If you are wondering how to start a podcast in 2020, this article is for you.How much does it cost to start a podcast? What do you need to start a podcast? Can one make money podcasting?
How much money can you make as a podcaster?
Many people when getting started with podcasting have too many questions that sometimes go unanswered.
In this podcasting tutorial, I will take you through a step by step process from planning, recording, editing, to the tools you will need to start a podcast and make money.
This is a complete podcasting tutorial for beginners so if you follow the steps I am going to outline here, you will get started quickly and without any challenges.
Ideally, if you want to start a successful podcast, you must pick a killer show idea or topic– one that people will want to listen to.
Well, don’t worry because in this post, you will learn how to start a podcast the right way.
But before that…
What is a podcast
A podcast is an audio file that can be created for educational or entertaining purposes that you can download on your device or listen to on the internet.
A podcast can be a sister to a radio show where the podcaster engages the audience with sound through speaking.
Essential Tips on How to Start a Podcast
Blogging is one of the fantastic ways to share ideas in a text-based format. But audio is also another way to tell your story and make money.
But why start a podcast?
Ideally, podcasting is an effective way to reach a wider audience you wouldn’t with your blog or other media. Studies suggest that 33% of Americans have listened to a podcast. And this number has since gone up.
Although podcasting is a sweet way to attract readers to your blog, it’s not the sole purpose of starting one.
Podcasting helps you to connect with your target market on a more personal level.
So how do you start a successful podcast?
Follow these tips to start a podcast that will achieve its purpose.
1. Determine the purpose
With a podcast, you can achieve a variety of goals. You can start a podcast to increase your authority, attract traffic to your blog, grow your business, etc. For this reason, you need to determine what you want to achieve before you start a podcast.
Once you have decided the motive of your, creating the content would be easier. If you are looking to start a podcast and make money, you must be prepared to put the effort and time required.
2. Content planning
Planning your content is also another tip you shouldn’t skip if you want to create a successful podcast.
First, you need to ascertain the number of episodes you want at a given period, the topics to talk about, the time of releasing a fresh episode, etc.
A good rule of thumb is to create a content calendar, the same way you could do with your blog.
Planning your content will help you come up with new topics for new episodes.
3. Be personal
The good thing about podcasting is that you connect with your target audience on a personal level. But even with that, you may not connect with your audience the right way if you do it wrongly.
In this case, let’s say you are talking about “SEO Mistakes to Avoid in 2020”. You must be honest to share lessons you’ve learned and the failures and mistakes you’ve committed when doing SEO, then educate your listeners on how to avoid them. This way, you will earn their trust hence connect with them.
4. Choose your niche
When you speak to everyone, you speak to none. If you don’t choose your niche, you will not have a focus on your content and that will leave your audience confused not knowing what to expect in your next episodes.
Research topics that your audience wants to hearthen create podcasts that address problems your listeners are facing. This way you will never lack content ideas. One of the best places to research for content ideas and podcasting niches is on iTunes.
5. Create and stick to an outline
You want to have more focus while creating episodes for your podcasts. If you don’t have an outline, you will get lost on the way and this can make your audience lose their interests in your content.
The same way you write awesome blog posts that convert is the same way you should create your podcast. Begin with a compelling introduction, body, and end your podcast with a conclusion that leaves a lasting impression on your audience.
An outline shouldn’t be complicated. Just make a bulleted list of the things you want to cover in your preferred order.
Your outline will act as the roadmap so that you don’t wander in the middle of your podcasting.
6. Get the video editing basics
Of course, you can hire an expert to do the video editing work for you but it’s important that, as you learn how to start a podcast, you also learn how to do the audio editing yourself.
Remember that learning audio editing isn’t a one-day thing, but the results are worth the patient. Besides, there are plenty of free and premium audio editing tools out there that work wonders, Audacity, Sound Forge Pro, and Acoustica are just a few of them.
With these tools, you can edit, compress your audios, and enhance them to get the quality you want.
Other tools such as Auphonic will take care of everything. You just need to upload your podcast on the platform and it will automatically work on it.
7. Get the most out of your thumbnails
Your podcast thumbnails can make or break your podcasting effort. Thumbnails engage with your audience visually for this reason, you need to create quality thumbnails that attract potential listeners.
Of course, thumbnails won’t appear larger but will make people recognize your podcast easily.
8. Work with the right equipment
The last thing you want to get is a podcast that no one can hear what you were talking about and this happens when you use poor quality gear. You need to use the right audio recording equipment.
