How do I create a podcast 1

Create a podcast

You finally want your own Create a podcastbut don't know how to start? Here is our step-by-step guide to your first podcast. From finding a topic to the right equipment to publication. Find out in the beginner's guide how to create a podcast!

The Podcast Guide: From the topic to the host - everything you should think of when you want to do a podcast.

By Nadja Fleischer on May 12, 2021

Content: Create a podcast

What is a podcast?

The podcast is a media file that can be subscribed to and appears in series. The term is made up of the English word for broadcasting “broadcast” and the abbreviation “iPod” brought to life by Apple. The pod stands for “play on demand”. In short, podcasts are audio contributions.

These can be streamed or downloaded with the help of so-called RSS feeds. Anytime, anywhere: in the morning in the car to work, on the bus or train, in the gym or in the comfort of your own home on the couch.

With the help of podcasts and their consequences you can get people excited about your topic and turn them into a loyal audience.

What makes the podcast so popular?

  • Podcasts are free in most cases.
  • They are not tied to a specific place or time. Regardless of where the listeners are, the contributions can be accessed anytime and anywhere with a mobile device.
  • Podcasts can be streamed live, but heard offline via download

Create podcasts from A for Avatar to Z for target group: These podcast instructions will help you get started. | Image: Zoom PodTrak P4

Why should you start your own podcast?

  • Podcasts are easy to distribute in the media
  • With the help of podcasts you can build a trusting relationship with your listeners
  • You can be perceived as an expert in your field
  • With podcasts you can reach people who are interested in your topic
  • Podcasts are designed for the long term. This enables you to build up your audience and target group consistently and successfully.

Step by step: record a podcast

The variety of topics in podcasts is huge, with news (43%) and entertainment content (41%) being the most popular. Use of the data with the kind permission of Splendid Research GmbH. | Image: Sennheiser

Start podcast

Before you start creating your podcast, you should know what you want to talk about in your posts and who you want to reach. Find your podcast niche! For this you should:

  • Find the right podcast topics
  • Determine the right target group

Find the right podcast topics

A good strategy makes sense to ensure that your podcast is successful and that you retain your audience in the long term. Which topic do you love? Where do you already have expertise and would you like to pass it on to your audience? What makes your topic so unique?

To find good podcast ideas, it can also be useful to check out the competition. Apple iTunes, Google Play or Libsyn offer hundreds of thousands of free podcasts.

Answer these questions: What podcast topics are there already? How successful are you?

If you're creating your own podcast, a good topic is required. The rest comes (almost) by itself. | Image: Rode & Hyperactive Audiotechnik

Remain authentic

When choosing your topic, one thing is particularly important: authenticity! Many podcasts don't even make it through the first few episodes. The audience quickly notices whether the podcast is just a promotional tool or whether it is really filled with passion. In addition, many podcasters run out of topics after a few episodes. They can no longer offer their listeners any added value.

Offer diversity

Do you have a topic for your podcast? How nice! But do you have enough food to put it in a series of podcasts? If you want to offer your audience an added value, a wide range of topics is essential.

Determine the right target group

Do you want a unique podcast? Then your target group should also be unique! It is better not to try to make your topic so broad that everyone might like it. The podcast is a niche format and that's why it's so successful.

Who should listen to your podcast? Who can it be helpful for? Determine your target audience.

In the best case, you even create a persona, the so-called listener avatar. Is your listener avatar a woman or a man? What music does he or she listen to? What interests and hobbies does your avatar have?

You can answer these and many other questions if you immerse yourself completely in the sphere of your target group. Once you have found your target group, you can tailor your topics precisely to them and offer them real added value.

You are almost there

Your topic and possible sub-topics are fixed. You have defined your target group to which you can offer added value. Very nice, then you've already done the most important thing.

Now there are only a few steps left to your first podcast. Before we start, you still need:

  • Your unique podcast name
  • Your individual podcast cover

Find your unique podcast name

Your podcast name is your figurehead. This should fit your topic and of course your target group.

Choose a concise and unique name.

Make sure that it doesn't lead to misunderstandings or ambiguities. And of course you should also be able to identify yourself with your podcast name! It has to suit you!

More and more podcasts are also available in moving image format - a very good option to use the reach of YouTube, Twitch & Co. | Image: IK Multimedia

Design your personal podcast cover

Even if the podcast is a sound-based medium, your name and the podcast cover are the first things your potential audience will see. Here, too, you should make sure that your cover appeals to your target group and represents your topic.

Podcast tip:

Not familiar with Photoshop? No problem. With the free graphics tool Canva you can quickly and easily design appealing podcast covers. The tool offers numerous templates and ideas. Your podcast cover will be an eye-catcher in no time!

