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UK Career Coach and Creative Business Coach

The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast for Your Business in 2024

Updated: Mar 27

Starting a podcast can be a fun and rewarding experience for you or your business. Not only are they good for brand awareness, but they're also great for positioning yourself as an expert in your field. But with lots to learn and numerous platforms out there, knowing where to start can be hard to fathom. That's where this ultimate guide can help.

The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast for Your Business in 2024

Table of Contents

 

What is a Podcast?


A podcast can be a prerecorded or a live audio or video broadcast. It is typically themed around a particular subject or topic and can be subscribed to and listened to on-demand wherever a person chooses.


Podcasts can be divided into seasons or series and episodes, which are released weekly, biweekly, or monthly.


The average episode tends to be between 20 and 60 minutes or 15 and 20 minutes; however, it can be longer or shorter depending on the audience and type.


To engage your listeners, you'll need to be able to talk and discuss something you're passionate about. You don't need a large following to start; you just need a topic that will resonate with them.


The dictionary defines a podcast as:

A digital audio file made available on the internet for downloading to a computer or mobile device, typically available as a series, new instalments of which can be received by subscribers automatically.

The Purpose of a Podcast


Podcasts can entertain and also educate. Some will help you stay updated with current events, others will make you laugh, and some will make you cry.


Podcasts can be a powerful marketing tool and help with brand awareness. With each episode and each new guest, you can promote your business and broaden your reach. They're also a great way to build your networks and establish yourself as an expert in your field.


For example, my podcast, Inside Entertainment Industry Careers, offers career advice and helps people gain insight into roles in the creative and entertainment industries. I've picked a broad yet focused topic that will allow me to speak to a wide range of guests from all over the world.


Mark Sheng, Project Engineer at DoDo Machine, says his podcast has enhanced his reach and established his authority:


"Starting a podcast has been transformative for my business, especially in enhancing my reach and establishing my authority in the brazing engineering field. It has created a platform for in-depth discussions, allowing me to share innovative ideas and industry insights. This direct engagement has not only expanded my network but also bolstered credibility among peers and clients. For anyone embarking on this journey, my advice is to hone in on your niche. A focused approach on a specific area, like automatic brazing or refrigeration technologies, attracts a dedicated audience, fostering a stronger, more meaningful connection."


Scott Gabdullin, CEO and founder at Authority Factors, tells us that starting has enabled his business to reach a larger customer audience:


"Since launching our podcast, website traffic has spiked, and even better, we've started receiving inquiries from brands after hearing us on other shows. The key is understanding your audience and creating content that truly resonates. But it's also about creative storytelling, relatable anecdotes, and insights that leave listeners wanting more. Of course, production quality matters too. We invest heavily in editing, especially for video podcasts, and our Google Analytics 4 data shows a direct correlation between edit quality and website visits. People appreciate the polish and professionalism, and it translates to deeper engagement."


Where to Find Podcasts


Part of starting a podcast will also include the need to distribute. The more podcast apps you distribute to, the more listeners you can reach.


Here is a list of some podcast apps to get you started:



How to Start a Podcast

How to Start a Podcast


Once you've identified the why and the purpose of your podcast, it's important to check out the competition and research what's already out there. See what does well and what does not, and if any have the same name.


While researching, make sure to:


  • Define your audience avatar.

  • Decide what and who your ideal listener is.

  • Plan how you will engage them.

  • Explore if you can solve any problems that they face.


Artwork: Once you've defined your audience and name, you'll need to design your artwork. I recommend using Canva to help you do this. Carefully consider the colour and design, as this will be your theme as you grow your podcast.


Note that Apple states that any podcast covers should be at least 1400 by 1400 pixels and a maximum of 3000 by 3000 pixels.


Podcast Name: When choosing a name, it's worth also considering SEO and integrating relevant keywords that reflect the podcast content. For example, 'Entertainment Industry' is a term that is highly searched for and encompasses the content and target audience of my podcast.


Likewise, when writing episode descriptions, it's important to optimise any content for search engines.


Audio Quality: Another important consideration is also the audio quality of your show. Low-quality crackling audio will be an instant turn-off for your listeners.


To offer value to your listeners, make sure to record your podcast in a quiet space with no distractions. Get yourself a good pair of headphones to prevent feedback, and invest in a microphone. The microphones most popular with podcasters are the Rode Microphone or the Blue Yeti. I personally use an SL300 Editor Keys USB studio condenser microphone and a pop filter, and I edit my audio using Adobe Audition.


Before uploading any audio, ensure that you listen to the episode a few times, remove any background noise, add music or sound effects if necessary, and remove any unwanted speech and silences. Next, you'll need to decide on a hosting platform.



Nicolas Krauss, Founder and CEO at dasFlow Custom Sublimation Apparel recommends quality over quantity when starting a podcast:


"Starting a podcast has significantly amplified DasFlow's brand voice and authority in the custom apparel industry. It's enabled us to share insights, trends, and behind-the-scenes stories, deepening our connection with the audience and attracting new clients through engaging content. My top advice for starting a podcast is to prioritize quality over quantity. Focus on producing well-researched, high-quality episodes that provide real value to your listeners. This approach helps build a loyal audience and establishes your podcast as a go-to resource in your field."



Podcast Hosting Platforms


To distribute your podcast, you will need a Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feed. This feed acts as a bridge between your podcast and directories and instantly updates them every time you upload a new episode, ensuring that each directory has the latest content.


