01 The Business of Podcasting: Why your Ads Don’t Work

Are you surprised when your advertising doesn’t work? 86% of people sky through television commercials. Hard to believe? It’s true. In today’s episode, we discuss why traditional ads don’t work and discover new ways to expand your advertising presence.

Why your Ads aren’t Working

There are so many different places to advertise. When I started my career in advertising the standard advertising outlets were newspaper, television, radio, phone book, and coupon clippers. The number of advertising outlets has increased exponentially. Many business owners don’t feel that their ad campaigns are as effective as they’d once been. There are so many advertising options facing the business owners today. Surveying the landscape of the advertising world I believe that podcasts represent a powerful and emerging path for success in marketing and advertising.

Outbound versus Inbound Marketing

We categorize marketing into two groups: outbound and inbound. Think of outbound advertising as an ad that is shouting at you, “Buy my product, buy my product.” It’s a company that is trying to get you to purchase their product or service so they’ve placed an ad in either a traditional medium or online medium. The business is trying to get your attention so you’ll purchase their product. (I like to think of the out as shout and it helps me remember the difference).

Inbound marketing is content driven. Looking at an example, let’s say you’ve decided you’d like to put a pool in your backyard. What do you do first? You grab your phone, computer or tablet and search, finding the best company to install a pool. This will bring up a list of a bizillion pool articles, review and websites. As you research the process and the companies who work in your area, you’ll get a good sense of which companies might be a good fit. You’ll read reviews, and survey the content they’ve put on the internet. And you’ll make a decision. Chances are, and research has shown that you’re more likely to buy a pool from the company that you’ve found online. Why? Because you went out and actively sought that information. It wasn’t information that was being forced on you, but rather information you found about a product that you wanted to buy. Consumers have been empowered by the web. For this reason outbound advertising is suffering. Recent studies show that:

  • 44% of direct mail is never opened.
  • 86% of people skip through television commercials.
  • 84% of 25 to 34 year olds have clicked out of a website because of an “irrelevant or intrusive ad.”

Businesses need to market and advertise. It’s an important part of running and growing a business. As the face of marketing changes so drastically it’s important to keep up with the changing environment. And that is why I believe that podcast advertising is on the cusp of a tipping point. Podcast advertising is a form of inbound marketing and is approaching the consumer in a very different manner.

Let’s be honest, finding a podcast you love and listening to it isn’t always easy. However, when you find a show you love you listen and listen and listen (confession: I found a new show I loved this weekend and listened to 10 episodes). This podcast I listened to was about backpacking. If that podcast had ads for products related to backpacking you’d better bet I’d be interested. I’d be interested because backpacking gear is important and it’s expensive and you don’t want to buy the wrong stuff. Trust me I’ve done it. So if a host of a backpacking program tells me that this is THE sleeping pad I should get, I’m going to trust her. After all she’s backpacked thousands of miles. When people find podcast they like they listen.

Podcasts are micro targets. When we’re thinking about marketing the number one rule is, preach to your potential customers. You wouldn’t want to sell ski jackets in Florida and my guess is beach towels don’t sell well in Montana in the dead of the winter. People purchase your product or service because they have a need for that product or service. You have to make sure that you’re speaking to the people who are interested in your product. If I’m not a car owner, I’m not going to buy tires. The problem with 80-90% of mass advertising vehicles like TV, radio, newspaper and even many online outlets is that they speak to people who aren’t interested in buying your product. Podcasts on the other hand have the ability to target your audience. I recently sold an advertising campaign on an auto detailing podcast that targets people who own auto detailing companies. The advertiser is selling software for auto detailers. It’s a perfect match and going well. When you target prospects who have been qualified to buy your product or service your ads will work and your return on investment will be the evidence of their success.

