5 Tips for Growing Your Podcast's Audience and Establishing Personal Connections with Your Listeners
Updated: Mar 21
Creating a deeper connection with your podcast listeners is key to retaining and growing your audience.
Here are five ways to create intimacy with your podcast listeners.
1. Be consistent with your publishing schedule.
A listener wants to rely on your podcast like a friend.
So, like two friends who grab a coffee on a Tuesday morning, publish your episode at the same time every week.
Your listener will start to build your new episode into their weekly routine. This consistency creates an unspoken agreement between your listener and your podcast. That's huge.
2. Solve problems and entertain.
Your podcast is not about your brand or services. Your podcast is about the problems your brand solves.
Think of your target audience and imagine a problem that the listener might be having. For example, if you're a personal trainer for women in their 40s, what issues do they face?
Does your listener have trouble prioritising the gym with her kid's schedule? Work toward solving that problem in your episode.
3. Identify your audience.
One simple technique that works well is establishing an endearment term for your audience.
Instead of saying, "Hey guys", or "Hey podcast listeners", come up with a new (singular) identifier. A couple of examples are, "Hello dear one," "Hi friend, or "Hey mate." These are singular terms of endearment that help a listener feel connected with you.
4. Include a review, testimonial or voicemail from a listener.
This simple act drops the curtain between the host and the audience.
It lets the listener be more than just a listener. A great example of a podcast doing this well is the Shameless podcast. Each week, they feature a voicemail from a listener sharing their opinion about a podcast topic.
It's a brilliant show of intimacy. You can use a platform like Telbee to request listeners leave voicemails.
5. Speak from the heart and with authenticity.
This might sound the vaguest of all my recommendations, but it is by far the most important.
People love realness. They don't want to hear how perfect your life is or how easy it is to do big things.
Instead, they want to hear your survival stories so they can learn and grow from your experience as if it was their own. So don't be afraid to share your hard truths along with your wins.
If you show up with authentic opinions and advice, your listeners will look at you as trustworthy.
And the more trust they have in you, the more intimate the podcast experience becomes.
And a 6th way, just for good measure!
6. Let the listener know they are part of something bigger than themselves.
Often, a podcast listener simply wants to be seen.
Logically, the listener knows the host can't see them. But it doesn't stop their desire to be part of something bigger than themselves.
One podcast that does this brilliantly is We Can Do Hard Things with Glennon Doyle. She refers to her audience as "podsquad." She has the call-to-action, "Build your podsquad like a book club", and asks her listeners to band together to discuss the latest episode. It's the perfect way to improve your retention rate and expand your podcast audience.