Starting a podcast could be intimidating given it’s your first step into the podcasting world. Until and unless you have someone with similar goals, who is ready to collaborate with you and start a partnered podcast, it is the solo podcast that you have to go with.
Hosting a solo podcast is no piece of cake. You have no-one to talk to, consult, and exchange ideas. It could be a bit time consuming as you are alone and have to cover all the domains all by yourself.
But, there is a loophole!
A solo podcast equals to total and complete freedom. It’s your show and you have absolute control over the entire episode. You don’t have to worry about someone else making a mistake and covering up for them because it is going to be just you sitting in front of that mic.
You can have your style and personal touch to the podcast. Isn’t this exciting?
Let’s discuss the proper format for a solo podcast to avoid any confusion.
- HOOK AUDIENCE — Since it is a solo thing, hooking the audience at the very beginning could be tough. You have to give them an incentive to stay and listen to the entire episode. They need to feel happy while they are listening to you.
A great start could be: A small audio clip (sort of a teaser) giving away some interesting facts that will be discussed in the episode. Pose a fascinating question to your listeners and ask them to stay tuned for the answers!
Another great start could be to start with a quotation that matches with the topic to be discussed in the episode.
2. WHO ARE YOU? — These 20–30 seconds is going to play the deciding role of whether the audience will stay or not. It is through this section that you can either make or break your relationship with the people listening to you.
- Who the podcast is for?
- Why this choice of topic?
- & What you are all about!
Make sure to subtly answer the above questions. Keep a cheerful tone especially in this part of your podcast. Make listeners realize why the topic you are discussing is of importance to them.
3. ONE CLEAR TOPIC- I can’t stress enough on the importance of picking and sticking with one single topic. It is very easy to sway away from the main topic and end up discussing cookies your grandma made for you the other day.
First thing you can do is look at what kind of podcasts are working, what are people looking for ? and what are they listening to?
These questions can be answered by putting in some work on research. Once you have listed down the topics, choose the category, closest to your topic. Check how many podcasts there are in this category. If there are more than 4 or 5 podcasts then you know that this category is working. If you figure out this piece of the puzzle, all you need to do is make your content interesting enough to make it stand out from the rest of the podcasts.
4. PACK UP THE EPISODE — Podcasters usually struggle with a good end for the episode and end up installing outro music moments after the end of the conversation.
This just leaves the audience with a question mark about whether is episode is over or there is still something coming up. If a listener has stayed throughout the episode, you need to give them some value towards the end.
- The best way to do is to summarise the entire thing and give a short recap of whatever was discussed. Some major takeaways and tips toward the end can also help you keep your listeners onboard.
- Giving a precap of your next episode is also a good way to conclude the podcast episode.
5. CALL TO ACTION — Telling your audience what you expect them to do is important else they might feel lost at the end of the episode. Like, subscribe, share, email you, visit your website, or give a review?
Make sure to include either of these in-between or at the end of the podcast. Encourage them to respond to your call to action by giving them an incentive via giveaways or rewards.
Always imagine that you’re speaking to a person while recording the episode — refer to your listeners as ‘you’ instead of ‘you guys’ or ‘everyone’. This will help you give a personal touch and build a connection with your listeners.