Podcasts are now more plentiful that YouTube channels, which is a crazy stat. But it goes to show you how powerful podcasts are in that they enable pretty much anyone to create content on subjects they are passionate about or maybe they just want to be heard. The barrier for entry is a lot lower than you might think. When I first thought about starting the Farm Traveler podcast in 2019, I thought it would it would be a difficult undertaking. But after I took that leap of faith, I’ve now published over 150 episodes and interviewed guests around the United States, Canada, UK, Australia, Saudi Arabia, and countless other countries. Podcasts are such a cool way to learn from others and share great stories. After all, everything we do boils down to stories that make us who we are. So if you want to start a show, I’ve got 6 steps that can take you from concept to published. It’s really a lot simpler than you might think.
1. Pick a Niche
You will most likely know your niche when you are thinking about starting a podcast but try to narrow that as much as you can. For example, instead of starting a podcast on real estate, maybe try to focus it more on real estate in Panama City, Florida. Or even something more specific like how to get started flipping rental homes in Panam City, Florida. The more specific your niche, the larger your audience can grow. It sounds odd to try to limit your content, but research has shown that listeners are wanting specific topics. Only celebrities and others that are already widely known can really succeed in shows that cover a wide range of topics and guests.
2. Pick a Show Format
Is your show going to be interview-based or maybe just you talking? Or maybe it will be story-based like Serial. Pick whatever format you think works best for your show and stick with it. If your show is interview based, find guests that best fit your niche. Maybe start off asking friends, coworkers, or acquaintances that can fit that niche. You can even have several different formats on your show. For example, Wednesdays you can publish traditional interview episodes and on Friday publish short segments about what you learned that week. One great show I enjoy is the Tom Rowland Podcast. Tom, is a fishing guide and fitness guru and covers tips and tricks on Tuesday, traditional interview episodes on Wednesdays, and fitness advice on Fridays. It’s a great way to spread out content within a show.
3. Record Episodes
Time to record your show! Try using free software like Garage Band, Audacity, or paid software like Adobe Audition to record and edit our episodes. There are a ton of tutorials on YouTube that show you how to record great-sounding audio, and these tutorials are of course FREE! If doing an interview over the internet, try Zoom or Zencastr. Zencastr offers great-sounding audio but does require users to record on a desktop instead of having the option to record on mobile like Zoom.
4. Pick a Podcast Hosting Site
Next, pick a site to manage your podcast. This is where you’ll upload your podcast episodes to be sent to podcast directories like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and more. Sites like BuzzSprout offer free versions, but only keep your podcast live for 60 days unless you start paying a small monthly fee. But there are countless directories, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. Check YouTube and online articles for reviews of these sites and pick what works best for you and your shows needs.
5. Plan a Launch and Marketing Strategy
Launching and marketing your show are really the most difficult aspects of a podcast. First, you’ll need to plan your launch. Many experts recommend publishing a podcast trailer and two episodes right at the start. This practice allows your potential audience to get a good feel for what your content is going to be like once you start to publish consistently. Next with marketing, create a podcast logo as well as any images or videos you might use to market on social media. I highly recommend Canva, because it’s both free and includes a huge range of tools. On Canva, you can create short videos, posts for Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, etc., and even create your podcast logo.
Marketing a podcast is difficult and something that is always changing thanks to the ever-evolving algorithm. I HIGHLY recommend finding a trustworthy podcaster or marketing expert on social media and following any tips and tricks they have on creating content, reels, videos, and other forms of content that can help your audience grow.
6. Plan, Organize, and Stay Consistent!
The biggest piece of advice I can give you towards podcasting is to be consistent. Most podcasts fizzle out after a few months because hosts aren’t seeing the growth they want. Growing an audience takes time. You’re not going to magically reach a million downloads overnight. Consistency will help you build your show and reach your audience. Stay with it, and just focus on creating high-quality content. Remember, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
7. Don’t be afraid to try new things
Lastly, don’t be afraid to try new things with your show. Keep it interesting, but also don’t change things too frequently. If you want to freshen up your intro, music, or add Q&A segments, feel free to do that! And always engage with your audience members either on social media apps or through email marketing to see what sort of content or topics they’d like to see. Best of all, trying new things on your show can help you learn new skills!
Those are my six steps to creating your very own podcast. Keep researching on Google and even YouTube for best practices, popular trends, and more about the world of podcasting. Don’t be afraid to share your story and those who might go on your show. Your audience will find you, just make great content and make it easily accessible. Good luck and happy podcasting!
Need more help? Check out my Podcast Editing page and email me any questions you might have!