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Episode Transcript:

Benjamin: Hello, marketers, and welcome back to the Mar Tech Podcast. It's just you and me today. In today's episode, I want to give you an update on how the show has evolved in our first two months of production, how we're tracking to our goals, and how we're putting some of the learnings that we've gathered from our first few episodes into practice. 

Benjamin: We're now six hours away from wrapping up the second full month of production of this podcast, and with the hopes of helping you learn as much about marketing as possible, we're gonna go fully open kimono, and share a bunch of data with you that we've collected thus far. For those of you who are new to the podcast, at the end of the first month of production, I said that my goal for launching this show was to reach 10,000 downloads per month. At the end of the first month of this show, we had been downloaded 344 times. Obviously, we were pretty far away from our goal, but we had reason to be optimistic, because the weekly growth rate for the show was consistently scaling. That said, at the end of last month, I said that the goal for this month would be to reach 1,000 downloads, so how did we do?

Benjamin: Well, I'm happy to report that we crushed it. With a few hours left in the month, we're just a hair short of 1,500 downloads for May. To put that in perspective, the show has roughly tripled in size, and with the exception of the week that I was on vacation, we've grown each week. Before I go into detail about what marketing channels we've used to drive our growth, I want to just take a second to say thank you. Hopefully you've heard me say this at the end of each episode, but I want to say it loud and clear right now. I want this show to be a community for both experienced and new marketers. I've invested time and capital into building something that I am proud to publish, and it means the absolute world to me that you, our listeners, have shown up, and you've stuck around, so seriously, thank you. 

Benjamin: Okay, enough of the mushy stuff. Let's talk about what has happened to get this show to grow three X, in a month. First off, let's talk a little bit about tracking. At the beginning of this month, I installed a tool called Google Tag Manager, which I'll call GTM, for short. GTM is a piece of code that you build into a website, which enables you to share events that take place on your web properties with other platforms. So I set up two events on my GTM installation that track every time someone views a piece of Mar Tech content, or when somebody clicks a button that is a subscriber button, and I feed that data into Google Analytics, I feed it to Facebook, I feed it to LinkedIn, to Twitter, and to Ad Words. The reason why I do that is whenever I run a marketing campaign through those platforms, I don't just want to pay to drive someone to my website, I want to pay for them to execute a specific custom event, like viewing our content, or like becoming a subscriber.

Benjamin: Now unfortunately since the podcast app stores don't allow you to track when a podcast subscription actually happens, all I can do is track as far as how many people we're referring to the app store. So when we're using GTM, whenever I run a marketing campaign, I can now optimize for people that are engaging with our content, or clicking a subscriber button. Now in terms of our marketing channels, there are four primary sources driving the growth of the show. According to Google Analytics, our paid search ads, which show up when people search for key words like Mar Tech, or Mar Tech Podcast, that drives about 40% of our web traffic. 30% of our traffic is either un-tracked, or comes directly through people coming to my consulting website, which is under the domain BenJShap.com. 20% of our traffic comes from social media referrals, which are likely people that are guests of our podcast, sharing the show, and 5% of our traffic is either from personal emails, or just random website referrals.

Benjamin: In total, our marketing efforts have driven 540 unique users to our website, who have either engaged with the Mar Tech Podcast content, or clicked a subscribe button, and that begs the question how did the show generate 1,200 downloads, when our website only generated 540 users who engaged with the Mar Tech show's content? This is where I want to point out that marketing is not always an exact science. Outside of the $500 that we paid for a paid search ad which, just to give you the data, generally averaged about a $2 CPC, which is cost-per-click. We've also been running some audio ads, through a podcast platform called Ad Knit. For those of you who may have missed the interview with Chris Smith, who is the founder of Ad Knit, Ad Knit is a platform that allows advertisers like me to dynamically insert ads into podcasts. So this month, we invested $300 into what are called post-roll advertisements, and so those are the ads that play at the end of a podcast. 

Benjamin: So we invested $300 into post-roll advertisements using Ad Knit, and we targeted podcasts that were specifically about business. Just so you can hear what the ad unit that we played are, here is the 60 second ad unit that we used to promote the Mar Tech Podcast.

