Lifestyle,  Money

The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast

You’re keen to start a podcast but you’re not sure where to start. If this sounds familiar, then worry not, because you’re in the right place! The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast is a comprehensive guide that takes you on a step-by-step journey through the world of podcasting. We have covered everything you need to know, including topics such as finding the right niche for you, researching your competition, naming your podcast, branding, formatting your podcast, launching, and marketing.

If you’re ready to get started and learn everything you need to know about how to create and launch your first podcast, keep reading.

*Post contains affiliate links.

First things first, choose the right podcast concept for you.

Choosing a podcast concept is the first step in the ultimate guide to starting a podcast, as well as the first step to creating content that appeals to listeners. There are several considerations to go through before deciding on a final topic, so here are a few tips to help you narrow down your podcasting niche.

What topics do you find interesting?

You may not need a blog post called The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast to inform you that you’re going to be talking a lot about your chosen concept. But, just in case, it’s worth noting that you’re going to want to settle on a topic that strongly appeals to you.  Consider asking yourself the following questions:

  • Do I have excellent knowledge in a specific subject?
  • Am I passionate about a certain concept, such as mental health or crafting?
  • Is there an existing audience that would be interested in my chosen topic?

There are so many podcasting topics to choose from, so I advise that you really sit down and think about a topic that you know you can deliver a good, entertaining, and unique perspective on.

Do the ‘10 quick episodes’ test.

If you think you’ve finally settled on the right topic for you, it’s time to do the ’10 quick episodes’ test. Grab yourself a pen and paper and quickly jot down 10 episode ideas that you could record based on your chosen topic. If you find yourself struggling to produce 10 episodes easily, it probably isn’t the right topic for you to start a podcast on.

Thoroughly research your competition.

Podcasting is a rapidly growing medium, and the podcast charts are full to the brim with podcasts that explore different ideologies and concepts. What you need to do before committing to your podcast concept is scope out your competition. Is your podcast likely to launch into an already over-saturated market? Is there room for your podcast to grow within your niche? How can you add a unique spin to your topic that will entice listeners and keep them coming back for more?

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Produce a memorable, yet relevant, name for your podcast.

Once you have identified a niche that works for you, it is time to come up with a name for your podcast. The name of your podcast is an integral part of your brand, so it is likely you’re going to spend some time brainstorming in order to come up with the perfect name for you. Here are some tips that will help you to narrow down your podcast name options.

  • Use a specific, clear, and concise name for your podcast.
  • Think about what listeners are likely to input into the podcast search bar.
  • Consider the keywords often searched frequently by listeners.
  • Ensure your podcast name is memorable.
  • Make sure that the name you choose for your podcast is available!

Create eye-catching brand-specific graphics for your podcast.

The next step in The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast is to start creating and building your brand identity. For this step, you need to create brand-specific and eye-catching graphics and logos that complement your podcast’s niche and content. These graphics will appear on your social media profiles, as well as the podcast thumbnail on podcast charts, so be sure to make it as appealing as possible.

Use an online graphics tool such as Canva to design your brand’s graphics, but bear in mind that as your podcast evolves, your branding is likely to evolve with it.

It’s time to decide how to format your podcast, and how often new episodes are released.

I cannot stress enough how important it is to create a sustainable content plan for podcasters. Just like any other content creator, you need to consider the time that it takes to make, edit, and market your content. Is it really feasible for you to script, film, record, edit, and market a new podcast episode every week? If you are taking a big dive and trying to make podcasting your main earner, this may work for you. However, if you are juggling other responsibilities as well as committing to a tight schedule, you may start to feel overwhelmed quite quickly.

This leads me nicely onto my next point – how many hosts are you going to have? Going solo means that you only have to organise yourself, however it also means that all the responsibilities of creating, editing, and marketing the podcast also fall solely on you.

On the other hand, if you are planning to co-host a podcast, you will need to ensure that you keep your group of hosts small and ensure you’re able to consistently schedule time to deliver top-quality podcasts in a time frame that suits you all.

According to Buzzsprout Platform Statistics, the optimal length for a podcast episode is between 20 and 40 minutes and the most common publishing frequencies are every 8 – 14 days. Remember this when producing your content plan.

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Invest in podcast equipment and software

When deciding to start a podcast, one of the first things that you are probably going to think about is the type of equipment you’re going to need.

Thankfully, there’s no need to rush out to the shops and pick up the best the money can buy; in fact, it’s possible to create an extremely successful podcast using a basic, simple set up. If you are planning on monetising your podcast, it may be best to start with a simple set up and re-invest your profits into upgrading your equipment as your podcast grows.

