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Add Podcasts to Your Media Outreach

By Samantha Stinson, brand manager at Greteman Group, a marketing communications agency based in Wichita, the Air Capital.

Innovative industries and emerging technologies demand equally dynamic outreach. We’re generating good returns for our aviation clients by specifically targeting podcasts. Don’t get us wrong; we’re still big believers in traditional channels: magazines, newspapers, TV and radio. Adding newer, alternative media such as podcasts to the mix can lead to fuller stories better told, often to a more targeted, highly receptive audience.

Podcasts’ portability and mobility make them ideal for people on the move. So, you might say, podcasts feel especially right for anyone in aviation – from the cockpit to the cabin. Most podcast consumers stream content on their smartphones as the audio source using apps like Apple and Spotify. They typically listen while also doing something else – such as driving to the airport or waiting for their flight.

If you’ve been thinking you ought to include more podcast outreach to your media relations efforts, we agree. You probably should. Here are some suggestions on how to make the most of this increasingly important, but still somewhat misunderstood news source.

Do your homework. Listen to previous podcasts to get a feel for the tone and length (most are between 20 and 60 minutes). Ask the host for questions in advance so you can prep and have notes close at hand.

Pitch early. Personally suggest relevant topics well in advance of industry events or news hooks. This gives you time to submit more formal applications, if needed. Worthwhile opportunities will need to vet your content.

Don’t overly script speakers. A real benefit of podcasts is their humanity, so keep it real. A more conversational, friendly tone is much preferred to something that comes across as a lecture.

Tell stories. Facts and figures fly by listeners. They won’t be able to make sense of them or remember them. Make your key points through anecdotes, preferably that you were involved in.

Stay on topic. Frame your talk and try to stick to your key points as much as possible. Wandering down too many divergent paths will muddle your message.

Convey enthusiasm and emotion. Your voice must do the heavy lifting. Add energy to your regular speaking voice. Flip on the radio and listen to the pros. Notice how they put a smile in their voice? You can do that, too.

Know who you’re talking to. Tailor your comments to your listeners, just as you would if you were talking to a group in person. You’d speak to legislators differently than an ag group, right? Talk about things that would interest them, answer questions they might have or communicate benefits unique to them.

Give your audience something to do. Provide a call to action. Verbally drive them to a website where they can watch a video, respond to a poll, or download a whitepaper.

Ensure you have good audio. Record in a quiet space with plenty of soft surfaces (carpet, upholstered furniture, pillows) so sound doesn’t bounce around and echo. Place your microphone at the same height of your mouth. Not using a microphone? You should. Same for headphones. Those that fully cover your ears reduce audio feedback.

Keep water nearby. Make sure you stay hydrated. That lessens the chance of cotton mouth and helps keep your energy up.

Mute when you aren’t speaking. If the host or another guest is talking, muting keeps you from inadvertently talking over them. It also means you won’t pick up their voice in your microphone. It’s cleaner all around.

Podcasts offer a compelling way to tell your story and connect with the right people. Statista predicts there could be more than 100 million podcast listeners in the United States by 2024, up from almost 76 million in 2020. That’s a big platform for your news. Be part of it.

Here’s How We’ve Helped One Client

Podcasts have proven to be an excellent channel for Vantis, North Dakota’s beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) statewide network. This can be a complicated industry to explain. Having friendly, conversational spokespeople who break things down in understandable, easily digested nuggets helps immensely. They’ve learned how to entertain as well as inform.

Vantis Executive Director Trevor Woods teamed up with Thales ATC Digital Aviation Solutions, Americas Director Frank Matus to talk about their partnership and the groundbreaking work they’re doing in North Dakota. You can access their podcast here, on Apple Podcasts or Spotify. These platforms let you track audience metrics and access promotional tools.

Woods jumped on YouTube to share the benefits of everything from sUAS integration and the IPP Program to the BEYOND Program and routine BVLOS operations. Dense stuff that he makes understandable and advantageous. Listeners engage by adding their sentiment, sharing and adding insights. YouTube has 1.8 billion monthly users and 73 million active podcast listeners, making it the place to be.

