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7 Tactics for Getting More Podcast Listeners

2009 was a big year for podcasting. Advertising on podcasts increased significantly over 2008 (by over 250% according to one source), and the audience for podcasting grew by about 22%. Millions of people now listen to podcasts every day. In short, podcasting went mainstream last year.

What does all of this mean for you and your podcast? It means the listeners are out there and 2010 is the year you can take your podcast to the next level. It all starts with attracting more ears. That’s why we’ve come up with a list of 7 surefire tactics for getting more podcast listeners.

1.     Interview guests on your show – One easy way to spread the word about your show is to interview guests from your industry. I recommend focusing on bloggers and power Twitter users who have a strong following. This way, whenever they appear on your podcast, they’ll alert their readers/followers, and many of them will come check out your podcast. Be sure to fully prepare for the interview by learning all about your guest and creating thoughtful questions they might not have been asked before.

2.     Tag your shows properly – Because podcasts are audio files, tagging is essential for helping listeners find you in iTunes or through search engines. Always use descriptive tags and keywords that will attract targeted traffic and listeners who are truly interested in your show. Remember that the text describing your podcast determines if someone will listen or not, so treat it like a promotional tool that immediately grabs the browser’s interest.

3.     Stick to a publishing schedule – One reason radio shows are able to build loyal followings is because they’re on the air at the same time every day. If the show was constantly bounced around at different times, it’d be hard to be successful. The same concept applies to your podcast. You need to set a publishing schedule and stick to it so that listeners know when to expect your podcast.

4.     Write a companion blog for support – Blogging can be an effective tool for generating interest in your podcast. Blogs reach a different audience that may not know about your podcast, and they can be useful for building a strong search engine presence. Make sure your podcast is featured heavily on your blog with well-placed subscription links. You can even place samples from your latest podcasts on your blog so listeners can get an idea of what your show is about.

5.     Get listed in podcasting directories – Listing your podcast in podcasting directories is a must. The internet is full of quality podcasting directories that match listeners with shows they might be interested in. Remember, don’t pay to get your podcasted listed in a directory. Check out this list of free podcasting directories.

6.     Stay active on other websites in your niche – Like blogging, podcasting is all about building a community. You can’t just sit back and expect listeners to come to you; you need to go out and be active in your community. This means staying active in forums, blogs, and online groups related to your niche. It can also mean building a strong presence on Twitter. Just make sure you’re actually contributing to the community and not just spamming them about your podcast.

7.     Make your show worth listening to – Of course, none of these tactics will work if your podcast sucks. Above all else, you need to focus on making your podcast worth listening to. This means showing up prepared and offering quality content that listeners can’t get anywhere else. Never stop trying to improve your podcast.

Do you have a podcast? What do you do to grow your listener base? Leave a comment with your best tips.

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (, the online leader in affordable press release distribution. To subscribe to PR Fuel, visit:

20 Responses

  1. This is a great list. I just launched a podcast and it’s been tough getting new listeners. I think your point about the schedule is key. I need to commit to a regular podcast slot.

  2. PR Fuel says:


    Thanks. I will check out your podcast.



  3. THOOM says:

    I agree, I actually found some useful advice. Now to actually work at using these tips.

  4. The After Hour Show says:


    This was an awesome thread! My show has been taking off nicely but we seem to have hit a block and cant pass that 200 mark for listeners each episode.

    Thanks for the great page!

    I will check out some of these other podcast on here as well!

    – The After Hour Show

  5. Kyran Barron says:

    Thanks for the help 🙂 I will try these tactics on my podcast

  6. Actually I find that not preparing content works best for our format. Unless we have a specific story, I can hit record and not have a single clue as to what I’m going to talk about. And then make it last an hour and a half.

    . And that our biggest problem, we talk about everything any anything, So we don’t actually have a niche. Unless talking BS is its own niche? Then that’s our niche!

    Just a shame iTunes don’t have that as a genre!

  7. […] Read Article […]

  8. Jack says:

    Thanks for the imput, we just started our pod and thought,” record and post and they will come!” now hits are dwindling. Time to get to work!!

    Canned Air

  9. I just recently released a podcast and I have alot of downloads thus far, but I need more. This is a great article and very informative. I will use these tactics to get more listeners. I have a regular schedule and plan to increase my schedule. Hopefully I can get more listeners. Our format is comedy, entertainment, and a little sexual content (talk about sex and sexual scenarios). We are also listed in iTunes, and a few other directories (Blackberry, Zune,, etc.).

    Resse Fife-Tillery
    -Host of Hecticism Podcast

  10. Jayson K says:

    Thanks for the tips! Only 6 episodes in and getting better each week. Another few years and we won’t suck! 😉

    Feel free to let us know what you think.

    -The Wannabe Podcast

  11. mike williams says:

    After recently starting our podcast (7 episodes) I’m finding it extremely difficult to book guests. From getting a commitment to having them follow through with their commitment. I was under the impression everyone wanted to be heard.. I know a podcast with built in fame and clout of an already famous host has their guests lined up promising more push for their agenda, book, twitter etc. But I don’t think we are really putting the bar to high even considering our obscurity.

  12. Awesome tips, thanks. I’ll be using some of these in my web marketing show podcast.

    It’s easy to get super excited about podcasting, but if nobody is listening, then the excitement can drop very quickly. In an ideal world, we start a podcast and get inundated with listeners who all soak up our content with the same amount of passion that we have ourselves about it. The reality is, that doesn’t happen.

    Slow and steady wins the podcasting race. You have to keep at it.

    Good work – thanks.

    Brent Price

  13. Frank Howard says:

    Even in 2015 this content is still great got a lot of insight here. With the growing capabilities of modern podcasts its a great time to be podcasting. Seeing previous posts almost wish I’d started earlier. It’s never too late!

  14. brian says:

    This makes me feel really good about my efforts so far and that me and my host are doing all these things to better our podcast 🙂


  15. This is a great article. We’ve recently started our podcast (8 episodes) and we are doing a lot of the things listed here. I will incorporate some of the other tactics listed here that we haven’t been doing. We have been trying top better the podcast since the first and they are getting better and better.

    Pablo Bonelli
    The Film Craft Beer Podcast

  16. Matt says:

    Thanks for this list of podcast directories! It’s been difficult getting a podcast to grow from the start, but, with this list, it has made getting our content out there much easier!
    Thanks again

  17. Thanks for the tips. Only four shows in but going to try to to stick to a two episode a week schedule. Been fun so far and I think that’s going to be key.

    Ryan Elward
    Host of Ryan Elward Reading Podcast

  18. All excellent tips. My podcast went from a modest amount of listenership to being on the most listened to Vegetable Gardening podcasts due to many of the items you listed above. Specifically to interviewing guests on the topic. No one wanted to hear me talk for 30 minutes 🙂

  19. […] eReleases also suggests setting up interviews, making sure to have tagged your show properly on iTunes (nobody’s going to find your podcast on John Deere tractors if you have it tagged as cars), sticking to a steady schedule, and having a blog to supplement your material. […]

  20. This is a great thread! I have another tip – keep you podcast short with no rambling. My shows average about 3-6 minutes, and in 18-months I’ve generated over 40,000 downloads.

    I always get asked why their so short and I tell them I respect their time; plus it makes them want to listen another podcast. Ha!

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