Podcasts aren’t cluttered. They’re free from ad overload. Most people don’t mind a couple of ads, but hate a huge group of ads. Advertisements are typically clustered together. Getting prospects to hear your message as an advertiser isn’t just about putting the message out or even putting it out to the right people. Your prospects have to actually hear or see your ad to make that ad effective. In many cases even though a TV station or website is getting great traffic your ad is being overlooked because their are simply too many ads. Podcasts have such low numbers of advertisers that you don’t need to fight the crowd to be recognized.

Podcasts are works of art. Podcasters pour their heart and soles into the creation of their programs. Podcasters love what they do, but almost without exception when talking to a podcasters, they’ll say, I just wish I could make money podcasting. And that’s what I’m here to do. I’m here to connect the podcasters with the advertiser. Advertisers need to advertiser. Podcasters want to suggest great and helpful products and services to their listeners. What I love about podcasters is how much value they place on their listeners. Several times I’ve approached a podcaster and told them about an advertiser interested in advertising on their show. After taking a look at the product or service they have often refused the advertiser because they didn’t believe in the product of service the advertiser represented. Podcasters are looking for products they love that they can promote!

Something New- In the Works

Something New- In the Works

I started listening to podcasts because I love audio. In my early twenties I was at a garage sale and came upon a stack of cassette tape programs. I believe there were five. They were all fully intact and I think I paid $10 for the bunch. The two that I remember well and listened to over and over were Wayne Dyer’s Manifest your Destiny and Earl Nightingale’s Lead the Field. These programs had a significant impact on my life. Earl Nightingale in particular really spoke about how we make choices each day in our lives . Choices to do or not do. The stories that he told about taking responsibility for your life hit me to the core. At that time I was an outside salesperson and I drove around a lot. I listened to those tape programs again and again. I read that your car should be a mobile university and that if you weren’t listening to tapes that would help improve your effectiveness in your career or give you a higher level of motivation you were wasting time. I agreed. From there I consumed hours of audio and written materials. I checked audio books out from the library, I scoured thrift stores and yard sales. When I got my first smart phone I downloaded audio books from the library. And then one day I found podcasts. Audio programs were traditionally really expensive, thus my search to borrow and attain my audio programs second hand. When I realized that all of this audio content was free, my mind was blown and I was hooked.

Fastforward to today and my love the of the podcast industry grows steadily. Recent reports show that podcast listenership in America went from 46 million monthly listeners to 57 million monthly listeners in a year. People are finding this medium and they are loving it. As I’ve mentioned in my past episode this love of podcasts combined with my experience in marketing has led me to create my new business True Native Media, where I’m able to connect podcasts with advertisers. This business has been such a wonderful experience of creation and connection and as the company has grown I’ve had to evaluate my time commitments and focus on my goals.

I started my podcast Leap to Grow because I have such a love of business. Having started several companies and learned so much along the way, I’ve had a deep desire to help others grow their companies and support them on their journey to experience the thrill of success and the satisfaction that only comes from owning your own business. I’ve had the privilege of working with many business coaching clients and continue to work with individuals to provide accountability, inspiration and guidance for creating a profitable business. The focus of Leap to Grow has been on business development. A big part of business development is sales and marketing. Some might argue and I’d be one of them that sales and marketing are the two most important cornerstones in any business.

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted an article on Leap to Grow, or published an episode on the podcast. During this time I’ve been evaluating the program, trying to decide what I want to provide the world as a podcaster and an entrepreneur. The idea of giving up the podcast altogether really wasn’t an option for me. I love the show and as I mentioned I love everything there is to love about the industry. Keeping the show was a must. However, I want to be able to use this podcast to discuss the power of podcasts and digital marketing as a whole and that is why I’ll be launching The Business of Podcasting starting in the next episode. If you’re a current subscriber, you won’t need to do anything, because I’ll be transitioning Leap to Grow, by basically just changing the name. What you can do to help is please subscribe to the show if you aren’t already a subscriber and please share the show with those that you feel might benefit from listening.

So what can you expect from the Business of Podcasting. On the new program I’ll continue to provide information about how to grow your business, but it will have a much greater focus on sales and marketing. It will also feature people from the podcast industry and advertising world. It will feature the newest information about the power of podcasts and why advertising on a podcast is an excellent form of marketing.

