What The Podcasting Industry Needs
If someone asks me what the podcasting industry needs it is not a “discovery tool” or God forbid another tool to check our rankings and reviews, what we need is more listeners. For me, I don't just want listeners, I want people to Subscribe to my show.
Getting the Other 83% Tuned In
Edison research shows that only 17% of American listen to podcasts on a weekly basis. While you can put subscribe buttons on your website, why not put a subscribe link right in their face?
I don't get a ton of spam text messages, but I do get about three robocalls a day. I'm not looking to do either. I just want to put a subscribe link in front of people actively looking to connect with me.
Enter Slick Text
I found slick text. They have a free plan so I'm not out a ton of money if this fails. I went over, picked my keyword ( sop ) and set up my autoresponder to send a link to my show in Apple (Apple Podcasts) in on Android (Google Podcasts). I put it on Facebook and told people I was playing. Granted, a ton of podcasters follow me and were probably curious. I had over 10 people that first day, and I get stats showing what link they click. I also see if they unsubscribed (all you have to do is text the word STOP and you are off my list).
But What About Email Addresses?
I recently did an episode on how to build your email list, and this is another one. With Slick Text I have it set up so that if you text ” sop ” to 31996 you get my subscription links, and a message that if you supply your email you get a gift. That gift is a coupon code. Currently, Slick Text integrates with Mailchimp and Constant Contact (but sadly not my beloved Convertkit) so I had it integrate with Mailchimp and then used Zapier to send the new subscriber from Mailchimp to Convertkit. It wasn't as hard as it sounds (Zapier is one cool tool).
Buy Wait There is More?
I can have people text for contests and they will pick the winner (and then you can call them to tell them they won), you can collect birthdates. You can send out a poll. You can create segments so if you only want to send a message to people in a state that you are going to be there in October you can. You can even see where on a US Map your subscribers are. For me, again, I just want to send people a subscribe link. This is overkill, and I realize I'm not using them for their designed purpose of sending out marketing message via text.
Is It Working?
I saw were the first day I had 9 people click the Apple link and 1 person click the Android link. I had two people unsubscribe.
What Does it Cost?
You get one keyword, and 50 messages for free every month. If you are on a paid plan you have a certain number of message and more keywords. SlickText is one of the only platforms to offer rollover messages. Any text message(s) that you do not use will automatically carry over into the next month. Rollover texts are good for 3 months at a time or until used, whichever comes first. You can also save 15% with the coupon sop15 at www.schoolofpodcasting.com/slicktext
Why This May Not Work For Everyone
The system works for US and Canada. For me, that is 76% of my audience (70% US, 6% Canada). While this doesn't mean I don't care about other countries if I can make it easier to get subscribers for 76% of my audience.
While I listen to podcasts while doing items with my phone in my back pocket (walking, treadmill, shopping, washing dishes,) people who are in cars, walking the dog with family, don't have their glasses handy, may find it to much hassle to pull out their phone. Some may think it is easy to remember www.schoolofpodcasting.com/subscribe than text ” sop ” to 31996.
While it took a while for people to trust the Internet enough to cough up their email address, not everyone is as loose with their phone numbers.
If you provide too many calls to actions, you may lead your audience to paralysis by analysis.
Why I'm Jumping In With Both Feet
If this doesn't work, I can downgrade to the free account and not have to worry about having digits in my old episodes that no longer work.
As someone who speaks in front of groups on a regular basis, I look forward to putting up a slide that says “To Subscribe to my show text sop to 31996” and see if it works or not. I can even upgrade before the presentation, and if I'm not speaking that month, downgrade.
In the “fairy tale” land of everything working perfectly I would pay six cents a subscriber if I chose the Slick text $29 plan. If I apply the rule of 3% (where 15 people click subscribe out of the 500 messages) I would pay $2 a subscriber (which is what I paid when I used overcast ads) and I'm fairly certain I will get much more than 3%.
Video Walk Through of Slick Text
For more information check out the Slick Text Website
I will keep you posted on how it turns out