Take Five With Marc

From tradeshow build-outs and monumental environmental displays to compelling books and digital graphics, design plays a powerful role in capturing brand stories and developing move-the-needle marketing campaigns. Here at Greteman Group, we celebrate the meaning behind every visual that our team creates. Designer Marc Bosworth gives a beautiful account of his passion for design in his answers to these five simple questions.

Question 1: Why did you initially pursue a career in art and design?

I was one of those kids who was always drawing pictures and I had creative, older siblings who encouraged me. In high school, I had a chance to take a vocational course in commercial art (as it was called in those days), and I was fortunate to land a job doing graphic design at a screenprinting shop shortly after high school. I started college intending to study graphic design or illustration, but I really gravitated towards drawing, painting, printmaking and sculpture. My advisor – who was a fine arts professor – encouraged me to study fine arts to hone my skills and conceptual abilities, since I was already gaining real-world experience as a graphic designer at my job. I’ve had my hands in both the art and design worlds ever since.

Question 2: Who has inspired you along your professional path?

Sonia has been a big inspiration, of course. I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside some really talented designers and art directors over the years. I’ve tried to glean whatever I can from each of them. Wichita has a solid community of artists as well, and I’m continually impressed and inspired by their work.

Question 3: What was one of your favorite projects that you’ve ever worked on, and what was the biggest challenge that you faced?

The aviation history project for Wichita Eisenhower Airport was a favorite – and a huge challenge. The stop-start nature of the project spanned 10 years. I began on the project as a production artist and finished it as an art director. Telling a story so rich in history was exciting and difficult, because some of it was changing even as the project went along. You don’t think of history changing, but it does. Cessna and Beechcraft, for instance, became Textron Aviation. I feel proud to have been a part of it every time I see the finished work in our beautiful airport.

Question 4: What is your favorite thing about being a part of the Greteman Group team?

Working with a team of all-stars. Everyone in the office is not only a master of what they do, but they are also great collaborators. Each project is a strategic melding of minds and a blending of magical talents.

Question 5: If you could instill one piece of advice into the minds of those who are just beginning to pursue a career in art and design, what would it be?

It’s important to get to know the other artists and designers in your community. Form a network and stay connected with the people who are like-minded, who can continue to offer guidance and inspiration along the way.

Here is a beautiful example of Marc’s gift for printmaking.

Greteman Group Awarded Eisenhower National Airport Marketing Contract

At the May 17 session of the Wichita City Council, members unanimously voted to approve Greteman Group as the designated marketing partner for the Wichita Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport. The agency has filled that role since 2016. The agency was one of three finalists in the airport’s request for proposal process. The contract has options for five years.

Greteman Group will be responsible for strategic planning, website management, creative design and copywriting, video production and contest management. It will provide design and copywriting creative for all digital, broadcast, outdoor and print media.

“Our marketing support for the airport continues to be a passion project for us,” says Sonia Greteman, agency founder and creative director. “The airport acts as a key driver for the region’s economic development and prosperity. Nothing we do has a greater potential impact on our community. And, of course, we’re big travelers ourselves.”  

The agency has a long history with the airport. When Eisenhower National Airport opened its grand, aviation-themed terminal in 2015, Greteman Group was retained as project consultant for public art and exhibits. Special large-scale, aviation-themed exhibits designed by the agency serve as an integral element in the terminal design. A striking football-field-sized public art installation, selected by Greteman Group, arches from one end of the terminal to the other, creating a spectacular abstract vision of flight. The agency’s marketing support for the airport dates back to 2003’s Fair Fares and Ditch the Drive initiatives, which were designed to attract and retain low-fare airlines.  