Benjamin: Are you interested in learning how great companies grow? Then download the Mar Tech Podcast. The Mar Tech Podcast tells the stories of real world marketers who use technology to generate growth, and achieve business and career success.

Speaker 1: From advertising, to software as a service, to data-

Speaker 3: Getting brands authentically integrated to content performs better than TV advertising.

Speaker 5: Typical lifespan of an article is about 24 to 36 hours.

Speaker 2: If we're reaching out to the right person, with the right message, and a clear call to action, then it's just a matter of timing.

Benjamin: Ready to learn the secrets of technology driven marketing? Then download the Mar Tech Podcast. Just search Mar Tech. M, A, R, T, E, C, H, wherever you download your podcasts.

Benjamin: Okay, now that you've heard the advertisement, and you understand where we're playing it, without explicitly saying the rates that our friends at Ad Knit are selling their inventory for, I'll just say that they are giving us a sweet deal, and it's lead to that ad being played a few hundred thousand times. While we reference MarTechPod.com as our website, most of the people that hear that ad are likely to look for our show in their podcast feed, which we don't get visibility into, which makes sense. If you're listening to a podcast, why would you go to a website to find the podcast, as opposed to just looking for it in the podcast app? That also means that we can't directly attribute the show's growth to our podcast advertising, but it seems logical enough to me that we're getting hundreds of thousands of impressions in podcast advertising, and when we see our impression levels peak, we're also seeing our download levels peak, so there's enough correlation to an increase in podcast advertising for me to feel comfortable saying that that's the primary driver of this show's growth.

Benjamin: All right, let's recap. We spend $800 this month in marketing. The show's generated 1,800 downloads, 1,500 of which came this month, which equates to a little less than 50 cents per download. Our working assumption is that the podcast advertising we're running is driving the lion's share of those downloads. We've also run some Ad Word tests, and we know that we can drive visitors to the website for about $2. Lastly, whenever we launch a new episode, we ask our guest to share the interview with their social networks, and that's generated about 20% of our website content visitors. You, our listeners, you're sticking with the show, and since we shortened the episodes, the amount of each episode that you're listening to is up to about 80%. So what does this mean? Well, I'd say that we're on the right track. Our goal is to reach 10,000 listeners, and in two months, we're at less than an order of magnitude away, and we've found at least one good marketing channel, which we can invest in, and try to see how that can scale.

Benjamin: Now that we understand what our growth rate is, we've grown three X, and we're at 1,500 downloads. My goal for this next month is to reach 5,000 downloads per month. Now the strategy for doing that is we're gonna continue to invest in the channel that we feel is our primary source of growth, which is our advertising Ad Knit. We're going to test our Ad Words campaigns, and seeing what the impact of sending people from Ad Words to the app store, and then, since we know that we've seen good success with our social networks driving referral traffic, we're gonna try to test out some advertisements on LinkedIn, to see if we can increase some of the impression levels of the promotion that's already happening.

Benjamin: I feel like the show is off to a great start, and I just want to thank you, again, for listening. If you haven't already, hit the subscribe button in your podcast feed, and we'll give you a weekly dose of marketing and technology knowledge in your podcast feed. We'd also love for you to share this podcast with your friends, and if you're feeling super generous, give us a rating in the iTunes store. As I said, we want this to be a community. So if you have questions, or if you'd like referrals, you can reach out to me personally at Podcast@BenJShap.com. We've got our Twitter account, we're on LinkedIn, we're on Facebook. Just look for BenJShap LLC. In the next couple weeks, we're gonna hear from some great experts, we're gonna learn about marketing to millennials, we're gonna learn about direct mail, influencer marketing, there's a whole bunch of great stuff that's coming up, and our goal, like I said, is to get to 5,000 downloads for next month. We're gonna try to keep that three X growth pace going, and we're gonna be investing more in some of our channels, and trying to cultivate new ones. So if you want to hear how that goes, click the subscribe button. Until next time, my advice is to just focus on keeping your customers happy.

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