Five Podcasting Myths Busted: Why It’s Secretly Easier Than You Think

If you’ve ever sat down to your computer to write a blog post and just stared at that blinking cursor for what feels like forever, you might find yourself wondering if this whole “content marketing” thing is everything it’s cracked up to be.

But do you really have to write stuff in order to create content for your brand?

Well…okay, yeah, you usually do. No matter what, some writing is required here and there, so brushing up on your writing skills (or hiring someone to help you out with that area) is recommended.

There’s good news, too, though! There are other, non-blog-post-writing ways to create content for your brand, and one of those ways is podcasting.

Now, before you start thinking that you don’t have time to podcast, or it’s too expensive, or that you haven’t memorized all 150,000 pages of the iTunes user agreement yet, let’s bust some of the big myths out there about podcasting. 

(You might find that it’s not nearly as intimidating as it sounds!)

Podcasting is expensive

Budget shoppers beware! Podcasting equipment is expensive!

We can hear the warning cries too.

Fortunately, these warnings are pretty sensationalized. Yes, there are a number of podcasts out there that are highly produced, use expensive audio equipment, and even have customized theme songs, but you don’t need all of that to start a podcast.

Repeat after me: I do not have to be NPR.

Many successful podcasts are recorded at kitchen tables with a set of headphones and a free recording program (like QuickTime). You can buy your theme music cheaply on sites like Audio Jungle or not even have music at all.

The reality: There may be a lot of gearhead audiophiles in the podcasting biz, but you can still create a recording that sounds professional without taking a hammer to your piggybank.

I don’t have time to record podcasts

Some people make a living podcasting, but that’s not true of most podcasters. You do not need to make a full time job out of podcasting if you don’t want to.

Podcasting can also replace other forms of content marketing that you might find harder to manage. If it takes you weeks to write a single blog post but you can easily sit down and talk through a concept with a friend or client, podcasting might actually save you time!

There are a few ways you can simplify your podcasting production so it doesn’t take up all of your time:

  • Record shorter episodes
  • Don’t rely on hosting guests (making arrangements with them is kind of a whole thing)
  • Hire someone else to edit the show for you, if you’re not a one-take wonder
  • Produce a new episode bi-weekly instead of weekly – or on whatever schedule suits you best!

Reality: Just because other shows do things one way, it doesn’t mean your show has to do that, too. Start small, find your comfort zones, and remember that you can always go bigger later on.

Marketing a podcast is too time consuming

Creating content is never as simple as it sounds – because after you create something, you still have to put the time and energy into marketing it.

Marketing something like this doesn’t have to eat up all your time, though!

Using a scheduling tool like Edgar, for example, eliminates a ton of the busywork associated with a project like this. By stealing the content-repeating strategy big businesses already rely on, you can seriously increase your visibility without increasing the amount of time you spend.

You’ve got other options, too – using your newsletter to point people toward your latest recording, attracting new listeners by appearing on other podcasts, and even appearing in Twitter chats for podcast enthusiasts can all make a big difference!

Reality: You’ve got plenty of tools at your disposal that make podcast promoting quick and easy. It’s only as complicated as you make it!

No one will listen to my podcast

The number of podcast listeners grows every single year, and actually increased by 75% between 2013 and 2016. 

(That’s really, really good news!)

Even if you don’t have a large and loyal audience clamoring to listen to your new show, don’t despair. Podcast listeners will find your show through category searches, topic/theme searches, and direct referrals from other listeners.

People start new podcasts all the time, and new people start looking for and listening to podcasts all the time, too! (Besides, remember all that stuff we said about how to effectively market your own?)

Reality: New to recording? Lots of people are new to listening. This thing is getting more popular with audiences all the time!

I don’t have a good voice for radio

Lots of people don’t like the sound of their own voice.

Doesn’t matter!

