The secret power of podcasts

Since we last wrote about them, podcasts have become a big deal. Asset managers have caught on, using podcasts for quarterly commentaries and updates. A few are trying their hand at more ambitious podcasts.

It’s a good start, but from the podcasts we’ve heard, and even helped create, asset managers aren’t leveraging the unique strength that makes podcasts so powerful.


And that is intimacy. Podcasts are arguably the most intimate communications medium there is, short of meeting face-to-face. So say two best-selling authors who’ve begun podcasting.

Compared to the written word, Michael Lewis (Moneyball, The Big Short) finds that podcasts foster “a warmer relationship” with his audience. “There’s something to listening to the voice alone,” without visual or other stimuli, “that makes us listen [and] triggers something in the imagination.”

The bond created by that warmth is, well, incredible. When he was writing best selling books and New Yorker articles, Malcolm Gladwell (The Tipping Point, Blink) says strangers would come up to him on the street and thank him. As a podcaster, Gladwell gets hugs. On the street. From total strangers. As Lewis says, podcast listeners “feel they know you.”

So using podcasts as just another way to get content out there is massively underusing the medium.

The question isn’t whether podcasts work. It’s whether there’s a place in your marketing strategy for forging the bonds of trust and likeability, at which podcasts excel. And if so, whether you’re up to the task.