The 4 B2B Podcast Strategies (& How to Pick the Right One)

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode, Logan Lyles & Dan Sanchez discuss the 4 top strategies you can use to make your B2B podcast successful, how to pick the right strategy for your brand & how the different strategies do/don't overlap.

Also mentioned in this episode:

Kickstart Your Thought Leader Journey With the 30/30/30 Plan

Yeah, welcome back to be to be growth. I'mLogan Lyles with sweet fish media. I'm joined today by dan Sanchez. If you'rea regular listener of this show, you know him, he's our director of audiencegrowth and one of the primary co host of this show. I think this is the veryfirst time he and I are together on an episode. Just the two of us dan. How'sit going today man? Dude, I can't believe it's been, I've been workinghere and doing podcast episodes for well over a year and we, this is ourfirst episode together. It's crazy. We need to make this more of a habit.We're kicking it off today with something I'm really excited about.You've been socializing this on linkedin. I've been socializing it withour team. You have been as well. We've been thinking about this idea wherewe've kind of been giving different advice or maybe sometimes evenconflicting advice about your B two B podcast strategy and that's becausethere are, we haven't up until now really defined. These are the differentplays. These are the different strategies you can use. So what we wantto outline today are the four primary B two B podcasting strategies. Number oneis demand jin number two, we're calling industry influence. Number three A B. M,which has a lot to do with content based networking is we've talked abouta ton on the show and the number four is a customer success strategy for yourpodcast. We're going to talk about why you would do each one of these wherethey overlap and where they don't and how they compare on some differentthings like what should be your primary goal, What's going to be the audiencesize, that sort of stuff? So any other thoughts in kind of how we came to thisand why it's important to outline these four a little bit more distinctlybefore we get into the nitty gritty dan. Yeah, I mean it kind of came as we kindof have like, we kind of knew about two. It's like, well you can emphasizeaudience growth or you can emphasize what we typically push customerstowards his account based marketing. But after doing strategy sessions with,I don't know, dozens of companies over the last year, I started to find thatcustomers were like, well we're gonna do it this way. And I'm like, well ifyou're going to do it this way, then I guess you would do it like this andthat makes a lot of sense because then if you're working with customers canreduce turn, if you do it this way, you can gain influence. And I found acouple other use cases where I'm like, actually there's, there's a good blunthere, there's a couple other, quite a few ways to use a podcast is veryflexible, but when I narrowed them down and kind of group them together of liketypes, it really came down to four. So after we started with five at thebeginning of this week posted in length and got some conversations going, kindof debated it back and forth on a live chat and now we're here and I think wegot it pretty well figure it out. So I'm excited to dive into the floor whatthey are, what they aren't and how, how they can work, some of them can worktogether. Yeah. And where they overlap, there are four main things we'll talkabout similarities and differences between each of them, but the fourthings we definitely will touch on in each of the four will be what's theprimary goal of this podcast strategy? What's the main content type? What isthe time to impact? And then what is the expected audience size? Are youreally aiming and measuring based on audience size even based on thestrategy that you're going for? So let's kick it off. Number one is demandjin, where you're really prioritizing audience growth. Right? Tell us alittle bit about those four criteria, if you will then first and what thisplay really looks like. What is it prioritize them? We'll dig in, yep. Sodemand jin is probably what most people think of when they think of a podcast,but demanding is by far the most common business or B two B podcast, you'll seeout there. It's you and your subject matter experts usually sitting in frontof a microphone. Sometimes it's solo, sometimes it's co hosted, so there'stwo hosts, but generally they're both subject matter experts sharing theirexpertise on the show in order to kind of share what the content type is, isthought leadership really, it's a thought leadership play, but you'reusing thought leadership in order to...

