10 Classes From 10K Downloads of Ahrefs Podcast

We’ve not too long ago crossed 10k downloads for Ahrefs Podcast. And, to be sincere with you, I believed this 10k would come simpler.

I imply, Ahrefs is a reasonably mature model within the web optimization business, and most of our channels are measured in thousands and thousands:

So after we reached that 10k milestone I felt each joyful about it, and upset in regards to the quantity being so low. It was kinda just like the “third Place Celebration Meme” scenario (which I believed can be very becoming to re-create for the event on LinkedIn):

Tim's real-life version of the "3rd Place Celebration Meme."

My foremost takeaway: getting a podcast off the bottom may be very, very onerous.

It doesn’t compound in the best way web optimization does and the format of “Zoom interviews” doesn’t carry out very effectively on YouTube.

So in case you have been considering of launching a podcast, I can provide you 10 compelling the explanation why you shouldn’t do it:

I’ve observed that too many individuals deal with podcasts as “straightforward content material”—get on a name, file, publish. Completed!

Nicely… for us at Ahrefs, the precise interview is perhaps 40% of work.

Inviting company, scheduling time with them, doing first rate analysis, creating an enticing introduction, designing a thumbnail for YouTube, transcribing, including timecodes, writing titles and descriptions, importing to a bunch of podcasting platforms, slicing out snippets for promotion, writing copy for these snippets…

Working a podcast is A LOT of labor (if you wish to create a top quality present, after all).

I can’t think about doing Ahrefs Podcast alone. It’s a workforce effort from fairly a number of individuals:

  • Michelle (our group supervisor) is doing a lot of the heavy lifting by way of researching company, enhancing the recording, and managing the entire course of end-to-end.
  • George and Nikita are those producing these cool intros.
  • Sergey is designing thumbnails for YouTube.
  • Helen helps with uploads.

Sure, you’ll be able to minimize corners right here and there. However you danger compromising the standard. And a low-quality present will make all of your promotional efforts lots much less efficient.

Earlier than beginning Ahrefs Podcast I did in all probability over 100 interviews on different individuals’s podcasts. And I can let you know that being a bunch is a lot more durable than being a visitor. The strain to make the interview attention-grabbing is completely on you, not the visitor.

The visitor is usually in a “reactive” mode—they simply have to reply no matter is thrown at you. However the interviewer is the one in the end answerable for the success of an interview. It’s important to keep sharp all through, ask attention-grabbing questions, and know the place to dig deeper (and when to alter topic).

Too many podcast hosts like to chop corners right here and simply default to asking each visitor the identical set of generic questions, with out making an attempt dig a bit deeper into the solutions they get.

I like how Ryan Vacation described it:

“They’ll ask you a query, you’ll give a solution after which you’ll be able to nearly hear their eyes scan the paper they’ve in entrance of them as they transfer on the following query on the record.

It’s disrespectful to the visitor, however that’s not my actual downside with it. My downside is that it makes for actually boring audio. Who needs to take heed to somebody actually cellphone one thing in? Why do you have to take heed to a dialog that the host isn’t even listening to?”

Ryan HolidayRyan Holiday

You may disagree with me on this one, as a result of there are undoubtedly some good quick podcasts out there.

However once I tried interviewing my company for one hour, I noticed that it was not sufficient to squeeze some actually good data out of them. Particularly when your visitor may be very talkative they usually prefer to digress—that may simply throw your complete interview plan off the rails.

However getting individuals to decide to talking with you for 2 hours is an enormous ask. Many excessive profile individuals gained’t chunk until your podcast is rather well identified.

And when you do get somebody to spend two hours with you, staying sharp and alert for this lengthy with no break could be fairly difficult at instances.

Some individuals suppose that touchdown an enormous title is all they should get their podcast off the bottom, and that can routinely assure views. No, it gained’t.

If you happen to search round on YouTube, you’ll discover many podcasters who interviewed all the large names within the digital advertising and marketing area. And but the views on these episodes are largely in double digits.

