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Are you already a podcast listener? If so, I bet you can name at least a few of the sponsors of your favorite shows. The hosts of those podcasts are always introducing episodes by naming them and telling listeners what’s so great about them.

Maybe you’ve even tried out a service or product because you heard about it that way – I became a loyal user of Blue Apron’s meal services because I kept hearing about it on shows like Gilmore Guys and Reply All. You might remember how many people first became familiar with MailChimp after it was a major sponsor of the podcast juggernaut, Serial, a couple of years ago.

Podcasts are one of the fastest-growing forms of media right now, and even if you’re not already a die-hard listener, you can still benefit from them as a growing potential outlet for advertising. You don’t need to start your own podcast – just do some digging to find out what shows could be the best outlets for your ad dollars. A one-minute spot on a podcast listened to by hundreds or thousands (depending on your market) could get you front and center with an otherwise untapped audience.

Here are some tips for getting started:

  1. Know your market: If you’re regional or if your business is contained to one state, you might look into what local podcasts are around your area. You don’t necessarily have to pick shows that are related to your business – after all, any listener could have window and door needs. That said, if you’re a national company, you might consider going bigger. Podcast networks like Panoply and Gimlet Media advertise companies on their wide range of shows, each of which tap into unique, huge audiences. NPR is a great option, too.
  2. Check your budget: Before reaching out to anyone, know how much you’re able to spend on a podcast ad campaign. Then make a list of potential advertising partners, starting with who you’d most like to work with. Because podcast advertising is so new, you may not have planned for this for 2017 – if you did plan for radio ad spots, considering working podcasts into that mix. Make a note now to make podcast ad dollars a priority for 2018.
  3. Contact: Reach out to podcasts directly or to podcast networks. Find out their rates and then assess, according to your budget and your intended reach. Whoever you land with will work with you on ad copy and other details.

Right now, there’s a movement to get new listeners to try podcasts. If you’re curious about them but you’ve never listened, here are some instructions for how to get shows on your Apple device or Android phone. You can also stream podcasts through your browser; however, I prefer having them on my phone so I can listen on demand in my car or at the gym. Check out the trending hashtag #trypod for podcast recommendations – or comment below with some things you’re interested in, and I’ll try to brainstorm some ideas for you!

Featured Image: Patrick Breitenbach/Flickr Under a CC by 2.0 License