How to Start and Launch a Successful Podcast | Mike Parsons | Skillshare

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How to Start and Launch a Successful Podcast

teacher avatar Mike Parsons, technology, innovation, and storytelling

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (1h 10m)
    • 1. Course Trailer

    • 2. Podcast Popularity

    • 3. Choose a Podcast Topic

    • 4. Choose a Podcast Name

    • 5. Create a Podcast Logo

    • 6. Make a Podcast Cover Art

    • 7. Structure a Podcast Episode

    • 8. Prepare a Podcast Episode

    • 9. Submit to iTunes and Spotify

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About This Class

Hi there! I'm Mike Parsons. I'm the creator of the Moonshots Podcast. I've been podcasting for many years and I started in radio over 20 years ago. Today My podcast has over 300,000 downloads. And I make most of the show itself - from artwork to post-production.

After doing more than 100 episodes, I am going to share with you all the lessons I've learnt Together we're going to start and launch a successful new podcast

Here's what we'll cover:

  • Picking your podcast niche
  • Design your podcast brand
  • Structuring and organise your show
  • Planning and submitting your show

Our project: Create a Podcast Show and Episode Description

Students: When we're done you'll be ready to publish your podcast.

This class is for anyone who has a story worth sharing and wants to start a podcast. And I hope to inspire you to take this first step.

See you in the studio.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Mike Parsons

technology, innovation, and storytelling


Since quitting university after seven weeks, Mike has gone on to achieve remarkable feats. He launched Australia's first internet radio station, lived in Europe and USA, claimed a Guinness Book of Record and sold his Silicon Valley Startup.
Mike is currently the Chief Executive Officer at Qualitance. Together with over 200 staff, he helps clients build future growth products - from banks in Europe to Ford Motors in Australia and Anastasia Beverly Hills in the USA.

During his time in advertising, Mike won many global awards - DA&D Pencils, Cannes Lion's, Effie's – even a TED award.

His talks span innovation, marketing and embracing change in the business world. He’s passionate about understanding how to unlock the value in Design Th... See full profile

