A big hello from Portland, Oregon! Welcome to another episode of B2B Marketing & More with Pam! Today, my guest is Douglas Burdett, the host of the Marketing Book Podcast, and the Principal of Artillery Marketing, who will share tips and insight about a do’s and don’ts of a successful podcast.
Douglas has been doing his podcast for six years. So far he had over 300 episodes. His marketing agency helps industrial and manufacturing companies to become better known, liked and trusted in an era when their customers don’t want to be sold or marketed to.
In this episode:
- How to start the process of the podcasting journey and how to generate ideas?
- What role does a podcast play in business development?
- Who should do a podcast, and what should be accomplished?
- How to measure a podcast’s success and how to determine if you want to measure it or not?
- What are the top three things that one must do when launching a podcast?
- What people have to do keep the focus on the podcast topic, and why is that important?
- How to promote a podcast, and how to get more listeners?
- What elements should people look for ahead of time to refine and change the podcast?
Quotes from the episode:
“Podcasts are a great awareness building medium, but they are being misused a lot like a direct response. Don’t worry about your audience size. You don’t need everybody. You need the right audience.”
“Once you’ve published an interview much like publishing a blog post, that is not the finish line. That is the starting gun.”
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A big hello from Portland, Oregon! Hi, everybody, and Welcome to another episode of B2B Marketing & More with Pam! I have a very, very, very special guest today. Douglas Burdett, the host of the Marketing Book Podcast and the Principal of Artillery Marketing, will be talking to me and you about the do’s and don’ts of a successful podcast.
So Douglas, tell our audience a little bit about yourself. All right. I don’t want to monopolize the whole conversation!
Douglas Burdett: Well, and I came on with the agreement that we weren’t gonna talk about me. We were going to talk about useful information. So, uh, I, as you said, I’m the host of The Marketing Book Podcast. I’ve been doing it for six years. I’ve had over 300 episodes, including an interview with, uh, Pam Didner. At that point, I thought, well, I can stop now, but I’ve decided to continue because I heard she might be working on some other books. And I also, uh, have a small marketing agency. I live here in Virginia, and we work with, we like to work with, uh, industrial and manufacturing companies.
Pam Didner: Those are my type of companies. I love manufacturing in this industrial segment very, very much. And, some of my clients are actually down manufacturing in the manufacturing segments. I love them dearly — a no-nonsense type of crowd.
Douglas Burdett: Yes. Yes.
Pam Didner: So talk to us about your podcast journey. How did that start? And where did the idea come from?
Douglas Burdett: Well, uh, like so many things in life where we grow, it came from a place of pain. Let me explain the suffering. So yeah, pain and suffering. Um, so–now I should say I was in the military, so I’m very comfortable people screaming at me and making me, uh, put me in putting me in painful situations. But, and I was the youngest of four, which was probably even more painful.
So, uh, I came from a real advertising background, you know, after I got out of the army, I was, you know, I worked in New York City for a number of years at these enormous ad agencies, J Walter Thompson and Gray. Then when I started my firm, it was very much advertising focused, you know.
Over the years, starting maybe ten years ago or so, I started to notice things were changing, and I sense that they were permanent changes, maybe like a travel agent 25 years ago saying, “why are the airlines no longer paying us a commission? And how can somebody make their travel arrangements without us? And what is this internet thing?”
So I slowly started having to do things like bring website people to client meetings (laughs) and, uh, you know, all this sort of thing was happening. And I started to feel like, “Oh man, this is all kind of slipping away from me. This, I loved being advertising.” And so I started knocking around, reading a few more books here and there. And I stumbled upon one of the two books that had the biggest impact on my career.
Pam Didner: Enlighten us.
Douglas Burdett: The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott.
Pam Didner: Yes. I read that book, by the way.
Douglas Burdett: Yeah. And it was like the first or second edition. It’s now in the seventh.
Pam Didner: I read the first edition a while back, and I was, “Oh my God.” Yes, the PR is changing, and the world is changing.” That also somehow, um, I would say it’s a trigger point and then make me think about how the marketers should do the marketing moving forward. And I was like, you, I was a traditional marketer for a long time, especially on the pay side of things. So I get it. What about the second book?