For one thing, there’s a really good, science-y explanation for that phenomenon. Recordings of your voice sound different from what you expect, and for most people, that’s really disorienting and uncomfortable. (So congrats – you don’t actually just have a weird voice.)

Plus, some of the top podcasts out there have hosts with unique voices – Howard Stern, Ira Glass, and Alix Spiegel, to name a few. They all have drastically different sounding voices, but they all have one thing in common: a passion for their subject and a connection with their listeners.

Your voice – no matter how unique – is exactly what your podcast needs! (And it can even be a serious advantage.) Your show will stand out from the crowd right off the bat, and as long as you’re passionate about your content, that’s what will shine through in the long run.

Reality: Lots of people are uncomfortable with their own voice – but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t belong on the air.

So what’s stopping you now?

We’ve busted through some of the bigger reasons why people who like the idea of podcasting don’t take the plunge – but we want to hear from you, too!

Nervous about trying to record a podcast of your own?

Or are you a seasoned podcaster with some advice of your own?

Sound off in the comments below!

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  • Kate Jurd

    I agree totally! I created my first podcast this year with little skill or expertise, but with lots of advice from established podcasters, blogging sites, twitter colleagues – all done with “a little help from my friends”…see my journey from roadtrip to soundcloud: http://bit.ly/2pK4JKI

    • Tom VanBuren

      This is SUCH a great story, Kate – really loved reading about every step you took to get off the ground! Congratulations on your hard-earned success, and thanks for sharing this!

  • I agree with this article, especially that it doesn’t have to cost a lot. There are platforms like Simplecast that will store/host the audio for you while also providing a basic website for listeners to access your episodes, and can feed into iTunes. There are blog posts all over the internet from podcasters wanting to help newbies that list the apps/integrations they use, and The Podcast Method (podcast) is very helpful, too.

    Last year I wanted to launch a podcast that interviewed nonprofit fundraising and industry experts about avoiding mistakes and sharing best-kept secrets for success, and now we’re 30 episodes in! (20 published, 10 being dripped out over the next few months)

    My advice is to partner with someone who has the same goals yet complementary skills, then divvy up the work. If you look at mine (eventswithbenefits.com), you’ll see there are 3 of us–a former radio personality and benefit auctioneer who is a phenomenal main voice/host; a marketer with technical skills who handles recording, post-production, and episode summaries (with help from his team member); and I handle episode planning, scheduling, and publishing. None of us feels overwhelmed, and we record 10 episodes at a time every few months. They are published weekly; bi-weekly during the Summer.

    I’d also add that it’s not a bad idea to test out your content on friends and family for feedback before committing to the production process. Facebook and LinkedIn could be great places to privately share to your network and let them help you improve your first versions.

    Most importantly, make sure it’s fun, or you’ll end up stopping before you get an ROI on the time investment.

    • Tom VanBuren

      That’s outstanding advice, Renee – no wonder your podcast is going strong! You make an excellent point about collaboration, and how valuable it can be not only for the “up front” stuff like hosting a show, but for everything that has to happen behind the scenes. Your advice about recording in batches and then releasing episodes in a trickle is fantastic, too. We’re BIG fans of performing tasks in batches, so that you aren’t putting everything else on hold on a regular basis. (Because how overwhelming would it get to have to drop everything once a week just to record one measly podcast, right?) Sounds like you’re enjoying some very well-deserved success, so HUGE kudos to you and your partners – thanks for sharing your insights!

  • So glad we started the Candid Conversations small business podcast a few months ago! We’ve learned a LOT about podcasting over that time, and one of the best things we did is to do it as co-hosts who bring very different skillsets to the table. My co-host takes care of the tech side of things and I take care of the content side of things. It also helps to divide the workload when planning episodes, connecting with guests, reaching out to sponsors, etc.

    • Tom VanBuren

      That’s GENIUS advice. It’s easy to think of co-hosting as a thing that only happens on the air, but behind the scenes, it can make the whole thing infinitely more manageable! Thanks for your insight, Sagan!

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