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How to Start a Podcast

The step by step guide to launch a podcast

· entrepreneurs
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As the audience for podcasts continues to grow, there has never been a better time to start a podcast for your business, brand, or a personal hobby.

If you follow this guide, it will prime you to launch your own podcast and take advantage of this exciting new journey.

What makes podcasts different?

Podcasts are a great way to build a genuine connection with your audience.

Instead of the fractured connection you make through social media, podcasts allow you to engage your audience with unique long-form content. Podcasts are more convenient than blog posts; people can listen to podcasts while driving, working out, or just doing chores around the house.

Step 1: Develop a podcast concept

Podcasts are as varied as the people that create them.

The only limit to what you can do with a podcast is your own imagination.

Before we tackle questions about choosing a podcast name, format, and show length, let's consider some fundamental questions.

To start, ask yourself, "Why am I starting a podcast?" and "What is my podcast about?"

Once you've answered the why and what, the rest of the concept will fall into place.

Identify your podcast goals

So, "why are you starting a podcast?" To phrase it another way, "what's your goal or purpose for your podcast?"

To help you get started, here are some common goals in podcasting:

  • To generate leads for a business
  • To be recognized as a leader in an industry
  • To share an important message
  • To have fun

It's helpful to write your answer down so you can refer back to it as you develop your show's concept.

Pick a podcast theme or topic

Now it's time to figure out your show's topic. Your topic can be as broad as pop-culture or as focused as discussions about recent Supreme Court rulings.

The only requirement is to be passionate about whatever you choose. It should be something you're excited to research and regularly discuss. Once you have an idea of what to podcast about, it's time for market research.

You can search your show's topic in Apple Podcasts (formerly iTunes) to see if there are already podcasts in that genre. If there are, listen to a handful of episodes to see what they're doing well and think of ways they could improve.

Name your podcast

When picking a podcast name, try to pick something catchy, memorable, and that will rank for your podcast's relevant keywords.

Don't create podcast artwork, yet

Even though we're doing all the prep work, we suggest holding off on creating artwork right now.

Your podcast is in its infancy, and as a result, the concept of your show will probably change a little as you record your first few episodes. It's totally fine if this happens. It's easy to change the title of your podcast, but it's a real pain to change your artwork, especially if you paid already paid for it once.

We recommend waiting until after you record a few episodes before you create your show's official artwork.

Step 2: Choose your podcast format

Some podcasts just have a single host, others are scripted stories, or feature in-depth interviews.

The important thing is to choose a format that fits what your podcast is about and is something you're comfortable with:

  • If you love improv and banter, you’ll need to have a cohost. 
  • But if you like having everything planned out and scripted, then make you might lean towards an audio drama.

When it comes to podcast formats, there isn't one right answer. So, let's talk about the most common formats:

Optimal podcast length

Don't let people tell you there is an optimal length for a podcast episode.

You'll find shows like The Daily that are 20 - 30 minutes long, Accidental Tech Podcast that averages 2 hours per episode.

And remember: if you're producing quality, engaging content, be confident people will keep listening.

Step 3: Podcast recording equipment and software

Podcasts have a low barrier to entry; if you want to start a podcast, it's relatively easy to begin the process with little overhead or experience. You can start recording a podcast with just your iPhone and a pair of headphones. Remember, your content is the most crucial part.

Nobody listens to a podcast because it has superior sound quality. But people will put up with less-than-optimal sound quality if the content of your show is excellent.

Step 4: Recording your first episode

Editing is where things get real, and where a lot of potential podcasters give up.

It's easy to get caught up in the idea of recording a podcast and quickly lose steam when things get technical or just plain difficult.

Try to remember: even the best podcasts had to start with a few bad episodes. Every show, and show host, has to find their footing, and the best way to improve is by continuing to record new episodes.

tep 5: Editing & uploading your first episode

The editing process is where you segment your podcast, remove audible distractions, and insert pre-recorded ads, voiceovers, intros, and outros.

With the help of the right software and a few pointers, even the not-so-technically inclined can create a quality, well-edited podcast.

It's a behind-the-scenes process that requires a little preparation, but don't let the process overwhelm you.

With the help of the right software and a few pointers, even the not-so-technically inclined can create a quality, well-edited podcast.

Enjoy your podcast


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