they liked best about your book. These endorsements from guest speakers can go a long way in securing readers, for it gives you credibility as an author and builds trust.
To make sure your listeners tune in to your next episode, let them know who’s going to be the guest speaker in advance—or you can give them hints as to their identity and create curiosity among your audience.
02. Release Timely and Relevant Episodes
Have a clear idea of what draws your readers towards your books, and create your podcast content accordingly. Provide unique, engaging, and timely content to your listeners. When they are invested in your podcast, they will be compelled to hit the “subscribe” button and be notified whenever you release a new episode—every podcaster’s ultimate goal.
The more engaging and valuable your episodes are for the listener, the more likely they will want to get hold of your book.
03. Read Extracts From Your Book
Avoid making your podcast for the sole purpose of advertising your book. While gaining new readers is your ultimate goal, you need to pay more attention to what your audience wants—and no listener is going to tune it to listen to you talk exclusively about your own book in every episode.
Then how do you advertise your book? Read excerpts from your novel. Pick interesting passages that correspond to the content of your current episode and drive interest towards your book. This is similar to publishing free samples in your blog for your readers.
04. Advertise Your Podcast
While the purpose of your podcast is to advertise your book, you cannot do it if your podcast gets lost among thousands of others. Therefore, you need to advertise your podcast to make sure it reaches the targeted audience.
Submit your podcast to a “podcatcher”, an app that plays podcasts, like Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, TuneIn, etc. This will expose you to new audiences across different apps and countries. Prompt your listeners to subscribe to your channel, and to share their favorite podcasts with their friends and family. Pay attention to podcast analytics: find out when people listen to your episodes often, and try to release new episodes accordingly.
You can also join a community of other book podcasters and do occasional collaborations. You can even have them feature in your podcast, and vice versa.
Sharika Hafeez is a nerd, and she’s proud of it. Growing up, she fell in love with books and writing, and is currently following her undergraduate degree (for some mysterious reasons) in Physics. She likes procrastinating by watching the stars with a steaming cup of tea, composing poetry in her head.