Podcasting is a great way to promote your business, but measuring success can be challenging.
We all agree that podcasting can be a great way to get your business out there and promote your brand. The problem is that measuring your success is notoriously difficult. iTunes doesn't offer much in the way of analytics, and so we're forced to rely on other methods to figure out whether what we're doing is working or not.
If you're investing the time in a business podcast, the question you must ask yourself is pretty simple: what are your key performance indicators (KPIs)?
Podcasts are great because they give everyone something to rally around. You yourself can put your brand out there in a different and more engaging medium instead of solely relying on blog posts. For your guest, it's a public appearance that can add to their prestige or at least give them a chance to gain experience in an interview format. For the audience, it's a free way to learn new things and fill otherwise dead time--long drives, walking the dog, doing the dishes.
Because it's a win-win, you can often get people to make guest appearances on your podcast who would be a lot harder to pin down for a one-on-one meeting. Keeping track of how you've built relationships is, therefore, a worthy KPI for your podcast.
Social shares and backlinks
The great thing about shares is that they're relatively easy to measure. A solid indicator of your show's popularity is how frequently it's shared, liked, or linked to from social media and other sites. There are a lot of tools to track this. Do some research, and pick something that works best for you.
Other content generated
Podcasts can be useful for your other content marketing efforts as well. If you practice content atomization, you'll know that long-form audio is a treasure trove for creating new pieces of writing for blogging, guest posts, social media, and more. Get your podcasts transcribed, and then look for ways to break them down into shorter topics. With very little effort, you'll have a solid framework for written content or even an interview if you had a guest on your show.
The 7-15 Podcast Rule
Making a podcast and doing it well requires a sizeable up-front investment. You need to get the right sound equipment, and you need to train yourself to create a workflow that lets you write, record, and edit efficiently. How do you decide whether or not to jump in?
A common rule of thumb in podcasting is the 7-15 rule. Why 7-15? 7-15 is the sweet spot for how many episodes you need to make to figure out whether what you're doing has legs. Do these with the tools you already have--your built-in mic, for example--and then make the decision to spend more only after you've gained some experience.
Jumping into podcasting can be a little overwhelming, but by focusing in on KPIs and taking a hard look at what your podcast is doing for you, you can make stronger decisions that will help you get more bang for your buck.
This piece originally appeared on Inc.
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