Create your first audio podcast

You have defined your target group, found a crisp name, designed an appealing cover and created an editorial plan for the first episodes ?! Excellent! You are ready to create your first podcast.

Now the most important part of your podcast comes into play: your voice!

In order for your topics to reach your audience, you have to record what is spoken, of course. Do not worry! You don't have to buy an entire recording studio for this. There is also an easier way.

Everything you need: podcasting equipment

Mobile podcast recording specialist: ZOOM PodTrak P4

For podcasting | Streaming | Content creation
The Zoom PodTrak P4 is a compact, digital recorder that was specially developed for podcast recordings and has a lot of clever features. The recorder offers four high-quality XLR microphone inputs and four headphone outputs for mobile podcasting - especially interview or roundtable situations can be handled with ease.

One of the four channels offers the option of connecting a phone call from the smartphone via a TRRS socket. Very well solved: For example, you can record in pairs in your room and switch on an interview partner. The mobile recorder can also be used as an audio interface, which means that recordings can be made directly on the computer or smartphone.

With two AA batteries, the recorder runs for up to four hours and, in combination with the memory card slot, is optimally equipped for mobile use.

Features:

  • 4 XLR microphone inputs with 48 V phantom power
  • 4 headphone outputs with volume controls
  • All tracks can be recorded separately
  • Gain control and mute button for each input separately
  • 11 preset sounds with four assignable sound pads
  • Sampling rate up to 16 bit / 44.1 kHz (wav)
  • TRRS socket for smartphone connection
  • integrated USB audio interface
  • iOS compatible
  • Storage medium: SD / SDHC / SDXC up to 512 GB
  • Scope of delivery: 2x AA batteries, quick start guide

Street price: 218 euros

Your podcast microphone

To start with, a good quality microphone and a pop screen are sufficient to minimize annoying noise and background noise.

Do you want to get guests for your podcast and conduct interviews? Then you may need a second microphone. A tripod is also very helpful, especially at the beginning, so that you can concentrate fully on your language.

Discover the right podcast microphone

Your podcast software

The optimal duration of an episode is 25 to 30 minutes

Recording and editing a podcast is not rocket science. There are also really good and above all free programs: GarageBand for Mac or Audacity for Mac and Windows.

You can record interviews at a distance, for example, via Skype and the Call Recorder eCamm.

The best tools for recording, editing & production: Podcast software

The length of your podcast episode

Now you might be wondering how long your podcast should actually be. There is no optimal size for this - just best practices.

The optimal length of a podcast episode is around 25 to 30 minutes - that's about as long as the walk to the office. But here too, the length should suit your target group and your topic.

A subject-specific topic may require a lot more time and cannot be told in just a few minutes.

Your podcast intro

Not a must-have, but many podcasts start with what is known as an intro and end with an outro. These are short audio sequences at the beginning and end of a podcast episode that generate emotions in the audience and, above all, increase the recognition value for your show.

Ideally, your podcast also has a jingle (a recognizable music sequence) that you can use to separate different chapters or show segments.

Podcast tip:

You can find ready-made music sequences sorted by genre, for example at the online providers Premiumbeat or Audiojungle. But here it is essential to pay attention to the licenses! You can find information on this on the respective platforms.

Live Podcast Streaming vs. Create Podcast

Pro: Live podcast streaming

  • Spontaneous charm
  • Up-to-the-minute content can be discussed
  • Listeners can comment live
  • ... and you can react immediately

Pros: Record a podcast

  • Time and peace to deal with a topic in detail and accurately
  • Cutting and reworking possible
  • Show notes & transcripts that match the content of the shipment are possible

Of course you can also combine. That means: Simply record the live podcast, then ideally edit it (e.g. cut out pauses, coughs, slip of the tongue + optimize the sound) and put it on the web. This is how delamar Studio 365 (formerly: delamar Podcast) worked.

How can I create a live podcast?

hardware

You need a stable internet connection, although a low bandwidth is sufficient for pure audio streaming. We also assume that you want good sound - an external microphone is essential for this.

