How to grow your audience through podcasting (even if you don't have one!)
Episode 21117th January 2023 • The Courageous CEO • Janet Murray
00:00:00 00:26:45

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Podcasting is a great way to build your audience (and attract your ideal customer/clients). 

And here’s the best thing…you don’t even have to have your own podcast. 

In this episode of the Courageous Content Podcast, I’ll share how to grow your audience through podcasting - even if you don’t have a podcast. 

Here’s what I cover: 

  • How I launched a top ranking podcast (without no experience) 
  • Why you don’t need fancy tech to launch a podcast
  • Easy ways to get started with podcasting 
  • How to grow your audience through podcasting (even if you don’t have one)

Key Links

Janet Murray’s Courageous Content Planner

Janet Murray’s Courageous Podcasting Content Kit

Janet Murray’s Courageous Planner Launch Content Kit

Janet Murray's Courageous Blog Content Kit

Save £30 on my Courageous Email Lead Magnet Content Kit using the code MAGNET67.

Save £30 on my Business Basics Content Kit using the code PODCAST67.

Save £30 on my Courageous Launch Content Kit using the code PODCAST67.

Janet Murray’s Courators Kit

Janet Murray’s FREE Ultimate Course Launch Checklist

The transgender journey of a parent (and why Josephine Hughes made a podcast about it) (podcast)

Inclusion in Progress with Kay Fabella (podcast)

How to Fail with Elizabeth Day (podcast)

Changes with Annie Macmanus (podcast)

Janet Murray’s website

Janet Murray on Instagram

Janet Murray on Facebook

Janet Murray on LinkedIn

Janet Murray on Twitter

Janet Murray on TikTok




You don't have to have a podcast to grow your audience through podcasting, although if you do, it is a great way to attract your ideal customers and clients. I'm Janet Murray. I'm a content and online business strategist. I'm also the creator of the Courageous Content Banner as a whole host of content kit that will save you time and help you be much more strategic about your content so you can get a bigger return on investment for your.

shed my first podcast back in:


a good way to connect with ideal customers and clients, and also to build my audience, but I didn't really know anything about how to do it.

I was a journalist by trade, so I was used to interviewing people and asking questions, but I was a print journalist. And although I'd done some interviews as a guest, that was really, as far as my experience went, I had no idea about what kit I would need, and like everyone does, I had loads of hangups about how my voice would sound, and if you tell me back then that my show would make the apple.

All time bestsellers for marketing and consistently be in the top a hundred business podcasts. In fact, it was often in the top


10 for quite a number of years. I don't think I'd have believed it. I ended up publishing more than 450 episodes of my first podcast. It started off as the Soulful PR podcast.

It later changed to the Janet Murray Show and then Build your online audience. I recorded the first 373 episodes on white trusty blue snowball mic, which I think costed me 69 pounds, if I remember right. I did get a fancy road mic for Christmas a few years later, but I actually left it in the box for a year because I loved my little blue snowball mic so much.



Podcast. I now also have 12 private podcasts because I deliver all of the training for my digital products via private podcasts using Captivate. And again, if you'd told me that I would be delivering online training and selling digital products via a private podcast, well, first of all, I wouldn't have even known what it was,

But secondly, it just would've seemed incredible because I didn't consider myself to be a particularly. Techy person, I still don't. I'm just willing to have a go at things and see where they take me. Interestingly though, after seven years of podcasting, I don't really see myself as a podcaster. I don't worry too much about my voice or even the tech.

I use bar ensuring a high standard of.


Audio quality case in point, I'm recording this as I've just had my office redecorated and I've removed a lot of the furniture that I had before. The blinds aren't up at the moment and I have blankets draped everywhere because I know that it's gonna be more echoy.

And I've learned over the years some of the things that. Make a difference to your audio quality, hence having blankets all over the place. To absorb the echo, when I listen back to my first podcast episodes, I do cringe a bit because I sound a little bit high pitched and squeaky and a bit serious. I'm much more relaxed now.

I don't really worry about making mistakes like I did do in the early days, but obviously the only


way to get better at podcasting is. Do podcasting. So for me, podcasting is an enjoyable and also a convenient way to deliver my content. I'm a writer by trade. I love to write as a former journalist, but I just find there's something so intimate about being in someone's ear.

