Updated: Aug 10, 2020
I had always wanted to start a podcast but like many, never knew exactly how to begin. How do I publish it? Who will I interview? What do I ask my guests? The list of insecurities went on but just like everything else in life, I found that the easiest and most effective way to get started was just to take the first step and begin.
Here is a step by step action plan to get your podcast up and running as soon as today.
Ron Sturgeon & Evan York on Biz Owners Ed Podcast
Create a Show That Interests You
Most people never start their podcast because they believe they have to talk about subjects other people want to hear. The fact of the matter is the more niche the better. Biz Owners Ed has become relatively popular because we have a very specific goal, "help business owners start, scale, and sell their companies." We do this by bringing in guests who have done exactly that and ask them questions that I myself am personally interested in. You don't have to be mainstream, you just have to appeal to the group you're targeting. Pick something that you have a passion for and then decide whether or not you could gather the interviewee pool to sustain a long term show.
A few ideas:
If you are passionate about coffee, interview small town coffee roasters.
If you love cooking, interview local chefs.
If you love the finance industry, interview local financial planners, managers at larger corporations, and even finance professors at universities.
Getting People on The Show
People think this is the scariest and hardest part of building a podcast, but I think about it very differently. Imagine for a minute you were a top notch realtor in your area. You have become well known in your part of town and your success has given you an abundance of knowledge about the markets and real estate in general. Now say you get a phone call, LinkedIn message, text, or some kind of communication from someone that reads,
"Mr. Smith. I have been watching you dominate the real estate game in the Highland Park, Texas area for the last year now. I see your signs everywhere and it looks like you have become "the guy" for this market. I am reaching out because I have a podcast called Dealing Dreams where I bring on top notch pros like you to talk about single family housing in their parts of the country. I know you would be a huge hit on our show and I would love to interview you for a 60 minute episode. Let me know if we can setup a time, I am so looking forward to speaking!"
Wouldn't that make you feel good? Important? Proud? Heck yes it would. So know this, people are flattered when asked to be on a podcast regardless if you have 10, or 10,000 listeners.
Using The Right Equipment
You don't need to go expensive at the beginning, but you do need to make sure that your audio sounds professional. Personally, I use the RhodeCaster Pro with two headset microphones. This works great because the microphone is at a consistent distance from the speakers mouth and with the RhodeCaster, you can travel anywhere you want to record an episode. This whole setup cost me around $1500 so not the cheapest, but definitely worth it.
If you want to keep to a smaller budget, you can use your computer with two usb mics, or even your phone with a dual headphone adapter. Again, it really doesn't matter how you get the audio, it just needs to sounds good, but you do want to show some level of professionalism to your guests!
Asking Good Questions
The quality of your podcast if soley determined by the quality of your questions. I cannot stress this enough, questions are the make or break factor of a podcast. This is what keeps the guests talking, and the audience listening. Always ask broader questions at the beginning, and then more narrow ones as times progresses. I usually open with, "tell us about how you got to where you are today," and close with something like, "tell me exactly how you manage your time with your work and your family." As you can see, very broad to very narrow. Also, don't be afraid to ask questions that are off the beaten path. These people are used to talking about what they are known for, so it can be fun to take them a different direction by asking more personal questions to probe deeper. Think of yourself as the only one listening and your job during this hour is to extract every bit of knowledge you can.
Editing and Posting
There are two ways to edit, you can either have a professional team do it for you (what I do) or you can do it yourself. It really isn't that hard to edit a podcast, just time consuming. You can use software like Final Cut Pro, GarageBand, even iMovie to accomplish the edit.
Next you need the artwork. I used Canva for the Biz Owners Ed podcast because it was easy to create and free!
Finally, you need a place to post your episode. There are a number of podcast hosting sites, my favorite is Simplecast. They charge a minimal fee and it is extremely simple to upload and post your content.
Go Do It!
Starting your own podcast really isn't that difficult, but just requires a process and some initial effort to get off the ground. Stop waiting for the perfect time and go make it happen! There has never been a better time to create good and interesting content.
I am convinced that so many people are not doing the thing they are passionate about because they are scared of creating instability in their life if they were to jump ship and do "the thing." In reality, those are the people who end up with regret and actually create massive amounts of instability mentally, and especially financially.
I quit a great job where I was making six figures because I knew that this was a never ending cycle of me not being fully happy. After starting a recruiting company targeting high level sales positions, I made a 180 with my company. That leads me to starting HiredUp, a mobile application that allows candidates and companies to interact with each other through short form video before they ever meet.
I love sharing the process of this startup, my podcast, and other content by bringing people along for the ride of success and failure.
Go be Risky,