The podcast field is a crowded one, and your efforts to make an impact could depend on a number of factors. Whether your podcast is strictly audio-based or via a video format, youâ€™ll need to produce a professional product that can both entertain and, if relevant, inform your audience, and thatâ€™s easier said than done.
Clearly, the medium of a podcast is by its very nature one that is driven by sound, and as such, youâ€™ll need to make sure the quality of your equipment is up for the task, but before you even step in front of a mic, you have to make sure that the subject matter, and style, of your podcast, is fit for purpose.
Too many people attempt to cover a podcast without the required amount of hard work needed to actually succeed, as if just by turning on a sound recording device and ad-libbing would be enough to not only engage your audience but also to attract one in the first instance. It really isnâ€™t that easy.
Here are a number of tips on how to make sure your podcast is capable of making the grade.
Know Your Subject
When it comes to running a podcast, you shouldnâ€™t veer into unfamiliar territory; stick with what you know and look to build around that. There are many types and styles of podcasts, from conversational to storytelling and interviews to theatrical; whatever way you choose to direct your podcast, keep it within your wheelhouse.
While itâ€™s true that a podcast host should be well-spoken and charismatic, that wonâ€™t count for much if you attempt to discuss topics you know little about. Make use of your own experiences and knowledge, as this will shine through in your podcast.
Engage With Your Audience
Once you get your podcast off the ground, look to interact with the audience that you start to generate. You can do this in a number of ways. You can name-check those who watch and get involved or communicate with the messaging or comments section, depending on where your podcast is being run from.
This is especially important when you are setting out, as it will give those listeners and viewers who are trying out your show a sense of community, and that can be the key to driving up your numbers.
Music for podcasts is key, and there are many varied ways to incorporate it into your production. Youâ€™ll want a catchy intro tune, and depending on the type of podcast you run, youâ€™ll want a number of other musical aspects. For instance, if your podcast is a documentary-style one, you may want music that reflects the subject matter.
Perhaps you are covering haunted mansions in your eerily spooky podcast; then youâ€™d want some nice horror related sound effects. One tip on this front is to sign-up with a royalty-free music provider which will give you tons of tracks and samples to help give your podcast that professional feel. Whatever you do, donâ€™t just steal a song you heard on your iPhone, using tracks that you donâ€™t have permission for will almost certainly end up costing you in a big way.
Preparation and Routine is Key
No successful podcast just involves a host, and if relevant, their guests, just sitting down and hitting record. You need to plan out your overall strategy as well as the topics and discussions for that particular show. You should be as organized as possible and, if necessary, treat the whole endeavor as a job, even though itâ€™s clearly far more enjoyable than that.
Set ground rules and stick to them, and that goes for the broadcast times and dates, stick to a schedule, and that way, your audience will rely upon it and, hopefully, end up looking forward to your next show.
Get the Best Equipment
Make sure to have as professional a setup as possible when it comes to the sound and the recording of your shows. Fortunately, in this day and age, the costs of getting very high-quality equipment are very low, and you can put together a home studio for a fraction of what that might have cost five or ten years ago. You can happily just use an iPhone to record your podcasts, such is the availability of good quality technology that will give your show an accomplished feel.
The better the quality of your show, the more likely your viewers will buy into what you are broadcasting. No one will want to listen or watch your podcast if it looks amateurish, so make sure everything is in place before you even shoot or record your first show.
Be Patient and Donâ€™t Be Afraid to Fail
Trying to create a successful podcast depends on a number of factors, and perhaps the chief among these is how you wish to define that success. Making money from your podcast isnâ€™t easy and making large sums is nigh-on impossible. So if your idea of success is to run a well-liked podcast show with a strong audience, then thatâ€™s one thing, but if you are going down this route only to make money, then frankly, you might want to re-think your plans.
It will take time to bed in your show, and it may take weeks or months before you even see a small audience tune in; thatâ€™s to be expected. Donâ€™t be afraid to try new things and always look to think outside the box but be prepared for the long haul.