By Ash Brown
The popularity of podcasts has grown tremendously over the past decade. It was a new artform to express creativity. Prior to this, it was unheard of to have a radio program without a major corporation backing it. You don’t need a radio station. The world wide web does all the work with the click of a button. From independent music to fashion trends, there was always a lot to explore.
Some things never change. Today, podcasting is one of the most favored ways to make a statement. It’s a unique interactive marketing tool for entertainment blogs, food brands and so much more. Everyone wants to have a podcast. And they should. I can’t think of a better way to connect with a target audience. Just don’t go broke doing it.
The biggest mistake that I’ve watched people do is overspend before they see their first dime. Spending $5,000 on high end studio equipment before you publish your first show may be a waste of money. Especially if you don’t continue or things just don’t work out. If you can save a few dollars, do so. Don’t follow what everyone else is doing.
When I started ‘Ash Said It Daily’ in 2014, I had no idea it would turn into what it is. I was having issues with my job and my life was in shambles. A friend challenged me to start a new podcast on a different provider. I previously had a successful run with a podcast that I produced for an online brand. But I soon got bored with that format and left the company. I told my friend that my podcasting days were behind me. They said this show could be whatever format I decided. That thought sparked my interest. Hmm…my own format? What does that even mean?
I was then introduced to Spreaker. This free app was downloaded to my phone in minutes. It was so easy. And it didn’t cost me a penny. Without the use of a computer and microphone, I now had the capability to record shows wherever. Not only can the app be downloaded on multiple devices but I can incorporate sound effects during recordings. This was so cool and right up my alley. I’m by no means tech savvy but if I can do this, so can you!
Given, my show is all talk and no music. That makes it easy for me to record on the go. I can be leaving the gym, going grocery shopping or even climbing Stone Mountain while recording my show. Most of the time people have no idea what I’m doing. It just looks like I’m talking to someone on the phone. Why spend unnecessary money when you don’t have to?
If you’re just starting out in the world of podcasting, focus on content. That’s what really counts when building an audience. My first couple of shows were not good. It happens to us all. Don’t expect perfection the first couple of rounds. As you find your path, you’ll have quite a body of work to show for it.
Be consistent with publishing shows. In the beginning, I would publish shows weeks apart. That’s a common way to confuse an audience. If they don’t know when your shows are, they can’t support you by listening. Put some thought and time behind it. Then you should consider investing in this passion project.
While on this journey, you may discover that podcasting is not for you. That’s ok too. You’ll be glad you didn’t burn through your savings on something you didn’t stick with.
But if it is for you, plan accordingly. Build an audience with regular shows. Keep pushing forward until you are ready for the next phase. I’m proud to share that my show is available on every major platforms such as iTunes, iHeart Radio and Google Play. It was not overnight by any means. Hard work, dedication and belief in self can make anything possible.
Ash Brown is a gifted American producer, blogger, speaker, media personality and event emcee.