8 Fun and Easy Ways to Connect With Your Local Community as a Podcaster
Regardless of where you live, your local community can be a great place to support your podcast and find both new listeners and fans of the show. Whether you live in a big metropolitan area or a small town, there are some simple and fun ways to connect with the folks who live there and to let them know about your podcast.
We’ve put together eight ideas to build up your local community and take your podcast from off the apps and into a town near you.
1. Strategize. Where Are Your Target Listeners Hanging Out?
This is where you list the different hobbies and activities your podcast listeners typically tend to gravitate toward, and you can build out from there. Are they interested in yoga, education, coffee, real estate, etc.? Even if it’s not podcast related, you can attend events that align with your listeners and begin to meet community members who might just naturally be interested in what you’ve got.
2. Sponsor Something Local! Big or Small
There’s a local podcast that sponsors a freeway exit sign on my commute, and that show lives in my head for at least 30 seconds out of every day. While a highway exit sign may not be the road you want to travel yet, look for sponsorships at local 5k’s, local festivals, farmer’s markets, nonprofit events and more. If you set aside a marketing budget for your show annually, you can divvy out sponsorship dollars. One idea is also to ask the event if you can do half the sponsorship in cash and the other in podcast ads or social media posts.
3. Throw a Podcast Party!
Find something to celebrate about your show. The 100th episode? Ten thousand downloads? Your fourth anniversary as a podcaster? Have a podcast themed party where all attendees get show-related swag as a parting gift. Go out of your comfort zone and invite not only close family and friends, but those local community members you think could be future fans of the show.
4. Identify Local Tastemakers and Invite Them On Your Show
Even if your show is not locale based, create a segment every couple episodes that features some local influencers and key people. Depending on your show topic, this can include politicians, local musicians, authors who have a new book to promote, chefs, local reality stars, etc.
5. Pitch Yourself To Local Media
Introduce yourself and your show to local news, radio, newspapers, weekend magazines, etc. Offer yourself as an expert on podcasting in general, or about the topic your show is about. Don’t be a pest, but check in every couple months to say hello and see how you can help them.
6. But, Like, Actually Get Out in the Community
I’ve found that it’s the everyday community members who get more excited about my podcast than actual family and friends. Talk with your barista, local grocers, dog groomers, etc. about your show when it seems appropriate.
7. Connect With Other Local Podcasters
If you live in a larger city, chances are there may already be podcast meetups. If not, be the one to start it. Host a podcast party where you rent out a small venue, charge tickets and pick three to four podcasts to do mini live versions of their show. We did this in Los Angeles and it was SUPER fun, even if it’s mildly scary to do your podcast live if you’re used to the comfort of in-home recordings.
8. Add Your City as a ‘Character’ on Your Show.
I often hear from our listeners that even though they don’t live in Southern California, they love hearing all the annoying “LA” stories and horrific tales of traffic from me and my co-host. If you want to get extra fancy, contact your local Chamber of Commerce or hotels and see if there’s any special giveaway or discount they can give your audience for visiting your city. Figure out some great touristy things about your town and make the non-locals interested in planning a trip there someday.
Follow Blubrry on Podcast Insider to stay up to date on all podcast news while you are enjoying that break. Be sure to follow @Blubrry or @Blubrry_podcasting on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.