Podcasts are all the buzz today and for a good reason — they’re easy to digest, free to tune in to, and people can listen to them anywhere.
In 2019 alone, there were 750,000 active podcasts and this number continues to grow by the minute. But what exactly is a podcast and why do you need one for your business or personal brand? What type of equipment do you need to start a podcast? And finally, can you make money with a podcast?
Keep reading to learn how to start a successful podcast and the 7 steps you should take to launch one.
What Is a Podcast?
A podcast is a series of audio episodes where the host focuses on a specific theme or niche and either talks to a guest or hosts the episode solo. Podcasts are hosted on hosting platforms and services like Spotify, iTunes, and Simplecast, but you can also host them on your website.
The ideal length for a podcast is 22 minutes or less and this is in order to keep the audience’s attention and focus. To record a podcast, you’ll need proper equipment, especially a high-quality microphone specifically made for radio programs and podcasts.
Why You Should Start a Podcast
Starting a podcast seems simple on paper but there’s a lot that goes into it. Luckily, with the right tips, you can have a podcast up and running in less than a month.
If you’re not sure how a podcast can help your business, think of it as an easy (or free) marketing method that’ll attract an audience and spread the word about your business.
When you upload a podcast to a podcast directory, it’s easy for people to find it when they search for keywords or browse topics. This helps you build brand awareness and attract an audience that’ll turn into customers.
If you’re overwhelmed or strapped for time, specialized podcast agencies like Motion can help you launch a podcast in less than 21 days. They’ll do all the editing, transcripts, and social media images. This way, you can focus on the quality of your podcast and the guests you bring instead of sweating the small (technical) stuff.
Make a Plan and Brainstorm Topics
Before you do anything else, you should write a plan for your podcast. Brainstorm podcast ideas and topics, the niche you’re going for, the types of guests you’ll have on, and the ways to monetize the podcast.
Try to think of at least 4 episodes and make a concept for each one. Having a vision about your podcast can help you stay on track. Set a specific goal for each episode as well as the value you want to offer.
Having a content strategy for your podcast and knowing what the goal is will help you stand out and attract the right audience.
Think of a Name and Branding
To make your podcast stand out, you need to think of a memorable name and branding for it. This is the best way to help it get noticed and attract listeners.
By creating distinct branding, you’ll be able to promote it on different channels and create an image for it in people’s minds. The name should be catchy and easy to memorize, but also related to the topics you’ll be covering.
Buy Podcast Equipment
To record an episode, you’ll need the right podcast equipment. This includes a high-quality studio microphone, a pop filter, headphones, audio recording and editing software, a laptop/computer, and acoustic treatment for the room.
While this equipment is an investment, the quality of the audio matters when it comes to your audience. When they tune in, they want to listen to crisp, clear voices with no outside noise or popping sounds. This is where post-production comes into play.
Reach Out To Guests
If you’re hosting an interview podcast where you have a different guest for each episode, make a list of all the people you’d like to invite.
Then, it’s time to reach out to your guests and explain what your podcast is about and why they should be on it. This process can take a while if you’re just starting out, but don’t give up.
If you have friends or family members who are successful business owners in your niche, ask them to be your first guests. Then, as you gain traction, you’ll be able to invite some more popular names.
Make a Concept for Each Episode
There are hundreds of different types of podcasts but they all have one thing in common: a well-defined concept. Before recording, divide each episode into chunks and write it all down.
- Intro music (+ message from a sponsor if applicable)
- Introduction of the podcast, the guest, and the topic
- Commercial break (if applicable)
- Conclusion + call to action
You can add songs or interludes to the podcasts when you take a break and create social media images to use for promoting the podcast on different channels.
Promote Your Podcast
Now that you’ve recorded and edited your episodes, it’s time to promote your podcast and attract an audience. Make a podcast marketing plan and start sharing your podcast on all social media platforms, your email newsletter, and your business website. You can also pay for ads to promote the podcast or ask industry friends to share it on their platforms.
Monetize Your Podcast
If your podcast is gaining traction and has a decent audience, it’ll be easy to monetize it. The main way to earn money is via brand sponsorships where a company buys air time on your podcast and you talk about their product or service to your audience.
You can also monetize it by promoting your own products and services to your audience. The more people trust you, the more they’ll buy from you which is why podcasts are one of the best marketing channels out there.
Now You Know How To Start a Successful Podcast and Monetize It in No Time
Whether you’re recording a podcast for the first time or have some experience hosting radio or TV shows, these tips will teach you how to start a successful podcast in no time. From having a niche to getting the right equipment, launching a podcast can take your business to the next level.
Want more marketing and business growth tips? Tune into our blog where we share the latest industry blog posts covering trends, news, and updates in the digital world.