Why Email Campaigns Are The Key to Growing Your Podcast

Why Email Campaigns Are The Key to Growing Your Podcast
05 October, 2023 • ... • 210 views
Selzy Team
by Selzy Team

Building a loyal podcast following can be tricky. How do you get listeners to return time and time again? The answer is email. Compelling, creative campaigns not only attract current subscribers, keeping you in their minds, but also new listeners that may have never heard of your show.

This article will explore how email campaigns can help grow your fan base and how to kick start a dedicated newsletter to boost listener count.

Why use email campaigns for podcast growth?

Email marketing is a powerful tool for podcast growth. It’s a brilliant platform for communicating with potential and current audiences, advertising upcoming episodes, and nurturing a loyal community with personalized content.

Here’s why you should use email campaigns to grow your show.

Build a loyal audience

To grow a podcast, you’ll need to build an audience of loyal listeners that tune in weekly. While an omnichannel approach can be hugely beneficial, Litmus’ 2023 State of Email Workflows Report shows that email marketing is still the most effective channel for marketing leaders (41%), followed by social media (16%). Why is this? Because subscribers are a captive audience: they’ve signed up as they’re interested in receiving updates about the latest episode, so they will be waiting for your newsletters to hit their inbox.

Starting a newsletter to target new and returning listeners allows you to push exclusive material, like  bonus episodes, and resource guides to a niche audience. This will encourage people to listen to each episode to learn more about the content you put out.

Establish a personal connection

Email campaigns allow you to address fans by name and tailor content to their interests. By getting personal you create a more intimate experience for listeners. That personal touch also shows you value and recognize them as individuals, fostering a sense of connection and loyalty.

NBS addresses their podcast newsletter subscribers by name. The welcome message is prominently featured at the top of the email.
Source: Really Good Emails

Encourage subscribers to reply to emails, ask questions, or provide feedback.

The Daily Good newsletter asks their subscribers What permission have you been seeking from others lately?
Source: Milled

By actively engaging in conversations, you show genuine interest in your audience’s thoughts and opinions. Responding to their messages further deepens the personal connection and helps build a community around the show.

Increase podcast visibility and subscriptions

As we’ve already mentioned, email campaigns allow you to provide exclusive offers or incentives, which can include bonus material, premium episodes, giveaways, or discounts on merchandise. These exclusive perks create a sense of value and exclusivity for subscribers, which can prompt them to subscribe and engage with the podcast.

The New Yorker entices their audience with multiple subscription options, sweetening the deal with discounts and exclusive merch.
Source: Milled

Encouraging subscribers to share emails with their friends and networks who find your podcast interesting is another way to boost your subscriber count.

Include social sharing buttons or personalized referral links to make it easy for recipients to spread the word about your show. This can expand visibility and potentially attract new subscribers.

The Good Trade encourages subscribers to share the newsletter with friends and to follow the media on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Spotify, and Pinterest.
Source: Milled

Crafting an effective email campaign for your podcast

Are you ready to start a campaign and grow your podcast? Then you’ve come to the right place. Here are the five steps you need to boost your campaign and see results.

Building an email list

First things first, you must build an email list. You can do this by doing the following:

  • Placing prominent sign-up forms on your website, blog, and social media platforms.
  • Offering valuable incentives, such as exclusive material, bonus episodes, or resource guides, to entice visitors to subscribe.
  • Using social media ads or collaborations with other podcasters or influencers to generate traffic and capture email addresses.
  • Use SEO techniques, such as including well-performing keywords, in your podcast descriptions and emails to attract organic searches and build sign-ups.
  • Leveraging offline opportunities, such as events or speaking engagements, to collect email addresses from interested attendees.

Consider incorporating tools that would be relevant to listeners. For example, Millo created the Freelancer’s Rate Calculator for their targeted audience.

Millo's Freelance Rate Calculator, with clear instructions, among other things, aids beginner freelancers in factoring in savings and desired working hours.
Source: Millo

This calculator provides freelancers with insights into pricing their services and helps them make informed decisions. By offering such useful resources, you can attract and engage potential listeners who are interested in the content and value you provide.

Once you have a small list, you can build from there by encouraging subscribers to invite friends and spread the word.

Designing compelling emails

Without producing a unique message, you’ll struggle to engage listeners and build a valuable email list. You need a combination of appealing visuals, attention-grabbing subject lines, and high-quality content to target listeners appropriately.

Start by creating visually appealing templates reflecting your brand and style. This will help you stay recognizable in the minds of your audience. Additionally, you can leverage AI image generators to create visually appealing graphics that catch the attention of subscribers and enhance the visual appeal of campaigns.

Remember, your audience comes to you for your content, so you should maintain the same quality you’ve already set when creating email marketing content.

Keeping your emails concise, engaging, and scannable by using headings, bullet points, and images enhances readability and allows readers to get the picture quickly.

Finally, include a clear and compelling call-to-action (CTA) that directs subscribers to listen to the podcast, subscribe, or engage further. This will help you not only engage with your current audience but encourage new audiences to subscribe.

The Design Files align their newsletter's color scheme with episode photos, include summaries, and prominently highlight the CTA to listen to the latest episode.
The Design Files checks off all the boxes for a well-designed podcast newsletter. Source: Really Good Emails

Email frequency and timing

Determine a consistent frequency that keeps followers engaged without overwhelming them. To do this, regularly test different schedules and identify the best timing by measuring KPIs using the report features of your email service provider and tools like Google Analytics. Consider time zones and audience preferences while determining email frequency.

Align send frequency with your episode release schedule. Send emails when new episodes are released to generate interest and increase listenership. Finally, pay attention to analytics to monitor subscriber engagement and adjust the frequency or timing if necessary.

