Do you want to start a podcast? Are you looking for detailed guidelines about how to start a podcast?
If any of those are true, you have come to the right place. In today’s post, I will show you how to start a brand new podcast from scratch. After reading this article, you will be able to create your own podcast and publish it on your website.
Without further ado, let’s get started with a list of the basic things needed to start podcasting.
- 1 Things You Need to Start Podcasting
- 2 How Podcasting Works
- 3 Determine your podcast topic, niche & avatar
- 4 Podcast Artwork requirement
- 5 Recording and Editing Your Show
- 6 Uploading the Podcast Files
- 7 Publishing the Podcast
- 8 Working with iTunes
- 9 Promote it!
- 10 Additional Resources
- 11 Final Words
Things You Need to Start Podcasting
There are some basic things you need to start a professional podcast. Let’s start the post with a list of the essential things for a podcast.
- Domain and WordPress: First things first, you need to create a website to publish your podcasts. If you already have WordPress installed on your website, you can skip this. Otherwise, choose a suitable domain name for your website. Get a good WP hosting – we suggest Siteground which host your website for as little as $3.95 to install WordPress on your domain.
- Media Hosting Service: If you are serious about podcasting, you should invest in a separate media hosting account for your podcast. Storing large podcasts files on your regular hosting could slow down your website. Choose a media hosting like Blubrry which is specially optimized for publishing podcasts. Along with the top-class CDN, Blubrry also has a helpful community, built-in ID3 tagging, and iTunes optimization.
- Podcasting Equipment: You need some specialized equipment for professional podcasting. Getting a high-quality microphone should be your priority here. The built-in microphone of your computer or mobile phone will produce a poor sound quality. Instead, get a professional tool like the Rode Podcaster microphone.
- A computer and mixer (if using multiple inputs)
- A webcam/camcorder (if video podcasting)
PRO tip: You can get a WordPress podcast theme for an audio first website.
Now that you have everything you need to get started, let’s start the actual process.
How Podcasting Works
With Itunes and other directories like Stitcher and Google Play, you setup your show and create a feed. Then every time you create a new show, a new show gets inserted into that feed. Which is then automatically picked up by Itunes and the other directories you have setup.
I mentioned this now because I sometimes get asked if you have to manually upload your show to Itunes.
Getting Used to Podcasting
Before you start publishing the podcasts on your website, you need to do some practice. Once you are confident about the whole process, only then you should start publishing the podcasts.
You need to use an audio recording software to record and audit the podcast files. Audacity is a popular choice for these purposes. This open-source, very powerful tool allows you to create studio quality podcasts without having a real-life studio.
Being a robust, feature-rich tool, it is out of the scope of this article to cover all the features of Audacity. Luckily, the Audacity team has published an in-depth tutorial about using the software for publishing podcasts. Follow the steps described in the tutorial, and you are all set.
You should save your podcasts as MP3 files. While saving the files, you need to follow a strict naming convention. Since podcasts are supposed to be continuous episodes, it would be wise to add a serial number to the file name.
Determine your podcast topic, niche & avatar
Here are a few questions you need to answer:
- Think about who is your show for?
- What is it about?
- Why do now?
- What pain is your show solving? What are the transformational benefits your listeners will receive?
- Whats the name of your Podcast Title?
- Research whats already on market in your niche.
Podcast Artwork requirement
- 1400 * 1400 pixels(minimum) 3000 * 3000 pixels(maximum)
- 72 dpi
- .PNG or .JPG
- Compressed the file size (https://compressor.io/)
- Ensure your image looks good smaller
Extra resources for your artwork:
fiverr.com, upwork.com, canva.com(do it yourself)
Recording and Editing Your Show
In this section, we will talk about the equipment and software you will need to get your podcast off the ground. It’s import to note that you can have the best content in the world or most useful information but not of that matters if you have poor quality audio.
Purchase your equipment
Rode Podcaster (XLR connection) – The mic that we use for podcast and videos, please note you will need an XLR cable, mixer, Arm clamp and pop filter.
Heil PR-40 (XLR connection) – This is what the Pro’s use, you will need an XLR cable, mixer, Arm clamp and pop filter.
Mixer (optional depending on mic)
BEHRINGER XENYX 302USB – This is what I use cheap and cheerful, you can choose which ever mixer you want it doesn’t really matter. If you want to connect everything to you Computer or Laptop I suggest getting a USB mixer.