Douglas Burdett: Oh, the second book was Ogilvy on Advertising, which I read after I got out of the army and didn’t know what I wanted to do. And I read a lot of books about different career fields, and I, uh, read Ogilvy on Advertising. And I said, my goodness, that’s what I want to do.
The next thing I knew, I was a New York adman. And it, I, it, you know, the right book at the right time can transform things. So. David Meerman Scott’s was the other one. And that’s where I felt like I got a second bite at the career apple. I could see where things were going and I was very excited. I felt like I’d gotten a reprieve almost.
And I remember thinking I don’t ever want to be in a situation where I feel so irrelevant. Like I’m growing dinosaur scales. It just really bothered me more than maybe some, the average person. So I kept reading the books and just thought, you know, “It’s changing a lot, anyway, I got to keep up.”
So I kept reading the books, and then I would, um, I would go to a marketing conference, and I know an author would be there. I would have already read their book on a Kindle, but I would buy a hard copy, put it in the suitcase, fly to the conference (Pam laughs), carry the book around in hopes that I could get it autographed.
So at the same time, like in the mid- A while back, I would look, I would listen to marketing podcasts for a long time, even back when we had to plug them in iPod to our computer. And I loved interviews with authors, so I thought, “Oh, well maybe I’ll maybe I should try this podcasting thing.” Also, I noticed that marketingbookpodcast.com was available. So I took that as a sign from on high.
And I put together 11 little videos for the first 11 guests. And, uh, people, a lot of my had met, and I had already read their books and, you know, I don’t know that they remember meeting me at a conference or whatever, but I asked them, I said, “Hey, I’m starting this thing. Would you be one of the very first guests?” And I ended up interviewing all 11, one of them; it took me Episode 200 to be able to finally get him on because he didn’t have, he didn’t have a book out at the time.
And, uh, so I, now I know we’re gonna talk about this, but does it benefit my business? Well, as you can sense, this podcast is more of a personal thing. I have a day job, and
I do all that sort of thing. This is what I do on the side. And, uh, and I love doing it, and I like learning, but then the thing that’s sustained me is knowing how many people find the show helpful. So every day now, there are listeners in over 150 countries. I hear from these people, “Hey, I’ve been listening to your show for a couple of years. Yes, I appreciate it. I know it takes some time.”
And it just, what feels better than helping other people? I mean, look, yeah, creating this content you’re doing right now, it’s so helpful. And you hear from your, your audience and you think, well, gosh, I better keep doing it because I, you know, I like helping people and I learn a lot, and I just hope that listeners get at least a little bit from it in comparison to what I get by reading the book and then talking to the author.
Pam Didner: That sounds great. You bought a very good point. I was planning to ask you, and you know, me obviously as a B2B marketer, right and a lot of stuff on the B2B marketing side of things, it needs to be measurable, right? It needs to be quantified. And you brought up a good point that in terms of the podcast, that depends on your objective. And a yes, I was going to ask you, it was specifically in terms of conversion, does this podcast help the business directly or indirectly?
Douglas Burdett: Um, maybe indirectly, but honestly, I probably haven’t even been doing that right. Because if I were to do this right, and I may still do this, I should start a podcast more specific to our beloved manufacturers, industrial companies.
Pam Didner: Industrial segments, yes.
Douglas Burdett: Okay. I’m doing this, and now it helps clients obviously, and it helps me keep up with what’s going on and gives me a lot more, uh, ideas. And I think it does give me a little more authority when I’m speaking to a prospect or a client. Um, but, but that’s the difference. Um, and you know, the show makes a little bit of money, but again, that’s kinda not what I’m doing. I mean, advertisers come along and sponsors and things like that, but–
Pam Didner: I do agree with you and, uh, even, you know, I have clients that come to me and ask me, Hey, should we do a podcast? And I always add them specifically; what is your objective? What do you want to accomplish? You know, and this is tied to sales or brand wanting awareness. And, uh, how do you want to measure your success? That’s where we got that all squared away. And then we’ll determine if you want to do this or not.
