Podcasts are a versatile tool that can be used for internal and external communications. They can be used to train employees, reach clients and prospective customers or as a recording of a webinar or event. In this case Podcast were used to promote and event. Through the use of Audio Podcasts interviewing presenters, we can build excitement, inform delegates that wish to attend and showcase the event and what it will have to offer.
We have attended a number of events organised by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight branch of the Institute of Directors (IoD) and always found them well attended, with a wide range of local businesses represented and lots of great networking opportunities. Where there have been presentations these have always been informative and engaging.
When we were approached by Giorgio Bendoni, the Chair of the local branch, asking for our help with their Annual Members Meeting, we were pleased to provide it.
As well as networking opportunities there are a number of guest presenters talking about a range of subjects:
Paul Bennett who is Director, Executive Education at the University of Southampton will talk about “Leadership and Performance: an exploration into next generation leadership”.
Dr Nasser Siabi who is the CEO of Microlink PC Ltd will talk about “The Hidden Gold Mine in each company: our people and their abilities”.
Gary Jeffries who is the Chairman of the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership. He will talk about the work of the LEP and present details of the Solent Growth Plan which has just been submitted to government.
We suggested we interview the presenters before the event and produce it in the form of an audio podcast. This way attendees would be able to listen to the presenters and understand what they would be talking about.
We agreed with Giorgio that we would create a microsite mirroring the IoD website and host the interviews there. The microsite was designed to retain all the same active links but add additional ones to the sponsors web sites as well as IoD contact information for people wanting to learn more about the event or book to attend.
The microsite has a space for each presenter which includes their photo, a short summary of what was discussed during the interview and links to their own organisations web site and to any relevant social media accounts. This in effect performs the same role as a Radio or TV guide by allowing the audience to get information about the program.
The microsite with the interviews can be found here.
The process to arrange, record and produce the interviews was simple. First Giorgio e-mailed the presenters, introducing us and explaining how the podcast interviews would be used. He copied us on the e-mail so we could follow up directly with the presenters saving him the admin time of being a ‘go-between’. Our e-mail to the presenters explained who we were, how podcasts worked and included links to a number of examples we have produced for other clients.
Everyone contacted responded positively so we sent them another e-mail detailing the questions we would be asking and our preferred interview method and offered to talk to them on the phone if they had any questions. Everyone was happy with the information and explanation in the e-mail and simply book 15 minutes in their diary to record the interview.
Podcasts are just like radio interviews – they can be in the studio, face-to-face on location or over the phone. If over the phone our preference Skype for quality (using headsets is best), followed by landline (handset and not speaker phone) or mobile as a last resort.
We then agreed a day and a time to contact people and simply chatted for a few minutes (to check line quality and adjust recording levels) and then asked the questions as previously discussed.
We then edited the recording we had made, adding the voice-over introduction, the music (pre-selected and approved by Giorgio) and the outro (end voice-over). Once the interviewee and Giorgio had approved it we uploaded it to the site so it would be available for the IoD to start using it as part of the marketing of the event by linking to the microsite in their e-mail and other promotional activities.