Jeff, a client who is a very savvy networker, recently discovered a great way to find conversation topics!
As an Interview Doctor client, he understands that the core of any well-organized job search marketing plan is your customized list of target companies. Researching this list reveals people to talk to. Then he can reach out to start conversations.
Like many clients, Jeff was stumped at the conversation stage. He was reluctant to reach out to people he did not know. What could he talk about? Why would anyone want to talk to him?
Ever feel that way?
His research on one particular company revealed that the hiring manager had a podcast!
Do you listen to podcasts?
Podcasts are trending these days. It seems like there’s almost as much watercooler conversation around podcasts as Game of Thrones. As of April 2019, over 700,000 shows have released over 29 million episodes. Even The Interview Doctor got into the act with our own podcast (off the air right now – sorry!).
According to Podcastinsights.com, 51% of the US population has listened to a podcast. Most of that listening is done at home (49%) with 22% of listening done in the car. Podcast listeners are very loyal, listening to an average of 7 shows per week.
Just about anyone can make a podcast – individuals, students, small companies, large companies. You can publish a podcast if you want.
Given all that content, chances are pretty good that someone at one of your target companies has a podcast.
Jeff listened to that particular podcast from someone at his target company with renewed enthusiasm for networking! He found the podcaster’s name in the podcast notes, looked him up on LinkedIn and felt confident enough to send an invitation to connect, with a note and question about that podcast. The fellow responded and they had a great conversation!
Jeff wanted me to share this pro tip with all of you. He found all these cool things to do with podcasts:
- Get insight into a target company. What are their priorities? Get a flavor of the culture and how the leaders think.
- Find topics to discuss with the podcaster. Do you agree or have different opinions?
- Gives a reason to reach out and connect on LinkedIn, along with something to say. “Hi Joe, I loved your podcast on supply chain insights. I share your views about negotiation. Have you had success with XYZ strategy? Katherine”
- Gives you background information on individuals as you prepare for interviews.
- Makes the person you are trying to connect with more of a human being and perhaps less scary.
- Maybe you learn something!
What a great way to expand your networking!
Since you probably already listen to podcasts, go into your favorite podcasting service like Apple iTunes, Spotify or Stitcher, and search for your target companies or people you are trying to connect with. Listen to the podcast, then reach out through LinkedIn to the host to start a conversation about the podcast topic. I bet these podcast hosts would be thrilled to speak with you about their favorite subject!!
Do you listen to podcasts? Have you used podcasts as a networking technique? I would love to hear your experiences!