There’s nothing wrong with wanting to grow your podcast quickly.
Every time someone asks “How do I grow my podcast audience?”, the all-too common answer is “Don’t worry about growth”, “Keep putting out great content”, “Wait for it to grow organically”, “Keep asking your listeners to share your podcast”, or some variation of that.
All those are great, for sure. But it doesn’t have to end there.
There are ways to make things happen faster, and not just have to “Wait for 2 years or 100 episodes - whichever comes first”.
“It all comes down to priorities”, one might argue.
We’re not talking about making money from your podcast here. We’re talking about growing your audience.
I haven’t met any podcaster (yet) that doesn’t want to grow their audience, regardless of whether they want to monetize their show or not. I’m assuming you’re not one, because if you didn’t care about growing your audience (and “improving your show” is also an indirect way of saying that you wish to grow), then you’re probably not reading this post.
Now, it’s one thing to try and set expectations low for someone wanting to retire rich with their podcast after publishing their first 3 episodes.
But it’s another thing - and is totally reasonable - for someone to have fair expectations of wanting to know how to grow their audience without having to wait endlessly for “word of mouth” to kick in.
I don’t know about you, but other than with Podcasters within Podcasting communities, I’ve never seen any “regular” person promote a podcast. Even if they do, they’re like the biggest outlier, and not the norm.
So yeah, word of mouth is tremendously overrated.
Doing smart marketing, like spending money on ads, contests, booths-at-events, grassroots-marketing and list-building and JV’s… those are simply not talked about enough.
Simply “asking” for social-shares and ratings and reviews is not going to get it done - at least not for the next few years. And if you’re simply posting on “social media”, then if you don’t already have your target-audience following you on social, all you’re doing is spamming your friends and family, who probably have absolutely zero interest in your online business or your podcast.
It basically comes down to “How much are you willing to spend to promote your show?”.
If you don’t havem say, $20 per month to spend on promoting your podcast, or whatever it is that you’re trying to promote, then it’s most probably not because you “cannot” afford it, it’s probably because you “do not want to” afford it. Check out my podcast episode titled “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is And Pay to Play - Ep #68” at SubscribeMe.fm . On the episode, I talk about why it’s important to spend money on promoting your podcast (or YouTube channel, or website), and I also talk about ways in which you can easily come up anywhere between $20 to $200 per month in practically-found-money that you can then use on advertising.
And advertising doesn’t mean just Facebook ads. There are so many ways to put that money to good use. And I talk about a lot of paid ways and a lot of free ways to promote your “stuff”, in my free report titled: “Podcast Promotion Report: How to Promote Your Podcast, Reach New Listeners, Build Your Audience and Find Your 1000 True Fans”. While it is being sold for a few bucks on Amazon Kindle (just search Amazon for “Podcast Promotion Report”), you can also go to https://SubscribeMe.fm/podcast-promotion/ and download it for free.
And when it comes to the next step - “Monetization” - you don’t really need tens- or hundreds of thousands of listeners. You just need your “1000 True Fans”, like Kevin Kelly says. And you can read my twist on that in my report above.
– Ravi Jayagopal
Download my free report: Podcast Promotion Report: How to Promote Your Podcast, Reach New Listeners, Build Your Audience and Find Your 1000 True Fans