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