Personalization and segmentation

Personalize emails by addressing subscribers by name and tailoring the content to their interests.

A podcast platform makes listening recommendations based on what a subscriber has previously listened to.
Source: Really Good Emails

To create and send content that appeals to and converts casual visitors into dedicated fans, start collecting relevant information from subscribers during the sign-up process. This will help you segment your mailing list.

Collect information like audience demographics, interests and preferences or engagement levels and create segments you want to target in your future email campaigns. Remember to continuously analyze and refine your segmentation strategy based on subscriber behavior and feedback.

You can use automation tools to trigger campaigns based on specific actions, such as welcoming new subscribers or following up after specific episodes. Use the best VoIP app for business to reply to viewer queries quickly.

The UI of Dialpad software highlights features that enable live question-and-answer interactions during podcast live streaming.
Click to enlarge and take a closer look at all the capabilities of Dialpad.

Accessibility

Having your show available in accessible formats and providing a transcript is essential. That way, everyone can enjoy the podcast, and you get more content to share in your newsletter. Use tools like visual voicemail to transcribe your episodes correctly.

Transcription can be a long and tedious process, but using transcription software can make this much faster and easier.

The UI of the Dialpad transcription service can assist with recording the conversations.
Source: Dialpad

When it comes to accessibility, you should also consider alternative formats, such as creating a video with subtitles and making sure you’ve got a clear audio recording. That way your podcast becomes more accessible to those who are hard of hearing.

On top of this, you can make your website more accessible too by including things like a high-contrast option, to assist those who have sight difficulties. And don’t forget to adopt accessibility best practices in your email campaigns.

All of the above combined will help to ensure your podcast is enjoyed by as many people as possible.

Tracking and analyzing campaign performance

To make a campaign that compels listeners to choose your podcast, track and analyze performance consistently.

Here’s how to successfully improve newsletters over time:

Choose the right metrics to measure the results of your campaigns

When it comes to tracking and analyzing campaign performance, there are several key metrics you should track to get a clearer picture of your progress.

Open rate

The open rate represents the percentage of recipients who opened each email. It indicates how engaging the subject line and preview text was and the effectiveness of your content’s appearance in the recipient’s inbox.

Click-through rate (CTR)

The click-through rate measures the percentage of recipients who clicked on a link or a specific call-to-action. It helps evaluate the content’s effectiveness and links’ relevance.

Conversion rate

The conversion rate indicates the percentage of recipients who completed an action after clicking a link. This action could be subscribing to the show, downloading content, or purchasing something. It measures the overall effectiveness of each campaign in driving desired outcomes.

Bounce rate

The bounce rate measures the percentage of undeliverable emails for various reasons, such as invalid addresses or technical issues. It’s essential to monitor and reduce bounce rates to maintain a clean and engaged subscriber list.

A/B testing results

A/B testing involves creating different versions of campaigns and comparing their performance. By measuring metrics like open rate, CTR, and conversion rate for each variation, you can identify the most effective elements and refine future messages.

Integrate email marketing with other promotion channels

An email marketing campaign only works when integrated with other promotional channels, like social media, a website, and podcast directories.

Website

A key component of an effective email marketing campaign is having a website that encourages new visitors to sign up to your mailing list.

Your website analytics should be able to provide you insights into who is visiting your site and interested in your content. You can leverage this data to create extra information and fantastic bonus content that listeners can unlock by signing up for your mailing list.

This ensures that you have a captive audience for your mailing list whilst your email marketing campaign works to make sure that they’re reminded of your channel and continue to engage with it.

Podcast app

People often listen to podcasts on the go. This means that making sure you’re available on the biggest podcast apps, such as Spotify or Substack, is essential.

You can also consider building your own podcast app exclusively for your own content. This means you’ll have better access to audience insights as well as create a great way for customers to engage with your content as you build your podcast’s library.

On top of this, consider how other phone apps for business can provide a useful boost to your growing podcast venture. They can present an excellent opportunity to engage with your target audience and help you manage communications with customers. The latter will particularly come in handy when you start to sell podcast merchandise.

Social media

Include social media icons and links in campaigns, encouraging subscribers to follow and engage with you on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn. Share snippets or highlights from episodes on social media and include a call-to-action, directing subscribers to listen to the full episode. You can also use social media platforms to promote your newsletter or exclusive content, driving more subscribers.

The email footer provides links to Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn as additional platforms for subscribers to connect with and engage in podcast content.
Slowdown.tv invites subscribers to follow them on social media at the end of every newsletter featuring a new episode of their podcast Time Sensitive. Source: Really Good Emails
Instagram post featuring British designer Tom Dixon and the main highlights from the podcast episode. Dixon talks how two motorbike accidents transformed his life, his days as a bass player in Funkopolitan, why he considers cork a wonder material, and how his work is similar to a baker’s.
Slowdown.tv promotes the latest episode of their podcast Time Sensitive on Instagram. On day 1, they introduce the guest and the topic. Source: slowdown.tv on Instagram
Instagram post from slowdown.tv quoting Tom Dixon. The quote reads It’s not that we should; it’s that we’ll be forced to buy things closer to home.
Slowdown.tv promotes the latest episode of their podcast “Time Sensitive” on Instagram. On day 2, they try to grab the followers’ attention with a quote from the episode and further encourage checking out the whole conversation. Source: slowdown.tv on Instagram

Grow your podcast with email strategies today

In this article, we’ve given you all the necessary steps to promote your podcast with an email campaign. By encouraging people to listen with personalized and targeted content delivered straight to their inbox, you can boost your listener count and grow the show over time.

05 October, 2023
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