Today, the agency leverages its expertise using low-cost, high-return tools on earned, shared, owned and paid media that expand the airport’s reach and move people to action. Greteman Group helped launch service for four new airlines: Alaska, Southwest, Frontier and Allegiant. Frequent contests generate user content, keep flights top of mind, increase loyalty and build an engaged following. Its Eisenhower AIR online magazine serves as a travel resource that lives on, drives search engine optimization (SEO), increases time on site and links directly to the airlines for booking flights. Ongoing campaigns – from Travel is the Ticket and Time to Fly to Florida Fun and Break Away – educate travelers, spur grassroots sharing and drive passenger growth. The I Fly Wichita campaign encourages business leaders and the flying public to fly more than the flag, but to fly out of ICT rather than competitor airports.

10 Marketing Tips From Hosting 100 Podcast Episodes

In 2017 when I agreed to be the co-host of the Making a Marketer Podcast, I could never have fathomed the marketing industry leaders I would interview and the lessons that I would learn in our first hundred episodes. In fact when I look back to the moment when I agreed to play this part, I don’t think I considered that we would even record this many episodes!

My journey as the co-host of this podcast has taught me so many things, and it’s also opened my eyes to so many different facets of marketing strategy. There is a lot to know, and there are so many different niches. The best part of all is that I use so much of what I’ve learned so far every single day in my role as Social Media Manager at Greteman Group.

Here are ten nuggets of marketing genius that have stood out the most to me after recording our first hundred episodes:

Always be Innovating

Ep. 54 – Duncan Wardle

As a marketer, how do you make it a daily point to think differently? Duncan Wardle, Former Head of Innovation and Creativity at Disney, reminds us in episode 54 that “If you don’t like change, you will hate irrelevance.” We have to keep an open mind and be accepting of new ideas in order to keep our brand relevant in this fast-paced world we live in.

Consistently Promote Your Own Content

Ep. 40 – Erik Fisher

In episode 40 featuring Erik Fisher, we talked about the actual marketing of our marketing podcast. Sure, we can talk about marketing on our podcast as much as we want, but if no one knows it exists, then what’s the point? Content creation isn’t necessarily an “If I build it, they will come” sort of scenario. You need to come up with creative ways to distribute your content to the masses, and social media platforms are fast and obvious outlets.

Make Your Content Accessible to Everyone

Ep. 75 – Alex Heinrich

Do you devote time to filling in the alt text when you’re posting to your website and social media channels? Content accessibility is something that often gets overlooked by content marketers. In our 75th episode with Alex Heinrich, we talk about the ease and importance of taking the extra step to make your content accessible to everyone.

Video Content Will Only Keep Growing

Ep. 104 – Rob Balasabas

Over the last decade, video content has continued to grow and evolve with the fast-paced world of digital marketing. It’s imperative that brands who want to remain relevant adopt a video strategy, and not only that, a MIX of video content types. Does your brand use Instagram Reels to show off your company culture or behind the scenes happenings? Maybe you have former customers who are willing to provide video testimonials for you to use in your marketing mix. Keep an open mind and stay innovative.

Keep The Human Element in our Marketing

Ep. 46 – Mark Schaefer

As we all know and often tend to forget, the being who is consuming our marketing efforts will always be, at the end of the day, a human. Whether your industry is B2B or B2C, it should always bring an air of being human-to-human. Mark Schaefer, author of Marketing Rebellion, explained the importance of why we need to think differently and be human in our marketing efforts in the memorable Episode 46 of Making a Marketer.

Ask the Right Questions

Ep. 90 – Angus Nelson

In marketing, we are in a constant get-to-know you phase with our clients. For us to successfully speak to a brand, we need to know them inside out, top to bottom. When we come into meetings prepared with the right kind of curiosity and intent, it helps to build trust and deepen our connection with and understanding of the client and their marketing goals. Our conversation with Angus Nelson on episode 90 of the podcast arms our audience with some motivating tactics to do this.

Stay Consistent

Ep. 50 – Andrew and Pete

Consistency in content depicts to your audience and your fans who you are and what they can come to expect from you. In fact, if you do it right, people will organically start to come back to your social media channels and/or website to see what you’re going to do next. Finding a way to regularly create engaging content gives your audience something to look forward to, and it also gives them some ownership in the brand experience as they engage more and more often. In episode 50, Andrew Pickering and Pete Gartland leave our listeners with some motivating ideas on how to do this.

