Ep 70: How the Taylor Swift N*des Scandal Affected my Podcast Marketing

You won’t believe what happened to my podcast recently!

I released an episode titled “What Taylor Swift Can Teach Us About Podcasting” on January 30th. In it, I used Taylor Swift and her ever-changing music eras as a metaphor for adapting your podcast content and promotion strategies over time.

Little did I know, that same weekend the episode launched, searches for “Taylor Swift” were completely banned on Twitter after some scandalous AI-generated images of her emerged online.

This was really bad timing on my part and here’s why: I rely heavily on Twitter for promoting my podcast and driving listeners to new episodes.

A huge majority of my podcast downloads come directly from Twitter, and it’s where most of my new listeners find me too. So when people suddenly couldn’t search Taylor’s name that week, it meant my podcast episode likely wasn’t showing up in any Twitter searches either. (And I’d banked on that being a clever way to potentially reach some new listeners).

I couldn’t believe such an unforeseen consequence!

As content creators, we can strategize search engine optimization and promotion plans, but we can’t always predict what social platforms will restrict access to each day. Whether it’s election censorship or COVID misinformation crackdowns, search bans happen more than we realize.

While downloads stayed strong that week (thanks loyal listeners!!), this whole debacle made me realize I need to actively promote old episodes to capture new listeners from searches.

So that’s exactly what I’m going to do – rerun a special promotional campaign just for my Taylor Swift episode in case anyone looks her up now that the name ban has been lifted. You never know who may discover and subscribe to the show from it popping up in more keyword searches!

I hope relaying my own podcast visibility challenges gives you some helpful tips and food for thought. When the algorithms seem to work against us, we have to get creative with repeating and repurposing content across multiple platforms. As the saying goes, the show must go on…even when our favorite pop star suddenly disappears from the Twitterverse!

Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Intro
  • 00:00:49 Taylor Swift Searches Blocked on Twitter: A Complete Coincidence
  • 00:02:08 Twitter Ban Affects Content Discovery
  • 00:04:27 You Can’t Always Control What Social Media Does or Doesn’t Do
  • 00:06:12 Reflections and podcast promotion tips

Highlights:

  • The impact of the Taylor Swift AI-generated n*de scandal on my podcast
  • Keywords relating to my podcast episode being temporarily blocked on Twitter
  • Search engines and social media platforms censoring and blocking information during past events
  • The unpredictability of what might be banned or restricted at any given time
  • Running campaigns to promote content and potentially reach new audiences
  • What I learnt from this whole experience and what it means for podcast marketing and promotion – including some podcasting tips for when a marketing campaign maybe doesn’t go as planned

Listen to Episode 66: What Taylor Swift Can Teach Us About Podcasting – https://lazygirlpod.captivate.fm/episode/ep-66-what-taylor-swift-can-teach-us-about-podcasting

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Transcript

[00:00:00] Verity: You have absolutely read that title. Right, my friends? Because in this episode, we are talking all about how the Taylor Swift AI generated nude scandal affected my podcast. Yes. That's absolutely correct.

[00:00:15] Verity: So, oh, gosh. I don't even know where to start with this because I don't think I ever thought I would say that sentence on this podcast. In fact, I don't think I ever thought I'd say that sentence at all. But, yes, Taylor Swift's deep fake AI generated nudes affected this podcast. Now before we go into it, I'm going to say, I obviously do not advocate any creating nudes via AI and, like, oh, just I can't imagine.

[00:00:39] Verity: I just think I must be awful. But let's dive into this, and let's talk about the link here. Hi there. I'm Verity. Welcome to the lazy girl's guide to podcasting.

00:00:49 Taylor Swift Searches Blocked on Twitter: A Strange Coincidence

[00:00:49] Verity: It is great to have you back here if you're a returning listener. And if you aren't, then great to have you here for a first time. And this is probably the strangest episode that you could have possibly landed on for your first listening to the podcast. But, you know, here we go. So I released an episode a little while back.

[00:01:09] Verity: I'm just pulling up on my phone here. I, released an episode 30th January, episode 66, what Taylor Swift can teach us about podcasting. And this was a great episode. Absolutely loved it. If you haven't listened to it, do go back and listen to it.