Case in point, a year or so ago, I was at St. Pans Station in London. Buying a coffee. And somebody said to me, Hey, Janet. And I turned around and it was a former client of mine, Zoe, and it was actually her husband who had recognized me, not because he recognized how I looked. It was because he'd recognized my voice and Zoe must have


been paying my podcast in the car or in the house or whatever.

And as I'd asked for my coffee, Zoe's husband, who didn't even listen to the podcast, well not by. Actually recognized my voice, and I've actually had people say to me that their children recognize my voice because they listen to my podcast in the car when they're doing the school run or in the kitchen when they're washing up.

It's a really intimate way to build connection, and I'm a big podcast fan. I listen to. Multiple podcasts a day, and there's just something about being in someone's ear and you tend to get people's attention for longer, even on a hour long podcast or even longer,


where people might break it up and listen to it.

In sections, you are getting people's ear and their attention for. A long time and they're getting to know you, and they're getting to know your little stories like the, the ones I just shared with you there. It's really powerful. However, while I did manage to by accident, really create a top ranking podcast.

I'm not that bothered about the numbers. I mean, I do check my download numbers, but what really matters I've learned is achieving your goals and having a hundred listeners who really engage with your content and crucially take the action you want them to take. So that might be downloading an email lead magnet that might be buying your products or services coming to your event, whatever your goal is.

Well, that's better than having millions of people listening


who don't do. Or knowing you've got a hundred listeners who are taking on board the advice that you share or are captivated by your stories, even just knowing you've made one person feel better or you've helped one person with something. It's a great feeling.

And crucially though it is about taking action. Case in point, one of my friends, Jessica Loma, she's made hundreds of thousands of pounds from her podcast selling to corporate. I've worked with Jess on some of her content strategies, so I've actually had a look at her podcast download numbers, and they are much smaller than mine.

She wouldn't mind me sharing, but she is getting the. That she's looking for from her podcast, so it doesn't really matter. It's not about


numbers. And Jess's podcast is an example of quite a specific niche. It's better to have a small audience of people listening to your very niche podcast who take the action that you want them to take than have loads of people listening who.

Enjoy the content, but don't really do anything. And I think it's just particularly important if yours is a business podcast. And one of the most valuable lessons I've learned is that having a strategy, so being really clear about what it is that you want to achieve from your podcast, not only makes it easier to achieve your goals, but it can also save you a ton of time.

And help. Every podcast episode you create work harder for your business. Now, that strategy might change over time as your business does. I changed the name of


my first podcast three times because my business is changing and that's okay. And the podcast is currently going through a bit of a change because my podcast is, is changing.

That's okay. The right listeners will come with you. And I think it's sad sometimes that people put off starting a podcast because they haven. Everything figured out. You'll never have everything figured out, and just when you do, something will come along to side swipe you. So do please feel reassured that you can start a podcast and you can pivot or change direction sometimes without even changing the name or changing too much externally on the podcast.

But even if you do wanna change the name, it's really, really simple to do. And as for the tech,


that's another thing that often puts people off starting a podcast. But I'm sitting here recording with a very simple U s B mic that's just plugged into the side of my laptop. Got my headphones plugged into my podcast, Mike.

I'm using Audacity, a free software to record. It's super, super easy. I use Captivate for my podcast hosting. Really easy, really intuitive to get your podcast online, and if you want to know more, I'll put a link in the show notes. I am an affiliate for Captivate, by the way, but I would never recommend anything that I don't use myself, don't think is brilliant myself.

So do check it out. If you are thinking of starting a podcast or maybe moving your hosting. So a key thing I've


learned in my seven years of podcasting is that having a strategy makes everything easier. It also helps you to make decisions on things like frequency, how often you're going to publish format, whether you're going to publish in seasons, or whether you're going to have a rolling podcast that comes out every week or every other week or whatever.

And these are the kind of decisions that need to be closely align. With your podcast aims. Another key piece of advice I share with clients all the time is to start with a season of podcasts. So, for example, one of my clients, Josephine Hughes, she recently launched a podcast called Gloriously Unready.

She was actually a guest on this podcast. I'll link to that interview in the show notes. And her podcast is all about how to navigate change and how to


deal with surprises that life sometimes throws at. Now her first season is about finding out her three children are transgender and her journey as a parent in dealing with that change.

