3 Lessons I Learned about Podcasting to Build My Author Brand

As a new author, I knew I would struggle to get more eyes on my writing in an already highly competitive environment. I was already blogging and using videos, but I wanted a medium that would put me “on a new playing field” as an author, help me grow my platform and reach a larger audience.

Let me just say that from the minute I started podcasting back in 2013, I loved it! honestly, I didn’t think I would initially, mainly because I thought of myself as a writer. I started to see how much I loved connecting with authors on a deeper level. In this way, trust was built in my community because my listeners could connect with me in ways that went deeper beyond reading my blog. They could hear my VOICE. I immediately found that podcasting gave me a voice on topics I was most passionate about as an author – the craft of writing, storytelling, marketing, and now, stories of courage -- part of my latest brand name, “Giving Voice to Your Courage.”

As a new podcaster, I wanted to bring other literary “voices” to other authors and non-authors alike. At the time, so I mustered the courage to reach out to Julia Cameron, famous for The Artist’s Way and Linda Gray Sexton, daughter of the Pulitzer prize winner, Anne Sexton. In a short time, I was reaching new readers. People I didn’t know were listening and commenting on the replays. My enthusiasm jumped. A new love and connection had begun.

Let me also just say that most authors haven’t embraced podcasting. I knew going in to podcasting that my purpose was to build a brand around my words, services, and books. I tried to not see myself as just an author, but someone with a strong brand. So if you’re wondering how to build a name for yourself and your brand at the same time, read on. Podcasting may your next marketing tool. In the meantime, allow me to share with you a few lessons about using podcasting to build my author brand.


Lesson 1. Podcasting is not a quick and easy way to get famous

In the beginning, I kept looking at the numbers of viewers. Were the numbers of listeners going up or down? I looked at the numbers as a measure of success. But I would soon learn to put the focus on content. Podcasting is not an easy way to get 1000s of listeners right away. It takes time to create a value packed show that listeners will want to listen to week after week.

Lesson 2. It’s important to be consistent in the release of your episodes

In the beginning, I was consistent in releasing a 60 minute podcast each week, which is a lot of air time! For some reason, I thought that if I didn’t read every author’s book prior to interviewing them, then I wouldn’t come across as a podcaster with integrity. Sounds silly, right? But after a short while, I couldn’t keep up this frantic pace of reading a book each week prior to a podcast. This burnt me out completely and I resented that extra work because it was so time-consuming. My family resented it too! So I took a long hiatus and as a result, lost many listeners. When I finally did come back to podcasting, I had a better strategy in place when relaunching my new author brand “Giving Voice to Your Courage.” I would create shorter podcasts and in preparation, I would ask authors to direct me to a few pages in their books that reflected the theme of courage. I had to start again from scratch, but at least, I wasn’t burnt out with my new brand name.

Lesson 3. I had to commit to learning how to podcast professionally.

Committing to podcast professionally was and still is a big part of the job. However, there were technical snags and problems that threw me off (still do!) and I had to learn how to deal with those problems on the spot.  At the same time, I also had to educate my guests – some of whom needed technical help how to connect to the podcast. So that was an issue that I did not anticipate going into the podcasting world.

So there you have it – 3 lessons I learned in the last two and half years about podcasting. I look forward to each Thursday at 10 am EST as a “chat” – not as dread around important topics that don’t get a voice. It’s one of the best parts of being an author as well – to interview other authors who add so much value to the podcast and are generous in sharing their content and stories. If you have a story of courage worth listening to, let’s connect! All the podcasts are archived here over at "Giving Voice to Your Courage."

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Comment by Dorit Sasson on December 24, 2015 at 12:12am

Thank you so much, Irene, for your encouragement! It's challenging to keep this kind of long haul thinking up and so, I appreciate your words of support. And thank you so much for tuning in! It is much appreciated. Keep sharing and spreading the news. 

Comment by Irene Allison on December 19, 2015 at 9:33pm

This is so interesting, Dorit! And I love your thematic approach and your long view of keeping at it. I love listening to author interviews on the old-fashioned radio and discovered so many great books that way. So I look forward to tuning into your podcasts too. Kudos to you, it's great what you're doing!

Comment by Dorit Sasson on November 17, 2015 at 5:59pm

Yes and good point, Ester! Thanks for your comment.  I plug in the program at the beginning of each week, and I email a list of questions several days before the live podcast. I also create a special Facebook events page that lists each podcast. I look forward to hearing your insights about the episodes. 

Comment by Ester Benjamin Shifren on November 17, 2015 at 5:52pm

I can't believe I wrote a whole comment and it's disappeared. Anyway, from memory, here it goes again.

Bravo Dorit for writing such a great post. I've been intending to start podcasting for ages but never got round to it. Whenever I've been interviewed I've sent a list of probable questions ahead of time, to enable the interviewer. It always worked well. I wish you luck and will try to get my own act off the ground. Looking forward to listening to your podcasts.

Comment by Patricia Robertson on November 17, 2015 at 5:28pm

I'm intrigued by idea of pod-casting. Not ready to do it just yet. Congratulations on successfully taking on this new level of communication.

Comment by Mardith Louisell on November 17, 2015 at 3:16pm

Thanks, again.

Comment by Dorit Sasson on November 17, 2015 at 3:09pm

I generally choose books with a courage theme built-in. Typically non-fiction works best for this purpose. I showcase a lot of SWP authors and I also am on the lookout for other books that dovetail with the theme of courage. 

Comment by Mardith Louisell on November 17, 2015 at 3:08pm

Thanks, Doris, themes of your books? Or others' books? Picked at random?

Comment by Dorit Sasson on November 17, 2015 at 2:53pm

Thanks so much, Mardith and good question! The first podcasting round focused on all kinds of questions around the writing process, themes of each book and advice for writers. The second round focused more on the theme of courage and also on advice for writers.  

Comment by Mardith Louisell on November 17, 2015 at 1:45pm

Fascinating post, Dorit. I will listen to your podcasts but for  those of us who know nothing, can you say what you podcasted about? Was it all organized about courage, even, before you added that?


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