Episode 125 – Are You Losing Listeners? (Pitfalls Disrupting Podcast Traffic)
In a previous episode of Podcast Talent Coach, I shared 7 ways to drive listeners away from your show. We work so hard to gain listeners and podcast traffic. Why would we ever drive them away.
Joshua Liston from The Deadly Arnold podcast was checking out my back catalog when he stumbled across this particular episode. He took exception to one of the 7 ways I mentioned.
In the episode, I suggested one way you drive listeners away is being the podcaster who assumes listeners have heard the show before.
You work so hard to attract listeners to your podcast. Growing the audience is a constant challenge for most podcasters. You do all you can to bring more people to the party.
In this episode, we discuss the 7 ways you could be driving listeners away.
In the episode next week, I will dissect one of the episodes suggested by Joshua and demonstrate how successful podcasters eliminate these traps.
There are seven common mistakes podcasters make that drive listeners away. Here is a brief overview of each. See if you recognize these within your show.
THE PODCASTER WHO TALKS AT YOU
Great podcasters are not announcers. Great podcasters are conversationalists. If you can have a conversation with someone you cannot see nor hear, you have the ability to create a great podcast.
Instead of talking at me, talk to me and with me. Let’s have a conversation. You won’t be able to hear my responses. However, how many times have you found yourself talking back to the radio or podcast host? When the listener is responding out loud, you know the host has the ability to be conversational even when the other party isn’t present.
Be personal and talk to your listener, not at her.
THE PODCASTER THAT WASTES YOUR TIME
The wider the focus of your podcast, the better chance your topic will not interest me. It sounds counterintuitive. If you want more listeners, you need to narrowly focus your topic.
When you are too broad, your listener doesn’t know what to expect from your show.
Instead, pick a niche. Make it a tight focus. Pick the segment of your topic that you most enjoy and really focus there.
Focus is powerful. When you are focused, your audience knows exactly what to expect. Your focus builds loyalty, because you aren’t attracting listeners who have no interest in your niche. Since the niche is only focused on the slice of information that that interests your listener, your audience will almost always feel like you are delivering great content. You’ll never be wasting their time.
THE PODCASTER THAT DOES NOT MAKE YOU CARE
When you only deliver the what, the listener has no real reason to care. You are only providing information. Facts are lifeless. You must provide the why before you can provide the what. The “why” makes your listener care.
I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “what’s in it for me?”
Your audience will be asking this very question every time they tune into your podcast.
When your audience knows what is in it for them, they begin to care. Making your listener care is the only way to get them to listen and more importantly come back again.
Provide the “why” early in the podcast. Make them care.
THE PODCASTER THAT DOES NOT GET YOU INVOLVED
A podcast that is only focused on the host quickly becomes a very lonely podcast. “Enough about me, let’s talk about me.” Listeners surely won’t stick around for that very long. If listeners are not involved, they feel like the host doesn’t care about them.
Make your listener the star. It is your show. You know where it is going. When listeners are involved in your show, it is always your job to lead your guest and make them the star.
Get your listener involved wherever you can. Provide opportunities for listeners to interact with you. Even if you receive very little feedback, the opportunity to do so will send the message to your listeners that you care. The opportunity for involvement goes a long way.
THE PODCASTER THAT DOESN’T HELP OTHERS
Focus on helping others.
Zig Ziglar had many great quotes. One of my favorites is, “You can have anything you want in life just as long as you help enough other people get what they want in life.” How true that is.
As you turn your information into engaging entertainment with your podcast, keep in mind that helping people is part of the foundation of a strong relationship. If you take, take, take, your relationship won’t last long. If you are there to give and help, you will develop friends for life.
Get what you want out of life. Focus on helping others.
THE PODCASTER THAT TRIES TOO HARD TO BE FUNNY
Many podcasters painstakingly try to be funny. Jokes are never funny when the joke teller tries too hard. The forced punchline is uncomfortable. The timing is off. He will lead with something like, “This is funny” or “Here’s a good one” or “You’ll love this”. If I’m going to love it, do you really need to tell me? Won’t I know I love it once you tell me?
The good news is you don’t have to be funny. Stop trying so hard. The funny will come. You are focused on the wrong thing.
Funny follows fun.
THE PODCASTER WHO ASSUMES LISTENERS HAVE HEARD THE SHOW BEFORE
If you’re not explaining your podcast purpose each and every show, it will be difficult for new listeners to understand the show. Your audience will feel like they are joining a conversation in the middle. They will be lost.
Have you ever felt left out of a conversation due to inside jokes. Two other people are chuckling about something, and you have no idea why. “Oh, it’s an inside joke” they say. Why aren’t you important enough to be in on the joke? Why is it inside only to them? Those situations are a bit offensive. You’re not included.
When you are not explaining your podcast, you are not allowing your listener to understand the nuances of your show. They won’t feel like part of the club. Your listener will not feel important or that you care about them. It is quite possible they will leave.
A well-crafted introduction serves two purposes.
First, it tells the brand new listener who is hearing the show for the very first time exactly what to expect from the show.
Second, those that have heard the show before are confident that they are in the right place.
As you create your show open, treat it as if every listener is saying, “Hey, I’m new here. What’s going on?” You’ll make everyone comfortable as the show begins.
Next week, we will review a podcast suggested by Joshua to learn how these ideas are put to use in the real world to attract listeners and drive podcast traffic.
As I mentioned in this episode …
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Let’s turn your information into engaging entertainment.