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Arielle Nissenblatt on #tweet100 for podcasters
Hi, I’m Courtney Kocak, and I’m so excited to be launching this newsletter!
I’ve been an indie podcaster for almost a decade now, and for the last several years, I’ve also been a professional podcast producer, running several different shows. Then last year, I started teaching podcasting, and it was way more rewarding than I expected. It made me reflect on my own process when it comes to both craft and marketing, and that’s what I want us to explore together in this newsletter.
The podcasting community is so welcoming, thoughtful, passionate, and, well… nerdy. So let’s get nerdy together! Every two weeks, I’ll bring you a new interview or reflection that dives deeper into how to better make and share these audio treasures we all love. Hopefully, we’ll continue these conversations in the comments and on Twitter.
So let’s kick off the first edition — an interview with one of my first pod pals, Arielle Nissenblatt, about she’s used #tweet100 to connect with podcasters far and wide.
Arielle is the founder of EarBuds Podcast Collective and community manager at SquadCast.fm. Follow her on Twitter @arithisandthat.
What is #tweet100, and how did you discover it?
AN: I was scrolling through Twitter in late August when I came across a very enticing tweet from Jay Clouse. I’ve been following Jay for a while. He’s a podcaster and prolific creator with an active Twitter presence. His Tweet described this accountability and engagement challenge that he was calling Tweet100. The goal is to send a tweet every day for 100 days. That, in and of itself, is no issue for me. I have been on Twitter every single day for almost three years, for better or worse, for my various podcast-related jobs that rely heavily on social media engagement. The challenge that Tweet100 presented for me was to create a meaningful tweet every single day for 100 days. I didn’t set out with any expectations. Just thought it’d be fun. And I am very competitive with myself. Let’s go.
It requires A LOT of tweets. Where do you get your inspiration, and what’s your strategy for coming up with and planning content?
AN: It’s a lot of tweets. But I was tweeting a lot beforehand. I’m just more strategic about it now. Yes, I’ll still post those throwaway thoughts that I feel I must get off my chest. But for tweets that I use the hashtag #tweet100, I try to make them valuable. I try to either post something helpful for podcasters or creators, or share an observation about the podcast or media landscape. My strategy for coming up with content is that I have my best ideas right before I fall asleep. So I’ve gotten in the habit of waking myself up and telling Siri to remember my ideas. Sometimes in the morning, they’re absolutely useless. Other times, and surprisingly a lot of the time, they’re good to go! I also spend a lot of time listening to podcasts, as you can imagine. And constantly hearing other people tell inspiring stories or share ideas... gives me ideas!
That’s so true! What’s your posting strategy? Do you schedule everything in advance, conceive of and post everything day-of or some mix? Do you use any apps? How long does it take?
AN: Over time, I’ve developed some strategies for posting. But for the most part, it’s still pretty much a fly-by-the-seat of my pants activity. On weekends, I’ve been tweeting about one person per weekend day in the podcast space that I think shares relevant resources and that folks should consider following. On Mondays, I try to post a networking tweet wherein podcasters can comment and virtually (and asynchronously) meet other folks for collaboration purposes. The rest of the days are pretty up in the air. I respond to industry happenings for the most part. I also recently started asking people to DM me their podcast marketing questions, and I’ve been answering them in threaded tweets.
Where are you on your #tweet100 journey? Have you experienced any follower and/or engagement growth? Have any other opportunities come out of your participation?
AN: As I write this, I am nearing Day 80 of #tweet100. I’ve experienced both follower and engagement growth. Some of that can definitely be attributed to #tweet100. But I also have to give myself credit beyond this hashtag challenge. I’ve been trying to be a resource for podcasters on Twitter for the past year or so. Tweet100 just made that official and gave me a reason to do it every day as opposed to when I felt like it. I’ve gained more than 2000 followers so far and can count on some pretty great engagement from my posts since starting Tweet100. I’ve also met a lot of other active Twitter folks who see this website as a very fruitful networking space. I’ve definitely had a lot more people reach out to me for paid podcast marketing consultations, which is awesome.
What’s your most popular #tweet100 tweet?
AN: This tweet got some pretty great engagement and facilitated a lot of guest swaps:
Would you recommend #tweet100 to a fellow podcaster? If so, what can they expect to gain from the experience?
AN: Podcasters (and anyone on Twitter, for that matter) can benefit from the #tweet100 mentality without officially taking the challenge. If you commit to consistently sharing meaningful messages that fit within your area of expertise, you’ll start to see growth.
There are a few things to consider if you are thinking of starting #tweet100:
Why do you want to be active on Twitter? What will you do with your new followers?
Getting a bunch of new followers but not engaging with them is a great way to a. lose them and b. have lots of followers with little to no engagement on your posts. So if you gain followers by consistently tweeting about one topic area and then all of a sudden flip to another area, you can’t necessarily count on those followers you gained prior coming over with you to your new interest.
Will you be able to keep it up...meaningfully?
I see some instances of people simply tweeting “#tweet100” in order for it to count towards their day count. That’s not gonna do much for you.
What kind of content will you post?
