The rise of content marketing has propelled blogging to new heights. And while blogging is an effective way to deliver content to your audience, there’s another method that doesn’t quite get the attention it deserves.
Enter the humble podcast.
Data released by Edison Research and Triton Digital states that 22% of Americans listen to podcasts on a weekly basis. That’s more than 72 million people!
Streaming services like Spotify and Pandora are playing a huge role in this growth by promoting podcasts to their consumers and making them more accessible than ever before. Spotify recently purchased pop-culture website and podcast network The Ringer, highlighting the growing value of Spotify and podcasting in general.
Getting started (step-by-step)
The cost of equipment is no longer a barrier entry to the podcast game, and small, medium, and large publishers can all get in on the action!
As with most forms of content marketing, consistency is key. If you put in the work and remain patient, that patience will be rewarded. You likely won’t see results overnight, but don’t let that deter you. There’s a segment of the podcast audience out there waiting for your stories and waiting to connect with your character!
The following step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of creating and publishing your first podcast!
1. Select a Niche for Your Podcast
If you already have a defined brand, this step is pretty simple. If your brand is large, however, you’ll want to focus on as specific a niche as possible.
For example, USA Today’s “Talking Tech" podcast focuses on consumer technology. The rest of the USA Today website provides news and updates on a wide range of topics, but the podcast itself focuses on the specific niche of tech.
If your niche is already specific, you can get away with covering the same list topics on your podcast. Next you’ll want to make sure that you land on a great name. Something that will grab the listener’s attention, but also one that will accurately represent your brand and the content you’ll cover in the podcast.
2. Choose a Format
How long will your podcasts be? Are you going to be interviewing guests, co hosting, or will your podcast be a monologue for the most part?
Again, the most important thing here is consistency.
As you build a following, they’ll expect the same or a similar format for each episode. If you suddenly change your format six months in, a large portion of your audience will likely stop listening to your podcast.
3. Recording & Editing
There are a number of audio recording & editing apps on the market today. If you’re comfortable working with audio recording software, or if you’re a quick learner, you might find that the free options provide enough features to suit your needs.
Although there are a number of paid apps, these free alternatives should provide all the functionality you need to get the ball rolling. You may even find that they’re more than enough for you!
Smartphones have come a long way and the capabilities of the newer generations make recording an audio clip easy and effective. If you plan on recording episodes alone, a smartphone is a viable option. However, if you decide to purchase a mic or a set of mics for your podcast, pay attention to the pricing and reviews. There’s no need to spend over $60 on a microphone for your podcast and you can often find one at a price much lower than that.
There’s no need to purchase a whole new domain and hosting package if you already have a blog or website. After all, your current followers already know where to find you.
If you use a free hosting service like Wordpress.com or Blogger, you may want to buy a domain and hosting package to give your podcast a foundation on which to stand. But even this isn’t required as the streaming services we mentioned above do a lot of distribution work for you. 👌
💥 Bonus Tips:
If you really want to up your podcast game and present a more polished look, consider putting some thought into a great cover photo. The cover photo is the first thing potential listeners will see, so it’s your opportunity to really hook people.
If you’re balling on a budget, we recommend you try your hand at designing your own cover art! Canva is an easy-to-use graphic design tool that has a ton of free options. As a bonus tip, if you need stock images for your cover art, Pexels has a huge selection of free stock images. 🤑 Another cost-effective way to create cover art is to repurpose graphics you have on your site already. Canva allows you to upload your own images or you can your graphic as is, and then edit from there.
Apart from your shiny new cover photo, it’s never a bad idea to think about some intro music. You can create your own intro song (or if you’re anything like me, ask a more musically talented friend to lend a hand). If you decide you do want intro music, which is never a bad idea, Premium Beat allows you to purchase and download single tracks.
Do you have a podcast? Are you planning to create one? If so, let us know in the comments below!