There was a time when an image was enough to advertise a brand. Then came the smartphone revolution and now people use videos to communicate with customers. But more recently, with the video marketing segment nearing saturation, marketers are hungry for more channels to reach out to customers. And customers are hungry for more ways to find valuable content.
Podcasts are becoming the bridge between these two groups.
Statistics show that nearly 41% of the US population listens to podcasts on a monthly basis. This makes podcasts a gold mine for businesses curious to explore new channels for customer engagement. Besides businesses expanding their marketing channels, podcasts are also popular among content creators looking for a platform to share their ideas and opinions with the world.
Image source: Kimp
With that being said, you should also know that there are over 2.4 million podcasts on Apple Podcasts alone, according to the Podcast Industry Insights courtesy of Daniel J. Lewis. And there are plenty of other podcasting platforms as well. So, you should be able to guess the amount of competition you would be facing when you launch a podcast.
So, how do you make your podcast stand out in the ocean of content out there? Marketing! Branding! Yes, a podcast needs dedicated marketing and branding efforts just like any other business. And when it comes to promoting a podcast, ‘audiogram’ is the one buzzword you are likely to hear most often. So we are going to talk about audiograms, why you need them, and how to create audiograms that drive conversions.
What are audiograms for podcasts?
In science, an audiogram means, ‘the graphical representation of sounds that a human ear can hear’. In the marketing context, audiograms refer to the animated graphical, or waveform, representation of the audio from a podcast.
Let’s make it even simpler for you. An audiogram for a podcast would be the video version of the podcast. It is a combination of:
- Static image
- Audio waveform
- An actual audio snippet from the podcast episode you wish to promote
A good audiogram would be a combination of two or more of these. The audio snippet is obviously the must-have in your audiogram. The image is to grab attention. The animations are to let people know that there is audio playing in the background, as most people tend to play videos on social media muted. And the transcripts or text overlays are to let people get the message even if the video is on mute.
How you combine these elements, and what innovations you add to make the video more engaging, will determine whether your audiogram will be a crowd-puller. But before all that, why do you need audiograms for your podcast?
Reasons why every podcaster needs audiograms
1. Reach out to new leads through social media
According to the Digital 2021 July Global Statshot Report, 56.8% of the global population is on social media. So, if you need to reach out to new people to promote your podcast, what better place than this!
And, images and videos are the most popular types of content on social media at the moment. So, by posting a video version of your podcast episode (audiogram) on social media you manage to expand the audience base for your podcast.
2. Engage existing listeners
People who regularly listen to podcasts might not browse for new content on a daily basis. But they might be checking their social media feeds every day.
So, if you have an important announcement to make to your listeners or build anticipation for an upcoming episode, you can do so by reaching out to them on social media.
3. Tackle competition like a pro
With images and videos, you can convey a lot of information even if your content gets just a brief glance from your target audience. But with audio, unless your audience hits that play button, they would not know that you have something valuable to offer them.
All the time you spend on brainstorming for new ideas and recording great content will be wasted if you do not creatively promote your podcast. And there will be so many other podcasts that are similar to yours. To show your listeners that your podcast is different from the rest and that it is worth their time, you need an audiogram.
So, you now know that audiograms are good for your podcast promotion. But how do you really create one that makes people notice the content you post and thus bring in valuable leads to your podcast? Let’s tell you the recipe for a good podcast audiogram.
How to create a scroll-stopping podcast audiogram
1. Choose an image that is hard to ignore
On the infinite scroll of social media feeds, people often stop when they come across an eye-catching image or a video with a promising thumbnail. This means that the image you add to your audiogram will be the visual hook.
The image can be the difference between your audiogram getting lost in the vast social media content space and making people stop and see what your audiogram is about.
The image could be something more personal, like your own picture or that of the presenter or a guest in your episode. Or it could be custom graphics or illustrations you design with the help of professional designers to capture the essence of your podcast. Make it crisp and catchy and half your work is done.
2. Pay attention to the animation
A simple waveform synchronized with the audio is enough but are you willing to stick with what’s “enough”? You need something that makes the audiogram pop. Conventional sound waveforms, pulsating lines, the options are plenty. Talk to the graphic designer who will be creating your audiogram to know your options.
The marketer in you must already be telling you that you should be adding your brand’s personal touch to this animation and you are absolutely right. The color of the waveform or even the design could be matched with your brand’s visual theme.
Even if it is not a business podcast, most podcasters have a personal brand, logo, and other aspects of visual identity for their podcast. You can use these visual elements in your audiogram animation as well as the image itself.
3. Pick the right audio clip for your audiogram
Within your podcast episodes, you might already be using cliffhangers to keep your listeners coming back for more. But for new leads you target and listeners who are not regulars on your podcast yet, you need to do some foreshadowing with your audiograms. Now how do you do that?
Identify the most engaging portion of the audio. It must be something that builds suspense and makes listeners thirsty to listen to the whole thing. Use this segment in your audiogram and leave it there on your social media page for your listeners. They will definitely be tempted to head on over to the linked episode to listen to the entire episode.
4. Add good quality transcripts
Text overlays in your audiogram will complement the waveform animation. It will give one more element of motion to retain your audience’s attention. Make sure that you use a typo-free transcript of the audio in your audiogram. Also choose a suitable font style, size, and color that enhances the aesthetics of your audiogram.
Putting together all these four essential ingredients, you have the perfect combination of elements for an audiogram that makes your podcast popular. Consumers love content that entertains them, inspires them, or gives them something new to learn. So, if you acquire the knack of creating great quality podcasts, and then back it up with a robust marketing strategy that involves audiograms, you are on the path to success.
1. What are your options for creating an audiogram for your podcast?
There are a few online tools that let you create audiograms. But then you will be choosing from the standard animations, and themes in the library. So, if you want something unique and perfectly personalized for your brand, creating one with the help of a professional graphic designer would be a better option.
If you’re new to audiograms, or planning to create quite a few audiograms, consider an unlimited design subscription. With the option to request unlimited revisions, and iterations, for a flat fee, it really is your most cost effective design solution. While most design subscriptions focus on graphic design or video design exclusively, keep an eye out for options that offer both for optimal results.
2. What kind of podcasts can you promote through audiograms?
Basically anything! You can use audiograms to promote all of your podcast episodes. The type of podcast content you choose to promote with audiograms depends entirely on your marketing strategy. It depends on which episodes matter to your marketing efforts the most, or the audio content you feel will be driving good traffic to your podcast. If you are confused about what kind of audio to use, here are a few ideas:
- Pick something that gives valuable information to the listener
- If there is a section in your episode that is fun to listen to, it will be great for your audiogram
- Use the art of storytelling to direct listeners to your podcast to find out the whole story
3. How many audiograms should you post?
As many as you like! You might be releasing new episodes for your podcast only once a week or less frequently than that. But on social media, you need to post more often to keep your audience engaged.
So, for the same podcast episode, you can have different audiograms created. You can then post them one by one so that you have something new on your social media channel regularly. People who miss your first audiogram might end up noticing the second one and go to your podcast at last.