Y’all. I am so excited, the She Can SEO podcast is officially one month old and in this blog post I’m going to be going over all the juicy launch strategies that got me to number four in my category.
First of all, I need to thank you so much for tuning in, for subscribing, for reviewing and for sharing with your friends. I’m so thankful for you! I want to see your businesses have huge growth this year despite all our challenges, so I’m just really excited to continue doing this podcast and providing a ton of value for you.
Here’s the deal. I was a total podcast newbie.
I had no idea what I was doing and despite that I launched at number four in the marketing category and got over 1700 downloads in my first month with only eight episodes. I’ve been told those are pretty epic numbers for someone who doesn’t have a huge following.
I’m excited about that because that means that I’m providing something that the market needs, that you want, that people are desperately looking for in their business. And that makes me excited to keep going.
It’s important to note that this podcast got launched even though I didn’t have a huge following. I started with just a 425 person email list and I only had about 750 followers on Instagram. Both of those numbers have increased by over 40% in the last month, which is fantastic.
To be honest, I think podcasting is a really viable way to grow an audience. And so I’m excited to do this episode and kind of unpack why I think podcasting is working so well for me and to share literally everything I did to get here and then I’m going to go over the things I wish I had done differently in retrospect, you know, 2020 hindsight, that sort of thing. So hopefully this episode will be useful for you if you are considering doing podcasting.
Why I Think This Podcast is Successful
- Timely Topic: Lots of people are interested in SEO right now. Lots of people are interested in online marketing because of the coronavirus crisis. People are trying to get their business online really quickly, so I do think I kind of hit the market at the right point in terms of providing value people are looking for.
- Short, Snackable Episodes: The thing I’m hearing from you, especially in your reviews, is that you love that these episodes are short. My average episode is 10 minutes or less. People are craving really short, snackable content that they can use.
- Actionable Advice: You are also telling me that you love how actionable my episodes are and that I’m giving solid takeaway advice.
- No Long Interviews: I’m hearing that y’all like the fact that I’m not doing interviews. That I’m just teaching. I’m just getting on and sharing the knowledge bombs.
- I Kicked Off With a Bang: Another reason why I think that I have had success is I did what I called a launch squad and I utilized some giveaways to kind of get the ball rolling and to get some traction on this podcast.
Let’s talk about the podcast strategy because I think honestly anybody could do this, if they really wanted to. You’re totally capable of starting a podcast.
What I Learned About How to Launch a Podcast
- It Doesn’t Take That Long to Set Up if You Are Committed: I set up and launched this podcast in less than two weeks. I knew the name before that, but I set my launch date and 13 days later I launched. When I set my launch date, I had none of the tech setup. I had none of the launch strategy in place. I had none of my episodes written. I just had the idea and I managed to do this in less than two weeks. If I can do that with everything else I have going on and homeschooling my kids in the middle of a pandemic, you can definitely do it too.
- Do Your Market Research: The next thing that was really important in getting this set up is I did spend a good chunk of time researching the right name and the right topics for this podcast. I was in a bunch of Facebook groups asking questions, listening, just watching what people were talking about, which made a huge difference in how I decided to launch and the things I decided to share on this podcast. And I think that’s one of those things that most people forget to do. I’ve been doing marketing for 20 years and still my number one strategy is to get in the Facebook groups and shut up and pay attention to what people are talking about. The phrases that people use and how they say things is really going to inform your decision making for your business if you pay attention.
- Get Your Cover Art Right: I did spend a good amount of time making some pretty awesome cover art and I think that that does have an effect as people are scrolling through looking at different podcasts to choose to listen to. People are visual and they like things that look nice, so that is definitely something I would recommend that you do.
- You Definitely Need Podcast Coaching: The most helpful thing, to be honest, that I did in setting up this podcast was I got in a course about podcasting. A lot of the technical stuff, a lot of the behind the scenes stuff, it was a complete mystery to me. So I got in the Podcast Pro University course and I binge watched the entire thing to learn how to do this. Of all the different marketing platforms I’ve ever tried, this is definitely the most technical. I will say, if you are just like a total, “don’t make me do any technology” person, podcasting may be not the right one for you unless you want to pay someone to do all your editing. I learned how to edit all my own episodes and do all the tech stuff behind the scenes. I don’t have a VA. Getting in the Podcast Pro University was a huge, huge part of my success. I literally followed all the steps that my podcast coach gave me. I didn’t go off the rails and do anything on my own. I just followed the instructions step by step, one by one.
- Create a Launch Squad: I did, however, go a little bit above and beyond in my launch strategy because I had this idea and it ended up working really well. 10 days before my launch date, I announced that I was looking for people to be on my launch squad to help promote the podcast. I sent out an email, I posted on social media and in a couple of Facebook groups about it. I told them I was going to incentivize them by giving them my Simple SEO Keyword Toolkit for free, if they followed the launch sequence. I set up a launch squad Facebook group for them so that I could communicate with them really easily.
- Do a Giveaway: I also did do a giveaway for the general public that way as I was going around and sharing about the launch of my podcast, I had something to incentivize them. I asked them to go subscribe to my podcast and be entered to win a branding package, an SEO assessment or my keyword toolkit. So there was a reason for people to go check it out. Even if they didn’t end up liking the podcast, at least they were entered to win something.
