Unfortunately, the loudest voices in the media aren’t always the most credible. How often do you hear oversimplified, sensationalized, or fear-mongering misinformation from celebrities and other nutrition experts?
More dietitian voices need to be heard so that credible, meaningful nutrition information and advice dominates the nutrition conversation. RDs are uniquely qualified to translate complex nutrition information into meaningful tips and strategies for the public, and if you’re not part of the conversation, you can’t be part of the solution.
However, the media landscape is evolving, and dietitians must cultivate new opportunities to stay involved in and lead the nutrition conversation. Traditional TV, radio, and print opportunities are shrinking, while digital ones are expanding. RDs have successfully embraced blogging, but there are other strategic ways to get involved—namely through videos and podcasting.
Videos and podcasts are exciting alternatives to traditional media that enable you to share credible information and resources, increase your visibility, build your brand, and promote dietitians as the nutrition experts. While there are some credible nutrition shows hosted by dietitians in the video and podcast space, unfortunately many aren’t so credible.
Have you ever wanted to be on TV? Not sure how to pitch the media or compete with other potential guests in your media market? Consider the impact of having your own videos online (on your own website or YouTube channel) to demonstrate that you’re a camera-savvy expert in your field. Including a link to your videos in your e-mail pitch to a producer gives them instant access to the caliber of guest you could be on their show. Alternatively, you can share your videos through social media avenues for exposure and to promote your brand, products, and services.
Have you ever wanted to be on the radio? How about having your own radio show?
Podcasts are digital media files (typically audio, but also can be video) that people can subscribe to through iTunes, via RSS feeds, or other software applications. Similar to having your own YouTube channel, you create the content, record it, produce it, and share it.
One important reason podcasts are growing in popularity is the convenience of being able to listen to them while commuting, exercising, and engaging in many other activities that aren’t compatible with screen time. In addition, the audience’s connection with podcasters tends to be more personal than with bloggers because voice inflection, enthusiasm, and humor are easier to convey in audio format. You also have a much better chance of standing out from the crowd with podcasting compared with blogging; the blog to podcast ratio is about 2000:1.
Here’s what to consider if you want to launch your own video series or podcast:
- Concept. What’s your vision, brand, niche, or unique voice?
- Content and platform. What is the focus of your show? Does it lend itself more to an audio or a video format (or both)?
- Skills. Do you need to build any skills such as writing, speaking, messaging, interviewing, recording, or editing? Can you outsource any of these tasks?
- Technology. What tools are needed (such as microphones, recording/editing software, hosting platforms, and publishing tools)?
- Promotion. How do you plan to promote your show (eg, launching, marketing, and monetizing)?
- Sustainability. Where can you access ongoing support and resources to sustain your efforts?
If you’re looking for a new way to increase your visibility or build your brand, I hope you’ll consider videos and/or podcasting. Despite the learning curve, it’s a fun and effective way to accomplish your goal.
For worksheets to get you started on brainstorming and next steps, and to see highlights of dietitians on videos and podcasts, visit http://www.soundbitesrd.com/needs-media-videos-podcasts-increase-visibility-build-brand/
— Melissa Joy Dobbins, MS, RDN, CDE, is an award-winning, nationally recognized dietitian, speaker, blogger, podcaster, and media trainer with more than 20 years experience. She’s the founder of Sound Bites, Inc, where she promotes “sound science, smart nutrition, and good food.” Melissa has extensive media experience as a spokesperson for the food, grocery, and health care industries. She’s a former spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and has received the Academy’s Media Excellence Award in 2016.