...generate demand about what you bring tothe table. So we don't use this one if we did this podcast will be called theBdB podcasting show and it's not, it is a BdB growth show. We'll talk moreabout how B two B growth fits into the A. B. M. Play. Um as I'm thinking aboutit, I'm trying to think of like some popular shows around this of course arethe state of demand gen of course is a demand gen play with chris walker,giving out lots of thought leadership and he has multiple formats that hedoes, but it generally him talking right, it's generally christmas ideasor him reacting to some questions or him consulting some customers, buteverybody's listening to because they want to know what he's thinking aboutdemanding and how he's applying it to different scenarios. The impact forthis is long term. It does take a long time to build up an audience unless youhave substantial audience somewhere else. Some other owned channel, likeyou have a large newsletter, then of course you're going to kick it off realfast. Have a friend. Um Austin Bell sack who had a huge lengthenedfollowing huge web traffic. So when he kicked off his podcast within likeeight months he was getting 15 k downloads in an episode or whatever,but he had massive owned audience somewhere else. So naturally he couldtake that audience with him otherwise this is a long, long road you're gonnabe doing to build an audience and have an impact here and then the expectedsize that you're shooting for is large. The whole purpose of it is to grow alarge audience. You're shooting for a large one unless you have some kind oflike really niche knowledge that so niche that only like a few people inthe world want to hear it, but they, those people really wanted, you know, Idon't know, maybe more than a few people, but you get what I mean. Yeah,absolutely. And this is this is the type of B two B podcast strategy, Iwould say most of our potential customers come in asking us aboutunless they've really heard about content based networking and they wantto go with strategy number three, we're going to talk about in a bit which isthe primarily a B. M focused play. But this one is the goal is audience growth.The content type is thought leadership good example with chris walker justbecause you're doing a demand jin strategy with your BdB podcast doesn'tmean that thought leadership, content has to be just solo episodes. Thatmight be a big part of it and likely it will be, but it could be this sort ofepisode, right, where you have two people from one company riffing onsomething within their realm of expertise, you could interview somecustomers and prospects and industry thought leaders as well, but theprimary focus is sharing the thought leadership from your team's perspectiveand just because you have internal people talking doesn't mean it's goingto be crappy, I mean that just depends on how actionable and how much thoughtleadership they actually have versus they're just plugging the product orthe service or, or whatever before we go on to 23 and four dan. You know, wetalk a lot about what should the premise of your show be? What shouldthe format, how should you name your show, how close to your company or yourproduct versus your Baier's expertise. What are some of those things that youthink about if you're going with podcast strategy number one, which is ademand in play, I haven't spent a lot of time thinking about like how premisecomplain to these though. I know premise could absolutely, once you lockdown the strategy, it actually makes the premise development a lot easier. Ido think if you're going to demand jin side an audience growth premisesprobably most important in this category because your goal is audiencegrowth and having a powerful premise, a reason that mixes it up and has adifferent angle on it, or a journey or some kind of mash up of a differentcontent in order to keep it interesting is only going to matter the most on thedemand gen side because premise development shines the most would tocapturing people's attention and keeping their attention so they have areason to show up to your podcast over and over and over again. Even whencompetition becomes more fierce your premises, what's going to keep peopleengaged? That's really good advice. Okay, let's step to number two. Thisone was the hardest one for us to name.

