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how to win podcast awards

How To Win Podcast Awards

Right out of the gate, I want to make two things very clear as we dive into today’s post – how to win podcast awards.

First of all, by sharing this post, we are by no means saying that by following these tips you’re going to win podcast awards. It would be really cool if we could guarantee that, but we can’t.

But what we are saying is that by following these tips, should you choose to enter your podcast into any of the available podcast awards programs, they’ll help you position your podcast in the right place for a favorable outcome.

Second of all, most of what we’re sharing today are really points to help you make the best podcast possible. Whether you’re going to enter your podcast into podcast awards programs or not, the tips we’re sharing can be applied to your podcast to help make it the best that it can be.

With those disclaimers out of the way, let’s dive in…

Why Should You Enter Podcast Awards Programs?

Why should you enter podcast awards programs? I mean, why not? Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

But besides how great it is receiving recognition for all your hard work (we know that’s not why you started your podcast, but recognition and appreciation is always nice) there are practical benefits to entering and winning podcast awards.

Entering your podcast into awards programs is a great way to get gain beneficial exposure for your podcast. The nominee and voting process is a way to get your show in front of a new audience. It’s also a great way to create more awareness of your show within your chosen category.

Finally, being a podcast award nominee or winner can open up new doors for you and your podcast. Let’s call a spade a spade. Awards bring a certain level of status. And that status and prestige can translate into some incredible new opportunities that you might not have had access to before.

But enough preamble. Let’s get into how you can win these coveted podcast awards.

Again. These tips are not guarantees. Podcast awards are subjective. They’re based on variables. Votes, people’s preferences, the strength of the competition, etc. But armed with these tips, you can position your podcast in the best possible place to win the podcast awards for the awards programs you enter.

How To Win Podcast Awards

1. Make sure your audio quality is top-notch

If you’re looking to win podcast awards, having great audio quality should be a top priority!

No, let me rephrase that. To be in with a fighting chance to win an award, high-quality audio needs to be more than a priority. It has to be a given.

Podcasting awards recognize excellence in audio production, so you have to make sure that the sound of your podcast is second-to-none. Your entry gets you in the line-up. High quality audio gets you in the race.

Invest in good recording equipment, or work with an experienced sound engineer to ensure that every episode you put out is up to the highest standards. That way, when it comes to the audio quality criteria, you can ensure your podcast scores top marks.

2. Create interesting and engaging content

If your audio quality gets you into the race, your content is what keeps you there.

Creating interesting and engaging content for your podcast is essential to stand out in today’s competitive podcast landscape. To find success when you enter podcast awards, you need to showcase content that really meets the audience’s needs.

This involves researching and understanding your target audience, curating topics relevant to them, and delivering it in an engaging manner. Use effective storytelling, craft engaging interviews that share something new, and add music and sound effects thoughtfully to really deliver the type of content your target audience is looking for.

You want to use these tactics to help you pique the interest of listeners. The quality of the content, and how that content is delivered is really what makes or breaks podcast award winners.

3. Keep consistency

Many of the podcast award programs available require that you have published a certain amount of episodes within a given timeframe in order to qualify for entry.

So what does this mean for you? All it means is that you need to be consistent. Create a workable publishing schedule, and then stick to it.

This is one of our go-to tips whenever anyone asks us how they can find success with their podcast. You need to be consistent.

No, you don’t need to put out an episode every day. And no, you don’t even need to put out an episode every week! Even if you’re only putting out one episode a month – totally okay – just do it consistently! Yes, this is one way to help you win podcast awards. But more importantly, it’s a key strategy to help you win at podcasting in general.

4. Get involved in the podcasting community

To find success in the podcasting space, you need people around your show who are engaging with your content. This helps create a healthy buzz around your show, which in turn, usually leads to an ever-growing audience.

And getting involved with others in the podcasting space in a great way to start building your community.

Through your involvement, you can also make valuable connections that may lead to new opportunities, collaborations, and other exciting avenues that can open up new lanes of success for you.

But how does getting involved in the podcasting community help when it comes to podcast awards? Simple, votes. To state it fairly bluntly, most awards programs are really popularity contests. Yes, there are criteria that you’re judged against. But in a lot of cases, it comes down to votes.

And if you’ve built up a community who already loves your podcast, you don’t have to go begging for votes. Your community will be all too happy to cast their ballot in your favor. Not because you’re using them to win an award. But because you’ve already done the work to serve them well by consistently offering high-quality episodes that are packed with the type of content they can’t get enough of, packaged in podcast episodes that sound amazing.

Related read: Why We Love the Idea of Podcast Community

The final two tips are specific for setting you up for success when it comes to entering podcast awards.

If you want to be in with a shot of winning, you need to…

5. Enter the right categories

If you want to win a podcast award, the right category really matters. It may be temptiming to enter your show into as many categories that you feel are related to your podcast. But this could work against you and your podcast.

Rather focus on the categories that most accurately reflect what your podcast is about. This will allow you to stand the strongest against your competition.

Look for the categories that celebrate the type of content you create, and enter your podcast here. That way, when listeners or the judges check out your show, you’ve correctly set their expectations, and there won’t be any confusion, which could hinder your overall success when it comes to winning those podcast awards.

Food for thought: Take a look at these tips from Matt Hill, co-founder of the Australian Podcast Awards. Yes, they are written for the Australian Podcast Awards, but there are some great take-aways.

And finally…

6. Follow the submission guidelines to the letter

Entering a podcast award program can be one of the most rewarding experiences for any podcast creator. And winning would, of course, be amazing! But, to optimize your chances of success, you must pay close attention to all of the rules and guidelines that are sent out by the award organizers.

It’s of no use being a shoo-in for the top prize based on your content and production quality, only to fall short because of a technicality!

It’s not enough to simply submit your entry – you must follow the application guidelines carefully in order to give yourself the best chance possible of being selected as a winner.

Each podcast award program has their own set of rules and regulations. So, as you prepare to submit your show, make sure you follow their specific guidelines to the letter.

Related read: Podcast Awards 2023 and How To Get Your Podcast Nominated

To Conclude

Applying for awards can be a nerve-wracking ordeal, especially when it comes to creative works. You’re essentially giving people the opportunity to critique your podcast. But if you apply these tips, you can, with confidence, know that you’ve done everything you can to make your podcast the best that it can be.

And should an award come from those efforts, then that’s just an added bonus!

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