It may well be that her podcast continues to be on that theme, but as she hadn't published a podcast before or indeed very much content on that topic, it's new territory for her. And that's why taking a broad theme for her podcast, so dealing with emotions that you feel unready for, rather than creating a podcast specifically about transgender issues is smart because it means that she could come back with more seasons on a different aspect of that theme or seasons on other types of life experiences that you might feel unready for.

Some of my favorite podcasts.


So how to Fail with Elizabeth Day Changes with Annie McManus. They're really good examples of taking that approach, and I think it's really smart because it's easy to look at other podcasts as you admire and look at people who publish a podcast a week or in some cases more than that.

I think you have to do the same, but before you've published your first season of podcast, you don't know whether you are going to like podcasting. You don't know how that's going to work for your business or your sales funnel. And part of the overwhelm is thinking that you're gonna start a podcast and it's gonna go on forever.

Whereas if you can look at it like a project and say, well, look, I'm gonna put out six or eight episodes on a particular topic. I'm gonna see how it goes. Then you don't have to do it forever. And that can take some of the pressure


off. You might well go on to do it forever. But approaching it like a project can make it feel a lot less overwhelming.

It also might be that you don't need to do more than one podcast season. Maybe you want to publish a podcast as a piece of evergreen content for a specific product or service, and a series of six or eight episodes might be all you need, and you might want to put the rest of your resources to really promoting that series of six or eight episodes to building a webinar funnel or some other kind of evergreen funnel.

your list of things to do for:


with many podcasters. They publish an episode, they post a couple of things on social media, and then they move on to the next episode.

They don't even promote the episodes in their archive, which just seems a waste of content. When you're planning more strategically, you'll also start to see opportunities to reuse and repurpose podcast. So, for example, some business owners republish their most popular podcast episodes in December, or when they're taking a break over the summer, or they create Roundup episodes that feature their most popular episodes, which might require a bit more planning, a bit more recording.

But getting those on the calendar ahead of time and doing the scripting and recording can save you a lot of time in the long. , it can also help you to spot those


opportunities to promote episodes or even republish episodes from your archive. Again, something that many podcasters just don't do enough of.

For example, we promote several episodes from my archive every week to coincide with relevant awareness days. So for example, I have an episode on trolling that we. Published for Antique Bullying Week, and if you haven't got my courageous Content plan and content kit, that's one of the things it can be really useful for.

So you can just go through each month, each quarter, have a look at any key awareness days that are coming up, and look at where you might be able to republish, not just podcasts, but any regular content that you put out or look at the best time perhaps to schedule podcasts or any other evergreen content that you.

So it coincides with key dates or awareness days. It's a great way


to make your content more timely, more relevant, and thinking more strategically can also help you to repurpose other content you're creating in your business. So for example, in 2022, I've worked with Kay for Bella. So Kay is a fully booked d e I consultant.

So that's diversity, equality, and inclusion. She works with big tech firms. I dunno if I'm allowed to say the names, but there's some very big, well-known tech firms that she works with and she has a podcast called Inclusion in Progress, and I'll link to that in the show notes. I started out working with catering content intensive days where we would look at what the focus was in her business.

She is very fully booked, but she's very aware also of the need. Make sure that her funnel


doesn't dry up. So publishing strategic podcast content is a great way for her to keep building her audience. She has a regular newsletter that she sent out as well. So I started by helping her plan out the episodes, and then we moved into scripting, and by the third, fourth quarter of the year, I was jumping onto Zoom calls with Kay using templates that I created for her, scripting them with her on the Zoom call so that she could just get off the call and then go off record them, which was a great relief to.

Then we took it a step further in terms of the repurposing and strategic workflow. So in November, I wrote a white paper with Kay, a 5,000 word white paper. We did it over two zoom sessions, and I then repurposed that white paper into three


podcast scripts for her, and I also provided her with social media posts for those scripts as well.

So again, all she had to do was edit the draft of the template that we did in a couple. Sessions a process that normally takes her at least a week, and then she could just go off and record those episodes, which leads nicely into another thing that I've learned about content strategy in general, but.

