Greg highlighted the importance of two-way communication for bloggers. This is critical for podcasters too. Offering show notes to your audience provides a natural opportunity to repeat your website and contact information multiple times during each show.
Be sure to tell your audience how they can help you. Recall in Cindy's interview with Marc Acito, that he forgot to ask readers to recommend his first All Things Considered commentary. The fact that he chose to send out a second e-mail to make the request shows the value of directing audience participation. Always tell your listeners how they can help you succeed. Whether it's voting for you on Podcast Alley, recommending your show via social bookmarking, or simply telling a few friends. Listeners want to support you and will appreciate your gentle coaching.
Heed Christina's advice and update your standard business materials. Your bio, e-mail signature, brochures, and websites should reference your show. If your podcast's title isn't descriptive, briefly elaborate. Write just enough so that you can easily remember and repeat it confidently when making new contacts and meeting prospective listeners.
I liken these recommendations to setting up Internet beacons, which guide prospective listeners and supporters to you. But don't forget to consider their user experience on your website when they visit. I've done this myself. In my zeal to set out my beacons, I've given my websites short shrift.
Make sure your websites are easy to navigate, attractive, inviting, and interesting. While the tools to design web pages are at your fingertips, it still takes knowledge and skill to incorporate good user interface standards. For example, templates are great. Yet, you're still in charge of arranging your content.
Basic eye tracking research shows that users read left to right, with their attention naturally lingering in the upper right quadrant. That's pretty powerful research that should influence your design. Check out KatiNeville.com and see what's in my upper right quadrant (hint: platform!). Understanding basic user interface principles will help drive the user behavior you desire.
By now, your author platform probably contains several components, such as websites, blogs, teleseminars, e-zines, Facebook, social bookmarking, wiki, Twitter, Scribd, podcasts, etc. If you aren't currently using several of these applications, rest assured you will.
Whatever platform components you choose, however, be sure to cross-market among them. If the word "marketing" gives you night sweats, call it "intra-platform promotion" instead. Either way, tell your podcast listeners about your seminars. Advise your blog readers to follow you on Twitter. Then Twitter about your podcast. Intra-platform promotion is a key element of viral campaigns because it generates and sustains buzz among your core audience.
Let's use Christina as an example. She is a master at this type of viral, intra-platform promotion. Take a highlighter pen and mark each instance her other e-zines, classes, interviews, published articles, blogs, or other platform components are referenced in this newsletter.
She uses intra-platform promotion because it generates buzz within her reader communities, which readers feel and then pass on to their networks. Sometimes she asks them to activate their networks directly. Other times, she just lets the excitement naturally foment and bubble over. This is pure artistry. So expect to develop the manner and cadence that's unique to you.
Successful podcasts enjoy both online and intra-platform promotional campaigns, which are grounded in solid design and backed up with quality content. Doing it right takes time and planning.