Posted on October 23, 2020
So you’ve read a bunch of different online articles about starting a podcast and you’re intimidated and confused. Do I really need to edit my podcast? Do I really need to have all these guests and make sure they’re comfortable having a real conversation? Do I really need to buy an expensive microphone?
The answer is no. To everything.
The one question you need to answer YES to is this: do I have a good idea for a podcast? If you answer YES to that, then do it. Record your first episode today.
Use your phone microphone to record yourself. Your phone mic is designed to pick up the human vocal frequency range. Open up Voice Memos if you’re on an iPhone or Voice Recordings if you’re on an android (or whatever either of those are called now) and start talking. Ramble on about what the podcast will be about for an introduction, and maybe even start your first real episode. It’s that easy!
Do you need to edit it once you’re done? No, you don’t. You need good editing to go from 200 listeners to 2,000 listeners. You don’t have 200 listeners yet. You don’t even have one, because you haven’t recorded an episode yet.
I’m going to be honest with you. The podcast content format already exploded. You missed that initial buzz. You’re now going to be the 8 millionth podcast and counting. And if you research your idea for three minutes, you’ll probably find someone who’s either doing it now, already done it a hundred times, or doing something relatively similar. DO NOT LET THIS DISCOURAGE YOU! Now that everyone is listening to podcasts, they can be a lot pickier about what they like. And just because someone out there is doing a really similar idea to yours (and they already have 100 episodes recorded), that does not mean that you shouldn’t carry through on your recording. If anything, that means you have more of a reason to start. Having a small podcast is awesome. It lets you REALLY connect with your audience.
You see, when you start your podcast, you’re going to have as many listeners as you have friends and family (unless you’re already some sort of influencer with many adoring fans). You’re going to have to request that your small listenership gives you HONEST feedback. You don’t want any of that “oh it was really good” crap. Ask your people for real criticisms without sugar coating so you can improve. Then, you can give them a shoutout during your next episode. You have 10 listeners. Don’t think that you’re too high-and-mighty to give your mom a shoutout on your weird podcast. That’ll just ensure she listens again (and then gives you more feedback).
So go record your first episode on your phone mic. Do it right now. Then send it to me at email@example.com and I can be the first of your friends to tell you that it sucks. And then we can make your second episode a little bit better.
My conversation with Teegs on yotally 3 turned to us discussing people we follow on Twitter. She mentioned Visakanv. He has some good ideas and communicates them well; I recommend following him (or check out his website if you don’t use Twitter (or just for fun)).
Anyway, in one of his threads I read recently, he mentioned (*and I am now PARAPHRASING*) that having a massive number of listeners/followers doesn’t really matter. I mean, it could matter for making money off of your thing, but if you’re just spreading ideas, the raw number of listens/follows you get doesn’t matter. What DOES matter is the quality of the people you engage with. In this sense, the impact of one specific person listening to your podcast could be much greater than a million randos who don’t care.
THAT’S who you should be making your podcast for. Not for the million randos. They don’t care, they never will, and all they would get you is $100 in advertising revenue. Who you REALLY want to get with is the ONE person who could connect with your idea and use it to change lives.