What are The Best Tools for Podcasts?

What are The Best Tools for Podcasts?

What are the Best Tools for Podcasts?

What are the Best Tools for Podcasts?

Podcasts are the lovechild of radio and digital. They are the natural evolution of recording your favorite shows. Now you can just take them everywhere with you to enjoy at your own pace. Creating such media required expensive equipment in the past, but now the hardware tools for podcasts are just a laptop and a microphone.

We’ve gathered a selection of the latest and greatest (please read “free/freemium”) software tools you can use to give your business a voice through a podcast. The list is organized following the creation process: listing ideas, recording, editing, social media broadcasting, and auxiliaries.

Ideation & Organization

Of course, you could go old-school and just use pen and paper, but it would be a pity not to try modern tools. During brainstorming sessions, you could use a mind mapping software. If you have a more chaotic working style and would just love to drop everything in a virtual box and sort them later for inspiration, Evernote is the tool of choice for most creatives.  Lately, a merge between project management and ideation software emerged, which promotes collaboration, named Notion.

Recording & Editing

The sound is the lifeblood of a podcast. While most people can’t define what makes a recording excellent or unbearable, they know it when they hear it. Room acoustics are essential, but if you can’t have a professional studio, you’ll have to rely on editing to get it right. Audacity is a free, multi-platform tool to record and process sound files. If you are looking for a quick, one-stop-shop, with the recorder, editor, and publisher, there is Cast.

If you intend to have a live show, conducting interviews with guests, you can try ZenCastr which records on separate tracks, offers live editing, and integration with cloud services (Dropbox). To engage listeners, not just guests, work with SpeakPipe. They can ask questions, leave comments and be interactive.

Social Media Awareness

To extend your current fan base and connect better with existing ones, you could view Facebook Live as a way to podcast with video. If you re mostly a Twitter user, add Periscope to your tools for podcasts. The direct interaction could give you a few ideas about your followers’ interests. Turn these into new episodes.

Auxiliaries

To succeed in the crowded world of podcasters, you need to keep organized. Use a planner like Google Calendar. This will help you keep track of the themes and the availability of your guests.

After a podcast, you could think about transcribing the discussion to text. This is great for repurposing as a blog post. Publishing content helps you with SEO, as voice search is currently not an option. You could use dedicated services, but Voice Typing in Google Docs makes a decent output.

Did you know all of these tools for podcasts? What are your favorite tools that get you results? Be sure to comment with your ideas or share this article with someone who might find it useful.

How to Use Social Media in Highly Regulated Industries?

How to Use Social Media in Highly Regulated Industries?

How to Use Social Media in Highly Regulated Industries

How to Use Social Media in Highly Regulated Industries

There are highly regulated industries including finance (banking & insurance), healthcare (pharmaceuticals & hospitals) and legal advising which are under strict requirements regarding advertising and marketing. Creating a social media strategy for these highly regulated sectors is a challenge. Yet, it should not be a reason to abandon this channel. It just requires more attention, organization, and diligence.

Do Your Research

Before developing your own social media strategy, take your time to research competitors. What are they posting about? Is there a certain frequency? What kind of graphics are they using? How do they stay compliant? Would you change anything about how they do it within the given requirements?

Set Goals

After you have a clear understanding of what is happening in your sector, develop a set of goals for your pages. What are you trying to achieve through social media? Do you want to generate awareness? Do you hope to get people to take action? Are you using it as a way to display achievement? Attach numerical levels to measure success.

Create Guidelines

 Make a list of topics which are acceptable for the online environment. Study both your industry’s regulations and social media policy regarding the types of images that are acceptable to be displayed online. Make a list of the words you can use and those that are banned. Develop a brand voice description that will be used in conversations with followers.

Learn to be Compliant

Healthcare and banking have the strictest regulations. Before creating any content, the marketer should be aware of HIPAA for social media or similar rules for the banking industry. Also, aim to have a good understanding of social media guidelines.

Create an Approval Process

In these industries, it is a good idea to have your social media content checked by a paralegal. This might slow down the creation and publication workflow. You just need to think ahead a few weeks.

Prepare a Content Calendar

Don’t rely on the moment’s inspiration, create a clear schedule of what you want to publish, complete with copy, images and relevant links. Pre-load your profiles with content and ask the paralegal to look at it before publishing.

Think in Checklists and Templates

To simplify tasks and avoid mistakes create lists (time/info/compliance/accuracy) and don’t be afraid of templates. If you have a distinctive corporate culture, these will not be boring, but create consistency.

Don’t worry if you have to manage the profiles of businesses in highly regulated industries. Just follow our steps. We encourage you to comment or reach out to us if you have comments or need more guidance.

How to Create a Weekly Posting Calendar that Converts

How to Create a Weekly Posting Calendar that Converts

How to Create a Weekly Posting Calendar that Converts

3 Easy Steps to Create a Weekly Posting Calendar that Converts

Maintaining a corporate social media profile requires strategy and planning. People are creatures of habit and react best to things they can anticipate. Even though the age of TV series and radio broadcasts is almost gone, following a consistent posting calendar, both regarding themes and hours can be the key to long-term growth. It makes your fans anticipate and be curious about what you have to say next. Be sure not to let them down or waiting.

Let’s review the steps you need to take to have a clear brand voice and never be out of inspiration. The best blogs, pages, and podcasts seem effortless but are built with clock-wise precision.

Think Strategically

Although most companies maintain social media profiles only for awareness, you can think more specific. Attach financial goals to your posting, especially sponsored ones. Treat social media posting with the same respect as general business strategy and define yearly, quarterly, monthly and weekly goals. Try to pinpoint areas such as the themes to cover, the number of followers to acquire or sales.

