The opportunities for content are endless whether you are running a history podcast, a do-it-yourselfer instructional, or a roleplaying Actual Play. If you’re in the Tampa area, reach out to us at Bake More Pies to discuss the opportunity to rent equipment and studio space to give your podcast listeners the experience difference that only professional recording can create.
How Did Podcasts Get Started?
The first on-demand radio show was created for the New England Patriots in 2000. Technically it wasn’t a podcast, as the technology wasn’t there yet to push downloads of content automatically to a client, but the beginning was there. The push format was invented in 2004, and the oldest still-running podcast, Radio Open Source, was created around that time by Doug Kaye.
The most popular genres of podcasts are comedy, news, and true crime, with sports and health/fitness rounding out the top 5. There are over two million podcasts globally that are releasing episodes regularly in the world, so it should be easy enough for any listener to find a podcast that’s to their interest.
The Golden Rule of Podcasts
When you’re putting together your podcast, the Golden Rule is, “Podcast unto others what you would want Podcasted unto you.” In other words, you must have a subject that would hold your interest. If you’re not enthralled by your subject, you are going to have a very difficult time communicating to other people the reason they should care about it.
David Crowther, the host of the History of England Podcast, is enthralled with the history of his homeland. In every episode, he regales audiences worldwide with another period in the history of England in a wonderfully detailed yet whimsical tone that makes it clear that not only is England a thing that he cares about because he lives there, but he genuinely enjoys talking about the history of the place and is deeply knowledgeable about it.
How to Begin Your Podcast
Even with YouTube channels and streaming taking an increasing portion of the online content space, podcasts are a low-stress way to create new content for listeners across the Internet. With a podcast, you don’t have to worry about makeup and visual impressions, lowering the stress threshold of your first experience with content creation. Your audience’s imagination sets the stage for your storytelling. A podcast can begin with as little as a single microphone (with a pop filter, please!) and your computer or iPhone in your bedroom, but sooner or later, you will probably want to upgrade both your equipment and your recording facilities. This is where a professional studio like BMP Studio can come in for you!
Get To Know Your Audience
For better or for worse, once you start your podcast you are no longer just chatting with friends in your house or apartment. To have a successful podcast, you will need to know what your audience needs and what it likes. If your audience doesn’t like 15-30 minutes of banter at the beginning of the podcast but rather gets down to business with a minimum preamble, those types of podcasts are not going to do you very many favors.
Research Your Material
Whether you intend to or not, your podcast is going to be claiming a position of authority in the field you’re talking about. Because of this, you will need to know your subject inside and out, whether it’s English history, computing, or gaming. There is no room for a podcaster who can’t speak with authority and clarity on their subject, so make sure that your words are well-researched and delivered confidently and clearly.
Write Your Script And Practice It in Advance
This shouldn’t have to be said, but unless you are running a roleplaying Actual Play podcast or improv comedy, your words are going to be difficult to get out. Improvised podcasts are very much the exception to the rule in the podcasting world. It’s hard to design a podcast format that will survive a lot of improvisational speech.
Script out your podcast, or at very least have your talking points in front of you if you’re running a conversation-style podcast. Don’t rely on yourself to be brilliant at the drop of a hat unless you are an improvisational actor.
Limit Your Episodes’ Length: Less is More
Sure, Critical Role can run for four hours, and the audience still wants to hear more. But most podcasts – even most Actual Plays – aren’t Critical Role. In most cases, less is more. The average commute to work for most Americans is 27.6 minutes or about 55 minutes in both directions. If your podcast episodes are about 30 or 60 minutes long, you’ll fill up that time perfectly and be a welcomed companion on the way to and from work every day. Plus, if your episodes are well-produced and full of great content, your fans will be hungry for more every time another episode drops.
You can always make episodes more frequently. But if you run out of gas in the middle of an episode, you can’t get that enthusiasm back next week.
Know Your Equipment
Before you start recording your podcast, give yourself plenty of time to get familiar with the capabilities and limitations of your microphones, mixer board, DAW, and space. And if you don’t know what any of those things are, learn them!
If you have the budget for it, hire an engineer who can handle all these devices and help you make the best of your equipment. A good engineer is the difference between a mediocre podcast with a tiny audience and a great podcast that reaches thousands. If you don’t already have personnel like an engineer, contact our team at Bake More Pies and BMP Studio to see how our crew can help.
Soundproof Your Recording Space
Your recording space is the most crucial part of a podcast. It doesn’t matter how good your microphones and software are if you can’t record your podcast in a quiet, controlled space that lets you sound your best. If you can’t use a professional studio, make sure that you have soundproofing tiles installed in your home studio space. The difference they will make to your home studio is immense.
Plan Your Promotions
Your podcast is a full-on business. You likely won’t have the ability or desire to market it all by yourself – creatives are usually content specialists or marketing specialists, not both. Plan your promotional times and spaces, and make sure that your promotional schedule is as consistent as your release schedule.
Tampa Podcast Studio
Bake More Pies is Tampa’s full-service digital marketing agency. Our podcasting studio is one of our most popular services and a great way to get your podcasting journey off on the right foot. Visit this link to book a podcast in our studio!