Podcasting isn’t new in the B2B space.
James Carbary has some unique perspectives on podcast marketing. Until recently, we may have been approaching podcast marketing from the wrong perspective. So we changed our thinking. Now, we’ve collaborated on episodes with our ideal prospects, and we shortened the length of each podcast.
James is the CEO & Founder of Sweet Fish Media, one of the premier podcasting agencies in the B2B space. It’s been featured in TIME, Forbes, Entrepreneur, and Inc. His entire perspective is simple: B2B sales are difficult. Getting to that VP or high-level decision-maker is nearly impossible. Even if you do, they’ve probably been pestered with other B2B sales calls all day long.
James does something different: He helps brands develop ideal podcasts, centered around ideal clients. Then he invites those clients as guests on the show.
James has a hit show on iTunes called the B2B Growth Show. Lookup B2B on any podcast player, and it’ll be at the top or close to it.
Because James collaborates with the most compelling guests from all over the B2B industry: from C-suite executives in tech startups, to thought leaders in high-end international currency, to medical device resellers — all have been glad to be a part of the show, and many of the turn into clients.
It’s easy to understand why: James isn’t selling them. He’s leading with value. Typically, B2B companies struggle to connect with decision-makers and clients. The options are pretty rough: cold call, or send an email.
Who wakes up in the morning and says, “I really want to get a cold call today?” Neither does the VP of any company you’re trying to sell to.
So, James started what he calls #contentbasednetworking, and he collaborates with his ideal clients, mainly through podcasting.
Too many people think of podcasts from an audience growth perspective. When a brand starts a podcast, their thoughts are centered around their audience base potentially turning into clients, and the content is inward focused on the brand itself. Then they wonder why few people listen.
James says they’re missing it.
Podcasting is not all about your audience. It’s not even mostly about your audience. It’s mostly about your guests. That’s where your focus should be.
Instead of creating a podcast around your brand, create it around your ideal client. What topics do they care about? What topics are they interested in? What’s their area of expertise?
Tailor the entire show around them. Then, invite those ideal clients as guests on your show. It’s a game-changer.
Instead of leading with a cold call, a mass email, or an annoying ad, you are leading with value. You are giving your potential client a free PR platform, a chance to tell their story, share their expertise, and talk about their brand. They’ll be happy to hop on.
In the B2B space, decision-makers do plenty of research on your brand and competitors before they make a purchase. If your brand has little to no content, you will be passed up for another company offering a competing product.
Having a professional podcast with industry experts frames your brand as an industry leader. It not only provides you with an excellent opportunity to add value to your audience and your guests, but you become an expert in your space.
Everyone has a blog — every company, every brand, and every dog-sitter. It’s standard. Here’s the deal: Most people will spend less than 40 seconds on your blog, and many people will spend less than 15. That’s not a lot of exposure.
But podcasts are different.
People listen on their commute. They tune in during their workout. Their morning jogs turn into thought exercises. If you can get in their ears for that commute or workout, you likely capture their passive attention for 15-30 minutes, and if they like your content, you’re now part of their daily routine.
James is all about giving to give. True to his philosophy, here’s a freebie he says could change your podcasting game: Keep your podcasts to 12 to 15 action-packed minutes.
“B2B podcast listeners enjoy action-packed, non-fluffy content.” — James Carbary
One of the top questions people ask James is: “How long should my podcast be?” James says 15 minutes is usually plenty for the B2B world. You are shooting for decision-makers, people of action. They don’t want fluff.
Unless You’re Tim Robbins or Jeff Bezos, most people probably don’t care about the coffee you had or how adorable your puppy is. They want tips, expert advice, performance-driven content. So deliver it … in 15 minutes or less.
If you don’t use iTunes, you can listen to every episode here.