Founder of the School of Podcasting. I've helped hundreds of people launch successful podcasts. I can advise you on a podcast launch, hosting, plugins, themes, microphones, software and more.
For me, I've used a ton, but I fell in love with Thinkific when I started using it. It hosts my videos, makes it super easy to make courses (and bundle them) and it has an affiliate program built in. I didn't need anymore. They also have flexible pricing.www.schoolofpodcasting.com/thinkific
Start of explaining how you solve a problem, say something unique that shows you know who they are (no form letters) and then ask if they are interested in a demo. If they want more information, tell them another way their audience would benefit (as all podcasters want to be seen as the person who helped their audience benefit) and then mention, oh, and we also have an affiliate program. Form letters go right in the trash. Also take some time to know who you are talking to.I get asked to promote my competition on a fairly regular basis.
You might check out podcastguests.com. This is a place to find guests as well as be a guest.
If the audio makes sense without the video component. For example, you don't' want audio where people are saying, "Oh look at that, oh my!" that wouldn't work (i.e. a demonstration video - click here to go to the new section...). But if the video is primarily a talking head video, it would work fine.
For me, I started a podcast answering those questions that I get asked the most. It helps listeners start to know, like, and trust me. I get feedback from the episodes that allow me to know what my target audience needs, and 80% of the people who sign up for my membership site use a coupon I only deliver in the podcast. Feel free to say I'm biased as I teach people who to podcast, but I see it work over and over.
I also want to say the phrase "passive" is somewhat misleading. You have to push pretty hard to get that ball rolling. You can start a podcast for the price of an Xbox and a couple of games. With a podcast people can hear you. it makes you more real. I had a blog for years and a email list over 1000. When I turned that same information into a podcast, and people could hear my sarcasm instead of reading italic words, they began to know, like, and trust me at a much quicker rate. With the right niche and affiliate product you can make some nice cash. The beauty of podcasting is you post the audio/video once and its there until you take it down. Try and make evergreen content.
The steps are simple, but podcast promotion is not easy.
1. Know who your audience is
2. Make GREAT content for THAT audience. Content that leaves them going "WOW I've go to tell my friends about this."
3. Go to where that audience is.
4. Make friends with them bringing value to every conversation.
5. Tell them about your podcast. (do not swap 4 and 5, they won't care about your podcast until they care about you).
If you're looking for the giant switch that gives you 10,000 downloads it doesn't exist. Other things that will speed things up is doing interviews and having those people promote their appearance.
Last never say the word, "only." As in "I only have 67 downloads." Those are people who chose your content over thousands of others. If this was a school 67 people would be 3 classrooms if not four.
As for tools, twitter, facebook, google+ (look for groups in Google and Facebook), meetup.com for in person meetings. You build your audience one person at a time.
I'm biased but a podcast can help. When you can't get past the gate keeper, you'd be surprised that the CEO is listening to your podcast on his phone while he is on the treadmill.
Is that 50,000 total downloads, or 50,000 per episode. There is a difference.