Audio is an effective yet frequently underutilized medium in content marketing. While podcasts aren’t the only type of audio content out there, they have been growing in popularity. The 2018 Infinite Dial Study by Edison Research found that over 22% of the US, or 73 million people, listened to a podcast in the last month. This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise given that in today’s day and age, everyone seems to be on the go. The beauty of audio content like podcasts is that instead of taking the time to sit down and read something, you can listen to information basically whenever and wherever you are, needing only a smart phone or device to do so.
The growing trend of podcasting is one that your law firm should definitely be taking advantage of. However, you shouldn’t jump in without developing a podcast strategy first. Below are some tips for hosting a successful podcast as a lawyer or law firm.
Have a Clear Goal
When considering to start podcasting, you should first think about your why. Are you developing a podcast because your competitors have one? Are you looking to get more clients? These are relevant marketing goals, but you should also have a more specific purpose of your podcast in mind before starting it. Maybe you are looking to educate listeners, showcase your firm’s capabilities, or enhance your firm’s thought leadership position. Whatever your goal, you must then develop episode topics and choose guests that will support this.
Know Your Audience
This point relates to the goal of your podcast, and just like your purpose, your audience shouldn’t be too broadly defined. Your content won’t be relevant to everyone, but that’s okay. Considering specifically who you want your podcast to benefit will allow you to narrowly develop the content of your show as well as give you a specific group to focus marketing efforts on. Many law firms choose to produce practice area specific podcasts in order to cater to a niche audience and be able to delve deep into trending topics. However, some law firm podcasts like Akin Gump’s are more topic driven and tend to focus on a variety of today’s trending topics in order to appeal to a broad audience.
Consistency is Key
This rule goes for several aspects of your show: how frequently you post new podcasts, the content and structure of your show, and who you choose as your host. In terms of frequency, don’t overcommit what you, your firm, and your staff can realistically do. Podcasts should be 15-20 minutes in length, and a consistent show structure will help to keep your show under this limit. Structure will also allow listeners to know what to expect when they download your podcast, making them more likely to subscribe and keep listening. Sticking with the same host from show to show will help in this regard as well.
Develop Your Brand
We’ve discussed the importance of developing a personal brand for yourself or your firm, and having a podcast will definitely influence this, hopefully in a positive way. If done successfully, your podcast should give listeners a sense of what you and your firm value, your expertise, and personality. It can be easy for outside parties to view law firms as rigid entities, so a podcast is a great way to humanize your firm. Building a relationship with your listeners will facilitate trust and ultimately positive awareness of your firm.
Entertain and Engage
The number of law firm podcasts and other legal audio shows is increasing, so it’s essential that you make your podcast stand out among your competitors. Given that by nature podcasts are strictly audio content, your voice or your host’s voice will be a distinguishing factor for viewers deciding to listen to your show. That said, the host of your podcast should speak clearly in an engaging and upbeat tone to draw in listeners. Additionally, while listeners are hoping to gain insight and information from your show, they are likely still looking for some form of entertainment. As always, keep things professional, but don’t be afraid to make a joke or two!
Promote your podcast
After putting in extensive time developing and perfecting your podcast, you’ll want to make sure it reaches the public. You will first need a hosting service that you can then use to submit your podcast to platforms such as iTunes and Stitcher, and there are several popular services available. Once your podcast is posted, promote it as often as you can utilizing social media outlets, newsletters, and email blasts to share your show with your clients and greater network.
If you aren’t familiar with podcasts yourself, the idea may at first seem daunting and uncharacteristic of your law firm’s content. However, podcasts are a great tool for communicating more directly with your audience and can provide significant value to your law firm. We would recommend listening to a few of the top law firm podcasts or subscribing to the Good2bSocial podcast to understand how podcasting fits into the legal marketing space. Developing a successful podcast takes careful planning and a well-thought-out strategy, and we can help with that. Contact us to discuss the podcast production services we offer.