I recently started The Paid Search Podcast with my friend Chris. And after deciding to start the podcast, we actually had to figure out how to start the podcast and get it up and running. If you Google “how to start a podcast” you’ll find a handful of really detailed and knowledgable blog articles about how you can go about starting a podcast. But what I noticed is that a lot of those article were from a few years ago, and while those articles were helpful and super detailed, their instructions were pretty long and there were a lot of technical stuff you had to know like using WordPress plugins, creating podcast feeds, and on and on. I know that technology is always changing and seems to get easier and more convent, and since these podcast guides were a few years old, I kept thinking there has to be a better way!
Well, there is a better way, and it’s called Buzzsprout.
Basically Buzzsprout makes podcasting easy to set up and manage and you don’t have to have any technical knowledge of the podcasting space to make it work.
I was so impressed by Buzzsprout that I figured I’d make this super simple how to start a podcast guide for my clients who are considering starting a podcast and for anyone else out there who wants a simple guide on how to start a podcast.
Here’s the podcast I started, you can listen to some of the episodes below courtesy of this free player that Buzzsprout provides to their customers. The podcast guide is below this player, enjoy!
How To Start A Podcast – 2016 Simple Edition
Here are the things you’ll need to start a podcast:
- A title
- A description
- A website
- Podcast art
- A microphone and headphones
- A way to record Skype calls (Ecamm)
- Intro music and GarageBand
- A way to get your podcast on iTunes and the other podcast places (Buzzsprout)
1. A Title
This one is easy, you need a title for your podcast.
2. A description
Buzzsprout and iTunes will ask you for a description of your show, so be prepared to put together a few sentences to describe your podcast.
3. A website
iTunes and Buzzsprout will ask you for your podcast’s website, so you’ll need to have a website for your podcast. You can either use your existing business or blog website or you can create a new website for your podcast.
4. Podcast art
You will need an image for your podcast art. Remember that people will see this image in places like iTunes and podcast players on their smart phones, so make sure the image looks good in small sizes.
The image size for your podcast art is 1400 x 1400.
But don’t forget that it also needs to look good in small sizes that people will see on their smart phones.
I’ve also read that you’ll need a 300 x 300 version of your podcast art. So far I haven’t had to use the 300 x 300 size when I did the podcast setup using Buzzsprout, but since you’re already getting the podcast art made in a 1400 x 1400 size it can’t hurt to get the 300 x 300 size just in case you need it for anything.
The designer I used for The Paid Search Podcast is Arrive Design.
5. A microphone and headphones
You’ll need a microphone and headphones to record your podcast. You might need other equipment like microphone covers, microphone stands, and stuff like that, but all you need to get started and be able to record podcast episodes is a microphone and headphones.
The microphone I use and recommend is the Audio-Technica ATR2100. It seems to be the best microphone that you can get on Amazon for a pretty low price. And it comes with a small microphone stand.
If you’re interested in the top of the line microphone and don’t mind paying up for it, I’ve heard that the Heil PR-40 is good.
As far as headphones go, I went with the Sennheiser HD 202 II.
Skype is a great way to record calls and turn them into your podcast episodes if you have a cohost and they’re in a different location and/or if you’re going to interview people on your podcast who are in a different location and not in-studio.
So make a Skype account for your show or use your existing Skype account.
7. A way to record Skype calls (Ecamm)
You’ll need a way to record your Skype calls and turn them into mp3 files that you’ll use as your podcast.
It seems like the best solutions for this is the Call Recorder for Skype from Ecamm. It’s not that expensive, it’s a one time cost, and it makes it super easy to record Skype calls. Ecamm’s call recorder opens up when you open Skype, then you hit the record button, and when you stop recording it turns your call into an mp3 file that you can use as the podcast file. It’s super easy, convenient, and I recommend this tool if you’re going to use Skype for your podcast episodes.
8. Intro Music and GarageBand
If you want your show to have intro music you’ll need to either buy a piece of music or use a copyright free piece of music. My partner took care of this part of starting a podcast for me, so I don’t have a website to recommend, but there are plenty of places online to either buy a piece of music or get a copyright free piece of music for your intro music.
And to if you’re on a Mac your can use GarageBand to edit the mp3 files that Ecamm creates from your Skype calls so that the intro music plays at the beginning of them. And you can do all sorts of stuff in GarageBand to edit your podcast episode files if you need any other editing done.
9. A way to get your podcast on iTunes and the other podcast places (Buzzsprout)
Finally, you need a way to get your podcast episodes into iTunes, Stitcher, and in Google Play’s music area. And this is where the big change in technology over the recent years comes into play.
According to the older start a podcast guides, it seems like you had to create podcast feeds and do a bunch of super technical stuff to get your podcast into iTunes and the other podcast libraries. But thanks to Buzzsprout, this is now super easy and super cheap.
Basically you just create a Buzzsprout account, upload your episodes into Buzzsprout via mp3 files, and then Buzzsprout does all the heavy lifting and automatically puts your podcast episodes into iTunes, Stitcher and Google Play.
Buzzsprout has lots of easy-to-follow instructions once you create an account on how to setup your podcast in iTunes, Stitcher and Google Play and how everything works. It’s easy to follow and super convenient.
Buzzsprout is also affordable. It doesn’t cost that much money at all each month to upload your episodes and keep them hosted on Buzzsprout.
If you’re going to start a podcast, I recommend Buzzsprout for your podcast hosting needs.
Podcasting is a great marketing vehicle, and I believe that every single business out there should have a podcast. The goal of having a podcast for your business isn’t to get millions of listeners and sell advertising against that audience because a) that’s super hard to do, b) you’re probably not interested in becoming a professional broadcaster, and c) only a handful of the thousands and thousands of podcasts actually make big advertising money. Instead, the goal of your business podcast should be to attract new customers and clients in your niche and gain a deeper connection with your existing customers and clients.
Podcasting is an awesome new way to grow your business, and I hope this simple guide on how to start a podcast helps you do just that!