If you’re like most companies, you struggle keeping your employees engaged. A study by Deloitte University Press found that 87% of organizations cite engagement as one of their top challenges. That explains why 3 out of 4 employees are open to or looking for a new job.
Poor engagement usually stems from poor communication. Employees often lack a connection with leadership, the company mission, or other employees.
An internal corporate podcast is a powerful way to create this line of communication. It’s more personal than a memo and less expensive and time-consuming than video.
In this article, we’re going to explain everything you need to know about corporate podcasts, including why you should bother and how to get started.
What is a Corporate Podcast & How Does it Work?
A corporate podcast (sometimes called a company podcast or internal podcast) is a podcast designed for the employees at your company. Someone in your organization would be tasked with producing regular episodes. Team members subscribe to the show and listen via your website (with podcast pages) or a podcast listening app.
In some cases, corporate podcasts are private. A private podcast is locked behind a password protected RSS feed. Each listener needs the password to subscribe to your show.
The goal of a company podcast is to deliver important information to employees, teach them how to be successful, and create engagement among the members of your organization. You can publish anything you want, including:
- Make announcements.
- Notify employees about deadlines.
- Promote upcoming events.
- Build culture by sharing stories.
- Provide updates on company strategies and goals.
- Teach valuable skills (e.g. time management).
- Interview team members or stakeholders.
- Distribute onboarding information.
That said, keep in mind that a company podcast is for the employees. Don’t fill it with corporate buzzwords, policy updates, and standard operating procedures. That’s boring. Provide high quality content that matters to your audience. They want personal stories of success and failure, meaningful lessons, and genuine human interactions.
What Companies Use Internal Corporate Podcasts?
Is an internal corporate podcast right for your organization? Consider starting one if you fall into any of these categories:
- Organizations with lots of employees, especially if you have thousands.
- Companies that rapidly growing by adding new employees on a regular basis.
- Organizations that need to address nuanced issues.
- Companies who are looking to build a deliberate culture.
Tell Me Why by American Airlines is a great example of a company podcast. It’s hosted by Ron DeFeo, the company’s Vice President of Global Communications. They publish five to ten and it publishes a few 5–10 minute episodes each month for the company’s 122,000 employees. They explain company policies and changes, announce new initiatives, and share employee stories.
The best way to determine if a corporate podcast is right for your organization is to ask your workforce. Use an anonymous survey to learn if your team is willing to listen to episodes.
The Pros of Creating an Internal Corporate Podcast
Now that you understand how corporate podcasts work, let’s talk about their benefits. Why should you produce a corporate podcast?
A corporate podcast is an easy way to communicate with your team
Accessibility is the biggest benefit of podcastings. Listeners can enjoy your content wherever they are, at any time. They can listen to episodes while they’re doing other links, like cooking dinner, driving to work, or exercising. They can even listen at their desks while they perform other tasks.
Furthermore, recording the content is generally easier than writing blog posts or emails. As the host, you can speak casually with basic notes to guide you.
Company podcasts can reach remote workers or people in different offices
If you’re part of a big organization, you probably have people stationed in multiple offices across the country or the globe. Plus, remote working is on the rise, which has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. But when employees aren’t in the same place, they can miss critical information and opportunities to connect.
Corporate podcasts are great tools to keep everyone informed and align employees with the leadership. Employees can listen whenever and wherever they prefer, even if they’re in different time zones.
A corporate podcast tends to cut through inbox clutter
If your employees receive dozens of emails every day, there’s a good chance that some of them get lost in the clutter. 30% of employees say they ignore emails from their employer, especially if they don’t believe the message is urgent.
A corporate podcast, however, is a modern form of communication that’s less likely to get lost in the day today chaos. Employees can listen to episodes whenever they prefer, like during their commute or when they exercise. Podcast episodes don’t compete with their flood of emails.
People connect with spoken words
Written content is valuable, but it’s often cold and impersonal, especially in a corporate setting. It’s often hard for your employees to connect with company blog posts, internal memos, and PowerPoint presentations.
Studies show that people are more likely to engage on an emotional and cognitive level when stories are transmitted in an audio format. We are conditioned to appreciate the human voice. Even though the podcast host can’t hear us, we still create a personal connection with the speaker.
Podcasts make leadership more accessible
It’s hard to feel engaged with the leadership of a large company, especially if employees never see or speak to the management team. A company podcast is a great opportunity for leaders to speak directly to their people on a regular basis. This is a big bonus for newer generations who expect accessible leadership.
How to Measure the Success of an Internal Corporate Podcast
Like any company initiative, it’s important to measure its success (or lack thereof). This will help you determine if your work is paying off. Your podcast host should provide you with a suite of analytics to help you understand your show’s performance. If your host doesn’t provide this, find a new host.
