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How To Start A Podcast [Quick & Easy Tutorial]

Learn the quick and simple way to create a podcast, step-by-step. I'll show you the exact steps needed to launch a podcast and how to grow it.

Do you have a strong opinion on something? You are halfway through starting a podcast! No, seriously, podcasts are a wonderful medium to speak your heart out and share ideas through intimate conversation.

All you need is a penchant for talking and a basic know-how about broadcasting it.

I will walk you through the nitty-gritty steps of creating a podcast in this module, so you don’t have to feel overwhelmed. Let’s start!

Bring Your Podcast Concept Into Life

The urge to create a podcast begins with an idea, no?

You might have been having a fun discussion with friends, and dang, you now want to start a podcast.

You just need to think it through a little with the following critical points:

  • What’s the purpose of your podcast? You may want to have fun with friends, learn from brilliant minds, or be a thought leader in your niche. You can also use it as a lead-generation medium for your business. Whatever it is, be clear about your purpose and set a realistic goal accordingly.
  • What will be your podcast theme? Choosing a topic you know a lot about and enjoy talking about is fundamental. Pick something broad enough to give you episodic mileage, but not too common to get lost in competition.
  • What should be your podcast format? Podcasts come in various formats, from monologue, storytelling, co-hosting, interviewing guests, etc. Choose a format that is most suited to your topic. You can also mix it up here and there. Video podcasting is also very popular, and is lucrative for broadcasting on YouTube.
  • How long should your podcast episode be? More than 60% of podcasts are between 15-40 minutes long. Make it what you will with these statistics, but choosing a suitable length will help your audience build a listening habit.
  • How frequently are you going to publish your podcast? Choose a publishing frequency (daily, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly) and stick to it. After all, listeners love consistency from a channel they subscribe to.

Research is your friend while thinking of the right solution for these questions. You can head to popular platforms like Apple Podcasts or Spotify Podcasts to search for your niche topic.

Look closely at what’s trending and the most popular formats, lengths, etc. Then, think about how you can make yours different to stand out.

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Create a Brand for Your Podcast

Like anything else in life, you only get one chance to create a lasting impression on prospective podcast listeners. So, put some thought into building an attractive podcast brand.

Treat it like a business brand and sort out the following key areas:

  • Name: Give your podcast a name that is relatable to your niche. It should also be unique, memorable, and nice to say out loud. Try to keep the name within four words.
  • Category: You can categorize your podcast under a specific section – music, history, technology, health and fitness, etc. While some categories are more popular than others, choose one that is aligned with your niche. Choosing an irrelevant category may get your podcast removed.
  • Podcast Description: Descriptions enable you to communicate with your audience. Different podcasting platforms have various word limits, but you should keep the description between 400-600 characters. Tell your audience about the podcast’s subject, format, length, value proposition, etc. Optimize your description with keywords and do the same for each episode.
  • Cover Art: Graphics attract more than words, so include an aesthetic design as your podcast cover. Treat it like album art and make it relatable so your audience can easily recognize it.

Setup Your Podcasting Equipment

Nobody likes to listen to low-quality audio, especially on their headphones. Therefore, recording noise-free audio is essential for the success of your podcast.

Podcasting with Your Phone

As smartphones like the iPhone get smarter in each version, it is not too far-fetched to record your podcast using your phone. Many beginners do exactly that. Nevertheless, you should add a few accessories and software to enhance the quality of your audio. It includes:

  • An external mic
  • A pop filter
  • A podcasting app.

Podcast hosting apps like Soundcloud offer in-app recording capabilities. You can also download software like Spreaker on your phone.

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Podcasting Like a Pro

You may have to spend money to buy the setup required for recording podcasts like a pro. A mic alone may not be enough, you will also need stands, filters, etc.

Even in the mic market, many variants are available at different price points. It includes:

  • USB Mics: These are professional mics but on the beginner’s side. You can plug it into your computer and start recording with your software. Some budget-friendly options include Podmic, JLab Talk, Blue Yeti, etc.
  • Dynamic Mics: Perfect to stave off the noise in the background. These mics are also less sensitive and can pick up lower-frequency audio. My recommendation includes Electro-Voice RE20 and Heli PR40.
  • Condenser Mics: Studio-quality mics that are best for a noise-proof environment. These mics offer the best sound quality but require batteries or external power. The condenser mic I prefer is the Rode NT1.

While you can plug in the USB mic directly to your computer, you can’t do so with the Dynamic or the Condenser mics. The last two types come with XLR connections, so you need an audio interface like the Rodecaster Pro II or something similar.

Alternatively, you can use an external audio recorder or a more expensive all-in-one podcast machine.

