I have the pleasure of doing two podcasts weekly as one of the marketing initiatives for Think & Grow Business. The Coach Curl Podcast and the Dumb Leaders Podcast both provide the opportunity to highlight our authority in our chosen fields. The Coach Curl Podcast has been operating since 2014, while the Dumb Leaders Podcast has been a more recent entrant in 2017.
During this time I have learned through trial and error how to deliver a cost-effective program, with enough quality to maximise listener retention. And you don’t need to come up with hundreds or thousands of dollars to get started with your very own podcast. You may be surprised to find out you only need a small investment to set up your own show! Here are some of the most essential things you need to get started:
You can use your computer’s built-in microphone, but you’re most probably not going to like how you sound. You can also use the microphone that comes with your earphones or headset, but they’re only going to be marginally better than your computer’s built-in microphone. For best results, it’s highly recommended you consider buying a good quality microphone that’s made for podcasting. Some of the best ones, like the Audio-Technica ATR2100 cost less than $70. I use the Blue Yeti USB microphone when and while this can be a bit touchy on the microphone gain, investing the time to ensure a quality sound makes this a popular choice
- Pop filter
You don’t want your d’s, g’s, b’s and p’s (called ‘plosives’) blowing into your microphone and degrading your audio quality. The solution to this is you can put a pop filter in front of your microphone. These normally cost well under $10. Stepping up the sound may also incorporate soundproofing around the microphone so background noise is minimised. Amazon and Ebay are both places to research these options.
- Audio editing software
Professional audio editing software can be quite expensive. However, the good news is there are quite a few FREE options you can choose from. If you’re on a Mac, then Garage Band is a no-brainer. However, if you’re on a PC (or Linux), then you may want to look at Audacity. It’s the most popular audio editing software out there for non-Mac users. Personally, I host my podcasts at Spreaker and they have a wonderful Studio available on PC and apps for use on tablets and phone. This allows me to broadcast live and chat with listeners, or record off-line for scheduled publishing. Additionally, I can record directly from Skype which opens up the potential for interviews.
- Intro/outro for your podcast
Most, if not all, good podcasts have an intro and outro in place. If you know what you want your intro/outro to sound like, then you can certainly do it on your own. However, if you’re strapped for time, you can hire a freelancer on Upwork or Fiverr to do the job for you. Check the reviews of any potential contractor to get the quality you want.
- Cover art
You can also create your podcast’s cover art yourself. You can use software like Canva or Photoshop to create it. However, if you’re not so artistically inclined and you don’t want your art to look like it was done by a 5-year old, then consider outsourcing it to graphic artists. The good news is this doesn’t have to be expensive at all, check out Fiver and Upwork again for options.
- Podcast hosting service
You don’t want to just upload your podcast audio files to your regular web hosting server. This is because audio files can become quite large in size and can cause problems with your web host. For your peace of mind, get a podcast hosting service like Libsyn; their basic plan only costs $5/month. As previously mentioned, I host with Spreaker for a reasonable investment.
Podcasting may be a great option for you and if you want to learn more, Podcasting Secrets is available at The Coach Curl Academy. Learn more by clicking here.