What Software for recording your podcast
Whether you are recording an interview over Skype or directly to your computer you are going to need some form of software to store that recording. So here’s what I recommend:
Tag your mp3 (http://www.pa-software.com/id3editor/)
Pro Recording Tips
- Create an outline for your show.
- Mic distances (test, test and test)
- Face the mic at all times
- Mute mobile phone/notification
- Keep your ideal avatar in mind and their transformational benefits of the show.
- Just be yourself
- Umms – every master doesn’t start out perfect it will improve
- Don’t worry about being too perfect
- Show intro, the first impression counts. Use the PPP Forumla (Source: Brian Dean https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJFK9k5i1ew)– Preview – tell them what to expect.
– Proof – accomplished, experienced or researched
– Preview – reiterate what your show is about
Uploading the Podcast Files
At this point, you have recorded some dummy podcast sessions. Now you are confident about recording podcasts and performing the necessary edits. The next step is to publish the podcasts on your website. However, you need to upload the podcast files first.
Since you are using Blurbrry for storing your podcasts files, you should use the Blurbrry PowerPress Podcasting plugin on your website. You have to provide your Blurbrry account details to use the plugin. This plugin will help you add dedicated post type and taxonomies for your podcast, add HTML5 media players on your website, import podcasts, and follow the podcast SEO best practices.
When uploading your podcast files to Blurbrry, make sure that you are adding them from the Podcaster dashboard. Doing this will make sure that you can access the podcasts files from your website through the plugin.
Publishing the Podcast
So far, you have recorded the podcasts sessions and uploaded these to your media hosting account. Now, it is time to publish the podcasts on your website.
While there are various plugins for showing podcasts on your website, we recommend Pat Flynn’s Smart Podcast Player. Unlike the boring, traditional podcast players, this modern podcast player provides an excellent user experience for the visitors.
This plugin comes with a beautiful podcast player which allows the visitors to play, pause, set play speed, share, and download podcasts from the same page. The player also shows your podcast library on the sidebar.
Smart Podcast Player allows you to add two types of players – the default player and a track player. You will find dedicated icons in the post editor to add both of these players. You need to use the track player for single episodes, and the default player for displaying the podcast player anywhere else you want.
When it comes to customizations, the plugin offers several choices to match the player with your existing design. You can choose the light or dark skin, choose custom colors, set the default sorting mode, provide social sharing buttons, and keep track of the downloads.
There is a built-in mobile player on Smart Podcast Player. That means your podcasts will be perfectly accessible on mobile and tablet devices as well.
Working with iTunes
If you have made it this far, you can congratulate yourself for publishing a brand new podcast. There is only one thing left for your podcast. And that is to submit the podcast to iTunes. iTunes is the biggest directory of podcasts, and you will have a better chance of getting noticed by listing yourself.
Before you submit your podcast to iTunes, you need to make sure that everything is in order. To do that, install iTunes on your computer, open the software, and log in to your iTunes account.
Next, go to File > Subscribe to Podcast, and provide the feed URL of your podcast. You need to make sure that the artwork, description, category, episode, etc. are properly displayed. If everything looks good, click the ‘Submit’ button. Check out this Blurbrry tutorial for a step-by-step guide of the process.
And that’s how you create a podcast, publish it to your website, and submit to iTunes.
Long gone are the days when you only put out content in one format. that is why it’s ever so important to repurpose your content as your audience will most likely have different preference. So you could publish a blog post and simply attach your episode with or without a transcript.
Share it on social media these day you can use tools like Buffer, Hootsuite, Dlvr.it and many more.
The key is to get creative.
3 ways to master Itunes.
- The number of subscription you have.
- Total episode download
- Total rating and reviews in a short period.
Pro tip: launch with a minimum of three episodes on day one.
Congregations on making it this far but the learning doesn’t stop there. If you want to become a master of your craft it’s time to start investing more in yourself. Here a few notable courses and resources by Podcasting gurus:
Power UP Podcasting by Pat Flynn
Podcasters’ Paradise by John-lee Dumas
The top 8 ways to monetize by Podcasting by John-lee Dumas
Side note: you can continue to read a zillion blog on podcasting, the thing is the information is usually incomplete save yourself time and invest in a course where everything is compact.
Podcasting is a great way to build your brand and grow your audience. Now that you have detailed guidelines about how to get started with podcasting, it’s time to create your own podcast.
Let me know if you have any other question about publishing a podcast. I will be glad to help you with your problems.