I’m really excited to launch the new program and I’m thrilled that you’ll be listening.

How to Build Your Company

How to Build Your Company

As a business owners we are creators and builders. A business owner takes nothing more than ideas, dreams and aspirations and creates something out of nothing. As you walk through this process whether you’re just beginning or you’ve been in business for many years you are choosing the type of organization to create. I mention this because you can always change the type of company that you’re creating. If you start out as a solopreneur and then decided that you’d really like a team, or if you have a team and decide you’d really like to have no team at all, these are changes that you can make in your company. You simply need to form a plan and work toward that. Today I want to talk about the types of organizations you can create to allow you to see which model will best to suite your needs.

1. Solopreneur – a solopreneur is just as it sounds someone who works alone. Typically, a solopreneur doesn’t have any employees. You are a one woman or man band. You’ve created the product or service and you’re doing it all. Many solopreneurs may surround themselves with others to help. Contract labor is your ally as a solopreneur. Many times a bookkeeper/account/tax preparing will be hired. Online automated delivery systems may be used and frequently a VA or Virtual Assistant will be part of your team of contract labors. If you are a solopreneur there is often no need for an office space and working from home is a good option. Your overhead is low as a solopreneur. One of the largest expenses in business is employees. If you don’t have employees you also don’t have payroll taxes and benefits that are required by employees. The biggest limitation of the solopreneur is time. You are just one person and you don’t have the ability to do more than you have time in the day. Solopreneurships can be very profitable. Most solopreneurs are self funded. Because in many cases they are their product and their overhead is low, they don’t typically need funding to start their business.

2. Small Business – when we think of small businesses we often think of the corner store, or gift shop, a dry cleaners or florist. We think “small business.” Often these small businesses are brick and mortar. They have a shop, store or office and typically conduct business in their town and community. They may have an online presence and might even sell products or services online, but the bulk of their business is done face to face. Small businesses can and often do have employees, but not all small businesses have employees. If a small business does not have employees it is often run by a partnership, a family or husband and wife team. A small business can also be a contractor, accountant, dentist or attorney. When you think of small business think, limited service area. You can only service the people within your region. If you are a dentist in order to grow your customer base you would need to open a new office. That may mean opening a second location in the same community or it may mean opening a new office in a different community. Typically, most small businesses have growth goals and many are very profitable. Many small businesses receive funding. This funding can come from different places. It could be money that the founder has saved up, it could be a loan from a friend or family member or it could be a loan from a bank such as a government back SBA (Small Business Administration) loan.

3. Startup – Paul Graham, founder of Y Combinator an early stage funding organizations in Silicon Valley, CA says this about Startups. “A startup is a company designed to grow fast. Being newly founded does not in itself make a company a startup. Nor is it necessary for a startup to work on technology, or take venture funding, or have some sort of “exit.” The only essential thing is growth. Everything else we associate with startups follows from growth.” So what does growth mean? Growth means offering your product or service to a huge number of customers and staffing your company with a huge number of people to service the distribution of that product or service. When we think of Startups we think big scale. Often, start ups will seek funding from angel investors or venture capitalist. This is a type of funding for a new or growing business. It usually comes from venture capital firms that specialize in building high-risk financial portfolios. With venture capital, the venture capital firm gives funding to the startup company in exchange for equity in the startup.

These are three types of organizations you may want to build. There of course are many others, such as franchises, online product companies, Ebay or Amazon selling companies and many other types of organizations. Consider the type of company you’re forming. Think about what you want in life. Your business should be an extension of who you are as a person, and should fit in well with the lifestyle you desire. After selling my company that I would put in the small business category and moving into the solopreneur category, I realized I missed the energy of working and collaborating with others. I missed working on a team. Now that I have that insight I’m working to build a Startup. Time will tell if my company will be a Startup or a small business, but either is good for me. I know that I want to build a team.

What type of company do you want to build?

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