Specifically relating to, to podcasting, doing things in the right order. So creating a workflow that makes sense can save you a ton of time and make every podcast work harder for your business. So I've created templates for myself that allow me to create, for this podcast a blog that I then use as a script for this podcast.

I then turn that blog into, Show notes, and


then those show notes are created in such a way that they can easily be repurposed into social media posts by Buba who works with me. And back to that example of Kay and the white paper, achieving that kind of result, getting so much done in a short amount of time was also about workflow.

So I created a template for K for her white paper, based on the white paper she'd publish. The year before, but I created that template in such a way that it could easily be turned into three separate podcast scripts with a very specific call to action for a white paper. So we're dealing with content creation and planning, and also lead generation as part of that workflow, and it's easy to approach things like that


as an afterthought, but actually by the time Kay received her scripts, I'd written the call to action for her, and she also had a social media post as well. Again, thinking further ahead, thinking more strategically, not only saves you time, but make sure that every piece of content you create goes further and can actually mean creating less content overall, which is good.

king of starting a podcast in:

And it's basically your podcast strategy in a digital box, if you like, because it includes all the


templates you need to grow your podcast. So podcast growth strategy templates. So there's a, a roadmap for you to follow to grow your podcast. There's fill in the gaps, content templates for podcast, script outlines, podcast trailers, show notes, promotional emails, social media posts, and guest interview.

All of which is gonna help you to really refine that workflow, save time on content creation, but also spot those opportunities to repurpose and make more of the content you've already created. and also help with outsourcing as well. So after a year working with Kay, this is always a happy story, . But uh, Kay now has a strategy and a workflow, which means she's now outsourcing to a virtual assistant.

Before that was really difficult to do because. Every podcast episode, she


was kind of starting afresh, and now there is a very clear workflow, which makes it easy for her to pass the research onto someone else, and for them to take over that workflow, which I'm delighted about. I'm gonna be working with Kay on some other projects, hopefully in 2023, but it's always delightful for me to be able to set something up for somebody like that, that means they're able to outsource efficient.

And to that end, my kit also includes a podcast repurposing strategy. So you can make every podcast episode that you create work harder for your business. Now, if you don't have a podcast and you are waiting for me to get to the bit about growing your audience through podcasting, even if you don't have one, this is it.

So this kit I've just created also includes an audience growth strategy, and


there's templates for pitching yourself as a podcast guest and podcast swaps. So that's when. You might run parts of, or even a whole episode of your podcast on someone else's and vice versa. There's other things that you can do on social media, but it's kind of about finding complimentary audiences.

So finding podcasters who have a similar audience, but you can offer a different style of content. So that's included in the training as well, but, Back to what if you haven't got a podcast, how can you use podcasting to grow your business and your audience? Well, securing guest interviews on podcasts that have the kind of audience that you want to reach is a great way to grow your audience and to get in front of your ideal


Casting. Some clients, you're basically borrowing somebody else's audience. And I do go through the process in more detail in the courageous podcasting content kit, but the key things to think about are how you can give rather than take. I get dozens of podcast pitches every single week, and I have said yes to about two out of hundreds.

And the reason most of them are not successful is because they're selfish. They're all about what the person thinks they can get out of getting in front of my audience, not what they can give to my audience. And it shines through. Like you can spot it a mile off. And not only that, if you are not genuinely looking for ways to add value, you probably won't have


researched the podcast.

You won't have a sense. What kind of content they usually cover. You'll be sending out blanket pictures rather than tailored pictures, which are tailored to a specific podcast host and a specific audience, which means your pitch will be off and most are like, most pictures I get are just useless. Some even include stupid mistakes like pitching my old podcast.

So even though , my last podcast, the very last episode I called, why I'm Ending this podcast, I have even added a new artwork that says Janet Murray. Has a new podcast, , but still I will get people pitching to the old podcast and all of this pitching without doing your research about the topics that a podcast has usually covers about the kind of format,


the kind of guests, it just shows a real lack of respect for the platform someone has built.

And your selfishness just comes across like, Obviously, personally, I would never pitch a podcast host without studying their podcast. So looking at the topics that they've covered in the past, looking at their guests, looking at their format, and listening to several episodes just to get a feel for them style.

