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By Frances Caballo

Everyone seems to be talking about podcasting these days. But is podcasting right for you?

As an Indie author, you’re already busy producing books and handling all of the marketing. Just take it all in for a moment.

  • There’s your website to maintain.
  • Your blog to update regularly.
  • Comments you leave on other blogs.
  • The guest posts you write for other blogs.
  • Your social media accounts that help you build your platform.
  • The blog tours you organize.
  • The endorsements you secure for the back cover of your books.
  • The newsletter you have to publish every month.

The list can be exhausting.

I chose to follow this path because I feel it’s important to integrate as many forms of media as we can into our content marketing strategy.

The Rise of Podcasting

Kevin Roose, writing for Forbes, said, “We’re in a golden age of podcasting.”

Why is it occurring now? Many say it’s because of the widespread use of smartphones and connected cars.

Just as people are increasingly forgoing cable subscriptions for streaming Netflix, people are turning to the intimacy and interruption-free programming of the podcast.

According to WPVirtuoso.com, Apple recently surpassed 1 billion subscriptions to podcasts.

Michael Wolff, also writing for Forbes, wrote that there are nearly 250,000 unique podcasts in existence.

That number may seem high but not when you compare it to the 152 million blogs on the Internet. What this means is that there is far less competition in the podcasting realm than there is on the blogosphere.

It seems that while the public’s interest in podcasting is rising, readership of blogs is declining. When I researched this on Google Trends, I was surprised by the graphs I discovered.

The first graph tracks the rise in podcast listeners.

Rise in podcast listeners

This second graph tracks the declining interest in reading blogs.

Declining interest in blogs

I am not saying that you should stop blogging and start podcasting. I am saying that right now is a good time to get your message heard through podcasting.

Each form of media helps you to reach new audiences. I find that my podcast listeners tend to be people who don’t have time to sit at their computers to read blogs but do have time to listen to podcasts as they travel on subways or prepare dinner.

Content marketing has always been critical to platform building. Your first book was like the first brick to your platform foundation. Blogging and social media provided further support and now there’s a fairly new type of brick available: podcasting.

I say fairly new because podcasting has been around for ten years.

I’ve only had a podcast since January, yet my book sales have already increased. Even a deaf writer discovered my podcast before he’d ever read my blog. In fact, he sent me an email asking whether I had show notes for the podcast. I directed him to my Friday blog posts, which are the scripts for my podcast.

My Journey into Podcasting

My journey began in August when I traveled to Atlanta to attend a workshop with Ellen Britt and Denise Wakeman. It was an intimate workshop, and I came away completely enthused.

Then the hard work began.

First, I defined my audience and the goal for my podcast. I also decided that my podcast would air weekly and that I would keep the episodes to no longer than 15 minutes.

Then, over the next several months I created:

  1. an editorial calendar for my first 25 podcast episodes.
  2. a logo and an episode graphic element.
  3. a template for my scripts.
  4. a template for my show notes.
  5. a landing page for my podcast.
  6. a marketing plan.
  7. my intro and outro copy.
  8. a survey (using Survey Monkey) to find out what topics my audience wanted me to cover in the upcoming episodes.

In addition, I:

  1. purchased equipment, tested the equipment, and then bought new equipment.
  2. purchased my intro and out trial music from Audio Junkie.
  3. purchased and installed Smart Podcast Player on my website to enable me to stream my podcast with my show notes.
  4. learned how to use Audacity for recording and editing my episodes.

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