32% of Americans listen to podcasts at least once a month, and that figure is growing rapidly. Podcast episodes are easy for people to search, access, and listen to and listeners can find most podcasts for free on different platforms including Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
With the podcast industry evolving, these platforms make it easier for listeners to access podcasts, organize them and subscribe to their favorites. For businesses, podcasts offer an easy barrier to entry, almost free marketing cost, and access to a wide audience without much investment.
The audio form of podcasts, today’s modern-day-radio, allows people to listen to your content as they go about their day, from doing daily chores, to traveling, or even exercising.
How to Start A Podcast for Free
If you’re interested in using podcasts to expand your business marketing reach, it’s relatively simple to start a podcast and increase awareness for your business.
What you need to start a podcast:
- Audio & sound equipment. Get a microphone that easily connects to your computer (I like this one) and pick a place to record your podcast. You want to record episodes in a sound-proof room or quiet area where your voice won’t echo too much – however a good microphone also helps with audio quality.
- Recording software. Choose how you are going to record and edit your podcast. If you are somewhat familiar with editing tools, I recommend Adobe Audition or you can use Audacity which is free and user-friendly for podcast beginners.
- Podcast hosting software. After each podcast is recorded, edited and ready to go live, how will it be hosted and broadcast to your subscribers? I like BuzzSprout which starts. with a free plan depending on how often you plan to release your podcast and you can also distribute your podcast through their platform to Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google and most popular podcast platforms.
- Brainstorm content theme. What’s the overarching theme or concept that will guide your podcast episodes? People search for podcasts related to certain themes, topics or ideas. The key is to hone in on your expertise and how you can create relevant, informative and engaging podcast that keep listeners coming back for more. Some questions to ask yourself:
● What theme or idea does every podcast episode relate back to?
● Will your episodes be conversational interviews, solo-shows, or tell a story?
● What types of content will you produce? Do you want your podcast to be helpful and informative, inspirational, practical, or conversational?
- Set a publishing schedule. How often will you publish podcast episodes? You might also want to create podcast “seasons” where after you publish a certain number of episodes, your podcast takes a scheduled break.
- Create a podcast marketing plan. After each episode is published, how will it be marketed? Use these ideas to promote episodes and help with content exposure, SEO and authority-building:
● Repurpose the clips from podcast episodes into Instagram reels, Twitter audio, or YouTube videos.
● Highlights, takeaways, and time stamps from your podcast can be typed into “shownotes” to be published on your blog or website for SEO purposes. You can also include links or resources mentioned on the podcast in your shownotes.
● Create graphic images of inspirational or informative quotations from the episode and circulate them on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.
● Interview other companies, businesses, or influencers in your industry and ask them to promote the episode when it’s live.
● Add keywords and search terms to your podcast titles and descriptions so that people can find your podcast when looking up a topic.
The podcast industry is growing rapidly, and it will just continue to grow. Platforms like Spotify are evolving with the industry, and now is the perfect time to start reaching a new audience with a podcast.
Overall, publishing podcasts builds brand awareness with listeners. By listening to your episodes, they learn more about you and your company over time. There are some things – like emotions – that are best conveyed with words! Podcasts are a great opportunity to connect with your audience and grow your market share.