Podcast promotion should be done in many ways. Social networking is just one part of a large package for promoting your podcast. Getting connected to a community of like-minded people and building authority with them will bring you more listeners and viewers when you begin promoting your podcast.
Podcast Promotion â€“ Facebook
Facebook is very popular today and is probably the easiest, and most effective, place to promote your podcast at this time. Facebook makes it easy for you to paste your podcast link into a status update. You can also promote using a Facebook Page for your show.
Leverage your friends by posting links to your show in your status box. They will see your link and possibly click the 'Like' button. When they do, your original link gets shown to their friends. Your friend may never have posted a link on his own, but by you taking the first step, you gave him an easy way to share that link with others.
Create a Facebook Page (used to be called a 'Fan Page'). This is a page that is specific to your podcast where you can post links and information about the show. It is different from your personal profile and allows people to Like your page without having to become your friend. As soon as you get 25 people who Like the page you can get an address like www.facebook.com/THE-NAME-OF-YOUR-SHOW. After that it is easy to tell your listeners where to go to become a fan.
On your Facebook Page you should create exclusive content to give your listeners a reason to interact with you. This extra content may be as simple as a status update that gives a sneak peak listing of upcoming episode topics. You could also include audio or video content that was cut out of the final release of the program because of time or because it didn't fit.
On your Page, as well as your personal profile, you can install an application that will automatically pull any content that is in your RSS feed into your Facebook presence. By updating your podcast website, your Facebook Page and profile will be updated. Some of these RSS applications will even include a media player making it possible for people to listen to or view your show from within Facebook.
Podcast Promotion â€“ Twitter
Twitter is a good place to promote your podcast if you have the right followers. If they are passionate about your show, they may re-tweet (RT) any promotional material about the episodes.
Whether it is better to have one Twitter account for your show and another one for personal use is a great topic for debate. An account that is specific for your show allows people to follow that account knowing that they will only get relevant information. If you have a personal Twitter account and are heavily connected to your followers, then promoting your podcast from your personal account can reach a wider audience. You may consider having two accounts and promoting them both on the show.
Podcast Promotion â€“ YouTube
While YouTube may seem more like a broadcasting platform than it is a networking platform, it was started as a way to connect with other people sharing videos. It can still be used that way. By following other people's YouTube channel, you are encouraging them to follow yours. Find other people posting similar content to yours and begin to follow them.
Social networking is most effective when you can get like-minded people sharing content with one another. Their friends eventually become your friends. This is true in all the different social networking platforms.
Podcast Promotion â€“ Podcasts and Blogs
Interacting with other podcasters in your space promotes your podcast to podcast listeners who are interested in your content. Leave comments on other podcaster's blog posts. Send them an email to be read on the show. Record a voice mail message using your nice microphone and send that to the podcaster. Most would be glad to play it on their show and you are presenting to the audience a little taste of what they will hear when they download your program.
Invite other podcasters to participate in your show. Call one up and record an interview. They will be glad to expose their program to your audience and will either talk about you on their show, or invite you on as a special guest. This is very targeted podcast promotion.
Don't limit your connections to just podcasters. There are many bloggers who have niche blogs about your topic. Interact with their audience as well. Leave blog comments and participate with other readers. You don't need to spam with your links. Most blog commenting systems let you put in your website address when leaving a comment. When people see your helpful comments, they will click on your link and discover your show. Again this is targeted promotion. These are people who are interested in the same topic your show is about.
Podcast Promotion â€“ Social Networking Buttons
Make it easy for your fans to promote your podcast. It is possible to get social networking buttons that show up at the bottom of your blog posts for your show notes. These are links that allow people to easily send a Twitter message, post to their Facebook profile, share on Delicious, Digg and other social bookmarking sites.
The one thing that is easy for most web users to do, and it seems to be very effective, is click on the ubiquitous Facebook Like button. For podcast promotion, you should have a Like button available for your fans to promote your show to all their friends.
Podcast Promotion â€“ Podcast Directories
Though podcast directories may not fit the term of social networking, they are a place to leave and get comments. Spend time writing reviews for other shows. Let the podcaster know you wrote a review for them. They will appreciate it and will probably consider leaving a review for your show. If podcasters are hesitant to write reviews for others, then you can be assured that an average listener is not going to see the need for leaving reviews.
Podcast Promotion â€“ Forums
Like podcast directories, forums don't really fit into social networking. This is probably because they have been around for so long. But as far as what is accomplished in forums, they can be the ultimate in social networking. The biggest difference is that forums are usually laser focused on a topic where other social networking services are general in nature. If you could promote your show to only very involved people in a community that has a passionate interest in your topic, would be willing to spend some time there? That is exactly what a forum is.
Many forums will allow you to put a link to your show in your forum signature. If not, there is usually a place in your forum profile where people can get more information about you. Be sure to include a link to your show in your forum profile. The more you participate and demonstrate yourself to be an authority in your genre, the more traffic your forum time will drive to your show.
Podcast promotion through social networking is not something you do once and can quit. The nature of social networking is that you need to keep yourself in front of your audience. Spend at least a little time every week promoting your podcast through social networking.