- Use the Launch Sequence to Dominate the Charts: The launch sequence that I used with my launch squad was this: in order to get the free Keyword Toolkit, they needed to subscribe, rate and review the podcast. They needed to listen to one podcast episode per day for the four days of the launch. Lastly, they needed to share the giveaway on their social media in some way during the four day launch.
I released one episode per day for all four days and I didn’t actually have those all prerecorded. I had only recorded the first one and I was literally up late at night every single night over the four days recording the next episode and editing it and getting it put on to iTunes because I’m just nuts that way.
Now I only release an episode once about once per week, which is totally fine. I don’t have a set day for episode drops. I know some podcasters do that. They always release a new episode on Mondays and Wednesdays or whatever. But y’all, I just, I can’t commit. My life is too crazy. I have lots of stuff on my plate. So I have a general idea of the episodes I want to do. When I can grab time to record them, I do and that’s it. So I’m not setting like these really rigid rules on myself. I only want to get on here and record if I have something of value to tell you and I think that that’s really important.
Another really great thing I’ve been doing is I transcribe every single one of these episodes using a service called Temi. I put every episode on my blog as a blog post, which is just really fantastic for SEO. My shortest episode was over 1500 words once it was transcribed. As an SEO expert, I can tell you that long form content usually will rank better, and I’m getting these really in depth long blog posts out of just simply transcribing what I’m speaking in these episodes.
I don’t know about you, but if I sit down to write a blog post, it takes me way longer than half an hour and I’m recording all of these episodes in definitely under that amount of time just by speaking and talking and getting them out of my brain. Then I just send it off to the transcribing service and it comes back to me for just a couple bucks, ready to put into a blog post.
Another thing that I’ve been doing to help boost the signal on podcast episodes is I email my email list every time I drop a new episode. So I just give them a little teaser of what’s included. I have a link to Spotify and iTunes so that they can listen right away.
Here’s a really amazing thing. I’ve struggled for months now to come up with content for Instagram and Facebook posts. That problem has completely disappeared because I’m literally pulling all my social media content from these episodes. I go through the transcript, I grab all the quotables from the episode and I just turn them into images, posts and captions. So I’m not having to reinvent the wheel. I’m spending an hour or two every week recording the episode, pulling all the quotables and creating the images and then posting them on to Instagram.
This has solved a number of problems for me. Number one, trying to think of what to blog about. I just pick a topic for the podcast and they speak it and I transcribe it. Number two, coming up with content to post on social media. I’m pulling all of that content from these episodes, which is just majorly relieved a ton of stress for me. I can’t even describe it.
So that’s an overview of my podcast strategy and I think I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing because it feels like it’s working for right now.
What I Would Have Done Differently
Number one, I probably would have launched with all four launch episodes in the tank. Like they would have already been recorded and up on iTunes when I started my launch because I think that that probably would have boosted my download numbers quite a bit in the beginning. It is possible if I had done it that way, that I could have made New and Noteworthy on iTunes, which I didn’t. If I could go back, I would have probably had more time to launch and would’ve gotten all those four episodes done before the beginning, it would have been a little easier.
And then the other thing I wish I had done during the launch period was email my launch squad people daily during the launch cause I had 80 people on my launch squad, but I only had about a third of them complete the launch sequence that I gave them to do, which I have no idea if that’s a good number or not. But maybe if I had emailed them I could have gotten more people to interact and to participate.
Other than that, I mean I really don’t have any regrets about this. I think podcasting is definitely a viable way to get in touch with your people, to teach them, and I know people are consuming a lot of content right now. Some people like videos, some people like blogs. I am able to kind of hit all three of those things because what I’m doing is recording the podcast and then I’m also publishing it to YouTube as well, which isn’t actually me on video. Maybe someday it will be, but at least I’m actually hitting all these platforms, you know, also publishing to Pinterest and Instagram and Facebook really all out of just that 15 minutes it takes me to record the episodes and then however much time it takes me to edit. So that’s pretty amazing.
Whatever industry you’re in, podcasting could be something to give it a try. I’m enjoying it a ton. It’s way easier than I thought it was going to be. It’s super enjoyable. So if you guys are interested in trying out podcasting, I totally recommend Podcast Pro University by Stef Gass. She’s my podcast coach and she’s amazing. She is such a beautiful human being. I love her and her advice has been invaluable to me. I’m going to put in the show notes, a link to the Podcast Pro University course if you want to check it out because I’d love to have you be in our little podcast mastermind together. That would be tons of fun.
And then I think the other thing is just really being in tune with what people want. Like I said in the beginning, like getting in those Facebook groups and paying attention to what people are talking about in whatever industry you’re in, people have problems and if you’re a problem solver, then you have the basis of doing a podcast. I think it would be honestly amazing opportunity for your marketing.
So if you decide to launch a podcast, as always, I feel like I end every episode this way, but I want to hear about your successes. I want to hear about your challenges. Come DM me on Instagram. Let’s be Insta besties. I love talking with you guys. Don’t be shy, like I’m just sitting on my bed in my PJ’s recording a podcast, so come chat with me. Let’s be friends and I can’t wait to hear more about your success.