Making a Marketer Podcast recording of episode 50 featuring Andrew and Pete.

Develop Influence Through Shareable Content

Ep. 96 – Dan Gingiss

One of the most powerful ways to prove brand relevance is by creating an experience where your consumers want to share you with their whole world. This can be as easy as a retweet, or as fun as creating a beautiful, “Instagram-able” environment where people just can’t help themselves but share something special about you. The important thing is to keep an open mind and know what your audience really appreciates about your brand, and how that can tie into other interests that they might have. Dan Gingiss gave some fantastic examples of how to do this in Episode 96.

Be Strategic in Your SEO Efforts

Ep. 56 – Brie Anderson

Marketing strategy should always start with setting goals. How can we truly be strategic if we don’t know what success looks like? In episode 56, fellow Wichita native Brie Anderson talked about how to set goals, and to use strategic SEO tactics to achieve marketing success. She drove home a very solid point by saying “If you don’t know your audience — who you’re marketing to, or who you’re trying to sell to… who you’re trying to reach — then you can’t have a strategy, really.”

Make the Customer the Hero of Your Story

Ep. 100 – Ann Handley

Successful marketing boils down to messaging, with the main focus being on our end user. In everything we do as marketers, it’s crucial to make the customer the hero of the story, and to speak to and with them instead of constantly talking about ourselves. In episode 100 of Making a Marketer, Ann Handley explains in more detail how our content can be used to show an empathy for our customers and to make them the true hero.


We expected late April’s AUVSI XPONENTIAL in Orlando to be a good show. It proved to be a great one for our client Vantis. In retrospect, that’s really something, because for a while it looked like they might not even make it to the show.

Western North Dakota received one of its famous blizzards just as the show was starting, with heavy snow and ice affecting flights and ground transportation. Gov. Doug Burgum issued a state of emergency and enlisted uncrewed aircraft systems (UAS) to help restore power to residents and assist recovery efforts. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) came to the rescue, too, with needed approvals, waivers and monitoring.

The storm proved to be an all-eyes-watching proof of concept for the state’s UAS network, Vantis. The network was created to enable drones to operate beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) in times such as these, when crewed aircraft systems simply aren’t feasible. This real-life exercise underscored how valuable UAS can be in quickly getting to rural areas to assess utility infrastructure damage and helping prioritize resources needed for repairs.

Ready for Business

When the Vantis team got to Orlando and onto the convention floor, they were more jazzed than ever. They had just been put to the test – and prevailed. That positive energy and enthusiasm came through in every interaction – from current and potential customers to print reporters and TV crews.

A last-minute press release about the storm and the state’s UAS-driven response garnered media attention both at the show and at home. Trevor Woods, executive director of the Northern Plains UAS Test Site (NPUASTS), served as an excellent spokesperson with such leading media outlets as Bloomberg and key partners such as the FAA.

Always Ready to Tell the Vantis Story

I worked onsite with a wide-range of reporters to get them the latest facts and schedule interviews with key individuals. I also learned to keep a laptop and mic handy to conduct Zoom interviews with TV stations basically anytime, anywhere.

People Want to Hear What We Have to Say

In one week, we garnered more than 20 articles reaching approximately 10.7 million people for an approximate value of almost $100,000. Pre- and post-show emails helped us reach key target audiences, while social media further expanded our audience. We had lots to share and no shortage of people eager to learn the latest.

Making an Impact

The attention-getting, new booth we designed brought together elements from both the Northern Plains UAS Test Site and Vantis, amplifying each of their efforts. While there were several booths with considerable wow factor, Vantis’s booth was among the bigger, more dynamic ones. Most were small, 10’x10’ spaces. Its brand continues to offer powerful visuals and messaging that help communicate the complex concepts of backhaul data networks and command and control radios. Booth supergraphics convey everything from delivery drones for large retail operations to remote-piloted vehicles filling advanced and urban air mobility (AAM/UAM) transportation needs. The bold creative – including a new video – suggests momentum that continues to accelerate.

