B2B Marketing Podcast Stirs Up Fresh Ears Amidst Pandemic

Not long after I joined data-driven marketing agency Stirista, I pitched a company podcast to CEO Ajay Gupta. When the world seemingly screeched to a halt in March of 2020, the idea was fast tracked and the Marketing Stir podcast was born. Now a year later, with 50+ episodes under our, the podcast enjoys guests from companies like SAP, Regal Cinemas, Amazon, Discovery Networks and Zoom.

While many companies host podcasts, we wanted to do something different. Something more personal, something that would keep people coming back. Ajay’s background as a young tech entrepreneur and my experience as a data veteran by day and a professional NYC stand-up comic by night was the perfect ying to Ajay’s yang which lent itself to two unlikely yet likeable hosts. Our chemistry and dichotomous personalities had served us well meeting with clients, so it seemed a natural fit.

In the absence of in-person meetings, Ajay and I strive to have real conversations with guests like we would in a conference or at a bar. Our goal is to maintain a conversational vibe even while tackling important industry martech and adtech topics. The Marketing Stir starts off with a quick summary of why we have the authority to host a podcast (Stirista company info) but very quickly moves into fun banter between myself and co-host Ajay with a different intro to him every week.

Our camaraderie in the beginning is truly a fun experience since we have different energies that complement each other so well. We cover Ajay’s nap schedule, my lack of sleep with small children, food we eat, NYC vs San Antonio, and celebrate any good news from the company.

Digging into the meat of each episode, getting to know our guests’ interests and hobbies has been a huge help in both making the guests comfortable and offering an engaging and unique take on industry issues. We offer our opinions as well as the guests’ opinions on hobbies, books, charities and the question that gets the most interesting answers – what TV shows or movies have kept them company while at home (I have developed a fandom for the Bachelor/Bachelorette franchise as well as Dr. Pimple Popper). We love hearing the answers from our guests which are often shocking revelations of shows that you would never think they would watch.

At the core of The Marketing Stir podcast are the amazing guests.  We started out talking with clients or friends in the industry.  Ajay and I were lucky to get some experts in our field immediately.  Our first episode was our friend Gretchen Littlefield, CEO of Moore DM Group.  That episode really set the tone of what we were looking for since the conversation flowed so naturally.  After that we added guests such as Michael Hussey from StatSocial and the founder of Rate My Teachers/Rate My Professors.

As we gained traction, reaching 46K listeners, the podcast format and guests have given us tremendous clout to talk with people we didn’t know. We really enjoy reaching out to thought leaders in their field, as well as now being approached directly by PR agencies. And, a surprising yet welcome result of our growing listenership is the strong pipeline of leads that result from each episode even though we aren’t selling our own services or talking about what we do (with the exception of the intro).

For those that are interested in exploring a corporate podcast as part of their sales and marketing mix, here are a few musts to consider:

  1. Come up with a concept that you are able to talk about every week and a topic that solves a problem for a wide audience.
  2. Make sure you have a great team around you for production, marketing, editing, etc.
  3. Keep it natural and comfortable. If you or the host are stiff, your guests will be too and that’s a real turnoff.
  4. Don’t just assume people will listen. Make sure you market the podcast as you would any other product or service.

It’s only the beginning of the Marketing Stir podcast which gives our listeners different yet fun insights from powerhouse marketing experts with a casual networking vibe, something we both miss from our pre-pandemic lives.

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Vincent Pietrafesa is the vice president of B2B products and partnerships for Stirista, which provides real-time data services that include B2B and B2C licensing, data enhancement, hygiene and verification, and cultural marketing.