There are so many ways to market to and engage with prospects and customers these days, and you need to be taking advantage of all of them. That's the whole point of omni-channel marketing. Whatever platforms your customers are on, you need to be there too.
Whatever type of content your customers are looking for, you need to be providing it. That includes social media posts, white papers, blog posts, videos, podcasts, etc.
Let's talk about podcasts. Hosting a podcast is a game changer.
Here at ChatFunnels, our VP of operations, Billy Bateman, hosts the podcast Digital Conversations. Our podcast is geared toward demand gen leaders and focuses on topics around sales and marketing strategies and best practices. Our latest episode featured Bernie Borges, Vice President Global Content Marketing at iQor. He explained his strategy of account-based podcasting, which targets your ICP as guests on your podcast.
Account-based podcasting uses the same strategies as account-based marketing and account-based engagement.
Account-based podcasting is strategically choosing guests to be on your podcast who are part of an account you are targeting, and using that as an opportunity to build a relationship with them.
It is all about starting and building that relationship!
The Purpose of Podcasts
Podcasts can serve a vital role in your content marketing strategy. You can provide people with a ton of interesting and relevant information with podcasts.
They are free education for listeners all while increasing your brand's credibility and visibility.
Podcasting is all about letting someone share a story. It really is just about story-telling. They also start discussions that can then be continued by prospects or existing customers.
Steps For Creating an Account-based Podcasting Strategy
1. Start With a List of Target Accounts
Your marketing and sales teams need to come together to discuss who your target accounts are.
If you are already familiar with ABM and ABE, then you probably already have that list compiled. Remember, the whole point of account-based podcasting is strategically choosing who you want to speak on your podcast. So making this list is crucial.
2. Identify the ICP (Ideal Customer Profile) From That List
You next need to identify which individual from those target accounts you would like to feature on your podcast. Think about your ideal customer profile and who would be a good fit to speak on your podcast.
3. Invite Them On the Podcast
Then, reach out and invite them on the podcast.
You are giving them the platform to talk about a topic that is meaningful to them.
Choosing a Topic
You as the host should choose the topic. It should be one that you know they will be comfortable talking about.
It should be a topic that is meaningful to them and relevant to your audience.
Even though of course you'd want them to prepare, the topic should be something that they are so passionate about that they could just talk about it on the fly.
30 Minute Planning Call
The best thing to do is set up a 30-minute planning call to discuss the topic.
You should type up some talking points and create an outline to ensure that the podcast flows smoothly and that neither you nor your guest goes off on a tangent.
After the call, share the outline with them and give them the chance to edit it and change anything. The guest will really appreciate that. It shows them that you have a solid process in place and that you really care about the podcast.
That first call is the first opportunity to build a relationship. Then, the actual recording of the podcast is the next form of engagement. So even before the podcast is recorded, you should have started building out that strong relationship with you and your target customer.
You may not have previously considered that you can really build relationships through podcasting.
Like Bernie said, "it's people working with people." It's as simple as that.
Your goal is to make sure that your guest has a great experience working with you. That can then lead into them seeing the value of your brand and product.
When they are on your podcast, you mainly get the chance to hear their story and you might come to find that you want to buy from them and maybe even that they want to buy from you. A customer relationship can develop from these podcasts.
After all, nothing happens in sales before you have a conversation. The podcast can be that initial conversation that drives further conversations between you and your guest.
Podcasts Can Bring You Leads
Think about the podcast guest as a lead which could turn into a possible opportunity.
Podcasting is a way to get some leads, but it won't be producing them in volume, right? Even podcasting weekly isn't a lot of volume.
However, these leads will be high quality leads, because, again, if you took an account-based podcasting approach, then your guests will all be great potential opportunities.
Overview of the Process
Let's do a quick recap of an account-based approach to your podcasting strategy.
First you need to talk about your target accounts and the individuals of those accounts. Know them by name.
Then, you need to put together an outreach strategy. A great play would be to send an email and even send over a quick intro video. That makes it much more personable. In the email or video you should mention other guests you've had on the show and previous topics you've discussed. Then say something along the lines of, "I would like to talk with you about one of these potential topics..." followed by a list of possible discussion topics.
The stats are around 50% of people accept to then be on your podcast, which isn't a bad statistic. It's an opportunity for them to get exposure for themselves and for their brand, so it's a win win.
What If I Am Just Getting Started With Podcasting?
Some of you may have been doing a podcast for months now and are recently wanting to have a more account-based approach, but we're sure there are many of you who haven't quite yet dived into the podcasting world.
It's never too late to launch a podcast. It's a great move for your marketing strategies.
When getting started, you should invite your existing customers or other people you know to be guests on your podcast. And they don't necessarily need to talk about your product. Have them come on your podcast and talk about things meaningful to them that are also relevant to your target audience.
After producing a few episodes featuring your customers and other connections you already have within the industry, then start looking at your accounts page for potential guests on there.
Make sure you remember that the emphasis is on the relationship building aspect of podcasting.
Podcasting requires strategy! You can't just start a podcast and hope something good comes from it. Implement an account-based podcasting strategy to avoid ever having to rely on hope again for your marketing success.
Do so by being strategic about the guests you invite on your podcast.
People can be qualified for a great conversation, but not really qualified for your strategy.
Remember that podcasts are a lot of work. Most podcasts never make it past episode 10 because people get exhausted of trying too find new guests and come up with new conversation topics.
You can't forget to promote your podcast! With podcasting, you are able to quickly build brand awareness if you work at promoting it.
Overall, account-based podcasting allows you to start, and strengthen, relationships with individuals from your target accounts. Check out Bernie Borges' presentation from our last Demand Gen Summit to learn more about account-based podcasting.