When you first start out podcasting, it can be difficult to know how to get feedback from your audience. You might not know what questions to ask, or even where to start. In this blog post, we'll discuss some of the benefits of getting feedback from your audience, as well as some tips on how to go about doing it. So whether you're just starting out, or you've been podcasting for a while and want to improve your process, keep reading!
KEY TAKEAWAYS FROM THIS EPISODE:
- Why you need to get feedback from your audience
- Four ways you can get feedback from your listeners
- Examples of questions you can ask to get the information you need
- How often you should carry out this exercise
TUNE IN TO THE EPISODE
Getting feedback from your audience is probably one of the easiest ways to grow your show. After all, you are podcasting for your audience and so their feedback is invaluable. If you can go straight to the horse's mouth and get the information you need and you then implement that information, you are giving your listeners exactly what they want, and they will become loyal fans and tell other people about your show.
All that being said, however, I know that asking for feedback can be scary. It is certainly something that I struggled with when I started my business. My coach at the time told me that I should ask for feedback at the same time as asking for a testimonial and it absolutely terrified me. I didn’t want to hear anything negative. I just wanted the testimonial that said how great I was. And that’s not how it works. Not if you truly care about your client’s experience and want to grow your business. It took some time and lots of coaching before I realised that I was looking at it the wrong way. Maybe you can relate to this?
Rather than being terrified about what bad things my clients might say, it was more about taking their feedback and using it to improve my offer, to improve my process, to improve my approach; whatever their feedback related to, they were giving me the sort of inside scoop to make changes that would be better for business in the long run.
Something else that I learned was that you didn’t have to take every piece of feedback on board but if you think a good point has been made, then, by all means, take that feedback and run with it.
The same relates to your podcast. When you've been podcasting for a while, with maybe 30 to 40 episodes under your belt and have built your audience a bit, that's a really great time to get feedback from your listeners so you can shape what the show looks like in the future. Using their feedback in the right way ensures that you're giving your audience what they want.
As we talked about in episode 63, your podcast analytics give you a really good look at how your show is performing but there’s nothing quite like getting the information directly from your audience. This is gold! So as scary as it might be to answer hard questions, I highly recommend that you do.
I recommend sticking to 3 -5 questions only. People are busy. If you bombard them with too many questions, they may be put off. So be really clear and strategic about the questions you want to ask in advance strategic about the questions that you ask.
Here are a few questions to get you started:
- Where did you first hear about the show? This data isn’t available anywhere else. Not your host. Not the listening platforms. It might be interesting to know whether most of coming from social media, word of mouth, Google…and it’s a pretty quick answer to provide.
2. What do you like about the show?
3. What would you like to see more of?
4. What topic(s) would you like to hear more about?
5. What would you like to be improved or done differently on the show? This could relate to guests, length, format, or anything they think matters.
Remember, look at their responses as a way of improving your show and don’t take anything they say personally.
Here are four ways that you can get listener feedback.
Number one - A direct invitation at the end of your episode.
As the saying goes, if you don’t ask, you don’t get, so don't be afraid to ask the question. It could be as simple as ‘‘I'd love to know what you think about the podcast. If you're willing to share your thoughts with me, send me a DM on Instagram or send an email to [insert your email address here] and I'll share further details with you.’’ Make sure you’re really clear and specific that you are asking them for feedback, for their views about the show.
Number two - Use an online tool called SpeakPipe.
SpeakPipe is an online voice recording tool that allows you to interact with your audience via voice messaging. Your listeners are able to leave a message directly on your website via a link that you share with them. They offer both free and paid plans. The paid plan starts at $15 per month. They also have an annual plan as well.
The free plan may not be appropriate for this feedback exercise because you’re limited to a 90-second message but this is dependent on how many questions you have. You might consider using the paid plan, which gives you five minutes, for a month and then cancelling. This option also allows you to be a bit more creative i.e. you could use the recording as part of an episode for the show (with the listeners' permission of course).
Number three - Reach out to your audience on social media or your email list.
I hang out mostly on Instagram so I’ll use Instagram as an example here but wherever you hang out think about the features native to that platform and how you can use them to get feedback from your followers.
Instagram stories are a great way to engage your audience and ask questions. You can use a mix of the question sticker and poll feature to get the information you need easily. I recommend keeping it to five slides and using a mix of formats to capture their attention i.e. talking video, flat lay, photo of you. You know your audience best so do what you know will engage them. The great thing about this is their answers will go directly to your DMs and you can thank them personally and maybe even ask follow-up questions (if they’re open to it).
The poll feature is almost like giving them multiple-choice options. Quick and easy for your audience but means that you need to think about the questions AND possible answers so they can make the right selection for them.
Number four - Use survey tools like Google Forms or Jotform
This is probably the most organised way of getting and storing your feedback as everything will be in one place. My biggest piece of advice is to keep your questions to five max or under five minutes to complete. You might even want to include 1 - 2 multiple-choice questions.
People are busy and if they think the form will take them a long time to complete, it may put them off. So be succinct. Think really carefully about the burning questions you want answers to, and stick to five max.
Note that you can use more than one of these options at the same time. For example, numbers 1 and 4 go really well together. If you make a direct invitation at the end of your podcast episode, you can share the link to the form rather than asking them to DM you on Instagram or send an email.
Speakpipe would work really well too for those who find it easier to send a quick message whilst they’re washing the dishes or doing the laundry. So consider multiple options and pick those that suit you best.
TIP: Most URLs are really long and unsightly. I highly recommend that you use a tool like Bitly or Pretty Links (if you are a WordPress user) to make your URL something that is easy for you to say and easy for your listeners to remember.
So, how do you get feedback from your audience? Well, there are a few ways. You can ask them directly on your, reach out to them on social media or email or use tools like Speakpipe or Google Forms to gather data. The important thing is to make sure you’re asking the right questions so that you can get the information you need to improve your podcast.
And don’t forget – the value of getting feedback isn’t just in making your show better. It also helps build trust with your listeners, which can lead to more downloads, sponsorships, and revenue for your business down the road. Have you gathered feedback from your podcast listeners?
Resources mentioned in this episode
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