Um we went through a few different onesand this might have been one where we act number five and marched in, I can'tremember, but right now anyway, we're calling it industry influence, what isthis strategy before we get into the four criteria, if you will thebreakdown. This is the one that actually kicked off the wholeconversation because I had a customer recently. First, they were kind ofunhappy. I felt like they were unhappy with the podcast. They're like, well wehaven't seen sales grow when I actually asked them like, oh, like what have youbeen doing with it? Who have you been interviewing? How has that been going?What the ceo started telling me, he's like, actually we've been using it tomeet and greet lots of people in the industry and break into the americanmarket from the UK and now we're making traction because like all of a suddenwe're able to kind of open the door for all the gatekeepers. We're actuallymeeting with thought leaders where I'm meeting with some customers, but I'mbuilding relationships with them getting by in. Like all of a sudden Ihave a much stronger industry influence because I'm able to get time with thepeople who matter in the industry, the gatekeepers. And so that's a powerfulplay in and of itself without demand, gen without account based marketing.He's not meeting with ideal buyers at all, but he is using it to break hiscompany into a competitive market in a place in the US where it's there, it'svery competitive for security. And so that's what kicked off the whole thingis, I'm like, wow, there's really a play here and it's not the first timeI've heard about it, I've heard of other people using this play to quicklygo from, nobody knows who they are, they just entered and they know nothingabout this industry to quickly lining up 30 40 people interviewing them alland quickly learning about the industry's he's talking to the top dogsand then everybody knows who he was. I can't remember the exact industry and Iwon't say who it was, but like, it was a quick way to become known in theindustry in a relatively short amount of time without having to like go to aconference and shake everybody's hands, which you're not gonna get an hour withall those people anyways, they're usually speaking on stage and hard toget a hold of. But to get them on the podcast isn't that hard? So it goeswell. Yeah, exactly. So I would say strategy is number two and three arereally going to be about what people have heard us talk about the mostcontent based networking right? Where you're creating content with the peopleyou want to know and the people you want to know you as opposed to creatinga podcast and hoping that they listen to it or trying to get it in front ofthem through typical digital marketing just going straight to them. Sostrategy number two is content based networking, even though you're notgoing directly to potential customers to have them on his guests, you'regoing to industry influencers, you're going to maybe potential resellers,potential partners, right. For us, we can do content based networking in thisstrategy of industry influence and build relationships with chris walkerat refined labs and matt Heinz Heinz marketing and other folks in the B twoB marketing space. And we've had them on this podcast and we've partiallyexecuted uh this strategy because we're creating good content. And so what'sinteresting here is the first three strategies have some overlap. So youcan see we're already talking about how this overlaps with the A. B. M. Playbecause it's about the relationships more than the first strategy. But ifyou're interviewing people that you want to get to know in the industry,they're probably going to have some thoughts that your potential customerswant to hear as well. So it overlaps with number one as well because you maybe able to build a good audience and develop some thought leadership eventhough you don't have thought leadership to share yourself yet. Right?You did a great episode on like a 90 day action plan to thought leadership.We should link to that in the show notes on on this one man. So the goalis really first and foremost, building relationships with industry influencers,partners, referral partners, folks like that. The content type is probablygoing to be more heavily focused on outside interviews because you'reinterviewing these people, you want to build relationships with. The impact ismore midterm. So maybe not as long as...