Here, you need to get a good quality microphone and stand, compressor, headphones, a big mixer if you will record with guests, and a USB box.
9. Choose the right software
Here, you will want to choose a program that records your audio, then mixes your sound, and designs sound effects, etc. Good software will also enhance quality of audio files.
10. Ask your audience to subscribe and rate your podcast
Reviews are helpful when you are promoting anything online. From physical products to digital products, having a positive reviews show your audience that you are a real person selling useful products.
For podcasts, iTunes puts those with plenty of good reviews in the “New and Noteworthy” section.
If your podcast can appear in this section then expect to reach a wider audience. And to achieve this, you need to ask your listeners to subscribe and leave reviews if they feel your episode is interesting.
11. Don’t pretend to be someone else.
As a beginner podcaster, you will experience some uneasiness when talking to a mic for the first time.
You will have plenty of things that you will think of removing as you edit your podcast, but not all are for scraping. The sound file will have things like “aahh” “uhm”, etc. Make sure you don’t edit everything as this will make you sound like a robot.
Just be yourself as you tell your story and this will attract more followers to your episodes.
With that in mind, let’s get into the “how to start a podcast step by step tutorial.
How to Start a Podcast- A Step by Step Process
1. Choose an Interesting Show Idea
Ideally, there are two types of show ideas: Entertaining and Educational shows.
Educational shows are just as the name suggests, to educate the listener about something you are knowledgeable or experienced in. These could be informative interviews with experts, lectures, or even a discussion about a particular topic.
Generally, educational shows are meant to help listeners accomplish tasks with ease. An educational show could be about “How to Start a Podcast Successfully”, “How to Start an Online Store”, etc.
To pick a killer show idea for an educational show, you will have to research what your competitors are doing to see what’s working and what’s not working for them.
The good thing about educational shows is that they establish you as an authority in your industry.
On the other hand, entertaining podcasts take a different approach and focus. These podcasts stir an emotional reaction in the listener. You need to be good in storytelling though.
You need to make your listeners feel something as they listen to your podcast. This way, they will be eager to listen to your next episode.
2. Start a Blog for Your Podcasts
You can start a podcast without a website, but this isn’t something I can recommend. Having a blog or a website for your podcasting work could help you promote your podcast and build a huge following.
If you already have a blog, the better but if you don’t have one, it’s easier to start one. Just choose a domain name and a hosting provider. There are plenty of domain registrars out there including Bluehost, namecheap, and many others.
Once you have set up your blog, customize it with a responsive theme, install the right plugins.
3. Choose a Media Hosting Service
Although you can upload your podcasts on your website, it would be good if you pick a podcast hosting service that can host audio files for you.
The good thing is that with a podcast hosting service, you can add a media player to your blog so your listeners can listen to your podcasts from your blog.
4. Get the Right Podcasting Gear and Equipment
Well, some people will start by getting their tools together even before going through the steps we have outlined above.
Whichever way you decide to start with, just make sure you acquire the right podcasting equipment for recording and editing audio.
You don’t want to work with poor-quality equipment as that will affect the quality of your podcasts. For this reason, choose the right equipment.
To get started, get great microphones that can record your audio. Remember that, a great microphone can cost you hundreds of dollars and if you are doing video podcast, the cost can go higher.
Another thing you will need is editing software. Podcast episodes are sometimes long but you don’t want to share all the information on the episodes. For this reason, being able to edit your audio files yourself could be helpful since you can do away with unwanted sounds and fix mistakes that could potentially hurt your podcast.
There are plenty of podcasting tools out there but you just want to choose the right one for your work.
5. Record and Edit Your First Podcast
We hope you have planned your content and you have created an outline to work with. If you haven’t then before you can start recording your first podcast, do some prep work- plant your content, create an outline for your podcast episodes.
If you are doing an interview podcast, you will want to prepare questions for your guests. This way, you will have more focus as you interview your guests. During the interview process, you don’t want to waste your guest’s time because you don’t know what question to ask next and planning your content earlier could help avoid this problem.
After you have done all the preparations, you can start recording your first podcast. Make sure you are in a quiet place, and don’t stay far away from the microphone as this could impair the sound quality. If you can, buy headphones.
You can also enhance your podcast during editing by adding background or intro music. It’s also important to avoid getting copyright penalties, especially if you are using a song that you don’t own the rights to use it. Choose royalty-free clips to avoid copyright issues.