If you want to do a podcast, you can now fall back on attractive sets. Sets like the Zoom ZDM-1 Podcast Mic Pack offer everything you need to get started. | Image: Zoom

This is the minimum equipment for a (live) podcast with good sound:

  • Computer, smartphone or tablet
  • headphone
  • USB microphone [OR XLR microphone + audio interface]
  • If necessary, depending on the microphone and its scope of delivery ...
    • Microphone cable (format: XLR)
    • Audio interface with at least one microphone input
    • If you want to stream live, you need a loopback function on the audio interface

Podcasts can also be created on a smartphone - without having to save on sound quality: The Apogee HypeMiC is a USB condenser microphone with a built-in compressor. With three settings, this also ensures a top podcast voice. | Image: Apogee

Podcast hosting - publish the show

So that your podcast can be streamed on iTunes, Spotify and Co., you have to create an RSS feed for your podcast or use one of the hosting services (podcast server). From here you can publish your podcast on selected channels such as Spotify, iTunes, Youtube, etc. There are different hosters on the market.

What is podcast hosting and when do i need it?

If you have a lot of time and are ready to train yourself technically, you can operate your own server as a podcast host. However, podcast hosting via a specialized provider is much more convenient. Upload your podcast episodes to its server to make them accessible to the world at any time, without having to worry about storage or programming yourself.

But podcast hosting means much more than that. Depending on the cost option, the providers offer more or less numerous extra functions - you can find the most important in the following overview.

What extras do podcast hosting services offer?

  • Ability to create and design your own podcast website
  • Provision of a web audio player with chapter marks & Co.
  • Easy way to create show notes, chapter marks, etc.
  • Optimizing the sound quality
  • Download in different formats with variable size / quality
  • Publication on Apple Podcasts, iTunes, Google Play, Spotify etc.
  • Automatic posting of new episodes on your social networks
  • Statistics on download numbers, listening time & Co.
  • Monetize your podcasts

Are you serious about podcasting? Do you want to reach as large an audience as possible? Would you like to offer your listeners a comfortable listening and downloading experience? Then you should definitely consider podcast hosting. These services do a lot of work for you and save time, which you can put into the main thing - creating fine podcasts.

Podcast Host - Free vs. Paid

A free podcast host is not uncommon - various providers offer free hosting of podcasts as one of several options or as their only product. Typical limitations include:

  • Limited storage
  • Limited data volume (number of downloads / traffic per month)
  • Less functionality - many of the extras listed above are missing

To get started, for podcasts beyond a mass audience or for a few episodes per year, a free podcast host is ideal. Many providers offer a free option (or at least a very cheap one) that you can top up if your needs increase.

In the tables below, our focus is on the bare, hard numbers: storage space or maximum number of hours or episode duration as well as the maximum number of calls or the data volume. In addition, we only looked at the halfway affordable offers among the paid offers - we did not consider the cheapest (and correspondingly limited), nor the most expensive ones to be interesting in the context of this article.

Worth knowing when it comes to storage space

You need to know roughly how extensive your podcast will be in order to calculate the storage requirements for a podcast host. An example:

  • 1-hour podcast (MP3 format, stereo, 192 kb / s) - ~ 85 megabytes

The kb / s value characterizes the sound quality and is above average in our example - depending on the podcast content and requirements, 160 kb / s, 128 kb / s or even less may be sufficient. The file size is reduced proportionally to these values. It doesn't always have to be stereo, especially with pure voice podcasts - with mono the space requirement is halved.

The Best Podcast Hosts - Free

The Best Podcast Hosts - Paying

price$ 9.99 monthly12 € per monthUS $ 13.50 per month (with prepayment for one year), otherwise US $ 15 per month
Storage space, hours or episodesunlimitedunlimited storage space,
4 hours of audio encoding per month (additional booking for € 5 per hour)
unlimited
Views / traffic per month10,000 plays, 25,000 plays with the Plus Planunlimited20,000 plays
particularitiesDistribution, advanced analyticsWebsite, help and support in German | Automatic sound optimization via AuphonicSimple tool for sharing specific excerpts from podcast episodes, basic analytics
priceUS $ 19 monthly / US $ 190 annually€ 18 per month (with advance payment for one year), otherwise € 20 per monthUS $ 19 monthly
Storage space, hours or episodesunlimited500 h in totalunlimited
Views / traffic per monthunlimitedunlimitedunlimited
particularitiesIntegration in WordPressLive podcast streaming with chat, each max. 3 hours | Own podcast apps, possibility to host multiple podcastsNumerous tools for the management of podcast files, for creating your own podcast website and for statistics

Now it's your turn!

Have you thought of everything related to podcasting? Then you can now record your first podcast. Better still, you start with 3-5 episodes. So you are well prepared and can draw attention to your other topics in the first few episodes.

In your very first episode, it is best to explain exactly what your podcast is about and what your listeners can expect from you in the future. Make them curious - then they want more!

What other tips can you give the delamari if they want to create their own podcast? Which hosters can you recommend and why? Are there any tools that we didn't mention but really should?

We wish you good luck with your first podcast!