Podcast promotion is not the easiest task in the modern day world.

You build your podcast, you nurture your listeners, you work hard to get as many downloads as you can for your podcast series.  This is what podcast promotion is all about.

[RELATED: Our Mobile Wallet Marketing Made Easy podcast offers up tips for podcast promotion in a variety of verticals]

Many business owners and marketers produce podcasts to help them generate leads or close more sales for their businesses; it’s taking the place of the ubiquitous webinar that hardly anyone watches any more.  It’s SO much easier to get someone to listen to your podcast while they’re on the train, or in the car, or getting in some exercise compared to trying to capture an hour of someone’s attention to watch a webinar.

We looked at some stats on webinar viewing from last year, which show great increases from two years ago.  However, we feel that the webinar is on a decline, and the podcast is going to take its place as the coveted marketing tool.

Podcast promotion for producers who rely on their audience numbers to sell ads is even more critical.

The NYTimes and WBUR produce a popular podcast called Modern Love, and in addition to using mobile wallet promos like PodcastMarketer, we see them running Facebook ads, SEO optimization and more.  They’re just one drop in an ever filling bucket, and one podcast among many that needs podcast promotion in order to make a financial go of it with advertisers.

But the Wall Street Journal is reporting (correctly in our opinion) that podcast listeners are using the Skip functions in podcast players like Stitcher, to jump past the ads.

Anna Mowry, a 32-year-old podcast fan who listens to about five programs a week, avoids ads through the Downcast podcast-listening app, which has different time-skipping options: 15 seconds, 30 seconds and 2 minutes. “Depending on the podcast I’m listening to, I know the one I need to click,” said Ms. Mowry, who works at the James Beard Foundation, a culinary organization.

The big problem here is a lack of statistical proof that listeners are actually listening to the ads.

Podcasts in general are very hard to quantify.  The stats that are available in general are geared towards RSS feed subscriptions for blogs that people read.  Apple doesn’t give out very helpful information, and a number of podcast software programs have zero stats integration.

[RELATED: How Important are Stats to Podcast Producers?]

At the end of the day, there will be a method of holding producers accountable for listeners – there is too much money on the line for tech companies NOT to come in with new products and new ways of measuring.

The ad-skipping conundrum taps into a larger issue in the podcast world: Measurement challenges have kept many big-brand advertisers on the sidelines. “The big barrier to most brands is the measurability and the fact that you have to A) take on trust that a podcast is being listened to and B) that your particular ad has not been skipped over within that,” said Jonathan Barnard, head of forecasting at ZenithOptimedia, a media agency owned by Publicis Groupe SA.

Using mobile as a means of podcast marketing offers an opportunity to show value add to advertisers, in the form of lock screen notifications, back of pass placement, and providing direct calls to action from the pass.  It’s one of the more simple ways to increase your listenership, shares and reviews, since asking for a review is as easy as requesting it on the back of the pass and including a direct link to the review submission page on any player.

The Takeaway:

Look outside the proverbial box in order to generate non-traditional podcast promotion ideas and learn to harness the power of mobile to help grow your podcast.  It’s a cost effective method of increasing subscribers, listens and shares, and one that doesn’t rely on your constant purchasing of FB ads or Adwords to be successful.

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