Research your audience and find out the relationship between demographics and the preferred content. Try to identify best posting time regarding weekdays and hours.  Save the best material for these times.

Define the (Seven) Wonders of Your World

Not all companies need to post daily, but to be consistent, it is helpful to define a theme for each day of the week. Try to avoid general topics like the Monday dread and #TGIF, rather be specific to your industry and audience. You can have “Tips and Tricks Tuesday”, “Delicious Wednesdays” or “Mommy’s Saturday Treat”.

Merge this personal blueprint with international and local holidays to capture more diversity in your posts. Also, practice consistency. For example, if you have a weekly funny posting every Friday, don’t come up with sad or disturbing industry news. Make few exceptions for major events.

Exercise Attention-Grabbing

Build your calendar like a cake. The strategy is the cake dough, the daily themes are the cream, and the content is the frosting. You should aim to make this as enjoyable, eye-grabbing and fun as possible.

Industry leaders advise to write over 20 titles for each post and pick the best one. There are even headline analyzers to help you choose the best one. This exercise will make you more creative and attentive to nuances.   

Do you already know what types of posts does your audience like? Would you be curious how a specialist can help you define your unique calendar? Why not drop us a line about your social media struggles?

How to Identify a Real Instagram Influencer

How to Identify a Real Instagram Influencer

How to Identify a Real Instagram Influencer

How to Identify a Real Instagram Influencer

The notion of social media influencer is either embraced or bashed by marketing professionals. In an age where user-generated content is about to replace traditional advertising, influencer collaborations were able to attract over $ 1 billion in 2017.  The real problem is to identify those accounts which are genuine, have loyal followers, and the ability to generate ROI.

The Plague of the Fake Instagram Influencer

In 2017 a marketing agency created an experiment with two fake Instagram accounts. The goal was to get paid advertising contracts for these fictive influencers who only had purchased followers and comments. The real aim was to show how vulnerable are the platforms to false content. While calibeachgirl30 featured photos of the same model girl, wanderingggirl‘s profile contained only stock photos. They secured contracts with apparel and beverage companies.

So, as a marketer, what are the signs you should pay attention when choosing an influencer to act as your brand ambassador?

Hashtag Hunting

The recent changes in Instagram allow you to follow hashtags much in the same way you followed accounts. By consistent scouting of top posts for your range of interests, you can identify those accounts that are consistently having excellent results. Make a list of the top 20-50 potential influencers that you would like to reach out to. Use the next step to narrow down the selection.

Show Me the Numbers

A marketer is a strategist, and you should act by looking at business indicators, not tempting pictures. Disregard the visual coordination and harmony and go behind the scenes, since you should always choose quality over quantity. The total number of followers does not tell the whole story. You should dig deeper and ask for additional information and look at some industry-specific ratios.

  1.     Follower growth.

Some tools give a sneak preview of the backstage. The aim is to see a steady, linear growth of followers. Any sudden spikes could be an indicator of purchased followers. Only an occasional spike could signal viral content, but those are rare.

  1.     Engagement ratio

Industry standards define 5% as an average for likes/comments, while a rate towards 10% is extraordinary. Another study shows that once an account is over 10K it has a hard time sustaining a high engagement rate, even if it is a real Instagram influencer.

  1.     Video views

Fake accounts and bots don’t bother to watch videos. A clear indicator of the genuine people who engage with a page is the number of video views. It should be around the same value as the previous rate.

Remember these rules when choosing an Instagram influencer. If you have a hard time finding the right one for your brand’s voice, don’t be afraid to reach out for help.

Is E-Mail Marketing Still Alive?

Is E-Mail Marketing Still Alive?

Is E-Mail Marketing Still Alive?

Is E-Mail Marketing Still Alive?

Do you know that annoying pop-up that asks for your e-mail just seconds after you’ve opened a site? If it is not working why is everybody still stubborn to have it? Why does every business still work hard to build an an-email list if spam filters are getting stronger and people are more likely to open junk mail arriving by snail mail?

In fact, statistics show that e-mail marketing is alive and well, delivering a staggering 4400% ROI, which is way more than social media channels combined can offer at this moment.

Didn’t Social Media Kill the E-mail Marketing?

Social media is fun, engaging and creates a buzz, but it can’t be personal like an e-mail. Even with the best targeting, it can’t say “hello, Susan” like the greeting of an e-mail. This personalization drives action because people feel responsible. At most, social media influences the design of the e-mail by making it more visual.

Also, social media communication learned a lot from the digital workhorse. The tweet can be regarded as a great subject line. So, in fact, while Facebook and Instagram are the cool kids attracting all the news, e-mail is the working parent bringing home the bacon.  

Subject Lines Matter

The essential component of e-mail marketing is undoubtedly the subject line. What grabs your attention from the vast pile of advertising you get each day? A great line packs at least some of the following items: personalization (name), relevance, urgency, and making you curious. Keep in mind that you need to make it short and punchy.

In fact, there are automatic tools to help you evaluate your subject line. Most of these will teach you how to improve your scores by analyzing the words you use.

Black Friday Every Day

A pair of special events which shows the marketing potential of e-mail are Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Since shoppers anticipate the huge sales and deals for these occasions, they actually look forward to the e-mail announcing them and are more likely to open these and buy.

As a marketer, you want to replicate this behavior as often as possible, even daily. To do so, extend the strategies discussed in the subject line and the spirit of Black Friday. Make your clients look forward to your communication by including promotions and excellent deals for a limited time.

Do you have an e-mail list? If you need help in building one and crafting the right communication, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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