Are we gonna be a good fit? Are we gonna get a along? Is it gonna be a good interview? It takes a little bit longer, but you do get better results. I've got really good hit rate for pitching myself into people's podcasts. I don't think I've ever had a No actually and I did have an advantage in this area because prior to.

Coming into online business, I was a journalist. I was a freelance journalist and an editor. So I both sent and received hundreds of pictures. So


I really do know what works in terms of getting airtime, or in my case, it was column inches. So first of all, I know how valuable someone's audience is, and I take that really seriously.

So I know that say a podcast host who does 50 episodes a year, that they've only got 50 slots, they're not just gonna take anything and put any old person in front of their audience. And I know they also are likely to get way more pictures than they have podcast interview slots. So I've gotta do my research.

I've gotta make sure that I'm offering something which is the absolute best fit. When I was a education journalist on The Guardian, I started off, it used to be about 12 pages when I started. By the end it was about two pages, but we had very, very specific slots. And if you even just


looked at that section of the Guardian, you would know.

A really crucial thing, , is that we never published any articles that were for parents. They were all for Educationalists. So, Teachers, policy makers, politicians, and while parents may well have read that section, that wasn't who we were creating the content for. So we would get lots of silly pictures where people would say things like, can we write something for you?

Or Would you be interested in doing an article on. Five ways to get your child ready to start school. Well, we never did anything like that. It was just so way off and those pictures just got ignored. And it's the same with podcasting. I never do, never have done those kind of like rags to riches turnaround stories, but I get pitched loads of like, oh, would you be interested in interviewing my


CEO? They're really amazing thought. It's really amazing story and it's the Courageous Content podcast like what have you got to offer in terms of content, what is valuable ? And yeah, it's disrespectful. It's also a waste of time as well. There are a couple of things stylistically that can help. So using engaging email subject headers, getting to the point quickly in your pitch emails, but that isn't always obvious how to do it if you haven't done it before.

So I do have a template for that in my kit on how to pitch yourself as a podcast. And something like a podcast tour, as they're often known, can be so effective. If you think about it, let's say you made it your aim to get interviews on 25 podcasts in the first quarter of


2023, and they all have, just for arguments sake, 2000 monthly downloads.

That's potentially an audience of 50,000. However, to get the most from that opportunity, and this is why planning and strategy is key, you wanna be able to follow up with those people. Yes, appearing on someone's podcast or doing a guest class is great and it will get you exposure, but what's going to be even more useful?

A, being able to make direct contact with those new listeners, those new audience members, and ideally add them to your email list. And B, being able to track which podcasts are the most effective, where the most people are listening, and then coming over to sign up to your newsletter or read your


blog or follow you on social media.

So having a very specific email, lead magnet, for example, or a specific link that you use or a specific call to action that you've created specifically for your podcast or or for any podcast appearances that you do, is going to help you track how successful that strategy is going to be. If you are also looking to use this as an opportunity to sell a very specific product or service like a book or in my case, I often try and up my guest interviews on podcasts around my planner launch time.

Then you also want to be able to track your sales, so creating very specific links. Making everything trackable is going to help you to see those patterns and trends that are gonna help you to do more of what works and more of


what doesn't. For example, something that I learned quite early on when it came to podcast guesting is often, in my case anyway, you can get much better results by appearing on smaller podcasts because they may have smaller audiences, but they're more.

I've appeared on some pretty big podcasts in my industry and had virtually nothing as a follow up. Also, when you are on the podcast of, uh, somebody who's got a relatively small audience, they'll often still be doing all the promotion themselves. They'll be like really engaged and passionately trying to push that podcast, whereas a big podcaster who has a massive.

And has somebody else publishing all their content for them may not be quite so bothered about promoting you to their


audience. So I hope that's been helpful. If you are thinking that you might like to start a podcast or maybe revive one that you've. Started and I've taken a break from. I hope this has given you some ideas and inspiration, but also crucially helped you to think more strategically about your podcast content so that you can ensure it really delivers the results that you need for your business.

I think my courageous podcasting content kit can help you a lot with this. And podcast listeners can get a third off the cost of the kit. So it's 147. That's the headline prize, but you can get it for 97. Using the code, AUDIO. I'll put a link to the kit in. The


show notes discount codes on this podcast are usually active for 90 days after the podcast goes live. So do bear that in mind when you’re listening.



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