A podcast can be the next step for your business – or the start of it. But how do you start one? What are the steps you need to go through? That’s what today’s episode of Marketing in Minutes is about.
This episode of Marketing in Minutes was recorded with the following equipment:
In this episode of Marketing in Minutes I walk you through the most important steps of starting a new podcast:
- Coming up and refining the concept for your show
- How to record a podcast and which hardware and software you need
- Marketing your podcast to get regular subscribers
All in under 10 minutes.
For more information about getting a podcasting setup on a budget, see this article: The Ultimate Guide To A Podcasting Setup On A Budget
This article teaches how to use the non-free software Reaper to record a podcast, but it works exactly the same way in the software I link to below: Reaper Podcasting Tutorial
Recommended Software to record a podcast:
Free but Windows only, Cakewalk is a free DAW software (Digital Audio Workstation). If you are a Windows user, this is the best software I know.
Tracktion offers the second latest version of their professional DAW for free – it’s a great deal. The software is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux and certainly very capable!
Open source software – if you want binaries for Windows or Mac, you have to pay a small amount, but for Linux distros you can usually get free compiled packages. Certainly capable of producing professional shows.
Free plugins for DAW software that will help you create a better sounding podcast:
Most plugins you will need will come prebundled with any DAW software. This includes Compressors, EQ, and Noise Gate plugins. Additional plugins that help me improve my sound are:
This is a free plugin that automatically performs most tasks for normalizing and improving recorded voice to a broadcast level result (and to broadcast standards). It’s also used in the Reaper podcast tutorial I linked to above – check there to find out how to make the best use out of it.
If you are on Windows, you can download the Reaper plugins for free – and they include some great tools. If you need noise reduction, this is your only free option.
Marketing Strategy – The Social Traffic Code
For a complete step-by-step marketing strategy that will help you grow your podcast audience organically and over time – check out our book, The Social Traffic Code.
Below you can find the full transcript for this episode of Marketing in Minutes
How do you start a podcast?
Starting a podcast may be the start of your online business – or it may be the next step. But what exactly do you have to do?
I’m Jonathan Gebauer and this is Marketing in Minutes.
Welcome to Marketing in Minutes by The Social Ms – the podcast that gives you everything you need to know about one Marketing topic per episode.
I’m Jonathan Gebauer and today, let’s talk about how to start a podcast.
So how do you do it? How do you start your own podcast?
Let me start with this: When you start a new podcast or even planning a podcast, it helps to identify the main problems you will face.
In fact, you will face three different problems:
You will need to figure out the format of your podcast: What type of show do you want to produce, is it going to be scripted, or will you talk freely, how often are you going to release episodes, is it going to be split into seasons, and so on.
You will need to solve the technical aspects of podcasting – how do you record and edit your podcast and which hardware and software do you need.
And you will need to solve the marketing or distribution problem – how you will get new listeners and subscribers.
So, in this episode, I will give you a general overview of all three of these problems. Yes, it’s only a general overview – but I think it will help a lot of you.
Let’s start by looking at the format – what type of show do you want to produce.
The choices you have are Interview podcasts, narrative podcasts, and something in between.
Currently, your biggest chances for success are if you produce a show that is not an interview podcast – because there are many interview shows already.
So your best option, at least in my opinion are narrative shows. What does that mean?
A narrative podcast is a show in which the host is responsible for bringing the value to the listener. Serial is a narrative show, so are all the true crime podcasts, but not just those. This podcast you are currently listening to is a narrative podcast as well. And if you want an example of a narrative podcast that isn’t fully scripted, then listen to Marketing School by Eric Siu and Neil Patel.
When you’ve decided the type of show, you should decide on the frequency – how often you will produce episodes and how long these episodes will be.
When you’ve got that, go into detail on how these episodes will sound like, what elements they will have, and so on. Plan your show as best as you can.
Write a couple of scripts for your show or take some notes on what you want to cover, and maybe even read them aloud to find our how they sound. Practice your speech, and make adjustments to he concept where you find it necessary.
Do all this before you start recording your first episode. If you do this you will become comfortable with your format – and even your first episodes will sound a lot better then what you would get otherwise.
When you do all the stuff I just told you about, you are creating a concept for your show. And this concept is important.
You will build your own structure and your own style. And before this style has started to develop, it’s not the time to record anything.
But when you finally get to the point where you can hear the actual show in your head, and you think, hell yeah, this is something I would listen to, then it is time to start recording.
That’s when you need to approach the second problem of your show. And that is: How do you actually record something.
So how do you do that?
The first thing you need to do is to identify what type of recording setup you need to produce your show.
Podcasting isn’t the new idea anymore, that it was a couple of years ago. And that means that listeners expect a minimum of quality for the stuff they are listening to. You want people to come back to your show and listen to more than one episode.
You can get decent quality even on a low budget and with a relatively minimal setup. At least if you are willing to learn a bit about audio recording.
I will link an article in the show notes that shows you how to get a podcasting setup on a low budget. And for a show with a single host, all you need is a USB mic. You can get going for around 50 Dollars.
The second thing you need to decide is which audio software to use to record and edit your show. The recommendation I can give you here is to use professional software.
Ignore the open source tool Audacity – it’s complicated and it will cost you a lot of time to edit your podcasts with that. Today you can get professional software for free that you can edit professional shows with.
For Windows, my recommendation is Cakewalk by Bandlab. For Mac, you can use the free version of Tracktion, and for Linux, you can use Ardour.
The links are in the show notes.
With this software, you can edit professional podcasts, but you will have to learn how to use these tools. You will need a few plugins to make your podcast sound good – but it’s easier then it sounds. I will link the free plugins that I use in the show notes as well as my budget setup.
Record a few test shows, edit them and see how they sound. Improve your skills before you force yourself to publish episodes that aren’t good enough.
Again, practice before you publish.
Once you are ready to publish something, one final thing you have to decide about is how you will host your podcast. I won’t go into detail here, but I will list a few recommended hosts in the show notes.
And when you’ve done that, you now have a podcast!
With the technical aspects out of the way and your first shows recorded, it’s time to think about marketing your podcast.
And that’s where stuff gets really complicated. There is no simple set it and forget it marketing strategy for podcasts. But I can give you a little bit of information on how to do it.
The first thing that you need to know about marketing a podcast is that most podcasts are slow growth.
Sure, you can try to get into the iTunes recommendations when you launch. But most who try don’t make it. If you are starting out you are lucky to receive a couple of hundreds of downloads per month.
Almost all podcasters go through that phase. And that’s okay. It gives you the opportunity to enjoy what you are doing and improve with every episode.
But it also means you need to actively market your show.
You need a website or a blog, and you need to market in the same way that bloggers market themselves. And especially in the beginning, you have to go after every single listener.
You need to share your episodes via social media, you need to engage with your audience, you need to generate your subscribers step-by-step and if you do that, and your content is good, you will grow your show.
While podcasts are slower in growth than blogs and written content, podcast subscribers are currently worth a lot more – which means that it is worth pushing through the beginning stages of podcasting.
But the most important thing about running a podcast is that you have fun doing it – if you don’t, your show won’t become successful.
I hope you liked this episode of Marketing in Minutes – if you did, please subscribe and leave a review on Apple Podcasts. It really helps me to grow an audience.
For more information on podcasting setups, software, and marketing a podcast, check out the show notes. You can find them at blog.thesocialms.com/MiM-28.
And for a complete marketing strategy that works for Podcasts as well, check out our book, The Social Traffic Code!
I’m Jonathan Gebauer and you’ve been listening to Marketing in Minutes.
That’s all for today, take care, bye!