How to Make Your Podcast Work for You
How to Make Your Podcast Work for You

How to Make Your Podcast Work for You

If you’ve been listening to the big-name gurus in podcasting and online marketing, my guess is that you’re doing some things in your business that don’t resonate with you. Maybe they feel like too much or too little…or you just don’t feel like doing something that they say you “must” do.

I’m a big believer in doing business in a way that works for you. That means letting go of the idea that your podcast (or business or YouTube channel or launch or whatever it is) has to be perfect. Because it’s not going to be! And you know what? That’s okay. We’re all human.

This week on the podcast, I’m sharing how to make your podcast work for you. What questions to ask and what to think about when you’re building out your podcast (or whatever other kind of content you’re creating).

Because if it doesn’t sit well with you, you’re going to quickly lose interest and, frankly, feel crappy about it. So do it right…starting now!

Mentioned In This Episode:

Transcript:

Welcome to episode 201 of the Content Experiment Podcast, a podcast for podcasters that supports the idea that content and marketing are ever-moving targets in any business, and it’s okay if you don’t feel like you’re doing it all right, all of the time.

If you’ve been following along, you know that last week’s episode was technically the end of my 10-episode solo series. But, as I’ve mentioned a few times, I’m planning to keep it going for a just a bit longer. However I am in the process of lining up some amazing guests for you so stay tuned for that! I plan to go back to featuring a guest in every other episode soon.

Are you a podcaster or aspiring podcaster? If you’re like me, you run into roadblocks on a regular basis. Roadblocks where you need expert support when you least expect it.

Just this morning, I ran my brand new dishwasher for the first time. It was installed by a professional a week ago and I truly expected to be able to fill it, hit start, and voila. Clean dishes in about an hour.

The universe had different plans for me. I could hear the dishwasher beeping in the other room and when I checked it out, there was a flashing code on the panel. I looked it up and sure enough, there’s a malfunction. The user’s manual said to shut it off at the power breaker and call in a service technician.

Not really what I was hoping this morning, but it is what it is. I have someone coming tomorrow to take care of it.

Since the unit is new, I have a warranty on it. But if it wasn’t, I’d have to pay someone to fix it. I love that I have the security of someone to lean on when I need help.

It’s the same in business, right? Having someone to lean on, to help answer questions when needed is so valuable. But depending on what stage you’re in, that might not be possible within your budget.

I hope that the Podcast Ease membership can be that support system for you.

It’s part accountability, part expert-on-call to help you get your podcast out to your audience consistently and with confidence.

Each Tuesday you’ll get a 90 minute accountability session where you set your intentions on what you’ll work on for your podcast during the call, then you’ll spend the next 90 minutes doing that work. Maybe it’s outlining your next episode, researching guests, writing your show notes, or even recording a solo episode.

Then, every Thursday, you’ll have 60 minutes to ask questions and make connections with others on the call.

You’ve heard me talk about how important consistency is, and it’s true. Your audience expects to hear from you on a regular basis. They look forward to your episodes. But it’s also SO hard to prioritize our own work. We’re so busy making sure our clients and families are taken care of but the work on our own podcasts isn’t going to get done unless we make the time.

I’m going to help you with that.

This Podcast Ease membership is a month-to-month commitment, you can join or cancel at any time. Calls are at 8 a.m. Pacific on Tuesdays and Thursdays and you can join any time.

The investment is $99 a month for weekly Q&A sessions, weekly coworking sessions AND I’ll also pepper in some additional support and trainings here and there. Join now at thecontentexperiment.com/ease.

Tell me if this sounds familiar.

You’re a podcaster or aspiring podcaster. As part of your work to start up or grow, you spend a lot of time listening to other people’s podcasts. Maybe you’re listening to shows that are aligned with what you plan to talk about, or maybe you’ve decided to only listen to shows that are outside your industry.

Either way, you’re doing your research. You’re figuring out what like and don’t like on podcasts. Taking notes about what you want to replicate and what you want to do differently.

Then you turn to social media. You look at how podcasters show up online, what they’re posting about, what those posts look like, how often they’re showing up. And the video! So many podcasters are sharing video of their interviews.

And they’re sending all the emails, publishing episodes two and three times a week, using really cool audio editing within their episodes.

