How to Create a Podcast for Your Business
December 13, 2017 |
Podcasts are one of the many ways businesses and personalities connect with their followers. But before diving into what it takes to start podcasting, let’s look at why you should.
Why Start One?
According to Edison Research, podcast listeners spend, on average, 4 hours listening to audio each week. This is likely because podcasts are auditory and mobile by nature. People can listen to your podcast while driving to and from work, cooking dinner, mowing the lawn, or working out. This research also shows an estimated 112 million Americans have ever listened to a podcast. Podcast listeners reach 67 million monthly and 42 million on a weekly basis. These weekly listeners spend 5 hours each week listening to podcasts, on average.
“The audience for podcasts continues to be predominately 18-54, and leans slightly male.”
Until recently, podcast listeners skewed younger. However, the audience continues to expand in age range as the medium grows in popularity. Podcasts fit easily in today’s “binge-watching” culture. Listeners are able to consume episode after episode while completing other tasks.
What do I need?
Now that you know podcasting is a great way to reach an audience, what do you need to start one on your own? You don’t need fancy studio equipment or a slick audio engineer. With some planning and a decent microphone, you can start publishing your very own podcast on a weekly, or even daily, basis!
Your very first step is to plan your podcast; the very concept itself. Who is your podcast for? What problem does it attempt to solve? Who is your audience? What is their reason to listen? These questions are all similar, but they should help give your podcast idea more structure and motivation.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but there are several avenues for this step. If the podcast is about you, perhaps your name is part of the title. Should the name be funny and creative, or explain to a new listener exactly what the podcast is about?
This is first thing audiences will see when they search for your show. You cover art should be between 1400X1400 pixels and 3000X3000 pixels. It needs to be recognizable on a small scale; with few words that represent your podcast.
Once you’ve picked a topic, consider how long you could speak on that topic. How long would your audience be willing to listen? If you feel your audience would listen during their commute to and from work, 25-45 minutes is probably that sweet spot. While we’re on the subject of timing, how often will you be releasing episodes? Once per week is typically the standard. Do a search for your competition and see how often they post podcasts. In this case, competition meaning similar podcasts that would compete for your audience.
How will your content be structured for your audience? It will likely be difficult to speak on the same subject without help from others, especially if you’re not an expert in the field you’re speaking on. Plus, having guests helps promote your podcast because they will share the episode with their networks.
- Interview- In person or on the phone. Be sure to research what equipment you’ll need to record phone interviews.
- Roundtable – A regular host speaks with a number of guests, talking through a specific topic.
- Documentary – A narrator walks you through several interviews, conversations, and on-location clips to piece together the full picture.
- Docu-Drama – A blend of drama and documentary. Offering information in an entertaining way.
Let’s check out the basic equipment you’ll need to start off. You’ll want, at least, decent recording equipment because, in the podcast game, audio is everything.
- Microphone $50
- Headphones $60
- Pop filter $10
- Quiet room
- Editing software: Audacity is free and works with Mac or PC. Garage Band is free but is only available on MAC.
Writing and Recording
You’ve got your concept, equipment, and guest ready to go; but what will you talk about? And how will you say it?
When writing your script, remember to write how you talk. The idea is to make the audience feel like you don’t have a script. Use contractions, speak plain English and cut out the jargon. Don’t assume the base level of knowledge. You want your podcast to be welcoming to anyone who’s chosen to listen.
In the intro, understand things from the listener’s point of view. You can’t assume they have ever listened to your show before. New listeners join podcasts every day. Mention your name, the podcast’s name, and explain what the podcast will be about as a whole. Then talk about what that specific episode will be about. If there’s a guest, give a quick backstory on them. For the outro, be sure to create a lasting impression. Thank them for listening and point them towards something or ask them to do something. Give them website links for things mentioned in the show, tease the topic and guest for the next episode, and/or send them to your website.
Podcast Hosting and Publishing
Once you have your finished podcast file (.mp3 format), where do you put it? It can’t live on your website because that file is too big. Uploading the podcast directly to your website could crash it. That’s where there are media hosting websites like Libsyn, Blubrry, Soundcloud, Podbean, Podomatic… the list goes on. Many of these hosting websites include WordPress plugins, meaning you can SHARE your podcast on your site without crashing anything. To choose a hosting website, you must consider how frequently you’ll post and how long your podcasts will be. Also, consider your price range. After picking a hosting website, submit your podcast on apps and platforms so people can find you. Podcast apps and platforms include iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play Music, TuneIn Radio, and PodcastDirectory.com.
Once you really get rolling with your podcast, the workflow for each episode should look something like this:
- Episode ideas
- Guest Ideas
- Book guest
- Script and interview questions
- Record and edit your Podcast
- Add intros & outros
- Export your podcast
- Tag your podcast
- Upload Podcast to your media host
- Schedule the release
This is just one of many ways an entrepreneur can promote themselves and their brand. In this ever-changing world of technology, it’s imperative you remain visible to potential and current customers. Continue to use medias like this to provide your followers with helpful content; that way they’ll trust you as the expert!