Interested in creating your own podcast? Awesome! Time to get started. But… how exactly does one get started? Never fear. Regardless of where you’re at in launching your career as a podcaster, you’ve come to the right place. Because we’re about to share some tips and tricks from a pro on how to start your own show.
Meet Jakub Vambersky, Product Marketing Manager at Voicemod and co-host of one of the biggest pop culture podcasts in the Czech Republic. With five years of experience in the game, we asked Jakub a few of our most pressing questions about starting a podcast, which he answers below. Take a look:
The first, most important thing when starting out is to find a topic that excites you and that you can really educate or entertain your listeners with. Choose a format that best suits both you and your listeners. For example, some prefer short and scripted podcasts, while others prefer long and improvised.
There’s no right or wrong answer here. It’s all about your preferences. Just be ready to switch things up as you go if something doesn’t resonate with your listeners or if you’re simply not feeling it.
One might argue that if your content is interesting enough, the audio or video quality doesn’t matter that much. But it does, trust me. With podcasts, audio is everything and it’s important to make the show easy and enjoyable for your audience to listen to.
That’s why you need to invest in good hardware. But don’t worry, it’s not as expensive as you might think. You should be able to get a quality directional mic for only a few bucks. You’ll also want to get an audio card, which will give your audio an extra boost and let you listen to yourself as you’re recording – something podcasters usually do. Personally, I’m not a big fan of hearing my own voice, so I don’t do this. But this brings me to my next point: Use audio software if you can.
Voicemod has been an invaluable tool in my years of podcasting. One of my favorite features to use is the Clean Voice, which suppresses background noise and enhances your own voice for an overall better sound.
My two co-hosts and I used to podcast from a cozy radio studio with state-of-the-art equipment, professional audio quality, and a music library with hits for days. When the pandemic struck, the studio shut down and we had to come up with a new solution to keep the podcast alive. Meeting in person became increasingly more difficult, so we started podcasting virtually.
For this, we had to get the right equipment and also figure out how to properly record three different audio tracks. We first experimented with Zoom, but soon switched to Audacity where we could record each audio track separately. The main trick here is that you have to make sure the tracks are synced (a simple “3, 2, 1… clap” exercise will do). This allowed for easier editing and cleaner audio results.
Of course, there are other alternatives in terms of software. Right now, we’re using Riverside due to its video recording feature, but you should be able to get the same results with OBS, for example.
Podcasting is mainly connected to audio, but that doesn’t mean you can’t add a video to it. Putting a face to your voice can actually resonate well with your audience and give your show a more one-on-one feel.
You can publish video podcasts on more visual platforms like YouTube to help give your show more exposure. You can even try live streaming your podcast, which would introduce a new element of viewer engagement and live interaction through the chat. Try streaming your podcast on Twitch, for example, and shake things up with extensions like Voicemod Live.
Live streaming is a great way to give you direct feedback on what your audience likes and dislikes. It’s really important to listen to what your fans think about your show and to keep their feedback in mind. And while we’re on the subject, ignore the haters. There will always be haters, but as a great thinker once said, “Don’t listen to your critics, listen to your fans.”
Add something extra to your podcast. It’s increasingly difficult to find a topic that’s not already covered by someone else. Creating an interesting show is only one part of the equation to make it in podcasting. You need to find something that differentiates you from all the others.
For my podcast, the added value ultimately came through Voicemod, as it allowed my co-hosts and I to introduce unexpected mayhem into the show with voices and sound effects. My favorite use case is when I set up my soundboard with ridiculous quotes from a famous movie director. My co-hosts and I then led a fake interview with this director, asking about their movies and using the pre-downloaded quotes as their answers. It was hilarious and I would like to take this opportunity to officially apologize to Zach Snyder.
Now that’s my podcast. Your podcast’s added value can come from anywhere. As I mentioned before, video podcasts are becoming more and more popular, so try experimenting with other software. Podcast as a virtual avatar or stream with different Twitch extensions.
When it comes to launching your podcasting career, the world really is your oyster.