6. Launch and Market Your Podcast
The marketing strategy you use to promote your podcast will determine whether it will achieve your goals or not.
If you get the marketing right, your podcast will reach a wider audience.
Remember that creating an amazing podcast is one thing and getting it out to the world is another.
You may record your podcast with fancy equipment but if you don’t promote it rightly, it won’t make the cut.
Although you will want your podcast to rank in the iTunes New and Noteworthy section, it’s important to make sure you promote your podcast as far and wider as you can.
You also need to create social media outreach by building a Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube channel to share your podcast with potential listeners.
Just make sure you promote your podcast as much as you can because once you have built a community with your first podcast, it would be easier to expand your reach as you create the next episodes.
You also want to tap into an existing audience by submitting your podcasts to online directories such as SoundCloud, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. This is especially helpful since you will reach a wider audience.
7. Monetize Your Podcast
I hope money isn’t the sole purpose for creating your podcast but without it, you can’t have the resources to grow, expand, and improve your podcasting business.
When you start making money with your podcast, you can tap into many channels to promote your podcast episodes, use good-quality equipment and tools to record and edit your podcast, and hence reach a wider audience.
Well, monetizing your podcast is easier said than done and for beginners, it can be challenging and many have quit podcasting after failing to make money from it.
When it comes to podcast monetization, your industry and niche can determine what monetization strategy to use. Some podcasts are better monetized with sponsorships while others require different monetization strategies.
There are plenty of ways you can make money podcasting including in-person events, merchandise, crowdfunding, digital products such as online courses, livestreams, etc.
You just need to understand what your listeners want.
When looking to monetize your podcast, determine whether you are providing value with your podcast. Questions to ask yourself include: Is the podcast teaching people something they want to learn? Is it entertaining?
If your podcast offers value to your listeners, monetizing it will be easier.
Benefits of Starting a Podcast
I tend to think that in the past, business people were advised to create websites to promote their businesses and perhaps only a few took this advice and did right that. Those that never did it are perhaps the ones like you and me who are still struggling to promote their businesses.
Now let’s get back to the topic. Currently, experts are advising people to start podcasting and you may be asking yourself why?
Here are the reasons why you should’ve started podcasting as earlier as yesterday.
· Starting a podcast isn’t costly as you may think
Depending on the equipment you use, podcasting isn’t expensive as people may think.
If you have a laptop that has a recording feature, just plug in your microphone and get started podcasting. With time, you will improve.
Of course, it’s good to have better equipment and software but when starting, you can use what you have at the moment and create your first podcast.
· A podcast is easy to do
Well, it can be exciting and overwhelming to start a podcast, especially if you are a beginner, but the reality is that podcasting is easy to do.
You just need to follow the tips and steps we have outlined above and you are good to record and launch your first podcast. Besides, there are plenty of editing platforms some are free and others are premium.
· Podcasting helps to reach a new market
Although people love video some will enjoy listening audio given that it’s convenient and portable. You can listen to a podcast even when traveling.
And while you may be having your video-based audience, it would be good if you can add a new market from podcasting.
· Podcasting compliments other promotion channels
Ideally, you can create a blog, website, social media accounts, etc. to promote your business. Podcasting will establish you as an expert to your industry.
Just imagine hosting a podcast featuring experts where you discuss a topic that informs, educates and helps people to do something they thought it couldn’t be done. Doesn’t that make people see you as an expert in your niche? Of course, it will.
· Podcasts offer value
If done rightly, a podcast can offer value to your listeners.
This is especially important when you host expert interviews with key market players or discuss a topic of interest where you explain key concepts. This way, you equip your listeners with knowledge while keeping them entertained.
· Podcasts make you connect with your listeners on a personal level than blogs.
Video is entertaining and interesting, that I can’t dispute. But just imagine how inconveniencing it can be for your audience to download a 2GB video, particular for listeners with a busy lifestyle.
With podcasting, you tell your personal story in a way that your listeners can feel the emotions and be able to connect with your on a personal level.
So there you have it. Podcasting can do more than what you are thinking; both to your personal life and for your business. Why don’t you give podcasting a try?
Read to Start Podcasting?
Although you’ve learned how to start a podcast, getting started with podcasting can be stressful and exciting.
For you, it doesn’t have to be the case. Now that you are equipped with the right information, it’s time to put what you’ve learned into action.
We would love to hear any question or concern you have about podcasting in the comment section. If you also have podcasts you love, let us hear that in the comment section.