Catching Our Breath and Readying for the Next Wave

Forgive us if we continue to bask in the glow of XPONENTIAL just a bit longer. After COVID halted the show in 2020 and dampened it in 2021, it was glorious to be back together again. Being surrounded by the latest innovations in autonomous vehicles for sky, land and water reminded us of the bigger picture and the role our client plays within it.

While this is a casual, jean-wearing kind of show, serious stuff goes on here. These technologies can be gamechangers. The Vantis network in particular enables BVLOS flights that support UAS flying into areas otherwise impossible to safely enter due to dangerous conditions or the lack of direct ground support – the conditions western North Dakota experienced just before the show.

The statewide Vantis UAS network can elevate both the private and public sectors, raising the bar for services from medical and agricultural to utilities and transportation. North Dakota made a bold move with its initial investment to make the state friendly to UAS business and innovation. More and more, it’s showing what a wise, strategic move that was. Vantis is lowering the barriers of entry and becoming the place to come to for commercializing scalable UAS operations. And it’s proving it’s up to the task.

Lingering Thoughts from AUVSI

You would expect the world’s largest event for uncrewed and autonomous systems to blow your mind. And you would be right. AUVSI XPONENTIAL 2022 roared back from a COVID-depressed experience in 2021. This year’s convention ran from April 25-28 in Orlando and rocked it on every metric. Wow was on full display for high-tech products that included the latest innovations in autonomous aircraft, automobiles, maritime vehicles and even robotic dogs. The latter both fascinated and frightened me.
Full confession. I’ve had colleagues attend XPONENTIAL, but this was my first show. When I arrived at the Orange County Convention Center on opening day, I walked every aisle of the floor and the outdoor demo space without stopping to talk to anyone. (That’s saying something for me.) I wanted to take it all in. My immersive exploration took several hours, and my immediate takeaway was that while this is a casual, jeans and tennis shoes type of show, this is serious stuff. In addition to business folks and policymakers, I saw many members of our Armed Forces. Fatigues were as pervasive as T-shirts.

Telling the UAS Story
There were some amazing booths with great video displays and supersized graphics, but most were small and focused on the products themselves. You didn’t see much print collateral. Instead QR codes were on everything and, with a quick scan of your phone, let you quickly sign up for a demo or download a product sheet. The show billed itself as the place where autonomy meets society, and that change-the-world vibe permeated the convention hall. Everyone seemed to be talking about possibilities and opportunities. Keynote presentations and fireside chats banged the innovation drum and quickened our heart rates. There was a sense of a new day, not just coming, but here. Where we can be better connected, more strategic and secure – if we play our cards right. Advanced technologies can enhance our lives like nothing else.

Samantha Stinson, Greteman Group brand manager, helped generate tremendous press for Vantis at the show. Her onsite media support helped her connect with (okay chase down) reporters and coordinate last-minute interviews.

A UAS Case in Point
Our client, Vantis, put its value proposition to the test just as the show was about to take place. Western North Dakota had received some four feet of snow on top of another 4-6 feet already on the ground. Blizzard conditions with ice as well as heavy snow prompted Gov. Doug Burgum to call a state of emergency and turn to uncrewed aircraft systems (UAS) to help recovery efforts and restore disrupted utility services.

With approvals and waivers from the FAA, UAS did its job during this recent severe weather – quickly getting to rural areas, assessing damage and helping prioritize life-saving resources needed for power utility repairs and recovery. UAS overcame the difficult, if not impossible, travel needed to do the job. It saved time, money and, potentially, lives.

The severe weather essentially served as a proof of concept for Vantis, North Dakota’s UAS network. The network was designed to enable drones to operate beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS). It came through in the state’s hour of need.
Xceptionally Awesome
The Association for Uncrewed Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) represents organizations from more than 60 countries. Walking through the hall felt like the United Nations. I heard almost every possible language being spoken. Xponential provides a platform for collaboration, sharing lessons learned and building partnerships. More than 700 manufacturers and service providers were there with hands-on exhibits, interactive demos and perfected pitches.

