The big and small choices that prevent you from reaching your content marketing goals.
These days, content marketing is more than just a handy tool. It’s a necessity for most brands — and if you plan to do it, you should plan to do it well.
Remember, your audience has veritable mountains of unbranded content to choose from, no matter the medium…
So, when you’re creating content with a brand name attached, you can expect their standards to be through the roof.
This is certainly true in the podcast space, and while a corporate series should be an incredibly effective marketing tool, it’s all too easy to miss the mark.
Needless to say, we don’t want that to happen to you, so we’re sharing eight common pitfalls below. Check it out.
1. Making a series for everyone
One of the biggest mistakes you can make with any kind of marketing is the failure to identify a specific and appropriate target audience.
The assumption that your product or service is “for everyone” has the power to sink your business — and the same applies to your branded show.
You need to know who you’re speaking to if you plan to reach them well. It’s that simple.
This means that your production team should have a crystal-clear understanding of who your ideal listener is before you create your podcast.
Remember, this is about lasting relationships that will truly benefit your brand and your audience. It’s not about making (or trying to make) a universally appealing show.
2. Ignoring the needs of your listener
As you get to know your ideal listener, you should pay special attention to their unique needs, and how your corporate series can fulfill them.
RBC is an example of a brand that’s done this exceptionally well with their popular podcast, Disruptors.
This multinational financial institution didn’t make a series for everyone, full of general financial know-how (and to be clear, that probably wouldn’t have been so successful).
Instead, RBC zeroed in on the small business owners that use their services, and created a series that addresses their needs, wants, and knowledge gaps.
They sorted out who their customers actually are, and made a series based around what they learned — not what they felt like making or what they guessed would result in a high-performing show.
3. Underediting your show
Moving on to production, another common mistake in the podcast world (among both branded and standard shows) is not editing enough.
Yes, virtually unedited content can work for select influencers and major names in the podcast world, but remember — listeners will be extra skeptical of a branded show.
We have short attention spans these days, and again, incredibly high standards for the content we consume as more and more options become available.
This means that we have a low threshold for filler content, dead air, or listening to anyone “um” or “uh” their way through a podcast episode.
That said, it’s also pretty easy to go overboard when it comes time to trim your show.
A skilled production team may even decide to use silence as a tool, and a great edit is a bit of a balancing act.
The goal is not to pack every second, or trim every imperfect sound, but to make an appropriately edited, value-rich show — and you’re going to need a pro editor to strike that perfect note.
4. Skimping on graphic design
We’ve touched on this before, but here it is in short…
A great corporate podcast is no small investment, and if you want to make the most of it, graphic design is not the place to cut corners.
The visual assets you create along the way will generally be the first impression your listeners have of your podcast — and first impressions count.
Great design can help define your series, draw your listeners in, and challenge any preconceived notions they might have about shows that are backed by a brand.
5. Zero supporting content
A lack of supporting material can also stunt your corporate podcast’s growth.
Depending on your overarching content marketing strategy, you may choose to create blog posts, ebooks, or TikToks and Reels…
But no matter what kind of podcast you’ve created, it shouldn’t stand alone.
By creating other types of content within your niche of choice, you…
- Establish your team as experts in that space
- Prove your investment in the content you cover
- And invite new listeners to check out your show
Great content marketing relies on a web of related material. Your corporate series is no exception to that rule.
(Not sure what to create? Here’s a post that will help you determine the best types of content to surround your corporate show.)
6. Inconsistent episodes
Another common mistake with content of all kinds is inconsistency.
Remember, your branded podcast is part of a bigger mission to build trust and loyalty with your ideal audience, and to do that, you should aim to be reliable.
You don’t necessarily need to release several seasons of content, or even weekly episodes, but you should stick to a schedule your fans can count on.
This isn’t just about trust and consistency, though. It’s about ensuring your series isn’t forgotten by folks who could be the most loyal fans of your show..
By releasing regular content, you limit the risk of them dropping off after a single episode, and increase your chances of securing a regular spot in their busy schedules.
7. Advertising in-show
Finally, we have the cardinal rule of the branded podcast world — do not make a series that sounds like it belongs on the shopping channel.
When it comes to in-podcast promos, you should lean conservative, and generally stick to your own product or service if you choose to run any kind of ad.
Yes, some brands with major corporate podcasts are able to run third-party ads, and still find success with their shows…
But proceed with caution, and if you’re not seeing the success you hoped for, advertising might be your problem.
Again, your listeners will be naturally skeptical of a podcast with a brand name behind it, and when they choose to tune into your show, you don’t want to make them regret it.
8. Going too big with your plugs
While we do encourage our clients to avoid third-party ads, you will need to plug your brand two or three times per an episode, depending on the length of your show.
That said, when we say plug, we really mean plug — no infomercials.
Concision is key here, and while you do need to make sure your audience associates your brand with your show, it’s easy to go overboard.
A quick mention at the top, end, and (sometimes) midpoint of each episode is all you need to make the connection.
As you earn your audience’s trust, you may be able to share details on new launches or promos, but less is generally more — especially in the early days of your show.
Make it count
As a society, we tend to lean picky with our attention these days — largely because we’re being pulled in so many directions at once.
If your listeners are taking a leap by tuning in at all, the time you have with them is invaluable.
A carefully executed show will help you make sure you don’t waste a second of the attention they give you.
If you really want to make your efforts count, it might be time to learn more about sparking meaningful connections with a branded podcast.