Many things work better together in life, and influencers with podcasts might just be one of them.
22%of internet users are currently podcast listeners, and 92.7% of all internet users are currently on social media. So, it makes sense that the audience from one medium will nurture the growth of the other – and who better to lead the charge than influencers?
Influencers are uniquely positioned to produce podcast content that resonates with the audience they are already deeply in touch with. Their social media channels allow them to develop a two-way conversation and learn what their followers want to hear. And a podcast offers a platform to deliver that content in a more long-form, conversational format.
Any influencer who has managed to amass significant followers is media savvy enough to understand that they must constantly adapt to stay relevant. They know the importance of diversifying content to maintain audience engagement and growth. And while the podcast market is undoubtedly growing - it’s not yet saturated, making it the perfect space for flexible influencers to shine. There are around 460 million podcast listeners, which is predicted to grow to 500 million in the next two years. The demand is there, and influencers are perfectly poised to feed it.
But what makes a podcast the right place for an influencer? Podcast listeners are a highly engaged and attentive audience, often listening to an episode from beginning to end. Since most podcasts are consumed as the listener goes about their daily life - washing the dishes, walking the dog or commuting to work - an individual they already like and trust feels worthy of this intimacy. A podcast lets an influencer create a more unfiltered and deeper connection with their established audience while picking up new listeners who will, in all likelihood, also become new followers.
So, what does this mean for brands?
Podcast content is more organic and demands greater authenticity than most other media platforms, which offers opportunities and challenges for brands wanting to utilise it.
There are many ways to get involved, including interviews, sponsored segments, branded content, show sponsorship, giveaways or affiliate marketing – and the intimacy of the medium, together with their affection for the influencer who is hosting or co-hosting, is likely to make the listener more receptive to a brand’s messaging.
Product placement in shot content is a subtle yet effective method for brands to align themselves with that influencer, their values and their highly engaged audience. Featuring a product in its natural environment in the back of the shot conveys the message that this content creator trusts and upholds that brand, appealing to the audience who wants to emulate that influencer’s lifestyle.
Podcasts are an excellent medium for storytelling. Brands can work with influencers to create compelling narratives around their products or services, making the advertising message more engaging and memorable.
However, brands must ensure that the content is a good fit for both parties.
With no easy-to-apply filters on podcasts, the result might be less polished than a content creator’s previous work, so brands must align their ethos with an influencer’s podcasting style before committing. Unfiltered can be great, but too unfiltered might not reflect a brand’s messaging.
It’s also essential to work with the podcast producers to ensure branded content is integrated into the format in a way that won’t distract – or worse, annoy – listeners. Lack of alignment or clumsy delivery can confuse an audience and damage a brand’s reputation.
But handled well, working with an influencer podcast could be precisely what brands need. The variety of topics discussed is wide, making it easier to align with brand values. Podcasts are available almost indefinitely, so listeners could stumble across a brand years later, and conversational, less intrusive marketing can come across as more authentic.
There’s a good reason why podcasts are the fastest-growing media format (surpassing social media, online videos, watching TV or listening to the radio). The increasing trend of influencer podcasting lets brands harness both the popularity of podcasts and the status of individuals who have already proven their power to shape consumer behaviour.
So perhaps influencers and podcasts are the next dream duo we never knew we needed. With the rising success of filmed podcasts being repurposed as social media content, there are multiple ways for brands to integrate seamlessly into these conversations to engage an audience of loyal, open-minded viewers. So why not give it a go and see if you can encourage them to subscribe to your brand, too?