5 tips for those who want to make a popular podcast

If you’ve been meaning to get into podcasting, but you’ve been waiting for a sign, here it is. We’ve collected tips to help you get started in this business.

Podcasts are becoming an increasingly popular form of content around the world. In Europe and the United States, they collect tens and even hundreds of thousands of listens. If you were going to create your own podcast but did not know where to start, this text is for you.

  1. Choose a niche

Podcasts are usually interviews with invited guests, Q&A sessions, news, or recommendations. You can find podcasts in the “Fact of the Day” or “Story of the Day” format, movie or album reviews, and tips for travelers or pet owners.

These are all broad enough topics that it won’t be easy to beat the competition. You can go to a popular podcast service like PodHunt or Sticher and see what ideas and currents are at the top right now. And once you are inspired, go in search of your own, narrowest possible niche.

You can move in different directions. For example, you can create a podcast for people who will listen to it exclusively in the hairdresser’s chair or at the gym. Or you can suggest a topic you’re good at. Or you can make a podcast and text blog at the same time by using audio to text transcription service from Transcriberry. Here are some ideas for inspiration.

  • Vintage gadgets: how they work.
  • What to talk to cats about when they look at you.
  • Guess what a book is about, knowing only its title.
  • A podcast that motivates you to get out of bed.
  • Bedtime stories for those over 30.
  • Weird holidays from around the world.
  • Women inventors and their creations.
  1. Provide high-quality sound

A standard microphone in a smartphone or laptop has average capabilities. It distorts speech, does not convey the nuances of the voice, and the recording turns out quiet, “flat”, it is difficult to remove noise from it. It is very time-consuming to make something comfortable to listen to from such material, and it is unlikely that the final result will really suit you and your listeners.

The AKG Lyra condenser microphone helps you record speech cleanly and without any extraneous noise. Professional sound quality is ensured by an array of four microphone capsules pointing in different directions. The built-in amplifier lets you record even a whisper from a few meters away or an ASMR track, which will cause an unusual but very pleasant sensation.

  1. Do the issues regularly

It’s better to come out strictly once a week on Fridays than to do 3-4 issues in a couple of days and then disappear for a month. Regularity is very important. After all, subscribers wait for new releases, and if they don’t get their “reward,” they feel cheated and don’t come back to listen to you anymore.

In order for you to have enough time to record, process, and post your podcast, you’ll have to finally get your schedule in order. One of the easiest ways is the Eisenhower matrix (that same Dwight Eisenhower, the 34th president of the United States).

He divided his matters of national importance and smaller-scale into four groups:

  • Important and urgent – must be done as soon as possible;
  • Important and non-urgent: it must be done, but not right now;
  • unimportant but urgent – if these tasks are not done now, they will be irrelevant later;
  • unimportant and non-urgent – you can do them when all the others are over.

Try dividing your to-dos, tasks, and plans into these four groups, writing them out on a sheet and hanging them somewhere prominent. Don’t forget to include podcast preparation! If you try to follow the system, you’ll be surprised how much free time you’ll have.

And then there are a few more great tips.

  • The 5 Minute Rule. If you remember a task and 5 minutes is enough time to do it, do it right now, without hesitation or procrastination.
  • Regular routines. If you have a huge task that you’re scared (or lazy!) to get to, give it 15 minutes every day.
  • Plans for the day. Every morning write yourself a list of things to do, even if it’s a small thing like watering the flowers or going to the store for bread. Once you’ve done it, cheerfully cross it off. And what remains on the list, carry over to the next day – if it is, of course, still important.
  • From the big to the small. Big things are always scary. But if you break them down into smaller steps, everything becomes easier and clearer.”
  • “Eat the Frog”. Almost every day there are tasks that you don’t want to do: they are called “frogs. Get rid of such an amphibian right after breakfast and it won’t depress you anymore.
  • “No” and “Why should I?” Learn to say no to people who want to take advantage of your time, expertise, and experience without giving you anything in return. If you are asked, pushed, or coerced to do something, learn, “Why do I personally want it?” If you don’t find a decent answer in the first five seconds, say no.
  1. Listen to yourself

Millions of people don’t record podcasts yet because they don’t like the sound of their own voice from the outside. It even has a name: vocal confrontation.

We’re afraid of the sound of our own voice because it doesn’t meet our expectations. You are used to hearing yourself differently: some of the sound is transmitted through the air to your ears, and another part is transmitted through your skull due to bone conduction. It makes the low frequencies richer, and your own voice feels more pleasant. When you listen to a recording of yourself, however, you feel like that voice belongs to someone else. That’s normal: few people like the sound of their own voice. But it is useful to analyze your audio files. That way you can soberly assess speech tempo, tonality, emotionality, and other important characteristics.

But you can’t just record a podcast, put it on the Web, and forget about it. To create a really high-quality product, you have to work.

  1. Don’t overestimate the power of improvisation

How long will your podcast be? How long will you be able to talk continuously without long pauses looking for the next phrase? Will you be able to stay on topic and not jump from one idea to another? Will you be able to remain interesting to your listeners throughout the podcast?

Improvisation is always great, especially if you’re not hosting the podcast alone. But actors know how hard it is to improvise to make your audience believe you. Or in your case, listeners.

That’s why it’s a good idea at first to make a detailed plan and calculate minute by minute what you’re going to talk about. This will help you stay focused throughout the podcast, don’t miss anything important, and don’t get into lengthy reflections.

When you sit down to write a plan, at the very beginning or after a dozen points are ready, you may have all your thoughts and ideas slipping out of your head. There may be a fear of a blank sheet of paper, and the concepts that you were enthusiastically speculating about 5 minutes ago will no longer seem interesting and exciting.

  1. Don’t expect to start making money from it

The most expensive and popular podcast to date is The Joe Rogan Experience by American comedian Joe Rogan. In May, the streaming service Spotify bought the rights to it for $100 million, a tenth of the market.

There are several ways to monetize podcasts. For example, you can post releases on Patreon and only allow access to your “patrons.” Access levels can be adjusted. For example, you can offer all the podcasts for one sum a month, or you can offer a communication chat for twice as much, or you can list the names of your “patrons” at the end of the issue for 5 times as much.

Podcasters also make money from advertising. They can promote products directly or do reviews of goods and services. The terms and conditions are negotiated with the advertisers in each case. The main thing is not to be partial, so as not to irritate the listeners.

High-quality technology will help you get impressive results and have fun making a podcast. Advanced features inspire, and handy gadgets help you focus on the content, and make it interesting and useful.

A starter set for podcasts is a good microphone, comfortable headphones, monitor speakers with clear sound, and a mixer (audio interface) that will improve speech recording. All of these devices you will find in the arsenal of HARMAN – an American company that helps create a good sound for amateurs and professionals around the world.

Reliable equipment with wide possibilities is easy to set up and affordable. It lets you create podcasts your listeners will love.

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