It was a British journalist and columnist who coined the term “podcasting” in 2004. But the idea of audio-blogging existed since the ‘80s in the entertainment industry. However, people don’t utilize iPods to record conversational episodes anymore. Since YouTube has become a dominant platform for these dialogues. The 21st century brought public interest in listening to these digital audio files for information and amusement. Multiple personalities gained fame for their online conversations.
A prominent example is Joe Rogan, a standup comedian who found his niche in podcasting. In 2020, he became one of the most popular podcast hosts on Spotify. He has interviewed numerous celebrities such as Elon Musk, Bill Maher, Bernie Sanders, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Jordan Peterson. What makes a podcast popular? We can rephrase this question to ask: What can make a podcast lose popularity and drop your ratings? Let’s learn to avoid some common mistakes hosts often commit.
DON’TS OF PODCASTING!
The internet community often jokes about how everyone has a podcast. If you have a pleasant voice and the energy to speak, you can start your series. But research has shown that many of these newcomers to podcasting stop producing after the seventh episode. Furthermore, some 75% of podcasts in 2018 ceased to exist in the future. Even Dan Harmon had to discontinue in 2019! That’s why you need to avoid mistakes your predecessors made. It is what you shouldn’t do while podcasting:-
1. MAKING INTROS TOO LENGTHY:
People’s attention span has shortened, and lengthy intros can quickly exhaust their patience. Don’t waste several minutes just introducing the actual content audience wishes to hear. It’ll be a bad experience for the listeners, and you might even lose potential followers. Thirty seconds are what you need to introduce meaningful content up ahead. Also, don’t include any call-to-action in the beginning. Save them for the end of your episode. Give your viewers value and stick to the script.
2. CHOOSING THE WRONG PLATFORM:
You must select the most appropriate platform for uploading your podcasts. In 2018, YouTube hosted 46% of music listening globally. You’re probably thinking about how to make a podcast on YouTube in MP3 format. Well, you can’t! It needs to be a video. But YouTube gives you storage space for your episodes along with convenience and massive discoverability. You can choose other platforms, too, that provide an audio upload option. Some websites even allow viewers to download these files.
3. USING A BROAD RANGE OF TOPICS:
You can’t upload a podcast on any random topic of your choosing. As a host, you are marketing to your niche. Try to learn what your target audience desires to hear. For instance, if you talk about supernatural events in your podcast, stick to that subject. Don’t start producing content about presidential elections or homemade cookies. Learn which topic you can eloquently talk about and then be loyal to your niche. Your viewership will decline if people don’t get their desired content.
4. RECORDING WITH LESS PASSION:
A lot of people are creating podcasts because it’s become a booming industry on the internet. Never become a podcast host simply because it’s trendy. Your audience will retreat if they discover you don’t have any passion. Viewers will stick around if you’re motivated enough to attract their attention. Moreover, don’t impersonate a famous YouTuber to gain fame. Be yourself! Your audience would like to connect with the real you. Be genuine, and your followers will stay.
5. UPLOADING WITHOUT EDITING:
Yes, you need to edit and prune your podcasts as you do with any YouTube video. Delete anything unnecessary or uninteresting in the content. Don’t service your audience weak portions of an otherwise educational episode. Uploading raw recording is unprofessional and can cause your ratings to decline severely. You can find software programs such as Audacity, GarageBand, and Adobe Audition for podcast editing/mixing. Editing is tedious, for sure, but an imperative task.
6. VIOLATING COPYRIGHT LAWS:
Laws must never get violated, especially copyright laws. You can’t use someone else’s content in your podcast without the owner’s legal permission. There’s no hiding behind the fair use excuse too. A copyright infringement lawsuit can tarnish your reputation and bring down the number of your viewers. Make sure to only use specified material for commentary/criticism. If you need music, YouTube already has a collection of royalty-free tunes. So, be vigilant even about old episodes.
7. BELITTLING YOURSELF:
It’s a good thing to be humble. But being too down-to-earth can become disastrous for your digital viewership. Don’t deprecate or denounce yourself as a pathetic content creator. We’ve seen podcast hosts often jokingly saying, ‘This show sucks’ or ‘Nobody listens to this.’ It may sound cool but harms the audience’s perception of your channel. People don’t like to subscribe to someone who’s pitiful. Take pride in your content, and have a positive attitude.
8. USING A FAULTY MICROPHONE:
The popularity of your podcast lies in the content. And the quality of your content depends on people being able to listen to it. Be careful about the sound quality. A faulty mic can mess up the entire show. So, make sure to double-check the settings you hit record. Never forget to listen to the file thoroughly before uploading it. Don’t release an episode if it’s not audible enough. Don’t record in a noisy place. You can find digital tools to remove background interference from audio files.
9. SPENDING TOO MUCH MONEY:
Every successful business strategy involves a cleverly-drafted budget. There is a requirement for space and equipment to record podcasts; you can rent a studio for your conversations in the beginning. Buy an inexpensive but high-quality set up as a beginner. No expensive microphone will turn you into Ben Cummings or Art Bell. Buying new gear can be an addictive habit. You don’t need lots of gadgets. Setting up all of them will take much of your time. Be minimalistic and focus on content.
10. UPLOADING THE WRONG EPISODE LENGTH:
There are pros and cons of both uploading an entire episode or putting it up in snippets. A complete episode can be many hours long, and some people won’t sit through all of it. It also gives every valuable piece of information away. With snippets, you can expect people to click on the next video. Snippets are also easily shareable on social media platforms. But they require editing, and then you’ll individually upload multiple files online. You need to work hard for better ratings, don’t you?
11. NOT GIVING ANY CTAS:
Your content must be meaningful and valuable to the audience. The information you’ve provided needs to come to action. Viewers would like to know what they can do with your message. For example, if you’re marketing something, ask your viewers to share this podcast with a friend who might need this product. Furthermore, ask them to review your content and subscribe to your channel for similar podcasts. Put CTAs either in the middle or at the end of the episode.
Podcasting is one of those industries with a low barrier for entry. It means it’s easy for anyone to enter the market by uploading the conversation on the internet. But not everyone survives the tough competition with popular hosts. Statistics show that some 144 million people in the United States listen to podcasts. More than 50% of Americans (not including pre-teens) have listened to a podcast at least once. Now you can imagine why everyone would like to pick a microphone and start recording.
But if you understand how to create a successful podcast, it can serve as an alternative to video marketing. Remember that 54% of your listeners do think about the product you’ll advertise. With a brilliant marketing strategy, you can enhance your podcast industry ranking. Just don’t forget to keep your episodes consistent, collaborate with other hosts, and engage your audience with calls-to-action. And if your growth strategy fails again, don’t give up! Try implementing some innovative ideas.