For now, let’s take a closer look at the basic equipment needed to start podcasting:

  • A podcasting microphone. If you are planning on doing your podcast solo, you will only need to pick up one microphone. The TONOR USB microphone is an affordable first choice for beginners (£26.92*), plus it comes with a tripod stand pop filter, and shock mount. Additionally, there is no need to install extra software due to the microphone’s plug and play feature. If you’re looking to go all-out and seriously invest in your podcasting game, the Elgato Wave:3 is the microphone for you! Again, this is a plug and play microphone and records premium quality sound. It comes with free mixer software, anti-distortion technology, and many more professional features.
  • Headphones. Any old headphones will do, but if you want to create a professional studio from which to record, it may be worth investing in good quality over-ear headphones. I recommend the M-Audio HDH40 studio headphones priced at £34.99*. These headphones are a real bargain considering the quality that you will get!
  • Podcast editing software. After you have recorded your podcast, you are going to need to edit it. Editing a podcast isn’t too taxing, as there are only a few minor tweaks that you will need to make (I’ll dive into editing a little more later on). There are a few podcast editing options available, some are even free, like Audacity.
  • A camera (if recording visuals as well). When looking for a camera to record your podcasting moments, remember to choose one that records in at least 1080p and has an autofocus function. The Logitech Brio Stream Webcam is a popular choice among podcasters thanks to it’s ultra 4k HD video quality, auto light correction, wide angle lens, and other professional features. It is a tad on the pricey side – coming it at around £171, but for the quality of the visuals you will get, it’s well worth the money!

Choose the right podcast editing software for you

It is easy to make a few mistakes when recording, and you may not even have realised that you’ve included them. Just think about all the times you probably pause mid-sentence and say, “uhm,” stutter, or simply say the wrong thing. Listeners are not going to want to listen to you constantly interrupting yourself or hear long moments of silence as you try and get yourself back on track. That is where the editing software comes in.

Editing your podcast is going to be easier than you imagined, no matter how many mistakes you’ve made. You are going to want to listen to your recordings more than once. The first time you edit your episodes, you are going to be looking out for stammers and mistakes and edit them out. Use the fade function to seamlessly tie two pieces of audio together to ensure your podcast flows smoothly.

The second time you go through your recording, you will be listening out for any distractions or unwanted noises that have cropped up in the background.

After you have cleaned up the audio, remember to pre-record a catchy intro and outro for your podcast that tells listeners who you are, what your podcast is called, and what it’s all about.

  • Free podcast editing software. There are a few free editing options for podcasters who are just starting out, but these may not be the easiest and most user-friendly options. If you are looking to try your hand at some free editing, take a look at Audacity, AudioDirector, WavePad, or Podcastle.
  • Premium podcast editing software. For the average podcaster, there are a lot of premium options available. It is important that you do your research, as some options may be a little too complex for a beginner. Platforms such as Adobe Audition are amazing and can help creators to produce extremely professional podcasts, but the software is also a little overkill for a beginner podcaster. Alitu is an easy and quick software option, or you may also want to investigate other premium options such as Hindenburg PRO.

Finally, it is time to record some episodes!

Hurray, we are finally at the point where you can start recording! Before you dive into recording your first episode however, it is best to do a few test recordings in different positions. Moving your set up around and changing the position of your microphone will help you to figure out where you are able to achieve the best audio quality. Talk in a normal and consistent voice and decide where to place your microphone after listening back to the recordings.

Launching your podcast.

Hurray, the time to launch your podcast has finally come! Once you have recorded your first episode (you may also wish to pre-record a few more so that you can start scheduling them) it’s time to find a podcast host. Podcast hosting platforms are sometimes referred to as media hosts and are a platform used to store your audio files, set up your episodes, and distribute your podcast to the world. There’s no need to worry about specifically reaching out to Apple Podcasts or Spotify as the host will do this for you.

Research podcast hosting platforms to find the right one for you. Try scoping out hosts such as Alitu,, and Captivate.

Marketing your podcast and growing your audience.

Your podcast has been recorded, edited, and the graphics have been created. It is time to launch your podcast and market it so that people can find you!

Some podcasters prefer the grand entrance into the podcasting world. Social media is set up before the official podcast launch to get the word out about the new podcast and hype it up. Others prefer a softer launch, only marketing once the podcast has officially been released to the public.

That’s it! Are you raring to go?

Phew – that’s it! You now know everything you need to know to start a podcast!

Do not forget to bookmark The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Podcast so that you can easily pop back and refer to segments and plan your next step.

Good luck with your new podcast!

Rachael is a 31 year old mum to 10 year old Luke and 5 year old Oscar. She lives in England and writes about family life, crafts, recipes, parenting wins(and fails), as well as travel, days out, fashion and living the frugal lifestyle.

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