You can either acquire an RSS feed yourself or use a hosting platform. The latter is probably the easiest option, as you only need to set this up once. I've included four below that have a high Trustpilot rating customer rating.


Buzzsprout


Buzzsprout has a Trustpilot rating of 4.8 out of 3168, and it currently offers new signups a 90-day free trial.


Alex Adekola, CEO and founder of ReadyAdjuster, has this to say about their experience with Buzzsprout:


"For me, Buzzsprout is my top recommendation for new and growing podcasters. Their platform is intuitive and easy to use, with great analytics. Buzzsprout makes it simple to get your podcast submitted to all major directories like Apple Podcasts and Spotify. Their plans are affordable, starting at just $12/month, and include unlimited storage and episodes. I like Buzzsprout for beginners because their platform just works smoothly without headaches. For new podcasters I suggest starting with Buzzsprout for their simplicity and ease of use. Choosing the right host is crucial, so factor in costs, features, and ease of use when deciding what fits the needs of your podcast best."


Captivate FM


Captivate FM has a rating of 4.8 out of 86 reviews on Trustpilot, and it currently offers new signups a 7-day free trial.


Jeff Ford, Chief Creative Officer, tells how using Captivate FM has helped support the growth of his podcast:


"There is really only one choice for podcast hosting, as I see it. I've looked into a plethora, but Captivate.fm comes out on top every single time. Not only do they have the most feature-rich offering available from a hosting platform (guest management, training, websites, multi-show hosting, etc.), their pricing structure is hands down the RIGHT way to offer their services. It's based on growth, not space or time limits. You can host as many shows from one account as you like for one cost. When your shows collectively reach a certain threshold of listeners, then you move to the next tier of pricing, but if you've reached that tier, you've got the audience to monetize it anyway, and it'll pay for itself. Add all of that to the best and most responsive customer care team I've ever worked with from a service provider of any kind, leading all the way up to the founder himself being open and accessible, and you've got the best in the business podcast hosting platform, period."


Podbean


Podbean gets a rating of 4.8 out of 174 reviews on Trustpilot.


Podbean is my recommendation. Starting out, I found this to be an easy-to-access and follow process. You can sign up and start for free, and once you pay to upgrade, which currently costs $9 a month, you can easily distribute your podcast to all major apps. You can also link Google Analytics, create a website and a customisable player and when ready, easily monetise and start earning from your listeners.


Spotify


Spotify gets a rating of 2.2 out of 62 reviews on Trustpilot.


Natasha Carrillo, Financial Educator & Podcast Host of Black and Brown Make Green, uses Spotify and explains how user-friendly the features are:


"Spotify for Podcasters (formerly known as Anchor) has been a great podcast-hosting platform for us because it's free, easy to use, and has some nice features built into it. Equipment costs and monthly subscriptions can add up quickly, and it's nice to have a free, feature-rich platform to use for hosting. I like it because it's very easy to use, it has analytics, it has the option to add polls or feedback, and to monetize your show easily. It's really great for beginning podcasters or hobbyists."



Podcast Trailer


A podcast trailer is a short audio or video clip that acts as an elevator pitch for your show. The goal of the trailer is to give an overview that entices listeners to tune in and follow your show. Trailers are typically around 2-3 minutes long.


My advice is to write a script and practice recording it in different ways; changing the pitch and speed until you find a rhythm you are comfortable with. Here's mine:



These questions will help you put together your trailer script:


  • What is your podcast about?

  • Who is it for?

  • What can listeners expect or gain from listening?

  • How often are episodes released?

  • How can people connect with you?

  • When will the first episode go live?


Doing the groundwork at this stage and establishing a structure and a plan of action will help save you time as things progress.


Finding Podcast Guests


You've chosen your hosting platform, name, and target audience, but now you need to find guests. You can do this in several ways, such as direct email outreach, LinkedIn, Matchmaker FM, Podcast Guests, or podcast support groups on Facebook.



Podcast Guest Release Forms


Next, you'll need to consider whether or not to have a podcast guest release form. Of course, if it's a solo show, you won't need one. Personally, I use one for a number of different reasons.


Why should you use a release form? Well, a release form will allow you to monetise your podcast and distribute your content as needed. Say your podcast does extremely well and gets an offer from a big distribution company. Then, a release form will allow you to take advantage of that opportunity. It also protects you from deletion requests, gives you full consent and control over the ownership of each episode, and allows you to use their brand, image and biography. Meaning you can edit and distribute as needed.


A standard podcast release form is no more than one A4 page, and if you're not used to entertainment contracts, you would be advised to seek legal guidance. However, if you want to do it yourself, some options include the following:


How to Promote a Podcast Episode


  • Creative Audio Reels for Social Media

  • Email Newsletters

  • Press Release

  • Join Forces with Influencers

  • Cross Promote with Other Podcasters

  • Tap into Your Guest Networks

  • Paid Advertising

  • Turn Transcripts into Blog Posts

  • Text Friends and Family with a to Share Link


Final Thoughts


Starting and maintaining a podcast for your business will take time and dedication. However, the rewards are plenty. You'll meet with inspiring guests, reach far and wider audiences, build your networks, and become seen as an expert in your field.


Putting in place systems and processes at the start will help you streamline and reduce the workload as you go forward. After you've wrapped your first season, take time out to reflect on what went well and what didn't and adapt before moving forward to season 2. The life of a podcaster is one of continual learning and growth.


Every obstacle in podcasting is a chance to develop resilience, perseverance, and adaptability; traits that will serve you well throughout your journey. Pat Flynn

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