I’m using my personal account for #tweet100. I wouldn’t recommend doing this challenge from a brand or podcast account. There’s a strange dissonance that comes about when personal tweets come from brand accounts. Take this with a grain of salt. Ultimately, you can tweet whatever you want from whatever account you want. But I think it’s more meaningful and clear coming from personal accounts.
Some tweets look better without hashtags.
Most of the mega-viral tweets you see out there in the Twittersphere don’t have any hashtags or tags in them. Often, what makes something viral is that it’s extremely resonant and/or quote-tweetable. People want to share it or put their own spin on it.
Sometimes, if I know I have a great tweet, I purposely won’t use #tweet100 because I know it’ll do well on its own without and because the hashtag isn’t as aesthetically pleasing as a non-tagged tweet.
Does your Tweet100 plan match your already-existing content?
If you have a podcast about beluga whales and when you start Tweet100, you tweet all about marketing, networking, and other broad topics... that doesn’t fit into your existing aesthetic, and your followers will notice. But if you use Tweet100 as a way to challenge yourself to write resonant tweets about your research, your guests, your episodes, that matches your overall MO: to get people to listen to your podcast or otherwise engage with you as an expert in the beluga whale sphere.
Before you jump into a tweet challenge, think about what you want out of it. Your Twitter presence should stand on its own as content — meaning that when folks find you on Twitter, your tweets should do more than just point them back to your podcast. Your tweets should add to the conversation. They should respond to things happening in your podcast niche’s world. For example, new species of whale discovered? (That’d be nuts). But wow. Take the time to think about your opinion on this and share a thought on it and what it means for the overall community you’re part of.
Anything else you’d like to add?
AN: Social media for podcasters is great and necessary. But podcasters should not expect large-scale conversion from scrollers to listeners. If you maintain an active, informative Twitter presence, at best, it’ll convert a few passersby to check out your show. But most of the time, it’ll remind your already-existing listeners that you’ve got a new episode out. This is necessary. But all of this to say: there’s a reason you might be having trouble getting huge engagement or click-through rates from social to the podcast. Spend time on social media, yes, but don’t drive yourself up a wall expecting new listeners to be coming left and right from Twitter to your podcast. There are other, more effective ways of driving traffic. We can talk about that another time.
Yes, I can’t wait! I have a lot of homework to do in the meantime. Thank you so much, Arielle.
Every week she sends out five thematically linked episode recommendations with the help of a guest curator. It’s great. Sign up!
Headliner has added an auto-posting feature for YouTube. You probably publish your podcast to the usual suspects like Apple Podcasts and Spotify, but have you tapped into YouTube’s 2.2 billion active users yet? Headliner is making it easy to get your strategy started now.
Pro Tip: Facebook Ads are not a great choice for podcasters looking to grow their audience, according to podcaster Evo Terra. Terra experimented with Facebook Ads for his podcast over the 2.5 months to finally answer the question — are Facebook Ads a good method to get new listeners? It probably comes as no surprise to any podcaster who’s tried FB Ads, but after spending almost $400, he can definitively say do not waste your money!
*This job listing is behind a paywall. It’s for a series about reparations. I highly recommend becoming a member of AIR, but if money if tight, let me know and I can help you out. One of my friends had a great experience working for LWC Studios.
I’m excited to share with you some pods I’ve been binging that keep me inspired about the podcasting landscape and informed on topics I’m most passionate about, like climate change. I’m working on a project about Big Oil, so lately I’ve been listening to:
BOOMTOWN - I loved this 11-part series, which takes listeners inside the Permian Basin of West Texas, where roughnecks and billionaire wildcatters are fueling a boom so big it’s reshaping our climate, economy, and even geopolitics. This pod shows all points of view, from who’s cashing in on this modern-day gold rush to those just trying to get by as the world around them is turned upside down.
DRILLED - I started at the beginning of what is currently the most listened-to podcast about climate change, and I’m now in the middle of season 5, which covers the decades-long battle between Steven Donziger and Chevron over pollution in the Ecuadorian Amazon. This is a must-listen podcast for anyone who needs to be radicalized about climate change (i.e., all of us).
💕 This episode is near and dear to my heart. I interviewed my Private Parts Unknown co-host and real-life bestie, Sofiya Alexandra, about her cancer recovery story. Sofiya details how she found a cancerous lump on her own, what it was like to get the “Triple Positive” diagnosis, how she stayed sane during an arduous year of chemotherapy, and some super helpful tips for those battling breast cancer. PLUS, major do’s and don’t’s for friends wanting to support!
We continued our breast cancer awareness series with Dena Goldberg, a genetic counselor specializing in breast cancer. Dena fills us in on the difference genetic testing can make on breast cancer diagnosis and treatment, the genes beyond BRCA1 and BRCA2 that impact breast cancer risk, common misconceptions about genetic counseling in general, and more.
If you’ve seen Shiba Coin trending but aren’t sure why OR are wondering if it’s a good investment, this is the episode for you!
I had a blast guesting a recent episode of The Daily Zeitgeist. It was my first appearance back since 2019 (before times). We discussed takeaways from the recent election, Thanksgiving sides, and more. TDZ is the perfect daily news source, always hilarious and relevant.
So… ROLL CALL! 🗣
Who are you? What have you been making lately? Please share a little bit about yourself and your podcast(s). I can’t wait to meet y’all!