Michelle Barone, President of MBM, on the Importance of Podcasting and Expanding R.E.D.
Podcasting is a unique, long-form medium that helps brands stay consistent with their marketing voice. Michelle Barone, President of MBM, speaks about the importance of podcasting in today’s creator space, staying on top of constantly changing trends, and expanding her R.E.D. podcast.
Who is Michelle Barone?
Michelle Barone is a social media influencer and marketer with 20 years of experience in the marketing industry. She started MBM, a full–service marketing, and advertising agency, and helps companies with all types of marketing campaigns, including digital, social, and traditional campaigns. She has also been on air on the radio for around ten years and brings this experience to MBM’s podcast, R.E.D.
What is R.E.D.?
MBM is a full-service marketing and advertising agency offering strategic planning, personalized marketing campaigns, consulting, and resources for optimizing websites, making digital content, and leveraging social platforms.
MBM’s podcast, R.E.D., stands for Relevant, Entertaining, and Dynamic.
On the podcast, Michelle Barone interviews content creators and influencers, allowing them to showcase their products, skills, talent, and knowledge to the public. The MBM team already has an exciting lineup of podcast guests for 2023 and is working on a new website launch for MBM.
Michelle Barone shares, “R.E.D. was founded because I went to Playlist Live, and I started really getting out there as an influencer myself on Instagram, showing different lifestyle reels and adding more value to my followers. I started to grow a larger audience, and through that, I realized no one was really capitalizing on this audience and the influencer and content creator in the marketing space.”
She adds, “I felt like these people had such great stories behind the viral video – like, what made you think of the idea? How’d you do it? Why was it so exciting to you? These stories needed to be shared so that other people can gain knowledge and create their own way.”
The R.E.D. podcast is expanding in 2023. The MBM team is moving into a larger studio, and Michelle shares that they have a full production team for the podcast, including hair, makeup, and more. This expansion also includes new and exciting podcast guests.
Michelle shares, “We [MBM] have customers that have their own podcasts that tell stories about their industry, whether it be finances or home/auto. It depends on exactly what they’re looking to tell, but podcasts are so niche, and you could really have a podcast about anything.”
At the end of the day, podcasts entertain or inform people, or ideally, are a combination of both.
Michelle adds that podcasts help brands by giving them a consistent voice.
“The most important thing is consistency when it comes to marketing. I always equate it to working out, and I say that marketing is like a diet. If you fall off one day, you get to start again. The next day, you can get right back on, but you really have to be consistent in your efforts, goal, and direction in order to reach that goal and use the right marketing mix in order to reach that goal.”
The Creative Process Behind Podcasting
When brainstorming podcast content, Michelle looks at trending and hot topics, specifically topics that influencers or marketers are interested in due to the nature of her podcast. She is also always looking for behind-the-scenes information about how an influencer blew up online.
She shares, “I look at something that moves me. If I like it, and I think it’s cool, and I feel a connection towards it, I think others will too.”
Telling influencer and content creators’ stories through the R.E.D. podcast also connects back to MBM’s services, which helps brands tell stories.
Some businesses MBM works with have also become podcast sponsors for the R.E.D. podcast. Michelle always tries to get a unique giveaway or hook for the sponsorship. For example, she had an acting coach recently come on and give away a couple of roles in a movie, or brands may give away tickets to a big event.
Why Are Podcasts so Important?
Unlike many other types of digital content, podcasts are long-form storytelling, which provides creators with time to share in-depth information about a specific topic.
Michelle explains, “With podcasting, it’s something you’re already interested in, or you want to learn more about, and you’re willing to invest the time into it. I think that what makes it unique is those listeners. When you get a [podcast] download, those people truly listen to every aspect of it on their drive or during their workday.”
Staying On Top of New Marketing Trends
The creator economy and marketing industry is constantly evolving, making it difficult for individuals in the industry to keep up with everything. However, Michelle shares that her incredible team is a significant asset to her.
She has one partner who reads all marketing newsletters, databases, and more and then compiles new information for her and the team to review each morning. MBM is also always looking at how Google has changed to ensure they optimize ads correctly for their clients.
Michelle explains, “We are like culture queens. We like to see things happen. I think all of us collectively love success, and we’re super competitive people in a positive way.”
The MBM team is also selective about who they work with and only works with a handful of brands at one time so that they can pivot quickly and help their clients succeed online.
Working with Influencers
The MBM team uses programs to analyze influencers, their engagement, niches, what they stand for, and more. Once they find influencers that meet their criteria, they contact them and start a negotiation process.
“We always look for a win-win situation. We never want a brand to overspend, but we also never want an influencer to not make the money they deserve for building up that audience and providing quality content. It’s always, for the marketing agency who’s coordinating [everything], a really interesting balancing act.”
In the future, Michelle anticipates AI will play a massive role in influencer marketing. She also expects this will make significant waves in our education system because the need for learning to write may go down significantly as AI technology improves.
She explains, “In the influencer space, the people who can get access to that technology will be at the forefront of it. They will be the ones that are really the winners because the AI’s going to think for itself and give you the best ideas.”
Michelle and the MBM team look forward to continuing to grow the R.E.D. podcast and showcasing as many wonderful guests as possible.
She adds, “I think for us, finding those like-minded companies is what our future looks like and immersing ourselves in that technology we talked about earlier. Immersing ourselves in the AI, so we’re current and on-trend, and we stay relevant. That’s our goal – to stay super relevant, hire top talent, create the best culture, and to have a line of folks wanting to work for us that we can facilitate because of great work.”