If you’re like most companies, you struggle to keep 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.
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.
“Tell Me Why,” a corporate podcast by American Airlines
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 podcasting. 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-to-day 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.
Podcasts have reached an all-time high in popularity. You’ve most likely listened to one (or many), as has 55% of the U.S. population. More Americans listen to a podcast every week than attend religious services. And, there are now more than a million active podcasts on Apple Podcasts. At Podbean, we saw 100,000 new podcasts created in 2020 on our platform alone.
However, while you may be a podcast fan, it might not occur to you how this could relate to developing and supporting your employees. Yet, we’ve seen tremendous growth in corporate podcasts, especially private podcasts for employees. There are many reasons why private podcasts for internal communications, training, and leadership development are paralleling general podcasts in growth.
So, how can organizations benefit from internal podcasting? What role can private podcasts play in employee development? Where to start? And, how can you use corporate podcasts for employees most effectively?
Benefits of Corporate Podcasts: Private Podcasts for Employee Development, Training, Leadership and More
Podcasts are easy to consume anytime and anywhere. Corporate podcasts can enable employees to use time more effectively, always having various learning opportunities at hand. Because podcasts can be relatively easy to produce, companies can be nimble with timely updates and keep everyone connected.
Communications are typically believed to be about 7% content/words, while about 38% is how those words are spoken–things like tone and inflection. Though this varies by situation, it does mean that voice is a powerful tool for improving understanding and creating emotional resonance. Extracting data from podcast advertising studies, we see both high retention and action resulting from what people hear in podcasts. When combining corporate podcasts with other learning tools and resources, organizations really start to see improved results.
Appeal to Employees = Higher Engagement
Audio is an intimate form of communication. Podcasts can use storytelling principles and conversations to really reach and stick with the listener. “Zoom fatigue” was one of 2020’s most popular search terms. We all know the feeling of strained eyes from looking at screens all day too. Listening to a corporate podcast can give our eyes a break while our brains take in knowledge.
I’ve worked with many companies who turned to private podcasts because of their team’s own listening habits or employee feedback. Since the format already has wide appeal, it automatically offers potential for better engagement. Accordingly, our customers report high levels of employee engagement with their podcasts, and many have switched more resources, training, and various internal communications to private podcasts.
Podcasts can be consumed on-demand and on the go. Employees get content they need at their fingertips, so it’s always there when they need it and can be fit into their schedule. Obviously, podcasts can be a great fit for remote teams, whether distributed around the globe or working from home. If employees spend a lot of time on the go, corporate podcasts are a must for your organization.
Interested in starting a podcast for your organization?
Having over 10 years in podcasting, Chris Jordan Media can assist you in
- Developing a concept structure for your business podcasting strategy
- Training you in the construction of company content including sub-series that will create communication channels for departments and special projects
- Assist you in understanding the dynamic you are creating as a conduit to open conversation between your workers and your management team
- Assist you in equipment handling, editing, and distribution
Contact Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org or via WhatsApp 072 643 5502 for a quote now.