...the demand gen play because therelationships can start to make things happen and then the audience sizesmaybe medium, right? Because like we said, it overlaps with number one, butthe audience size isn't really what you're optimizing for. It's not yourprimary goal. So you shouldn't expect to go with strategy number two ofindustry influence and measure the success just based on downloads andstreams. They miss anything there, correct me if I'm wrong on any of thatman, I just love how this one blends like this one is so common and youshould be doing this to some degree whether you go to the demands inside orthe A B. M side because it is a really great way to build influence. Like Iwas just talking to Logan like we're in podcast agency. So like he's alreadytalking to some people at Descript right? The podcast editing company oruh tech company. And I'm like, but if we didn't have relationships already,it wouldn't that be that hard to find them on linkedin and shoot the mediumand be like, hey, come talk to us on our podcast, tell us about what you'rethinking about podcasting. And I bet the content would actually be really,really good. Right? And we should probably have them on anyway just tobuild a relationship even more. Right? Yeah, well in case in point, if we weregoing really with strategy number one, which has never been our primary goalwith with GDP growth, stay tuned for more on that. We could still have themon this show because podcasting is part of GDP growth. But then if we also hada show that went with strategy number one and this was the BdB podcastingshow or meta the podcast about BTB podcasting, we could also have Descripton. Right? And so again, strategy number two overlaps really nicely withone and three in a couple of, of different ways. We've already kind of given a taste ofwhat number three is going to be, the third one is a B. M. Or account basedmarketing, Pure content based networking with potential buyers. Imean we've explained this a ton, but for folks that are new and forconsistency here, let's outline what's important here. What's the goal? Whatare you doing if you're going with strategy number three dan? Yeah, forthis one, the goal is to build relationships specifically with buyersor potential buyers. The main content type is interviews. The impact is aboutshort to midterm as far as when it's going to impact your revenue andexpected audience size is going to be small to medium sized. This will neverbe probably have the same potentials. Audience sizes demand gen becauseyou're optimizing for audience growth there, but it does have the potentialto be fairly large. I mean this shows fairly large and it's an A B. M. Basedshow within that though, I wanted to outline like there's really threedifferent approaches you can even take within this one, Double um 1 1 cir hereis that you, there's three different types of ideal buyers that you can usethe show to reach. one is reaching just prospects who don't, who don't evenknow who you are, you reach out to them cold and be like, hey, so you're doinggreat things. Your company would love to have you on our show to talk aboutit right? And you walk through pre interview to a P. O. V. Discovery, youunlock some great nuggets that they have to share, You share it on the show.You build a relationship, you do not pitch them ever, but trust merelationship, people are smart, they'll check you out, right? So that's oneplay and that's probably the most common place what we're doing.Oftentimes with this show, not always, but often um the second one is bringingsomeone onto the show who's already in your pipeline, some a lot for a lot ofB to B companies, people in their pipeline can be in there for likemonths to year sometimes, like it's a long pipeline, sweeten the deal, likebring them onto the show, building a relationship that way. Not only do youbuild a relationship with the key stakeholder, but they're probablyexcited to be on the show. They share it out to their social media, multiplepeople within their account are seeing it and also becoming more familiar withwho you are and what you do with your show. So it's a great way to kind oflike accelerate the deal. Again, it's not through pitching them or strongarming them or uh like bait switching that switch, but it's about buildinggenuine relationships because we tend...

...to do more business with the people wetrust and more time spent talking and making adding value to them by givingthem audience is great. Now the third one is fun and that is finding currentcustomers of larger accounts that might have different divisions that you wantto get to know right if you're working with one division, you know, you'd bejust as equally effective at producing some good results for the seconddivision, a great way to get an introduction is to ask them for anintroduction and say like, hey, I'd love to have so and so on the podcast,could you warm introduction me to the person to the customer you're alreadyworking with. If you're doing a great job in providing value for them, that'san easy introduction for them to make because now they get to extend thevalue themselves and you get to build a relationship with that other divisionand do what we've already been doing with ideal fires, who don't know us. Sothose are kind of like the three different avenues that we've seen. A BM can work at building revenue for BTB company Strategy. No three, the goal isall about building relationships. The, the content type obviously isinterviews because of its relationships. You need someone to interview to buildthe relationship with. The impact can be short because those can map reallyquickly. And I love that. # three has three kind of subsets and that's theway I've always explained it to our potential customers that want to usethis strategy is you can use it to engage and get to know people who don'tknow, you. people who already know you. So like you said, number two people whoare in your sales pipeline and you could say, hey, could we have your bosson the podcast to have them speak to this industry trend or something likethat. So it could be even within type number two, within strategy, numberthree, there could be multiple people, you could engage the person you'retalking to their boss, someone else. And then number three, um we have somecustomers that are using this strategy and it is strategy number three A. B. M.But they're not interviewing any prospect accounts from their targetaccount list. They're interviewing current customers where they haveexpansion Upsell and cross sell opportunities. So the focus is still onrelationships, but there are three types of people you might want to buildrelationships with within this strategy. People who don't know you, people whoalready know you and people who are already buying from you. So I thinkthere's also some overlap as we, you know, talked about in industryinfluencers and folks that you might want to build relationships because ofthe how you name the show and how you set up the premise that will allow youto go there too. Anything else there, man, before we go to number four, Ithink before we go to number four, it's important to specify that just becausewe're saying the goal of industry influence and a B. M is buildingrelationships. It's not like we're not developing audience for them and it'snot like they're not developing relationships with the demand insidetheir developing relationships there too. You're doing all these things.It's just like what some are optimize more for one thing versus the other.And if you try to really go at both, they kind of get in the way, it justbecomes a problem. So you really have to optimize for one and no, you'restill building audience in A B. M. You're not like have an audience ofyour just your mom and you're inviting them on being like, yeah, we're gonnamake you look really good. And then you have an audience of like two and thenyou don't even release the episode. It's not on Apple, it's not on Spotify.And you're like, I gotta, that's not what we're saying here, right? We'resaying what is the top priority because what we found is that if you're nottracking the right things like your conversation with our customer based inthe UK, you may think that you're failing when you're actually not or ifyou try to prioritize all of them, you may hit a ceiling and you might getfrustrated. Which candidly we've been talking about internally, we've triedto do all four of these with me to be growth and it's put us at a point wherewe're like, we got to optimize for one, right? And then you can have asecondary. And you can maybe get a little bit from one of the others as athird piece, but you really got to choose what's your top priority out ofthese four, which one does it most naturally overlap and then optimize forthose and I love what you said. They're like, don't just make the contentcrappy, don't just phone it in like...