Maybe this is not the best way to spend your money. Right?
Douglas Burdett: Or time.
Pam Didner: Or time! This is a lot of effort. It’s a lot of time and I, 100% agree with you. So would that say, given that you have done so many episodes, can you share with our listeners the top three things they must do when they launch a podcast?
Douglas Burdett: The first one is what we will now henceforth call “the Pam Didner Question” (Pam laughs), which is what are you trying to accomplish? Do you know? And, and I seriously, don’t folks, listeners don’t brush over this. In other words, say something like, let’s say it’s three years from now, and you’re really happy with how the podcast has gone. What happened?
You know, in other words, bring the future to the present. Or ask what, what are they, what are they trying to accomplish? The reason I say that, and I’m sure that you’re thinking this too, Pam, is that this can be a vanity project pretty quickly where the CEO wants to talk about himself and his company.
Well, it’s just not that it doesn’t sound like it’s very focused on the listener. And so, the second thing I would say is, which is the most important determinant of success, is who is your audience? And that’s yet another one.
Pam Didner: I love that! Your object, your audience. It’s like writing a marketing plan, would you agree?
Douglas Burdett: Yeah, well, I, these are kind of easy things for us who are, can be more objective, you know, cause we’re maybe not in the organizations, but I see a lot of, uh, podcasts that fail because they never really thought about who their ideal listener is. Okay, now, I’m not the best example, but I was doing it for different reasons.
But for instance, um, what you’ll see is a lot of people they’ll go out and buy equipment, and they’re getting ready to check the podcast box, you know, “check the box marketing.” Let’s do a tick-tock video. Let’s do social media, or let’s do… often referred to as management by the inflight magazine. When the CEO comes in on Monday and throws the in-flight magazine, “how come we’re not doing a podcast?” Have your marketing people not thought about this? You know, it’s like, uh, “okay boss, let’s go back to who we’re trying to reach. They’re not podcast listeners, or they are.”
So think about who your audience is and then niche and then niche further down. So the, uh, there are, you know, I’ll say it, and I have to pay a podcast penalty for that. I’m going to be fine for saying this, but there are riches and niches. So, in other words, let’s say you’re a company and you have a variety of customers, but who is your most profitable customer? or who is the customer you want to get more of?
Okay, that might be very different from your other customers.
Pam Didner: Ideal customer profile.
Douglas Burdett: Yes. So, so what is it about them that might be different from the customers you might find less profitable or that you want to fire? So, in other words, really zero into the point where you’re uncomfortable, and that would be my second one.
Then, you know, the third is, how will you determine success? I think this is more important for the marketer than for the management team that wants the podcast or whatever. And that’s, certain things are measurable. You can measure downloads; you can measure what country they’re from and all that sort of thing. I mean, that would be like heart rate and blood pressure. Those are just two metrics that you look at for the health of a patient. There are many others.
What I would be looking at in addition to that is what the call to action is? And that’s, what is it you want your listeners to do? And then that’s a whole lot easier to measure. So, in other words, You know, you could say, “this is a podcast for left-handed widget buyers in the industrial space,” you know, whatever. And that’s where you would then promote something on your website–which you own–don’t send them to your Twitter account. You send them to something like “enroll in our eight-week left-handed widget buyer course.”
Pam Didner: Yeah. I have a very specific call to action.
Douglas Burdett: Yes, with a lot of value. In Seth Godin’s book, This is Marketing, he had this concept among all along with about 1500 others (laughs), but it’s a brilliant book where he said, you know, you’re trying to get people to enroll with marketing. Stop trying to sell them. Get them to enroll.
So podcasts as a great awareness building medium, but it’s being misused a lot like a direct response. So, I mean, that’s another way to try and measure it. But I would say niche down, don’t worry about your audience size. You don’t need everybody. You just need the right audience. And determine how, uh, you can, you can measure success.
Those three right there, you know? Uh, factoid, uh, according to one of the biggest uh, podcast hosting services, Libsyn, most podcasts never make it to episode eight.
