How to Start Your Own Podcast for Your Small BusinessWritten by Mindaugas on April 30, 2018
Podcasts over the years have drastically increased in popularity. They offer creators and alternative method of expression and help funnel opinions, facts, and other information to the audience..
As a business owner, you may want to expand your promotional horizons. Finding effective ways to garner the attention of people can offer enormous economic benefit to your operations. A well orchestrated podcast can be another great addition to your content marketing arsenal.
Preparation is key to launching your very own podcast successfully. Starting off on the right foot will help attract a positive audience perception and establish consumer trust.
The right guidance helps alleviate anxiety when treading uncharted waters – in this case creating a podcast. I am here to get you warmed up to the idea, and disclose all the pertinent details. This guide will set you off in the right podcasting direction.
Listen to Podcasts
When trying something new – in this case producing a podcast – it helps to see others at work. You get a better sense of what’s going on and what elements the seasoned veterans focus on.
For those of you who haven’t listened to any podcasts, or haven’t done so in a while, listen to a few now.
There are literally thousands of different podcasts available. Whether you’re out for a run, walking your dog, or stuck in the car during the morning commute, tune in.
If possible, go through a variety of podcasts. This way you will have a sense of different podcast lengths, topics, and how the hosts format their shows. Having a general understanding of podcasts and their functions will help you start off on the right foot.
Are You Going to Commit?
Before considering creating your own podcast, you have to realize that it will take some effort to get it off the ground. This isn’t just a simple monologue or a conversation you record and upload online. You have to entice and reel in the listeners with your voice and quality content.
In the beginning, when talking to yourself you may feel out of place. It’s natural and it could take a bit of getting used to. You will also need to get your audience on board your new endeavor.
As with a lot of things, consistency is essential. Your podcast may not start off as the most popular thing on the web, but you can’t let that discourage you. If you commit to this, put effort into producing and never stop improving. A podcast can be a valuable addition to your business and a great creative outlet for you.
What Equipment Do You Need?
Additional equipment usually follows the inception of a new hobby. With podcasting, it’s no different but the initial investment won’t be as bad as you may think.
Since we’re just starting off here, we won’t dwell too deep into top-of-the-line recording equipment and software. There really is no need for expensive equipment to start podcast production.
So let’s go ahead and see what you will need.
Main tool for the job. To produce a quality voice recording, I strongly urge you to avoid any built-in computer microphones or those raggedy Apple earbuds.
Get yourself a quality mic before recording your podcast. USB mics will work best for this situation. They are typically omnidirectional, meaning it captures the sound equally from all directions, and it allows you to record straight onto the computer.
Check out this list of microphones to choose from. Maybe something will catch your eye..
Some of you may think that headphones are not a necessity to create a quality podcast. Headphones make the process easier and I would suggest that you get headphones prior to recording.
Normally when you speak, the sound you hear coming from your mouth is different than what the people around you hear. While recording your podcast, headphones will allow you to listen to your own voice.
Hearing your actual voice through the headphones will let you to make vocal adjustments throughout the process. While editing, wearing headphones will let you hear the minor sounds that were picked up by the mic. As you hear more, you can make the right edits to produce a quality podcast.
Here are some headphones you may want to consider using.
A good recording location helps create a quality product. As some of you may know, sound has the tendency to bounce around. Depending on the environment in which you’re in, sound can echo. Echos can distort the quality of your recording, which can lead to a sub-par podcast.
Don’t worry too much, you won’t need to book an expensive recording studio. You can still record and produce in your office or at home, just take a few things into account.
Keep Your Recording Space Small
Whenever possible, keep your recording space as small as possible. Smaller spaces reduce the reverb and in turn creates a more crisp sound.
DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)
Digital audio workstation is the software that allows you to record and edit sound. DAW choices are immense, but to produce a quality podcast, you won’t have to spend money on a digital audio workstation.
I did some research on podcast production, and Audacity was the one piece of software that was always brought up. Many people swear by this program and I can see why.
First of all, it’s free to use. There are no gimmicks or additional features to purchase. Updates are constantly being implemented so the software is always up-to-date.
For the Mac users, there is Garage Band. It’s also a free DAW that offers great functionality to record and edit your podcasts.
Hosting Podcast Online
Podcasts won’t be sitting only on your computer, they need to inhabit the online space. Great thing about publishing a podcast – there are multiple platforms to host your content and it’s free to do.
You will need to setup an RSS feed through one of the hosting sites. This way you can publish your podcast on multiple sites quickly.
Hosting your podcast through SoundCloud is by far the simplest and most effective method. It will publish the podcast on SoundCloud itself, but will also let your publish it on iTunes.
You are able to embed your SoundCloud uploads on social media or your business website.
This guide will guide you through the SoundCloud and iTunes uploading process.
The popular blogging platform, WordPress, offers another great way to satisfy your podcast hosting needs.
As some of you already know, WordPress has variety of plugins to increase functionality. In this case, to host podcasts, there are a few different plugins you can use, but I recommend PowerPress by Blubrry.
PowerPress plugin will let you categorize your uploads based on topics, or any other criteria you choose. You also have the option of uploading your podcast to iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and TuneIn.
Topics of Discussion
Quality topics are essential for a quality podcast. They have to be compelling and engaging. Aside from your presentation, an intriguing topic is what will get people to tune in.
We are talking about creating a podcast for your business here. The topics available to you in that regard are vast. For example, you can talk about the challenges you face as an entrepreneur and how you overcome them. Product promotion can be incorporated into the podcast as well.
Topics you pick will reflect you and your business. Try to keep it relevant and appeal to your target audience.
Creating and publishing quality podcasts takes time. For some people the time it takes to produce a single podcast may take hours. This will vary greatly depending on the length of the podcast and how quickly you are able to edit the work.
Before starting the creation process, I suggest that you familiarize yourself with the recording equipment and the software. It will give you a chance to gauge the production time frame before the real work begins.
Start off by recording a few podcasts and editing them. Take note of how long the recording and editing process takes. With this in mind, consider your other business operations that eat into your day and begin plotting podcast publishing schedule.
Right off the bat, you may want to space out the podcast submissions to one or two a month. Your focus should be to produce quality content while prioritizing your business functions.
As you get more accustomed to the production process, you may start publishing your podcast more frequently – if you wish.
Podcasts vary greatly in length. Some are short – between 10 and 20 minutes – others may be as long as an hour or more.
Before you start recording, create a topic outline. This will help guide you through the recording process. If you set a time limit for your podcast, a clear outline will help you stay within the set time boundaries.
Promoting the Podcast
Once you have actually gone through the entire podcast process and have published your work, you need to promote it. This doesn’t mean additional extravagant marketing methods to get your podcast off the ground.
You probably have a few social media accounts. Use those platforms to your advantage. Share your recently created podcast across social media channels.
Newsletter may be another simple promotional method. Just type up a few words informing the recipient of your new creative outlet and what to expect from it.
Consider implementing automation tools – if you haven’t already – to help promote. MailChimp for example, can send out automated emails informing your entire mailing list whenever a new podcast comes out.