Of course, when you’re planning out your episodes there are so many directions you can go with the format too. One person does some really cool sound mixes in their intros, someone has a hired voice actor (or maybe a friend) do their intro audio, there’s the option to have a midroll add, either your own or a sponsor. And let’s not forget about using seasons in your podcast or what numbering your episode can look like. And the show notes format! And what’s the best hosting platform? What about the artwork for your show?

Holy cow, is your mind spinning yet? Mine is!

There’s SO much to consider when you’re a podcaster. So much that we tend to look at what someone else is doing and just do that. Even if it feels like too much…or not enough. Even if it’s not really our style.

And then…the podcast, and everything else we’re doing relating to the podcast, doesn’t feel good anymore. If it ever did feel good. So we stop publishing it or only publish it half heartedly. We’re no longer consistent and it takes everything just to load the audio to our host. Forget about sharing it on social media or in a regular email.

Then we get embarrassed about letting it go and eventually the podcast is this dirty little thing that we used to do and really would rather everyone forgot about.

Maybe that’s kind of an extreme example, but this happens. To some extent.

The important thing to remember when you’re starting or growing your podcast is to do it YOUR way. Make it work for you.

You can’t make something sustainable and support your business if you’re constantly stressed out or always feel like you’re behind. You’re not going to feel good about publishing if your show format is what someone else told you “should” do or if you’re trying to promote it everywhere.

You won’t be really excited about your episodes or creating your show notes if you don’t have some buy-in to the process.

You get to (and should) make the decisions around what you’re creating, how, and what it looks like.

Which honestly is one of the best things about podcasting, in my opinion. The show is YOURS.

So what can you do to make your podcast work for you?

If you’re just starting out, work with a podcast manager who walks you through the launching process but doesn’t push their beliefs onto you. Yes, there should be a process and a workflow to getting started but it doesn’t have to be super rigid because there are so many choices you get to make on how to implement it all.

If you’ve been podcasting for a while and you’re feeling stuck–around what to create, ask yourself these questions:

  • What am I struggling with most in publishing my episodes consistently?
  • What do I want to let go of in my podcast? Finding guests? Creating the show notes? The behind the scenes tech? The promotion? You might find that the idea of letting go of some of these things is just what you need to do to bring some excitement back to your podcast.
  • Am I consuming too much content that’s weighing me down or making me question myself? Sometimes overconsumption of information can make our own ideas muddled. Or we spent too much time comparing ourselves and our podcasts to others. That’s not helpful at all because it invites imposter syndrome.
  • Make sure your goals are aligned with the reality of podcasting. Some people host a show thinking they’ll gain a huge following or loads of new clients right away. That’s simply not reality. Podcasting is a way to nurture your current audience. Podcast GUESTING and speaking on stages (in person or virtual) is how you gain new followers. So get clear on your goals and do a reality check.
  • If you’re a veteran podcaster, you can also work with a podcast manager to work through some of these challenges and questions–or to have some of the load taken off your plate.

As I’ve mentioned before in previous episodes, podcasting is a labor of love. It takes a lot of time to get a rhythm down and the ongoing maintenance of a podcast takes several hours every week, even if you’re outsourcing pieces of the production. So keep that in mind as you look at whether starting or continuing your podcast is worth it in the long run.

(I will tell you that I’m 95% certain that your podcast IS worth it. I think there are very few business owners for whom a podcast isn’t a great time and financial investment.)

Where do you stand on the success of your podcast and bringing more ease to your regular production? If you’re only looking at download numbers…or the number of sales you’ve made from your podcast…or your list growth…and you’re getting really discouraged, my advice is to shift your priorities and stick with it.

And get some accountability and support! Remember that you can join the Podcast Ease membership at any time for just $99 a month. It includes weekly Q&A sessions on Thursdays and weekly accountability calls on Tuesdays. Both calls are at 8 a.m. Pacific, and the Q&A calls will be recorded if you can’t make it live.

You can join us at thecontentexperiment.com/ease.

If you found value in what you learned here today, be sure to share it on social media. Take a screenshot of the episode on your phone and share it over on Instagram stories. Tag me at thecontentexperiment. The more you share, the more we can get the podcast into the hands of more business owners, just like you, who need to hear the message that they are not alone.

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