Learn how to create a branded podcast that resonates with your brand and audience — plus, a short, fun experiment.
By Laurissa Cebryk
The golden rule for a branded podcast is that it isn’t just one giant ad for your brand. How on earth, then, are you supposed to establish and promote your brand’s values with a branded podcast without slathering on the branded schmooze? Try aiming for quality content that exemplifies what your company is about — without actually saying it.
This sounds as complicated as it is to pull off successfully. However, when done correctly, you will have a fabulous show that adds exceptional value to your audiences’ lives and reap the benefits of brand lift, boosted brand recall, and brand awareness.
That’s right, folks, the power of a branded podcast done well is bountiful!
Let’s start with an experiment.
Think of any branded podcast you might listen to. Got your podcast? Now, think of the key takeaways from whatever episode you’ve listened to. Write them out if you like.
A great branded podcast should mean that by looking at that list of takeaways, you can already start to gather what some of the brand values are. Next, consider the guests or experts brought onto the show (if any). That also tells you a lot about what the brand is trying to say without saying it. Then, look at the title, description, and any marketing efforts made.
Can you pick out the values of the brand whose podcast you chose from these podcast components? If the show was done well with the right amount of care, planning, and strategizing, you should be able to better understand the brand’s personality and values by the end of the episode. In theory, this will have you buying into the next episode or wanting to get to know them even better.
Five things to help reflect your brand’s values.
With that experiment in mind, here are five crucial things you need to do to create a branded podcast that reflects your brand’s values (without saying them outloud).
1. Understand WHY you’re making your show.
Saying, “Well, because I want to see all those great benefits that come from a successful branded podcast,” isn’t going to cut it. Great shows go beyond the perks to your brand. Maybe there’s a meaningful conversation happening you want to establish some thought leadership about. Maybe you want to inspire or educate your audience. For example, our friends at Staffbase created Infernal Communication to help communications professionals feel heard and to remind them that their industry is pretty darn cool (and fun!).
Once you know your why, you can consider your audience, title, content, etc.
2. Stick to your values every step of the way.
Like you saw with the JAR Audio podcast, How To Get Ahead In Podcasting, they really stuck to their values throughout everything. Those values were identified in the preparation stage, and I could easily determine what they were from the episode content. The values carried into how they marketed the show, too. From the get, listeners know what to expect from the podcast and feel like they know who JAR Audio is as a brand. Everything, every step of the way, aligned with JAR Audio’s personality and values.
In short, your brand’s values should be “broadcasted” by guest selection, topics, and even products (for when your show is big enough that folks want to advertise in it!).
3. Deliver value to your audience.
If you’re not giving your audience value, they aren’t going to stick around to find out what you as a brand value. Podcasting can be an inherently selfish thing. You’re assuming what you have to say is important to your listeners. Ensure it is, and they’ll want to get to know you, as a brand, better.
4. Listen to feedback.
Always, always, always monitor your KPIs and goals, and listen to what your audience is saying about your show (and ultimately your brand). If you’re missing the mark, you may need to realign your content to your values, solidify what those values actually are, redirect your marketing efforts to hit your target audience, or, if you’re hitting a different audience than expected, be open to learning what that says about your brand or your show.
5. Keep it simple.
It’s easy to get carried away with podcasting and the fun of audio (trust us, we know). When it comes to having your branded podcast reflect your brand’s values, keep it simple. You don’t need an elaborate, Inception-esque experience for your audience to “get” you. Podcasts are often used to keep us company while we do other things. Don’t overthink it — Let your podcast show your audience who you are as a brand and what you value upfront and easily.
Let a professional help shape your show.
You know your brand inside and out, but we know branded podcasting. If you need help translating those values into an audio masterpiece, it could be time to bring in the professionals! Even if you haven’t identified your brand’s values quite yet, doing so is part of our process for creating award-winning shows. Whether you’re keen to step into a new way of content marketing or have a challenge traditional methods just don’t seem to resolve, a branded podcast could be the solution, but only if done correctly. We’re here to help.