However my largest gripe is individuals who demand that their company assist them promote the interview. As soon as the episode is revealed, they observe up with a visitor, asking them to “please share it along with your viewers.”

Sorry, however no.

I did 5 podcast interviews this month, they usually have been all almost the identical. And if I have been to share every one among them on my social channels, I’d solely irritate my viewers. And in addition to, most social networks don’t actually prefer it if you put up hyperlinks, so the engagement and attain on these sorts of posts is tremendous low.

In case your solely promotion technique for the podcast is “my company will assist market it”—I’ve dangerous information for you. They gained’t.

Take any “huge” visitor that’s in your thoughts and go seek for their present podcast interviews. They in all probability did a number of dozen of them simply this yr. So why would anybody be considering YOUR interview with that particular person?

There are solely two causes:

  1. You’re an attention-grabbing particular person your self, so people would take heed to you even when it was a solo podcast.
  2. You’re excellent at selling (extra on that later).

Taking a look at my very own habits, 80% of podcast interviews I take heed to are by hosts I already know and respect: Nathan Barry, Eric Siu, Dave Gerhardt, Kipp Bodnar & Kieran Flanagan, and many others. Solely 20% are by hosts I haven’t heard of earlier than, however they promoted the episode effectively sufficient to get on my radar.

Podcasting is a reasonably ineffective technique to develop your individual viewers and recognition. However, quite the opposite, it’s a reasonably good technique to leverage no matter present viewers and recognition you have already got.

I think about your finish aim is rising your online business. Which means it is advisable to develop your gross sales. Which implies you must pursue probably the most high-converting advertising and marketing ways accessible.

Nicely… a podcast just isn’t one among them.

Throughout my two-hour-long conversations with my company, there’s truly little or no alternative to squeeze in some type of Ahrefs gross sales pitch. I attempt to point out related use circumstances the place it matches the dialog, however there have been fairly a number of episodes the place our product didn’t get any shoutout at all.

A podcast is a superb device for branding and constructing belief along with your audience. However I’m not anticipating any gross sales to come back from the episodes that we’ve revealed so far.

If you happen to want gross sales, you’d be higher off sponsoring some related podcasts in your area of interest (however even then, we tried it and didn’t see many gross sales from it). It’s a good way to lift consciousness, however not make any instant gross sales.

Every episode must be targeted in your visitor and THEIR enterprise. I imply… you didn’t invite some high-profile particular person on a name to simply discuss your self for a pair hours, proper?

And in addition to, if you would like the episode to land, you must deal with making your visitor look good. Your listeners are right here to study out of your visitor, and you must make sure that they’ll study loads.

In my very own interviews, I attempt to dig actually deep into my company’ companies and careers. I’m genuinely considering what they do, why they do it, and the way they do it. Your complete dialog is all about them.

In consequence, my company have loads of room to advertise themselves and their enterprise with out feeling salesy. That’s one of many foremost the explanation why they comply with be interviewed within the first place: they need to faucet into my viewers and promote their factor.

So in case your aim is to advertise your individual factor—it is advisable to be a podcast visitor, not a podcast host.

Evaluate podcasts to web optimization. An article you revealed 10 years in the past can nonetheless convey you guests (and gross sales) at present. However as quickly as you cease publishing new episodes of your podcast… everybody will overlook about it.

We simply crossed a measly 10,000 downloads. It took us 3 months, 10 episodes, and a TON of promotion to get there. And Ahrefs already has a reasonably large viewers. If I have been ranging from a clean slate, I’d have barely reached 1,000 downloads by now.

Why is it so onerous to advertise? Nicely, we principally mentioned a lot of the causes above:

In different phrases, with out an present viewers to faucet into, it’ll take you a large number longer than three months to succeed in 10k downloads.

So there’s that.

Nicely… I didn’t say that podcasting was utterly ineffective and completely not value it. I merely shared 10 the explanation why it is best to suppose twice earlier than stepping into it.

There’s clearly the opposite aspect of the coin. I’ll share my 10 the explanation why YOU SHOULD begin a podcast as soon as we attain the 50k milestone. Keep tuned! 😉

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