...content based networking, they're stillcontent as part of it. And so you still need to make your guest look good. Youshould be trying to grow the audience so that you can legitimately say, hey,I'm going to share this with our listeners and your listeners shouldn'tjust be your mom. Although if you get a customer and the only listener is yourmom, you should send her a thank you ambassador. Something nice. All right,we're going to talk about number four. This one was interesting. So I wastalking to Olivia Hurley, who's another host of this show podcast strategist onour sales team and she said, hey, this company came to me and said they onlywant to interview current customers and this is part of what led me to come toyou and you are already kind of thinking about how Logan, we need tooutline these four specific strategies, five slash for it's for now it's forand I kind of walk them through. Well if you're only interviewing existingcustomers, you need to realize some things that what your podcast is goingto be and what it isn't, this one kinda sits over on its own. So if you'reviewing all four of these as like circles side by side with the firstthree overlapping is like a Venn diagram. The fourth is kind of over byitself and we'll talk about some of the things that you could pull from theother ones. But it's a it's a different strategy and I like the way you summedit up the other day dance. I'll let you kind of laid forth strategy outcustomer success strategy with your podcast. So the goal of the customersuccess strategy is really to reduce churn. It's not for audience growth,it's not to necessarily build relationships. So you will build those,it's really to reduce churn and just help your customers become moresuccessful that way. The main content type is interviews, impact is going tobe medium. I don't know like it couldn't depending on how much youreduce your and it could be a really big deal. If it's one of the best waysto deliver good stuff to your customers, it could have a big but I'm going tosay medium and you're expected audience size is going to be small. It can onlybe as big as your customer. Your customer base. If you only have 30,000customers Then don't expect to have 40,000 listeners. All right, Havingeven 10,000 listeners would be really, really good if you have 30,000customers. Right, it's probably less than that most of the time. But myfavorite thing about it and I've, I've been on some been a customer of quite afew tools where I was so hungry, I wanted more. And I'm like, my favoritething to see from, especially from some sass providers was seeing customer casestudies, like who else was using this tool in creative ways to unlock successand what were they doing differently than how I was using it? Right. I wouldhave loved. That would have killed for some more stories. Only stories I evergot to see was like, maybe a competition between some customers attheir annual event. That was hardly enough. I wanted to see more who wasdoing the best with this and that's what this could become, is use casesinterviewing your best customers in trying to tease out the tips, thetricks, the rhythms they've gotten into using your service or your tool so thatother customers can become more like your best customers. This will probablyonly ever be a weekly show, right? Because you can't do that many episodesabout it, but people want to consume audio content. It's easy to consumethat can consume it passively. And while you probably already have blogposts like that, you maybe you should turn some of them into podcast episodesand have it stripped comes straight through the customer's mouth. Not onlythat, but you get to reward your best customers by getting them in front ofall the other customers and make them look like like a rock star for beingfor being one of your best customers, reward them. And like you said, there'srelational benefits here because having those customers on your investing inthat relationship, there's some equity gain there, there's some brand affinity,but that's not necessarily the goal. So what we're talking about in this fourthstrategy is interview your best customers about what they're doing, howthey're using your product or service. Again, we tried to do this a little bitwithin B two B growth. At times we've had to separate series that we'vecalled, why podcasts work and how to podcast, right? And at times therewe've interviewed customers to say,...