Pam Didner: Really? No way!
Douglas Burdett: And I would argue based on what I’ve learned, it’s because they haven’t answered the Pam Didner Question. What are we trying to accomplish? Who are the people we’re trying to reach specifically? If you go too broad, you’re not. It’s not going to work. And then what, what are we going to measure before we are successful? What, what kind of things could we look at?
And it’s, uh, you know, it’s a real content marketing play where consistency counts for a lot, but it’s not real glamorous.
Pam Didner: It’s a long play.
Douglas Burdett: So every Friday, since January of 2015, I’ve been showing up. And publishing an interview and people say, “Hey, Oh wow. You know, how’d you do that?” Well, I just showed up. (both laugh) I just kept doing it.
Pam Didner: Well, there’s a lot of work behind it.
Douglas Burdett: Oh yeah. I read the book, and I interview.
Pam Didner: The guest needs to show up, and you have to think through the questions you want to ask. You have to read a book. Yes, I do agree with you. Showing up is very important, but there’s a lot of prep that goes with it as well.
Douglas Burdett: There is, and I would say that it’s not the cost for people who start podcasts. There are very low costs. It’s time. Nobody realizes how long it takes.
Pam D: Yes, it does.
Douglas Burdett: Or how much more time it takes.
Pam Didner: And on top of it, there’s another piece of it. And I kind of want to, um, just elaborate a little bit more. It’s the promotion part of it, right? So when you have the interview done, and let’s assume you are doing that live, you don’t even want to edit it. That’s fine. But, some people want to do post-production editing, which is great to make it sound professional, but that is one part of the formula. And there’s another one, which is you have to promote the heck out of it.
Douglas Burdett: Oh, you do. And, and it’s so human nature. I’m sure you’ve seen this in your marketing career, as well as a lot of your listeners, where people want the easy button. They want the silver bullet. They want that lottery ticket that will get great success. And I always get this question from people with podcasts is like, “so how do you market it? How do you get more listeners?”
Well, I’d like to tell you it’s one thing, but it’s sort of like, um, you know, how SEO used to be how you could just tinker with a website and get better rankings? And now it has to be baked into everything you’re doing? I like to say, “SEO has gone from plastic surgery to internal meds.” Um, but here’s a lot of little things you have to do.
So remember I talked about a call to action to get better engagement. You know, the brass ring here is to get the email address of your listeners by offering them something great. I mean, nothing’s better than email. I know it’s not as sexy as social media, but it’s effective.
And, uh, it would be, let’s say you have a show, you know, there are generally two kinds of podcasts. One is the host speaking, and the other one’s a guest show. Well, very often, the guests on a show will want to share that they’ve done the interview. Much like the way I’m going to be sharing this interview with, uh, people that I know. And so you would hope that they would share it.
Um, there’s email marketing that you want to use social media to help people get, uh, you know, uh, awareness of it. Uh, another great way to get more listeners is to be a guest on other podcasts. So now that I’m on Pam Didner show, things will start happening for me, if you know what I mean? (Pam laughs).
Pam Didner: Trust me, over-rated! You know what, you probably need to be on Gary V’s show to have some miracle happening.
Douglas Burdett: Yeah, no, no, no. I’m, you know, I don’t have the hustle. I wouldn’t pass the hustle test, I’m sure. Um, and I say that because I think Gary V is misunderstood. Uh, what he means by hustle. He means “you have to do the hard work.” You have to do a lot of people think a lot of misguided people think that he’s saying you got to work hard and not smart. Not what he’s saying, but I think he’s misunderstood.
But so it’s a game of inches. It’s where you’re trying to do things to build up your audience. So, public speaking. Um, you know, uh, for my show, I have a number of listeners in the academic world, like marketing professors, and they sometimes ask me to come in and, you know, or Skype in or whatever to speak to their students. And they have their students listen. And it’s like little things like that. Now I’ll be honest with you, all those professors who have me Skype in are already tenured. So they’re not worried about getting fired by bringing me into the classroom. So, you know, if you’re an academic out there, let’s be careful. I want you to get tenured first before you start engaging in risky behavior, like having the host of the Marketing Book Podcast on the show.
