Have you ever felt like you should be doing more to attract new patients and grow your practice? Have you ever wondered how you can reach out to more patients, become a thought leader in your specialty or community, and open yourself and your practice to new growth opportunities without spending a small fortune?
There’s an easy way to do all of that and more. The key is to start your own podcast and promote it with a healthcare marketing strategy that includes podcast advertising and using current podcast advertising networks.
According to the latest figures, more than half of all Americans, about 144 million people, now listen to podcasts. So, if you’ve ever wanted to reach more patients without spending a lot of time and money, podcasts could be your answer.
What is doctor podcasting?
A doctor or practice podcast, like other podcasts, is an on-demand radio program that educates, informs, or entertains its audience. People from all walks of life have started podcasts, including artists, writers, entertainers, celebrities, scientists and, yes, even doctors. And people from all walks of life tune in regularly.
Today, millions of listeners can tune in to their favorite podcasts on-demand, whenever and wherever they want using their smartphones, computers, or tablets. It harkens back to a time in America before television when most homes had only radios for news and entertainment and families gathered around and listened to their radios regularly. That’s pretty much how podcasts work today. Many podcasters create and post their latest episodes daily, weekly, or even monthly.
Why should doctors start their own podcasts?
If you are like most doctors, you got into medicine because you wanted to help people. Starting a podcast can be an excellent healthcare marketing strategy for helping people on a much larger scale than you ever thought possible. And that’s just one of many benefits. A podcast can also help you:
- Establish yourself as a thought leader in your specialty or community
One of the easiest ways to establish your expertise is by sharing your knowledge with the public. By making your own podcast, you can share your experience, knowledge, and wisdom with a practically unlimited audience of patients, researchers, scientists, professors, and others both inside and outside your medical specialty.
- Identify and take advantage of new professional opportunities
Have you ever wanted to write a book or speak at community or professional events? With a podcast, you can build name recognition so editors and event coordinators will take notice. As your podcast following grows through podcast advertising, you can also build your reputation as an expert. As your following grows, it becomes easier for decision-makers to hire you or publish your book because you already have a built-in audience of followers.
- Increase the visibility for your practice and brand
Chances are, you’re probably reaching your local patient prospects through your website, Facebook ads, referrals, social media, Google searches, and other practice marketing online. Imagine what it will be like when you open up your reach to the millions of Americans who listen to podcasts. Your new patients and partnerships can come from far and wide because people can access your podcasts from anywhere.
- Build your network by doing podcast interviews
One of the most popular podcast protocols is interviewing other experts on specific topics of interest to your target audience. Having your professional colleagues and healthcare industry leaders as guests on your podcast is a great way to build relationships and expand your network of influence beyond your usual connections.
- Get yourself out of a rut
No matter how much you love what you do, doing the same thing day in and day out can get old and feel stale. Creating and starting a podcast can boost you right out of your rut. It might even help you discover a hidden talent for radio hosting, entertaining, and public speaking. You might even enjoy podcasting enough to consider it as your next career!
How do you start your doctor podcast?
If you think starting a podcast is complicated or difficult, think again. Starting a doctor podcast is a lot easier than you might imagine. You don’t even have to be particularly tech-savvy because podcasting is easy to learn. Just follow this step-by-step guide to doctor podcasting.
Step 1 – Develop a concept
No doubt you have a wealth of medical knowledge you can share with your target audience. To create a successful podcast, you will want to focus on just one topic for each episode. Your potential listeners should have a clear idea of what they’ll learn before they tune in.
Your concept should provide a springboard for an ongoing stream of specific topics to talk about. Be as specific as you want. You don’t have to confine your podcast to sharing your medical knowledge. Broaden your scope to consider all the things you do and see as a doctor. Consider talking about them, too.
Step 2 – Know your audience
As you develop your podcast concept, you should know who you’ll be talking to. Who is your target audience? Is it patients, other doctors, practice administrators? Once you decide which audience you intend to target, make sure you’ll be speaking to them in ways they can connect with. When speaking to patients, keep it casual and conversational while skipping the typical healthcare jargon that may go over their heads or turn them off.
Step 3 – Give your podcast a good name
Catchy names are always a hit for podcasts. Something that’s easy to say will also be easy to remember and easy to tell others about. If possible, use keywords in your podcast name that describe your podcast concept. Include words like “doctor,” “medical,” or “practice” to help listeners find your podcast in their Google searches.
Step 4 – Choose a podcast hosting and management platform
After you have your concept, your audience, and your name in place, you’ll need to choose a podcast management platform to host your podcast. There are many of these platforms available. Today’s biggest podcast platforms include Apple, Google Play, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. Your management platform will store the mp3 files of your podcast and create your podcast feed so people can find you.
Step 5 – Register with big platforms
Once your podcast is created and hosted, you’ll want to register it with those podcast platforms that will help you reach the maximum number of listeners possible. Do your research. Find out which large platforms are best suited to your concept and needs.
Step 6 – Get the right equipment
You don’t need a ton of high-tech equipment in order to create your podcast. You can create your doctor/medical podcast with a computer and a good external microphone. Don’t use the computer’s internal microphone because the sound quality won’t be nearly as good, and certainly not acceptable for podcasting.
Remember that the quality of your microphone will greatly affect the quality of your podcast. You’ll need clear sound if you want people to listen. Choose an external microphone that plugs directly into your computer. Invest in a good microphone and don’t skimp. With external microphones, you get what you pay for.
In addition to a microphone, you’ll need audio recording and editing software. Audacity and GarageBand are two of the most popular audio software programs for beginners because they’re relatively easy to use. If you don’t want to edit your own podcasts, you can always hire an audio editor from a site like UpWork to edit for you.
Step 7 – Identify podcast advertising networks
Podcast advertising networks allow you to earn income from your podcasts through paid advertising. They match healthcare podcasters with the right advertisers and sponsors. Some of the best podcast advertising networks are Podcast One, Archer Avenue, PodGrid, Megaphone, and AdvertiseCast. A quick Google search will reveal others.
How to advertise a podcast
The best way to advertise podcasts and grow your listeners is by embedding a link to your podcast on your website. Another best way to advertise podcasts is on your website’s personal bio page, on your professional and personal social media pages, and in your practice blogs. You can also promote your podcast to your current patients via email and text messaging.
Push your podcast everywhere you can because the more listeners you have, the more success you’ll see from all your podcasting work and the more you’ll appreciate this great new healthcare marketing strategy and enhance your practice marketing online.