Colleague Samantha Stinson and I left the show energized and more bullish on the future of UAS than ever. We are not alone.

This column ran in the May 12 issue of BlueSky News. 

What’s Your Appreciation Language

Our agency’s been talking about appreciation and how best to communicate it in a “language” the recipient values. These were identified by Dr. Gary Chapman back in 1992 in his book, The Five Love Languages. He followed that with iterations that include a guide for the workplace. The original goal of greater intimacy changes to feeling seen and valued, appreciated and acknowledged.

If you’ve never seen the languages or it’s been a while, here’s a recap.

1.     Words of affirmation – Praising accomplishments, affirming personal strengths and expressing thanks for a job well done can be done in private or in front of others, depending on the person’s tolerance for attention. It can also be spoken or written. The majority of team members (45%) prefer words of affirmation. Sincere, specific compliments can be very meaningful.
2.     Quality time­ ­– Focus your attention on the other person, give the interaction ample time (not rushing), create a safe environment to share thoughts, maintain eye contact, listen without interrupting, affirm feelings, observe body language and share experiences. This could be working together collegially on a project or engaging in lively, small-group dialogue.         
3.     Acts of service – Ask if colleagues need help, and, if yes, volunteer, then do it their way. Set expectations about what you can do, assist with a cheerful attitude and complete what you start. The more specific you can be the better. Like: “Is there anything I could do for you this week that would make work go better?” Be sure you’re ready to step up if they want you to.
4.     Tangible gifts – Giving a gift card for something you know someone likes such as coffee or books demonstrates that you get them. It’s not about the monetary value, but the thought. This is tricky as you can offend someone with the wrong gift. But take heart. Only 6% of team members choose tangible gifts as their primary language and 68% say it’s their least valued form of appreciation.
5.     Physical touch – High fives, a pat on the back or a hug can be appropriate for close associates at times of celebration or personal challenge. But times are changing. From global pandemics to sexual harassment, most employees today view physical touch as the least valued language for showing appreciation. We never want to take others out of their comfort zones. We’re still left with four solid opportunities for showing appreciation, so let’s focus on those.

 You Appreciate Your Colleagues, But Do They Feel Appreciated?
Chapman says people tend to give appreciation in the way they prefer to receive it, so my colleagues and I have been trying to dispel the mystery by simply saying what works for us – and then to drill a bit deeper. If it’s words of affirmation, for example, are those better delivered in writing or verbally? In private or in public? Does quality time mean an offsite lunch, or can it simply be stopping and giving your full attention to a situation? We’re learning by asking. The discovery has been fun.
For a creative agency, it won’t surprise you to learn that most of our team’s preferred love language is, well, language. Words of affirmation. We like positive declarations in all their forms – delivered publicly in an all-agency value share or one-on-one in a quarterly review supported by written documentation. The only caveat: they must be genuine, personal and specific.

Appreciation in Action
We recently received the nicest note from a longtime friend of the agency’s, Al Higdon. I’ll share it here as an example of love language that hit the mark.

“I’ve been a fairly frequent visitor to the airport recently, picking up visiting folks. While waiting for them on the mezzanine, I’ve observed many people spending a lot of time with your historical aviation exhibits. These displays were instant winners when they went up and have truly endured the test of time. Take another bow.”
The accolade is specific and sincere. While this is primarily an example of words of affirmation, it has elements of the other three love languages, too. Taking time to compose and send the note feels like an act of service. He’s giving of his time and gifting his thoughts in writing. See how those languages of affirmation intertwine?

Learning What Works
It’s critical that we understand each other’s appreciation languages. Chapman and White report that 51% of managers believe they are doing a good job of recognizing team members for work well done, but only 17% of their team members agree. Learning to speak languages that may be quite different from our own takes effort and intention.
We also need to consider changes brought by virtual, remote and flextime colleagues. Chapman and White say offsite team members value quality time with managers and colleagues even more than those who are in the office. More frequent, proactive videoconference check-ins and virtual meetings may be needed to fill this void.
How about you? What’s your primary appreciation language? Unsure? Take the quiz.