5 steps for launching podcasts that publicize your invention and provide important connections
Various sites can help you in areas such as finding a graphic designer, building your website, choosing recording and editing softwares, and determining a hosting platform.
BY ELIZABETH BREEDLOVE
Podcasting can be a novel way for inventors to connect with their customers, promote their business, spread the word about their invention and network with like-minded people and companies.
Ready to take the plunge and start a podcast? Here is what you’ll need to do.
- Choose a topic, determine a format, and make a plan. Your podcast can be about nearly anything, so long as you have enough to say about it. Think about what you know the most about, what subjects your personal connections are experts in, or what you enjoy talking about more than anything else. Tie that into your business or what you’re inventing, and you’ve got a solid topic for a podcast.
Once you have a general topic in mind, consider other logistics of your podcast. Will you talk about a specific topic, interview guests, or find a co-host? Will you keep your episodes around 15-30 minutes, or go for a long-form podcast closer to an hour? Will you release a new episode every week—or two? Sporadically?
- Pick a name and start branding yourself. A good podcast name is simple and easy to remember but also a bit catchy and creative. It needs to be unique so that your audience can easily find you in a podcast directory, and it should be memorable for the same reason. Make sure that it represents your topic or content and suits the overall tone you want to set.
Once you have a name, you can work on other brand collateral. Work with a graphic designer to create a logo for your podcast; if you don’t have a designer, you could find a freelancer to do it using sites such as Upwork.com or Fiverr.com. Then, have your designer use your logo to create cover art that will be listed with your podcast in the podcast directories.
You’ll also need to build a website. If you don’t have the budget to hire a developer to build it for you, you can use a simple website builder such as Squarespace. This site will be a place to host your podcast and your show notes, and provide general information about your podcast.
- Figure out the technical stuff. Start by ensuring you have the equipment needed to record. At a minimum, you’ll need a basic microphone and recording software. Set a budget, then find a mic with good reviews at your price.
As you get deeper into the world of podcasting and your audience grows, you may find the need to upgrade.
There are many different recording and editing softwares, but Audacity is great for beginners. It’s free and easy to use, and should suit your needs well—especially if you’re starting out.
If you don’t feel comfortable editing the recording yourself, you can use Audacity (audacityteam.org) to record and then outsource editing to someone else. There are many great freelance editors on Upwork and Fiverr.
If you plan to have a co-host or incorporate interviews into your show, think through how to do this. Generally, there are two methods: Record the conversation using a service such as Skype or Zoom, or each participant can record the conversation with his or her own mic and then send the recording to the editor to piece it together.
You’ll also need to decide where to host your podcast files. Buzzsprout.com is a great entry-level podcast hosting platform that also sends podcasts to some of the most popular directories such as Apple Podcasts and Spotify; helps you monetize your podcast; tracks analytics, and much more. There are many other podcast hosting services.
- Make a content calendar and prepare for your first several recordings. Take time to plan your initial episodes after you have considered the podcast’s basic framework—such as topics and the format you will use—as discussed in Step 1. It’s a good idea to plan the first few episodes in detail but also have a general roadmap so you know where to go once those initial episodes are finished.
Next, record the intro, outro and any other sound bites. Your intro should mention who you are, what your podcast is called, and what it’s about. Your outro will be similar but should also include a “thanks for listening” and some sort of call to action—such as an invitation to subscribe to the podcast, to share it with someone, or to carry on the conversation elsewhere.
Now you’re ready to start recording!
- Publish and share, share, share. After your first episode has been recorded and edited, it’s time to push it live!
This part should be simple because you’ve already determined your podcast host; you’ll just need to upload the file. If you aren’t using a hosting service that submits it to podcast directories, you’ll need to do that as well.
Publish show notes on your website. This will include a link to the audio as well as links to anything you discussed on the show, perhaps even a transcript.
Use all available channels to spread the word about your podcast. Promote each episode on your social networks, to your email lists, on your site and anywhere else you can.
Initially you may not have many listeners, but that’s OK. Just keep producing content and sharing it wherever you can, and you should see your numbers grow and your content get better.
As your numbers grow, you may even find an opportunity to monetize your podcast with ads. Happy podcasting!