Podcasts require frequency. To retain listeners and get results you have to put out content regularly for your audience.
Podcasts can be daily like the Marketing School.
You can elect for a weekly cadence (like our own podcast for B2B marketers, Recorded Content).
The constant here: your podcast needs to come out constantly and consistently. Podfade is a real term and it’s because podcasts are very easy to launch, but not nearly as easy to maintain. Your business needs to select a release schedule that you can stick to.
Because of the need to do the podcast on a regular basis and on a schedule, one of the biggest pieces of it that we see B2B tech companies struggle with is: who is going to host the show?
The CEO could do it, but what happens when he/she is too busy?
The marketers could do it, but then does marketing become the face of the company?
Sales could do it, but then does it come off like we’re trying to “sell” the guest?
To answer this question, it’s important to remember “who” the focus of the podcast is.
What's the focus of the podcast?
Many companies go into their podcast with the intention of “converting” the audience into customers or at a bare minimum, leads. In this situation, your podcast becomes very focused on your organization. Focused on the value proposition of your business instead of the value you’re bringing to your industry.
Have you ever been with two friends where one tells a story and then the other makes an attempt to one-up that story? Don’t let your podcast become that situation. Your job is to ask the questions and get person one to elaborate and expound on their experiences. Can you give your own insights? Sure! Just make sure that it doesn’t become a competition. Free flowing conversation that focuses on your guest, should be the goal.
The podcast should focus around trends, shifts, constants and insights into the industry that you serve. A B2B podcast is not a case study on your business. It should be content that speaks directly to your ideal customer where they can get educated on the industry, not your technology.
So what does this have to do with selecting your host?
If you’re less focused on your host being the star of the show and more focused on the guests that are coming on your show, the host matters far less. You don’t necessarily need one person who hosts every episode. You can take shifts on who’s responsible. Maybe someone is responsible for interviewing customers, another is responsible for subject matter experts, another is in charge of targeted accounts that are coming on as guests.
The job of the host or hosts should be to dig into information on the guest. That way, all you need is a bit of genuine curiosity… and a road map.
Preparing your podcast host
Whether you have one host or ten different hosts that will take turns, you need to make sure to have a plan. If you have a well thought out plan for your show, you can make sure that it isn’t as incumbent on the host, but more-so to get good guests!
View your host as a journalist or documentarian, not as an entertainer. And arm them as such!
You should have a general framework for your episodes. How long do you spend in the intro? What questions are asked to get the conversation started?
Then, what are the main topics you want to make sure you touch on in each episode? You should map out questions that help lead there.
How does the episode close and what are the closing questions?
You’ll find that if you have a good plan, “who” the host is doesn’t matter nearly as much as who the guest is. The purpose is to highlight that guest, not yourself.
Who should host your company's podcast?
In the end, you want someone who can ask good questions, follow along with the road map you set out and also relate to the guest. It can be someone at the executive level, it can be folks in marketing, it can be technical or subject matter experts, it can be your sales execs.
It doesn’t matter.
The focus needs to be on getting good guests, asking the right questions and staying consistent. Your audience wants episodes that have predictable release dates and guests that talk about their issues. If your CEO is only available to record once per quarter, think about bringing other folks into the fold. You’ll be surprised at truly how capable so many people in your organization can be.
Written by Justin Brown
Justin is the Co-Founder of Motion. With a background in Marketing, Communications and Sales, Justin brings a wealth of experience working with some of the world’s fastest growing B2B tech companies. After steering a video production company into the Inc. 5000 as the Head of Sales and Marketing, he started Motion where he now helps build marketing strategies for some of the most innovative B2B tech companies in the country. You can find him on LinkedIn.