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In addition to the microphones, you should invest in accessories like a Pop filter, a boom pole or a microphone stand, and over-the-ear headphones.

Video podcasters also need a camera setup for each speaker along with some lighting solutions.

Select a Recording Software

Now that you have the hardware, you can shift the focus to choosing software. You will need recording and editing software. To record interviews remotely, you will also need a remote recording software.

Recording and Editing Software

Many good options are available to record your podcast. Some are free, while others require a paid subscription.

Each software has pros and cons, so look at the details closely. You can also try out a couple of options before making the final choice.

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My favorite recording software includes:

  1. GarageBand: A free music production software that comes pre-installed on Mac. It’s perfect for beginning podcasters to edit their audio recordings.
  2. Audacity: Another free podcasting software for beginners that requires a bit of learning. It is available on Mac, Windows, and Linux computers.
  3. Adobe Audition: An advanced solution for audio editing professionals. The software costs $20.99/ month and is compatible with Mac and Windows devices.

For video podcasters, Riverside offers a comprehensive solution boosted by the inclusion of an AI-powered video editor.

It has free and paid plans (starting at $15/ month) and is compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android devices.

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Remote Recording Software

Riverside’s podcast recording software offers remote recording of up to 8 participants. If you need standalone software, try Zoom or Skype.

These video calling software can double up as your podcast recording tool, although they offer no editing tools and quality assurance.

For a better quality remote podcast recording, you can use:

  • Dialpad AI Meetings: A free AI-powered conference call tool that enables the moderator to record the call. It is accessible on all devices.
  • Zencastr: A studio-quality remote podcast recorder accessible on Windows and Mac devices. The least expensive plan costs $18/ month.
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Record and Edit a Podcast Episode

With all the hardware and software at your disposal, you can return to your podcast concept. Bring out the sheet and focus on creating your first episode.

You don’t need a detailed script (unless it’s a scripted podcast), but try to write down an episode note with key points so you don’t miss anything.

While the podcast recording steps may vary from one to another, it typically includes:

  1. Finding a room or place with minimal noise and disturbance.
  2. Adjusting the recording tools, audio level, and audio quality.
  3. Testing your record quality with a test run.
  4. Creating a noise footprint (by recording a few seconds of silence).
  5. Recording an intro and outro for every episode of your podcast.

Once you complete the recording, you must edit the files to polish it. Don’t consider it as optional as your listeners will find out about the lack of care pretty soon.

While editing, I recommend focusing on the following:

  • Edit out the unnatural gaps between speeches with no sound.
  • Apply a noise reduction tool to remove annoying background noises.
  • Use the equalizer to fix any frequencies sticking out of the conversation.
  • Apply compression to even out the sound level of your monologue or conversation, but ensure it remains natural.
  • Use the fade tool between tracks to avoid unwanted pops, clicks, or jarring.
  • Do some audio mastering so your podcast sounds as loud as other podcasts.

Choose a Host for Your Podcast

Beginning podcasters often think they can directly upload the podcast to a directory like Apple Podcast or Spotify.

It is not true. Instead, you must upload your episode to a podcast-hosting platform.

There are many hosting platforms for podcasts. My favorite ones are:

These hosting platforms offer various services including analytics and monetization for a monthly/ yearly subscription fee.

Once you open an account, you can start uploading your podcast. Typically, the host will ask you to provide a title, select the language and category, upload a cover image, and provide a description.

We have already created that as part of the podcast brand. It’s time to put them into use and hit the “Create” button (on Spreaker).

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After creating your podcast, you can upload your episode.

Follow the on-page instructions, edit your title (if you need to), and hit the “Publish” button.

You should also add a specific description for each episode.

Listing Your Podcast in Directories

Some podcast hosting platforms automatically list your episodes to different popular directories. Otherwise, you can do it manually by visiting each directory of your choice. Some of the most popular directories are:

  1. Apple Podcasts
  2. Spotify
  3. Google Podcasts
  4. YouTube
  5. TuneIn
  6. Amazon Music
  7. Stitcher
  8. SoundCloud

For manual listing, you will need to copy the RSS URL of your podcast, which you can get from the host (under RSS settings).

After that, follow the on-page instructions of each directory and paste your RSS URL for listing.

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List your podcast to as many directories as possible to engage the maximum audience. It is pretty straightforward and doesn’t take much time.

For instance, you can upload your podcast to Spotify for Podcasters using your existing Spotify Premium account. It requires only a few steps.

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Congratulations! You have successfully created your first podcast and published the first episode. It’s time to tell the world about it with a solid podcast marketing strategy.

Even without a comprehensive plan, you can start sharing on social media to reach your friends, family, and followers. They are most likely to be your first audience anyway.

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