[00:01:25] Verity: We talk all about, you know, how to promote your podcast and creating engaging contact, content even based on what Taylor Swift can teach us mainly through her eras talk because, you know, talk about all about how Taylor has changed her, you know, her image an awful lot and changed her music and what we can actually learn from that and how that can be applied to podcasting. But where I'm going with this. I released that on the 30th January. And little known to me, just a couple of days beforehand, that came out on the Tuesday. And that weekend, just prior to that, Taylor Swift searches got blocked on Twitter after those fake generated, you know, AI generated images of her spread around the Internet.

00:02:08 Twitter Ban Affects Content Discovery

[00:02:08] Verity: So that meant that anybody searching for the name Taylor Swift could not find it on Twitter. Now you might be thinking to yourself, well, what does this even matter? Well, the point is is I use Twite Twiter? I can't even talk. I use Twitter as my main social media platform for generating the podcast.

[00:02:30] Verity: And I have talked about before how I'll look can't have exact the exact episode, but I'll link it down in the show notes, but how I didn't promote anything on Twitter. For 2 weeks, my listeners my listens and downloads dropped by about 78 percent. So I get a lot of my listeners from Twitter. So for me to not be able to have my content found on Twitter easily is a problem. Now, obviously, my contact wasn't being blocked or anything like that.

[00:02:57] Verity: However, even though I used Taylor Swift as an example in the episode, and it was a great episode. Don't get me. Don't get me wrong. Absolutely loved it and the content was all about what listeners could learn. But, you know, there was kind of the adage as well that by putting Taylor's name in the podcast title, there was, you know, the, possibility that somebody searching for Taylor Swift's name on Twitter, as long as it, you know, all the stars aligned and, you know, the algorithm works my favorite, etcetera, they could actually theoretically find my podcast because I had tagged her in a and used the hashtag and then also, used some SEO keywords for searching Taylor Swift.

[00:03:40] Verity: I had done it when nobody could search for Taylor Swift's name. Now okay. Don't get me wrong. I'm not going into the ins and outs of SEO and saying this I should do SEO, the site shouldn't, and what have you, because that's a whole other topic. And like I said, I didn't use Taylor Swift's name in the episode title just to get the the listens and what have you.

[00:03:59] Verity: What I was trying to do was, you know, create a metaphor, essentially, which I thought really worked really, really well. And the feedback the episode was really good. But the point is is that I couldn't believe the bad timing. But basically, I put out this episode, and it was the weekend that the name or the search term Taylor Swift was banned on Twitter. Now incidentally, the you know, that is no longer a thing.

00:04:27 You Can't Always Control What Social Media Does or Doesn't Do

[00:04:27] Verity: You can now search the name Taylor Swift, and it will come up on Twitter and x. But I guess what I'm kind of saying here is you can't always control what people are searching for online, and you can't control what is and isn't being banned at any one given time. We know that, for example, during the was it the last US elections? There was loads of stuff that was being censored for political reasons, during COVID, when the pandemic would was at its height, a lot of search engines were blocking information about COVID unless it was coming from, like, the WHO, for example, because they didn't want the fatal news, you know, circulating there. So I think what's important to take away from this is you can't always plan what search engines and, you know, social media platforms are gonna block anyone given time I mean, I can only laugh about this because in this grand scheme of things, it didn't affect me.

[00:05:29] Verity: My download numbers for that episode, Bridgette, you know, really good, general I speaking and, you know, obviously, it was Taylor Swift who suffered because that was just an must have been an awful experience for her. But what I am going to do is, do you know what? I'm gonna run a mini campaign promoting that particular episode aside just, you know, now so then if people do search the name Taylor Swift on Twitter or Rex, then you never know. They Might Actually Find the Podcast episode, and then I might end up opening up to a new potential group of listeners. But either way, as I said, you can't always control what social media does or doesn't do on any given day.

00:06:12 Reflecting on the Experiment

[00:06:12] Verity: So it's really just what can you learn from it. And as I said, what I've learned from it is I am going to rerun another little mini campaign for that particular episode. And, hey, I even got another episode out of it in the form of this one. As I said, this is probably the strangest episode for you to jump into if this is the first time you've ever listened to the podcast, but I thought it would be fun to dive into this little reflective episode. If this is your first episode that you've listened to, or you've been with us from the beginning or somewhere in between, I would love it if you could hit the subscribe button and press the 5 star rating on whichever podcast app player you are listening on.

[00:06:52] Verity: If you are on YouTube, also make sure that you are hitting that subscribe and like button. It really does help promote the show in terms of other people see that people are liking it, and they might also want to listen. Otherwise, Thank you so much for tuning in for another episode. I'm Varysie. This is the lazy girl's guide to podcasting, and I will see you next episode.

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