It’s an exciting feeling to start a podcast. You can’t wait to share it with your friends and customers, and you’re stoked to push out as much content as possible. Some people own existing businesses and see a podcast as a way to promote their services. Others see a podcast as a way to share their personality and expertise while making money through ads, merchandise, and premium content.
If you fall in the first category, you will find some gems in this post. But If you fall into the second category, then this post is for you. Whether or not you want to admit it, you’ve just started a business. And if you want to maximize your podcast's potential, you need to start treating it as a business. To do that, you’ll need some podcast business tools to help you manage your processes, your quality, marketing, and business growth. These 10 business tools can make sure that you’re set up for success.
If you aren’t thinking about your podcast as a business, you’ll be in a lot of trouble in the future. You may suddenly come into a windfall of money or get a lucrative opportunity that requires your business information. If your goal is to be a successful podcaster, then you must establish your business from the start.
That’s why you should register your business almost immediately. Use a service like Legal Zoom to start an LLC or S Corp or C Corp. Learn the pros and cons of each, then choose one immediately. Make sure you have a business plan, business name, and business goals for your podcast. Registering your business is similar to laying the foundation of your house.
Even before you start making your first dollar with a podcast, you will have some overhead costs from purchasing microphones, subscriptions, and podcast hosting. For tax purposes, you should start tracking your expenses early. Furthermore, when you start earning money from your podcast, you will be able to find ways to benefit from tax breaks and deductions. Without setting up a business and accounting, you’ll pay significantly more as an individual.
Your podcast would have a lot of moving parts. From finding guests, planning content, transcribing, writing show notes, marketing, ad pitches, and more. What if there was one place you can manage them all? Notion is a multi-purpose app that combines blogging, project management tools, notes, databases, wikis, and more. You can create and arrange tasks and have several persons collaborating on the same board. Need to create a blog post? You can do it right in the app. Notion throws many popular apps out the window, giving you the ability to organize your podcast in one space.
Do you need some music for your podcast? You can pay for some cool tunes for an intro or outro. Or you can download your choice of royalty-free music. Bensound provides free clips that you can freely use in your podcast, covering genres like jazz, rock, contemporary, cinematic, or more. Find your favorite sound and add it to your podcast for some extra flair.
I’ve written about different podcast hosting services before. You need a service to host your podcast episodes for distribution. Hosting them on your own website can be costly. Buzzsprout stands above most with their suite of tools available for one price. You get a simple podcast website, analytics, social sharing, transcribing, and more. Buzzsprout also has a marketplace to pair you with advertisers, so you can start earning almost immediately. Hosting is a crucial part of owning a podcast. So it’s best not to get it wrong.
Recording your podcast is just half the battle. You should have it mixed and mastered to give your listeners a high-quality experience. No matter how good the content, your listener will quickly close your podcast if the audio is too loud, soft, or distorted. Mixing involves combining multiple tracks and adjusting volume levels, while Mastering is making sure everything is in the right place and ready for distribution. Auphonic is a great app for almost automatic post-production of your podcast. Its program can normalize audio levels, reduce loudness, and can transcribe in over 80 languages. You can even publish to your favorite platform directly from Auphonic. Paying a bit extra for mixing and mastering can set you apart from your competitors.
Interviewing is a great way to connect your audience with subject matter experts that can add great value to their lives. To conduct interviews, chances are you will have to do them remotely. And with the pandemic, more and more persons would prefer online interviews. Applications like Skype, Google, and Zoom, are unreliable at best.
Using an app like StreamYard gives you amazing audio and video, allowing you to not only conduct amazing interviews but stream them live on platforms like YouTube, Facebook, or LinkedIn. Your audience can even comment, with StreamYard aggregating the comments for you to engage from one dashboard. StreamYard can take your podcast to the next level if you’re committed to creating amazing content. And there is a freemium version too!
You can create a podcast, but you’ll need to promote your content to start generating real traction. Creating a content marketing strategy is key to growing your podcast. Facebook and LinkedIn are the best platforms for marketing your podcast. LinkedIn works particularly well if your podcast is in the Business to Business (B2B) space. You can share clips of your podcast, create videos, and engage with followers. With LinkedIn Pulse, you can write blog posts that link to your podcast or share show notes and transcriptions. This will funnel persons to your podcast, giving you the initial boost you need.
One big drawback of podcasting is the inability to connect with your audience. Yes, they can leave comments and rate your show, but how will you engage them? Email marketing is one of the best ways to maintain a 1:1 relationship with your audience. Placing a call to action at the end of your podcast, transcriptions, and show notes can help, but how will you capture their information? Send Fox is a new, free email management tool. You can create simple landing pages, segment your lists, and create email sequences. Using a simple dashboard, you can track your subscribers and see the performance of each email. With email, you’ll be able to turn those subscriptions into paying customers for future products.
As your podcast grows, you’ll find yourself working on multiple tasks at the same time. You’ll need to transcribe and create show notes, design podcast thumbnails, do cold outreach for guests, update your website, find sponsors, and more. The real question is not “how” you will get it all done but “whom” can help you out?
With Fiverr, you can find affordable freelancers who can take over easy tasks but not worth your time. You can find a Virtual Assistant, graphic designer, podcast editor, and more. You can save lots of time and stress while working on creating the best content for your show.
Without the right podcast business tools, you’ll be essentially creating a hobby and not a business. The more legitimate your business and podcast becomes, the more vital it will be for you in the long run. These tools help with everything from business growth to podcast quality. If you need to take away something from this post, it’s that you must make sure to register your podcast business.
Even if you have another business, legitimizing your podcast can be vital. Every other podcast business tool will take things to the next level.
If you’re interested in starting a podcast, sign up for my email list to benefit from tips, tools, and tricks needed to run a successful podcast.