As a small service-based business owner you know the importance of building your reputation and credibility as a specialist in your field. Your business’s survival depends on it.
Getting your brand message out in front of your target market should be part of your daily list of activities.
You may already be writing articles and blog posts or even incorporating video as part of your brand communications.
However, if you find writing difficult or you’re not quite ready to get in front of the camera, a great way to get your message out to your audience is through the use of audio.
I’ve been using audio for many years now and love it.
I was a former co-host on the popular internet radio show – Career Success Radio Show; and am now host of two business podcasts – Business Success Podcast and The Ambitious Entrepreneur.
Besides my podcasts, here are some of the other ways that I have used (and currently use) audio to build my brand. See how many of these you could adopt in your business to build awareness about you and your brand:
- Reading blog posts/articles;
- A coaching tip as part of my coaching packages/programs;
- A brief audio tip in my newsletter; or
- An audio introduction to my website/newsletter to welcome new site visitors/subscribers;
- Use audio to get in touch with your clients/prospects instead of writing an email;
- An audio tip that’s shared on your social media networks.
As you can see, you can leverage audio in all aspects of your business to get your message out there into the hands of your ideal client. You just need to decide which fits best into your brand communications wheel.
Here are some basic tips and tools to help you get started on recording your own on-brand audio/podcast:
1. Plan out your content
Before you start to record your audio, it’s important to plan out what you’re going to say.
Your audio should also include an introduction; your content, and then your call to action specific to your target audience’s needs and interests.
The Introduction: should include your hook, which is the reason why your listener should listen to the rest of the call. People are busy and need to know why they should invest their time to listen to you. It needs to identify ‘what’s in it for them’. What will they walk away with?
For instance in my Business Success Podcast interview I did with Roz Merry, she shared some great tips on how she has managed to get a closing rate of 80-90%, which is just incredible. So here’s what I wrote in my introduction:
“Roz Merry joins me today and Roz is an expert in Network Marketing. She’s going to talk about vital business building tips that all business owners should be aware of when it comes to selling. These are the exact same strategies that Roz used that enabled her to get a close rate of 80-90%, which is extremely impressive – so stick around.”
Click play to hear the recording of the Introduction.
Your Content: should provide listeners with a tip, strategy or information that is useful and valuable and something that they can implement within their lives and/or business.
By providing helpful information you’ll confirm your knowledge and expertise in your field. You’ll also encourage your listeners to return to your website as you become a reliable and helpful source!
And of course, as you continue to build your reputation as a credible expert, you’ll be top of mind when they’re ready to invest.
The Call to Action: should inform and encourage listeners to take the next step – whatever that step may be.
Do you want them to leave a comment? Or Like/Share your audio with their community? You may be using your audio as a lead generation tool and therefore want your listener to take the next step and sign up to access your free e-report or other offer.
Whatever action you want your listener to take – tell them at the end of your audio.
For instance, at the end of each of my Business Success Podcast interviews, I encourage my listeners to sign-up for my 7-step Charge What You’re Worth Audio series. Here’s an example of my call-to-action script:
“If you’re struggling to set yourself apart from your competitors or charging what you’re worth for the awesome services you’re providing your client, I invite you to access our 7-step audio series ‘How to Get Noticed, Hired and Charge What You’re Worth INSTANTLY, at http://bit.ly/ChargeYourWorth.”
Click play to hear the recording of the Call to Action.
2. Recording Tools
This is a great tool if you are only recording yourself. If you have two microphones you can record a guest as long as you are in the same location.
I use Skype to record all my interviews with guests who are located nationally and internationally.
If I am recording on my MAC – I use Call Recorder [There is a small fee for this software, however it is certainly worth the investment].
If I am recording via Skype on my PC – I use Pamela [There is a free version of Pamela, which allows up to 15 minutes of recording. There’s also a paid version].
3. Editing & Mixing Tools
Thankfully I now have an audio production team that manage this for me, however when I was mixing and editing myself, I would use Audacity.
To convert Audacity files to MP3 files you’ll also need to add on the LAME plugin.
4. Hosting Tools
I don’t recommend you host audio on your own website as this can eat up a lot of your bandwidth, especially once you get to the stage where many people are listening to your audios. A great problem to have!