...let's talk about guest booking, let'stalk about um interviewing and hosting skills. Let's talk about podcastpromotion strategies. Now, that doesn't mix real well when you're trying to dosome of the other types, the first three strategies, because it's sonarrowly focused. So I would say here, if you've heard us say like don't namethe show after your expertise or don't have it tied too closely to yourcompany. That kind of goes out the window here because if it is aimed atpeople that already know like and trust you, you can name the show after yourcompany, you can name it after a better way. Might be if you have a nicknamefor your customer base, you know, kind of like Taylor Swift has Swifty's right.Name it after them still. So actually still kind of falls in line with ourgeneral thinking about naming right? But the goal is not a huge audiencesize. It's, you might measure success, not based on a number of streams perepisode, but hey, we have 500 customers and we've got 300 people listening tothe show. How do we get that to 400 maybe that's really the ceiling. RightAnd how is that impacting turn? There's some other useful things that you coulddo with this type where you're interviewing customers, you're doingsort of audio case studies as well as tips and tricks for other customersthat could be used by your customer success team as added content. Youcould also provide this to your sales team. You probably not going to givethis to your marketing team to go do brand awareness with this sort ofcontent. But when you have people at decision stage with your sales team,they could absolutely use this as sales enablement content. Like we've gotsomeone we're talking to and they're concerned about guest booking for theirpodcast. If we have an episode with this sort of strategy where we'veinterviewed customers, we could give that to our sales team and they canshare it at that point in the sales process. So it's still going to have animpact on sales, but it's more sales and customer success More so thanbroader marketing with strategy number four with a customer success focus onyour podcast, man, I just feel like we unpacked one of the best pieces of theyear. I'm like, what else should we should we talk about here? I meanthat's so we've got the four types. Okay, let's sum it up. We've got demandjin we've got industry influence A. B. M. And then customer success. So ifyou're thinking about a podcast, think about these what you're really tryingto optimize for because we've talked about the goal, the main content typethe time to impact and then the target audience size, small, medium or large,based on which way you're going to go demand jin and industry influenceoverlap pretty nicely. Industry influence overlaps with A B. M. As wellas, you know, back to number one and then number four kind of stands on itsown but still has some impact on on sales. And it's not just something thatyour customer success team would have to do, you know, by themselves. Itmight be something that marketing and customer success do together and thenit impacts sales and CS and marketing gets a little bit of something out ofit, man, I I just think we have so much clarity here so that if you have a showand you're kind of hitting a ceiling or you're not sure if it's working, youmight be measuring the wrong things or you might be trying to do too manythings with one show because we've talked before about like don't havemultiple shows because it's hard enough to grow an audience for multiple shows,you know, push it into one. But I think candidly that's where you know, we haverun into some issues trying to shove all four of these plays into one show.So more coming on that soon from, from dan and I for sure. But if you'rethinking about a podcast, hopefully this was helpful for you connect withdan and I on linkedin. You can search dance hashtag. I don't have a hashtagyet. His is cooler than mine. Uh dan Chaz D A N C H E Z. Or you can justfind us dan Sanchez Logan Lyles. Pretty easy to find on linkedin as always.Thank you so much for listening, dan. This was good. We got to do it againsoon. Mhm At sweet fish. We're on a mission tocreate the most helpful content on the...

...internet for every job function andindustry on the planet for the B two B marketing industry. This show is howwe're executing on that mission. If you know a marketing leader that would bean awesome guest for this podcast, shoot me a text message. Don't call mebecause I don't answer unknown numbers, but text me at 4074 and I know 33 to 8,just shoot me their name may be a link to their linkedin profile and I'd loveto check them out to see if we can get them on the show. Thanks a lot. Okay.Mm hmm. Yeah.

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