Engaging with your listener is probably one of the single most important things you can do as a podcaster.
Everything I'm doing on the radio is I’m trying to get people to:
You as a podcaster must do the same. Your most valuable piece of content is your podcast and it's your job to encourage your listeners interact with you on social media or submit voice recordings.
The key here is engagement.
How do we figure out how to get engagement on social media?
First, you can encourage your listeners through your podcast to reach out to you on social media by leaving a comment on one of your photos on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Ask them to share a memory or a thought that will foster engagement.
Let's use my podcast, Be The Experience as the example here.
My goal is to get people to engage with me on Instagram or Twitter by using the hashtag "#BTEpodcast". This is a great way to find posts that are associated with your podcast and gives you the opportunity to engage with your audience through these other mediums.
In your case, maybe you've mentioned in your podcast that you want your listeners to go ahead and post a photo inside of Instagram by placing your branded hashtag in the description or comments. This gives you the ability to do a search inside of Instagram, Facebook or Twitter by locating those posts with that particular hashtag.
You as the podcaster, it is your duty to go in and comment, ask questions, and engage listeners to try to foster some type of interaction. Keep your listener inside of your universe and your podcast content.
This is going to be something that you're going to have to decide. I would recommend to most podcasters that you’re only managing 1-2 social media platforms. Any more than that will become really burdensome.
Each platform has their own unique way of delivering content and getting more interaction. But for you, I would say, if you’re just starting out, manage one particular platform, and then you can grow the others over time.
For example, your preferred platform may be Twitter because that’s where you like to communicate the most. You should find that audience on Twitter through hashtag searches in order to get them over onto your podcast. It's basic guerrilla marketing.
Let your listeners know where you’re hanging because I promise you they will follow you wherever you are. If you’re hanging out mostly on Twitter, that’s where you need to be, if you’re hanging out mostly on Instagram, that’s where you need to be.
Lay these seeds of content onto the social media platform of choice so people know how and where to find you.
One thing I have learned in radio over the years time and time again is that when someone is too afraid to walk up to you, you have to walk up to them. As a personality, you have to engage with them because they will always say they were too afraid to meet you.
It’s no different whether you’re doing it in person or on social media. You have to engage with your audience.
Encourage call-ins from your listeners.
Now that you have started to release your podcast and have created a relationship with your podcast listener, you want to encourage them to have some type of auditory interaction with you.
One of the best ways that you can do this is by getting someone’s voice inside of the podcast. This is very similar to having a live phone call on your podcast, but your listener is just leaving a voicemail.
If you’re using WordPress, there’s a really cool plugin by SpeakPipe, you can go to speakpipe.com and check out their services.
If the plugin for SpeakPipe happens to give you problems, you have the ability to embed their code on your site to enable their widget.
SpeakPipe allows the listener to record some type of call-in for you so that you can take that piece of audio and put it inside of your podcast in post-production.
I would encourage you to tell your audience to head on over to your website and leave a voicemail for you (granted you have placed the embed code on your site).
One thing I have noticed that works really well--not just on radio--on my YouTube channel is featuring comments in the videos or actual video recordings by viewers.
People love to see themselves being featured in your content. I encourage you to do the same.
If you don't like the idea of using SpeakPipe, you can create your own Google Voice number where listeners can leave voicemails.
Google still gives you the ability to create a number that people can call-in and you can utilize as a place where listeners can share their voice. The best part is that this is completely free.
This is how I would do it:
Whether you’re using an iPhone or Android phone, there should be some type of voice memo application on most phones these days.
Encourage your listener to record a message and send it to a designated email address. Perhaps it’s the email address that you’re using for your Google Voice number. It will be completely up to you.
Have your listener record a short message that is clear for your podcast recording.
You'll want to set some ground rules with this method as well. Recording these audio files don't take up too much space, but they may have difficulty being sent over email. So make sure you put a time limit on how long the voice memo should be.
Have you used any of these methods to capture phone calls? Also, how are you currently engaging with your audience?
Leave a comment down below.
Whether you're feeling inspired to make a podcast like mine or you're just trying to figure out where to start, my FREE PDF GUIDE will show you where to get started in under 15 minutes.
Shannon will share his 18 years of radio broadcasting knowledge and show you how strategies in radio relate directly to podcast creation and strategy!