So anyway, I hope that answers your question about, uh, marketing it. Yes, absolutely. Really. That is not the finish line once you’ve published an interview, much like publishing a blog post. That is the starting gun.
Pam Didner: Yeah. So with that, um, my next question is, you’ve been doing the podcast for six years and looking ahead for 2021, what will you do a little bit differently? How would you refine your podcasts moving forward? Are you buying new equipment, or are you looking to change your content? What are the couple of things you are looking forward to refining and changing that you can share with us?
Douglas Burdett: Well, I’m probably not thinking about those things like I should. So once again, Pam Didner asks all the right questions! This episode should be called “Questions with Pam Didner” No, um, I have a few things I’m doing where sometimes when listeners, but before I enter publish an interview, I will post a picture of the book on LinkedIn. And sometimes people who follow me on LinkedIn. will see and they’ll ask me,” Oh, ask the author this.” Well, I have them record their question, and I played on the show.
Pam Didner: I love that. I love that. I think that it is great to get your audience engaged because it tends to be one-way communication. You don’t hear directly from listeners. I love that idea. Well done, Douglas!
Douglas Burdett: Well, thank you. Well, thank you very much (said, Elvis). That’s one and then I, one other little thing I’ve been doing again, uh, is for the last, uh, 20 months or so I know this because we’re keeping track of how many months I do a monthly show on the B2B Growth Show James Carbary’s podcast. I do the monthly book show. And I do it with an author that I had on the show years ago, named James Muir, the author of a sales book called The Perfect Close. And he listens to the show anyway. He always did. And he, he reads all the books that, or he reads even more books than I do. So he and I get on and just talk about the last four or five episodes.
So what I’ve started doing, and in fact, I’m going to do this tomorrow. I did it once where after it publishes on James’s network, I then publish the same episode for my listeners, for people who may have missed some of the past ones, and they’re shorter episodes, anyway. So that’s one extra little thing I’m doing. But otherwise, uh, I don’t, I don’t know what else I could be doing, but if any of your listeners have any suggestions, um, you know, I’m all ears.
Pam Didner: Send it your way or send it to me. Yeah. Great. Great. I love it. No, those are good ideas. I love it. And, um, can you share with us in terms of what is the most memorable moment of your Marketing Book Podcast? Like somebody comes to your show, totally bombed. Oh, somebody was so brilliant. Like, “Oh my God.”
Douglas Burdett: Oh, there’s a couple of real quicks. Um, I remember the first author I interviewed while he was drinking. You know who it is, you know, him Mark Masters, from England. He is a total wild man! He was the first English author I interviewed, but it was also like 8:00 PM there and, you know, he had small children and I completely understood, but he’s a funny guy, and a fantastic writer and I love him to death. Um, so that was one.
Uh, there have been a couple of times where I’ve interviewed authors, and it became very clear, very quickly, that they didn’t write the book.
Pam Didner: Oh really?
Douglas Burdett: Yes.
Pam Didner: Oh no.
Douglas Burdett: Those don’t end well.
Pam Didner: If that happens, what do you do? I mean, seriously, I mean, you kind of, you kind of know it as well. And…
Douglas Burdett: Well, the first one I know happened, I figured it out afterwards, and it was a terrible interview anyway. And I even played it for one of my colleagues. I had asked him to listen to it, and I said, “maybe I’m too close to it. You know, if this, if you think it would be valuable, play it and, uh, “well, we’ll go with it.” And he goes,” no, no. It’s total garbage. That guy did not write that book.” I knew it better than he did.
And there was another time where I interviewed an author, and I love the book and published the interview, and only later did I figure out he didn’t write it. It was not a good interview either because it was a lot of, uh, “Yeah,” “no,” he wasn’t elaborating at all.
