Have You Started a Podcast Yet? Here Are Some Tips to Help You Launch Your First Episode
Side projects are fun, help you build new skills and are a great investment of your time as each idea you try can turn into something profitable.
Maybe you’re tried blogging, want to write a book, learn a new language, or are working on an online business idea from home. All that is great, but another side hustle you should give a chance to is podcasting.
Anyone can start a podcast. Just like you can easily set up a blog in no time and start publishing content, so can you find out how recording and editing audio works and can have your very first episode on iTunes or elsewhere pretty soon.
You just need to want this enough, to be eager to learn the skills that go together with it, and to have a message you want to share with people, whether it’s educational, inspiring or both.
To help you out, we’ve listed a few tips that are a good starting point for anyone looking to become a podcaster and have his own show available online.
Create your content strategy.
First, you need to pick your niche and decide what you want to talk about.
Make sure it’s something you are passionate about, a field you’re interested in and have experience with, but also a topic people want to learn more about. That will also help you choose the name of your show.
Once you know that, write down your subtopics and the titles of your first 10 episodes.
If you can’t think of 10 cool topics to cover related to your show, chances are you don’t know enough about the subject and might as well pick another field.
How many episodes do you want to publish per week or month? This should depend on whether or not you have experience with podcasting.
If you’re an avid podcast listener, for example, and already have a lot to say once you turn on the mic, then you can create even 10 episodes per month. But for beginners, it’s smarter to aim for quality rather than quantity. Do it once a week or even release 2 episodes per month, but make sure each is good enough to get your listeners hooked.
Now, you can decide how long your show is going to be. Podcast episodes vary from 10 minutes to up to a few hours. But 20-40 minutes is usually good enough for almost any field.
Prepare your tools.
The free software you’ll need in order to record your podcast episodes, edit them and save them as mp3 files that you can later submit to platforms like iTunes is called Audacity.
You can download it right now, for free, and watch a few tutorials on YouTube.
Getting a microphone is never a bad idea. Don’t invest too much in the beginning, though, or don’t edit the audio content in different ways either. But once you do have more episodes and plenty of listeners, it’s worth reaching the next level and making sure your voice is clear and there’s no background noise.
Outline your first episode and start recording.
Each podcast episode should have an intro where you tell people who and what they are going to listen to and let them know what the episode is going to be about. You can also add some royalty-free intro music to make it sound more professional and engage the listener.
Talk in the mic as if you’re talking to a friend. Be authentic as people want real shows with real hosts.
It’s best to prepare some notes and have them in front of you so you can always know what the next thing you want to say is instead of being silent and trying to think of another point to make.
Open Audacity and hit the red button for recording.
Choose your hosting provider.
Just like a website needs to have a host, so does your new podcast. The 2 most popular platforms that can host your audio files, handle the bandwidth and distribute it to podcast directories are LibSyn and Blubrry.
Once you sign up for one of these, you can directly upload the mp3 file for your first episode. The hosting platform will then create your podcasting feed. This is the link you need to distribute your show to platforms like iTunes and Stitcher.
Launch your podcast on iTunes with a few episodes.
It’s best if you record more than one episode first before you even launch your podcast. That’s because listeners don’t just want to check out the introduction episode of a new show, they want more. Give them more content and they will gladly subscribe to your podcast and look forward to new episodes.
So that’s how your first episode can be up next week. Start creating your content strategy and be sure there are listeners out there who want to subscribe to your weekly episodes and leave you positive feedback.