A black and white photo Dr Michal Tsur sitting and smiling into the camera.
Dr Michal Tsur. Image: Headline Media

Podcasting: The underdog of company communication?

3 Jul 2020

Have you ever thought about adding a company podcast to your communication strategy? It might just be the boost your business needs, says Kaltura’s Dr Michal Tsur.

Communication has been one of the most critical components of successful remote working in recent months, with many teams taking to video, messaging and collaboration platforms to stay connected.

But Dr Michal Tsur, president and co-founder of video cloud company Kaltura, believes there is another option: podcasting. I spoke to her to learn more about using podcasts for effective corporate communication.

In your opinion, why is podcasting a useful corporate communication tool?

We are experiencing an accelerated change in corporate communications due to Covid-19 and the adoption of a primarily remote workforce. Video conferencing has taken off and has allowed teams to remain safe but connected.

Simultaneously, many executives have begun experimenting with other types of consumer technology to engage, educate and inspire employees. In keeping with the blurred lines of our work and home life, podcasts are exploding in popularity as a corporate tool.

Podcasts are convenient and easy to produce. They are accessible, allowing users to listen any time, anywhere – whether they have an internet connection or not. Employees can therefore listen to podcasts while doing other business tasks, making it a more efficient and productive means of engagement.

Organisations can also effectively use podcasting to support and stimulate their employees, from tutorials to HR training and internal communication to town-hall alternatives.

For someone who has never recorded podcasts before, what would your advice be?

My main advice would be to focus on the content and have a clear message. I would also recommend thinking of it as a platform for continuous engagement and conversation. Consider what topics warrant continuous engagement by leaders.

People tend to subscribe to podcasts – if they are interesting – so I would start off by considering the content as a series, whether monthly or quarterly. The great thing about a podcast is that it can be scripted for an executive that prefers not to speak spontaneously.

It’s key that the listener can hear that the speaker is excited about and fully engaged in a topic. Sharing knowledge that they as an executive would want to hear is a good way to inspire and motivate employees to listen and come back for more.

And smile – listeners can feel it and it makes the experience positive for everyone.

Are there tools online that can help beginners get started?

Yes, absolutely. While there are many tools to choose from, organisations must select the right one for their content creation, management and customisation needs.

A tool that supports creation, editing and uploading features in one central hub, for example, will help beginners take the first steps in publishing their work.

For busy executives, the ability to upload on the go, reuse content and learn from advanced audience analytics are key. For employees, podcasts with interactive features and downloadable content will keep their engagement levels high.

What, in your opinion, are the key elements of a successful company podcast?

Companies can use consumer tech to create a more modern working environment for their workforce. Employees are always looking to improve their skillsets, so leadership or business advice podcasts, for example, will make employees feel like they are receiving benefits by tuning in.

A successful podcast must also be accessible – employees may want to tune in offline, catch up on company news during their downtime and pick up where they left off on any device. Podcasts allow employees to have a mobile-first experience, so they can listen anywhere, any time to their own playlists or channels, right within their company podcast platform.

Additionally, tools such as adjustable playback speed, transcription and translation features can really enhance the podcast experience.

What are some of the potential use cases for a company podcast?

A podcast is an excellent way to disseminate company information and user analytics can track employee engagement and show employers where they can improve.

Podcasts are also a great approach to organisational motivation. During Covid-19, employees have been under a great deal of stress due to changes in the work environment and in their social lives.

Executives can increase overall worker morale and boost confidence through more frequent executive or organisational updates. Giving access to company seminars or presentations via podcasts also helps employees feel supported and empowered.

Are there any common pitfalls companies considering the podcast approach need to be aware of?

If companies choose to go the podcast route, it can be beneficial to place their podcasts on a centralised platform which is already familiar to the organisation. Through a unified portal, people can seamlessly transition between workflow experiences and easily pick up from where they left off on any device.

Also, I would recommend creating central, accessible libraries of recorded podcasts. In some companies, once podcasts become popular, everyone wants to tune in.

Lisa Ardill
By Lisa Ardill

Lisa Ardill joined Silicon Republic as senior careers reporter in July 2019. She has a BA in neuroscience and a master’s degree in science communication. She is also a semi-published poet and a big fan of doggos. Lisa briefly served as Careers Editor at Silicon Republic before leaving the company in June 2021.

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