It seems like every day another major podcasting deal is announced in the broadcast industry trades. Recently, Entercom, now Audacity, made a 22.5-million-dollar deal to buy Podcast influencers marketplace Podcorn. The collaboration of podcasting integrated into broadcast radio’s traditional advertising offerings is fueled by an impressive set of revenue growth forecasts.
There are many amazing reasons revenue projections from podcasting look so strong. A new study has found that podcast listeners have a very favorable opinion of advertisers. A recent Whistle Wise survey shows that 61% say they have considered a purchase because of an ad they’ve heard on a podcast.
Whistle Wise is also predicting digital advertising will grow 22% this year as large brands shift spending into digital media to support e-commerce.*
As important as it is for large communications companies like Audacity and IHeart to drive revenue by embracing popular national podcasts, it would be a big mistake for these companies and independent broadcasters to neglect to identify and help promote local podcasters in their markets. Many of these local podcasters already have strong followings and contribute valuable insights into the lifestyles of their local communities.
Collaborating with these local podcasters and incorporating their content into a station’s on-air presentation where appropriate, as well as into local station’s digital offerings makes total sense. A local broadcaster would be wise to seek out these local influencers.
Finding local podcasters, who can offer insights into local entertainment options, for example, can give local radio stations another way to seem relevant in the mind of listeners and advertisers. Other examples include local podcasts about the challenges of first responders, local teachers, or even working moms. Promos that tease the content of interesting local podcasts on the air can lead listeners to station websites. Entertaining local podcasters can even add compelling content to morning shows as correspondents.
Plus, they can give your advertisers another exciting avenue to combine digital and traditional broadcast dollars into something stronger than either individually. Local podcasts don’t have to be competition for your on-air content producers. They can work together to give your on-air influencers even more credibility with the listeners they seek to influence daily.
Radio programmers in all markets know they need to be more digitally engaging. Unfortunately, many feel like it’s enough to re-print national entertainment news and other syndicated content on your local station websites and social media. Nothing could be further from the truth. Developing local content is essential for getting your share of increasing revenues derived from digital ad buys. Collaborating with local up-and-coming podcasters can be a great way to enhance local radio’s digital bottom-line while giving the podcasters an outlet to expand their fanbase. It’s a win-win.
As more companies go syndicated even on local stations nationwide, many successful native broadcasters are finding incredible opportunities in re-discovering the very thing that made radio so viable in its golden age—localism. The often-heard slogan of local radio broadcasters: “Keep It Local” should not be relegated to on-air content alone. Being local should extend to the growing digital market as well. Engaging local podcasts could be a big part of radio’s Post Covid “Normal”.