What’s unique about publishing a corporate podcast as opposed to a traditional podcast is that you can compare the number of listeners to the total number of employees within your organization. Infinite growth isn’t possible (because your audience is finite), which means you know exactly who to target.
Which metrics are important to track?
- Total Listeners/Downloads – The total number of people who pressed play or downloaded an episode over the entire lifespan of your podcast. You’ll want the ability to filter by date as well to learn when people prefer to listen.
- Total Listens Per Episode – This shows you how many people listened to a particular episode (including multiple plays), helping you determine what people like to hear.
- Listening Methods – This tells you where people listen to your show, including their browser or listening app.
- Geographic Stats – Where are your listeners in the world? If your company is in one location, this data should be pretty simple. But if your company resides all over the world, you’ll want to know where you’re connecting with people.
- Unique Listens Per Episode – This tells you how many individual people listen to each episode. If someone listens to an episode twice, this metric only counts them once.
All of these key metrics are available in the Castos analytics dashboard, whether your podcast is public or private.
Furthermore, surveys are useful tools to uncover your audience’s feelings about the show. Since you can contact everyone in your organization, you can even survey people who don’t listen to the show to ask why not.
Learn more about podcasting analytics: Understanding Your Podcast Analytics To Grow An Audience.
How to Start Your Company’s Internal Podcast With Castos
Producing a company podcast isn’t much different then producing any other type of podcast.
Here’s a quick overview of what it takes to start a company podcast. If you haven’t yet, read our full guide on starting a podcast.
1. Get some basic tools
Yes, it’s possible to record a podcast episode with your iPhone, but it won’t sound great and your team won’t want to listen. Production value and listener engagement are closely related.
You’ll need some basic podcast gear, like a microphone, mixer, pop filter, headphones, mic stand, recording and editing software, and a platform to host your episodes. We recommend Castos, of course, because it has all the features you need to start quickly and sound professional.
Read our full list of podcast gear recommendations: A Podcast Equipment Checklist For Any Setup Or Budget.
2. Record your first episode
How you record will depend on your personal approach. You may like to write a detailed monologue for each episode. Or you may be comfortable riffing from a brief outline.
Spend some time researching your topic. For instance, if you’re podcasting about the company’s latest experience at a trade show, make sure you know everything about the event. If you’re hosting an interview, make sure to have plenty of quality questions ready for the guest.
Try to relax during your first recording. No one is perfect the first time. If you make a mistake, simply pause and start again. You can always remove the mistake in editing.
Dive deeper into episode recording: How To Record A Podcast: Top Tips & Video Tutorials
3. Edit your episode
Once you have episode recording, it’s time to open your editing software. This is when you’ll remove straight sounds and background noise, cut out long pauses and mistakes, and improve the overall sound quality. It seems tedious, but like we said, production value matters.
Editing is also where you add your intro and outro. If you have any extra media – like a pre-recorded message from your CEO or a clip from someone’s presentation – splice that in too.
Learn more about episode editing: 5 Podcast Editing Tips Designed To Save You Time
Proper editing is a time consuming process. Most podcasters prefer to outsource this task. Castos Productions will handle post production for you, leaving you free to create amazing content. Our podcast editing service is staffed by seasoned audio engineers, talented show note writers, and producers who handle everything after you record. Learn more about our editing service.
4. Distribute your corporate podcast
The biggest difference between a traditional podcast and a company podcast is how you distribute it. Marketing a company podcast is actually easier because your audience is easy to define. You literally have the names and email addresses of anyone who might listen.
Next, simply notify everyone in your organization about the new show. Use a company wide email list to contact everyone.
Set up a process to notify everyone in the organization whenever a new episode publishes. Encourage them to subscribe via their favorite podcast listening app.
Private podcasts in Castos
Private podcasting with Castos is super simple. Instead of sharing a password for listeners to subscribe with, Castos lets you send invites to specific email addresses. The user receives a unique feed link they can use in any of their favorite podcasting apps. This means you can remove people as well if they leave your organization. Learn more in this video:
How Employees Can Listen To A Private Corporate Podcast
If the corporate podcast is private, it won’t be findable in the podcast directories. Users won’t see it in their recommendations or in a search result.
Private podcast listeners need to add the show manually to their preferred podcast listening app by pasting in the show’s RSS feed. This process varies slightly from player to player.
For example, in iTunes, listeners must click File > Subscribe to Podcast. iTunes will ask for the show’s RSS feed URL. Once submitted, the podcast will appear in the user’s library.
As you can see, a corporate podcast is a powerful tool to engage with your employees. They’re just as simple to set up and much easier to promote. Your first episodes won’t be perfect, so don’t wait to get started. The sooner you start producing content, the sooner you’ll boost employee engagement.