Podcasting for MSPs: It’s about the audience and guest

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    Originally published on SmarterMSP.com

    After recently sitting down as a guest on the SmarterMSP podcast, I got to thinking about how podcasting, and the revolution that is currently taking place all around us, is truly one of the most exciting marketing opportunities I’ve seen come along in years.

    According to one recent study, about 50 percent of all homes are “podcast fans” – meaning that someone listens to a least one or two episodes a week. If that sounds impressive, it is because it equates to about 60 million homes in the United States alone. All told, about 68 million people say that they listen to podcasts on at least a weekly basis – a trend that shows absolutely no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

    It’s amazing to see the MSP community also embracing the podcast as a medium. Besides the SmarterMSP podcast, I’ve counted over a dozen MSP-focused podcasts with the sole purpose of providing value to the MSP community. At the same time, I’ve seen many MSPs capitalize on the trend as well. MSPs around the world are being featured guests on, and even hosting their own podcasts that provide value to their local business communities.

    This type of podcast marketing can provide tremendous value for an MSP. For example, being a guest on a podcast that already has a large and dedicated listenership is a fantastic way to leverage an existing audience and get your name out there to a group of people who may have no other way of learning about you. Additionally, hosting your own podcast and disseminating your content to your list of prospects is a tremendous way to build value and nurture existing relationships.

    However, even with all the ways that MSPs are capitalizing on the podcast revolution, far too many MSPs fail to see the forest through the trees. They see podcasts as a marketing opportunity focused on reaching the podcast listener, which they obviously are. But they also need to expand their view and see their purpose within the context of the bigger picture, as podcasts present an incredible opportunity to have one-on-one conversations with your ideal prospects and dream clients. It is an opportunity just waiting to be taken advantage by someone who knows what they’re doing.

    Get your dream customers to sit down with you

    Take a moment to think about your ideal customer, for example the key IT decision maker at a 30 to 100 seat business in your neighborhood. Next, think about the type of client, that if you landed them, would change the trajectory of your business. Would having a 30-minute conversation with that person be of value to you? I bet it would.

    Now think about what would happen if you called them up and asked to have a 30-minute conversation about their “IT and cybersecurity posture.” From my experience, and from the experience of the hundreds of MSPs I speak with each year, setting up a conversation like that is easier said than done. Your prospects in this case can see the forest through the trees themselves. People don’t like being sold to, and asking for a conversation, even thinly veiled as a networking opportunity, will rarely get you past the receptionist.

    Now think about reaching out to that same prospect. Only this time, you’re not looking for a conversation about their current state of IT, instead you want to invite them to be a guest on your podcast. You’ve noticed their company’s amazing business achievements, and you want to give THEM some publicity, and want THEM to be able to share their story with your audience.

    In my experience, the second scenario is what really works in starting a conversation. So, how do you get your dream customers to sit down with you for 30 minutes? It’s simple: ask them to be a guest on your podcast.

    Podcasting can start an amazing relationship

    If you’ve taken anything from the first 650 words of this article, it’s that the best guest to have on your podcast is someone that you would love to have as a customer. You’re sitting down with that someone and you’re taking a deep dive into topics they actively care about. You’re providing value by giving them publicity, and a channel for reaching new customers of their own. In most cases, it’s hard to provide this level of value to a prospect, but podcasting allows you to do that.

    When you host a podcast, you do more than interview a guest. Before the interview, you’ll generally have a casual conversation with that guest. After the interview you’re following up to make sure that the guest sees the episode release, sharing on social media, and working together to promote the episode.

    This joint opportunity for promotion will often build more trust and rapport than even three or four hours of sales-focused conversations could ever do. That’s because throughout the entire experience,  you are never selling. In the old days, deals would get done on the Golf Course, not because you pitched your services over 18-holes, but because you were having fun and casually building trust.

    That is the same benefit that comes from a podcast conversation. You’re not talking about your services, and instead you’re having a fun and inspiring conversation that leaves everyone feeling good.

    Once you’ve accomplished that, you’d be shocked by how often those casual conversations naturally turn into business opportunities. You’re feeling each other out, finding out more about one another and suddenly, inspiration strikes. They casually mention a problem they have and, low and behold, you have a way to solve it. Or they have something they’re trying to accomplish and surprise, surprise, you know how to help them do precisely that.

    Can podcasting move the needle?

    The mistake that some MSP marketing companies often make is that they’re still looking at podcasting as an opportunity to connect with the listenership. In reality, that’s only a fraction of what they’re able to accomplish. If you see them for what they really are – an opportunity to build key relationships – suddenly you have a way to connect with individuals in a more intimate way that we’ve literally never had access to until now.

    Is podcasting the right move for your MSP? Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, I’m happy to help you figure out what that right next move is. I encourage you to contact either myself or one of my colleagues at Tech Pro Marketing so that we can get your strategy call on the schedule. It’ll allow us to learn as much about your business so we can help take your own efforts to the next level.

    To hear more from Nate, listen to his appearance on our podcast and subscribe to the SmarterMSP Podcast today!

    Nate Freedman

    Nate Freedman is the CEO of Tech Pro Marketing and Ulistic, the only MSP marketing group with 12+ years of experience helping MSPs generate over 20,000 high quality leads, with over 150 5-star Google Reviews to back it up. Connect with me on LinkedIn.