There are many memorable experiences, but one of them is that when I’m like a sportswriter who pinches myself, I don’t. I can’t believe I get to talk to these athletes, pro athletes or whatever. I get so excited talking to these authors and like I was talking to you beforehand. Like two or three years ago, I remember when I got a LinkedIn connection to invite from Pam Didner. I was like, “Oh my God, it’s Pam Dinder. No way!!” (pam laughs)
Pam Didner: Listeners. I just want to let you know. I gave Douglas my American Express credit card (Douglas laughs), and he said that, okay?
Douglas Burdett: If you’ve never seen Pam blush. She’s doing it right now.
Pam Didner: (both laugh) this is wonderful. I’m so happy. I had a chance to talk to you, and I want to do a quick summary of the insights and the wisdom that you share with us, right, in terms of the three things you have to do when you launch your podcast, understand your objective, know your audience, and also how you want to measure your success.
Everybody, those are very important. I 100% agree with Douglas? Yes. Then another thing is once you have the podcast, that’s only one side of the equation. And you have to market the heck out of it. That’s where the job starts. And that’s hard. In addition to that, another thing Douglas mentioned about having a very clear call to action that how you want to engage your audience. Why do you want the audience to do? I think that, like, that’s my biggest key takeaway from talking with you, is that, uh, “okay, now, um, I have this interview with you, right? Why do you, why do I want the audience to do it, and I’m summarizing the insight.
And, uh, from you, that audience can take. Um, and so that’s one thing I want the audience to do is just learn something from you and summarize the matter they understand. So it’s wonderful. A lot of good nuggets from you. So I have one last question for you.
Douglas Burdett: Okay. I already know what you’re going to ask. And the answer is those charges were dropped (both laugh). There’s a difference between,
Pam Didner: Not that!
Douglas Burdett: Oh, I’m sorry. I forget what I said.
Pam Didner: (whispers) it’s not part of the podcast. (Pam laughs) So what is your most useless talent?
Douglas Burdett: They are manifold.
Pam Didner: Um, just give me one, okay?
Douglas Burdett: Um, I’m pretty successful at the trivial pursuit game.
Pam Didner: That’s awesome. My husband’s, my husband is very good at that, too. Oh my God, whenever we do Trivial Pursuit, I am like the person I have Alzheimer. I was like, “Oh yeah, that show, that show. I remember that show!” I can see it visually; I cannot come up with a name. Right. And then my husband was like (snaps), you know, “Saturday Night Fever.” Oh, something to that extent, right?
Douglas Burdett: I think I haven’t played in a long time, but my weak spot now would be pop culture because I haven’t kept up with what the kids are watching these days, you know, for about the last 25 years (laughs).
Pam Didner: Well, Douglas, thank you so much for coming to my show. It’s wonderful to have you. And, um, I very much appreciate and thank you for inviting me to be part of your podcast a while back. And took me a long time to reciprocate. So please forgive me.
Douglas Burdett: Not at all. It’s an honor, and I’m such a Pam Didner fan. Um, and I hope that you don’t stop writing books. (Pam laughs) What the listener doesn’t know is I’ve been after you to write a specific book, and you’re giving me pushback, and you know, we’ll see, you’ll see. I’m right, a lot.
Pam Didner: it’s like giving birth. How many births do I have to give?
Douglas Burdett: I know. And that’s why I don’t, I haven’t written a book, and I don’t plan to. I’m too busy reading them. And that’s why I’m full of book ideas, because I know I don’t have to write them.
Pam Didner: You don’t have to do it! (both laugh) Very good. So that’s a wrap, and thank you so much for listening to my podcast. It means a lot to me if you can subscribe to my show and or your favorite channel.
If you have any questions, please reach out at any time on your social media channels or email me at email@example.com. Or you can join that Facebook group, Build Your Marketing Skills to Get Ahead. I personally—personally–answer everybody’s questions in my community.
Douglas Burdett: They should sign up for your newsletter. Like I do.
Pam Didner: Okay. Sign up
Douglas Burdett: I’m a recipient. Sign up for Pam Didner’s newsletter, people. Do it! (laughs)
Pam Didner: Thanks a lot, Douglas. I
appreciate that call to action. So everyone would love to hear from you and take care. Bye!