I use AudioAcrobat, which allows you to embed a streaming audio as well as provide your listeners the capacity to download and save the audio file to their computer. The Introduction and Call To Action audios above have been embedded into this post directly from AudioAcrobat. It’s very simple to do!
[Note: this is an affiliate link and I would NOT recommend a product that I was not using myself or completely happy with.]
5. Other Tools
Want to create your own internet radio show? This was how I started out – cohosting Career Success Radio. Blogtalkradio offers free and paid versions – and is a great option when just starting out.
This is a great little tool that I have just discovered. You can also download this application to your iPhone and iPad and you can record and publish audio tips on-the-go to your Twitter and Facebook feeds.
Click above to hear one of my Audio Boo Audio Posts.
When done correctly, using audio is a great way to build your credibility and reputation as a specialist in your field, while connect with and continue to build your relationship with existing and prospective clients.
I hope you found these tips useful in helping you get started whether you want to start a broadcasting career and run your own podcast, or whether you just want to use audio as a way of sharing information with your community.
If you Liked this post, please share it with your friends and colleagues by pressing the Like and Share button. Let me know how you plan on using audio by leaving your comment below. It’s always great to see what you’re up to!!
And, of course – once you upload your audio, let me know. I’d love to have a listen!
Till next time – I look forward to welcoming you to the airwaves.
AnneMarie, audio really is a great way to get your message out. I also like to post the audio file to Facebook. Once you add the URL as a link, Facebook’s little audio player will pop up. Now your friends/fans can just push play! I’m also using the RSS Graffiti app on Facebook. It automatically adds the audio player as it pulls in our blog/podcast feed into Facebook.
Hi Mary-Lynn, gaining exposure by sharing on Facebook is certainly a great strategy. Excellent suggestion about the RSS Graffiti app as well.
Thanks for stopping by!
Great Post! Full of Experience, Tools, Tips, Advices and Enthusiasm!
My pleasure Julio. Using audio is such a great way to get your message out there for sure. When you start broadcasting let me know – would love to have a listen!
Hi Julio, thanks for stopping by. So pleased you found the article helpful. If you ever do record your own audio, send me through the link. I’d love to have a listen!
Hey AnneMarie! Your site looks amazing! I am looking forward to learning more about what you do to see if I could use your services to put my name and brand on the map (even if its just the internet map!)
Welcome Anne – and thank you so much for your lovely comments. Feel free to browse around, there’s lots of articles on branding to help you get started, and I’m only an email a way if you have any questions!
thank you Annemarie for sharing with us that step-by-step guide!
Hi Klaudia, you’re very welcome! When you publish your first audio, send through the link. I’d love to hear it!
More small businesses and entrepreneurs should use podcasts to solidify their brands. As much as people love Twitter and Facebook, and social platforms, there is a sense of rapport that comes from hearing a human voice, human voices. So engaging a potential audience via this medium should be part of every entrepreneur’s game plan. It helps create relationships, and leads to additional exposure.
I agree; I think podcasting (audio) is a great way to build brand awareness as well as engage with your audience. While you can certain convey personality within your writing – hearing a person’s voice just takes the relationship to a far deeper level.
thank you for you lovely post. I like the way of minling text with audio, it makes your content more attractive. I will try this for my weblog.
Great list of tools — You do an awesome job with audio!!
This is an area I need to grow. In searching myself, I found cinch.fm.
Have you tried that one? A mobile app too.
Always a pleasure to read,
Thanks Keri! I have heard of Cinch.fm, however haven’t used it myself. There are so many amazing tools and technologies at out fingertips to help us build brand awareness. Isn’t it cool?!
Thanks a lot for sharing your ideas to us. This is a very helpful thought especially for someone like me searching this kind of topic. Really amazing.
I’m curious to find out what blog platform you happen to be working with? I’m having some small security problems with my latest website and I’d like to find something more secure. Do you have any suggestions?
This blogging platform is WordPress.
Wonderful post!This is very useful to many readers like me.Being a student, I am requiring myself to read articles more often and your writing just caught my interest.Thank you !