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1. Course Trailer: Hi there, I might pass, since I'm the creator of the men Schultes podcast, I've been podcasting for many years now, and I started in radio over 20 years ago. Today, my podcast has over 300 thousand downloads. And I make all of the show myself, from artwork to post-production. After doing more than a 100 episodes, I'm going to share with you all the lessons that I learned. And together we're going to start and launch a successful new podcast. Here's what we'll cover. Picking your podcast niche, designing your podcast brand, structuring and organizing your show, planning and submitting your shot. Our project, create show, an episode description. And when you're done, you'll be ready to publish your podcast. And this course is for anyone who has a story worth sharing and wants to start a podcast. I hope I can inspire you to take this really important step to create your podcast. I'll see you in the studio. 2. Podcast Popularity : Why a podcast surprisingly growing in popularity and it feels like everyone you meet is token about creating a podcast. So if you're thinking the same thing, I'll give you a couple of reasons why. And we'll talk about understanding podcasting and why it's so popular. So podcasting is just like radio. You guys all know that. It's just great sound grab audio, but there are some key differences. Now, the, the thing that podcasting has done, and it is like, like Netflix did to television. You can really now start to choose your shows in podcasting your areas of interest, rather than getting a generic Radio Production, which is just 247 on rotation, you can choose your show on-demand. And the other thing that makes podcasting so distinct here is you can listen to it on your phone. Vast majority of people that listen to podcasts doing on their fine. And this is really important to understand what makes it not only unique, but also why it's become so popular. Let's just remind ourselves here two big things that make podcasting so very special. One is you can choose the most bizarre, the most things that you might be interested in, let say, abstract watercolor painting. I'm sure there's a podcast on it. But the other thing here is that even if you do like more mainstream content, you can choose which exact shows who your favorite personalities. And that's what makes podcasting so special. And of course, it's all consumed on your mobile phone. And it was without a doubt, a revolution that was led by the introduction of the podcast app on the iPhone. Thanks to Apple. This is obviously Boston, far beyond that now. But this mobility has some special characteristics to, let's dig into the two things that start to happen on podcasts because of its unique nature. The first thing is that most podcasting, as I said, occurs while people are on the gut on the mobile. And that means two things, commuting to work and working out at the gym. Now, what's really special about this because of the mobility, is that you get to play a part in the regular lifestyle of your listeners. If you're creating a podcast, what happens is you become part of a very structured routine of your listener, of your audience. So most people will commute a good four or five times a week that will hit the gym at least three or four times or exercise and get out and about. And podcast listeners often consume shows whilst commuting and going to the gym. And because of the irregularity, they become so very loyal to your show. So this is really exciting because you can often have a monthly, weekly, sometimes shows a daily, and you can buy a massive part of people's lives. Just think about it. They could be tuning into you every single week of the year. It's anywhere from 48 to 52 times in the year. And that is really key to understanding the uniqueness of podcasting. This is also one of the pots that drive the success and the growth of podcasting. Now the other one is, this is a super personal experience. Podcasts, as you well know, there all consumed largely through headphones. Now what this does is it creates a very immersive experience. People are listening to you with headphones on dead deeply immersed in the conversation. And here's the key thing. They feel like they're part of the conversation is a really powerful insight because they're listening to you. A bunch may be several times a month at a minimum, but they're also feeling like they're part of the conversation with you. And this makes it a really compelling experience for the listener to really enjoy and to really feel super satisfied from the experience of tuning into a podcast, they get to know the house. Night will go on to feel like they're part of a community. So why is podcasting in a super loyal audience And a very personal medium? This is really connecting you with your audience. Now I wanted to show you just an example of the feedback that I've got from my show. So you can actually really start to see how connected your audience becomes a being podcasting for several years. And every week I create the moon shots podcasts with my co-host mock. And this is what we got from somebody in Chile recently. Hi, I'm poached gays in the lands of Chile and discovered your podcasts accidentally when searching for Simon Sinek articles. Since that show, I've never missed one so far. I even go back to some of them to get inspiration from my day. Thanks very much for all your shows and work and I hope that you'll keep feeding our days with the inspirations. So what you can see here is this is from a sermon eight, 76. I have no idea who's sermon is never met them. But she can see how the show that we've been making really plays a huge role and the sort of positive feedback that you get. So if you hit the sweet spot, if you're podcast is successful, you'll actually get a lot of these Canaanites and they can be really hot felt genuine senses of connection that your listeners will actually have with u. Now, if we zoom out a little bit and you want to think about the popularity and why this surprising growth in podcasting. I want to get you a little bit excited here because I want to compare podcasting and blogs. And a right now there's well over 600 million blogs in the universe. And there's actually only about 900 thousand active podcast right now. What this means is podcasting has really taken off. But we are by no means at the end of this growth. And if you compared podcasts with blogs, even if podcasting only has a potential of half of that of blogs, then we're still scratching the surface. So here is the opportunity space. So I'm sure if you're tuning into this video, you're thinking or considering the question, Should I start? I'd podcast? Well hopefully what this does is shows you how much runways left in the opportunity for podcasts, creatives. Okay, I think you've got it. I think you'll understand why podcasting is really taking off. It's super personal was part of a routine. But hopefully, what I've shown to you is that we're only at the start of the podcasting boom. And I hope that this has inspired you to go out into the world and to create a successful podcasts. 3. Choose a Podcast Topic : We're going to choose your podcast topic. This is really important process. There's all sorts of, well, you might even say, unlimited possibilities, but it's all about finding the right one. And that's what we're gonna do together today. We're going to choose the right topic, the area in which your podcast is going to focus. K thing here in choosing your podcast category is to avoid being too general, it's getting a crowded market now in the world of podcasting. So you wanna make sure that you're not too generic because it will be impossible for users to discover. Yo shut, let's go out and explore how to find a worthwhile niche. To do that, we're going to jump in the podcast app from apple. And I'm going to show you how to create, find research and discover the category for you. And we're gonna do that in another directory of podcasts as well, which really will help illustrate some of the key things that we need to understand. The first thing we're going to do is we're going to choose an area of interest. And for me, something I've really been into recently is running. So we again create a running podcasts is it'll be a great example to show you how to go about it. So you can see down here in the bottom right-hand part of your screen running such a popular topic, they've even got a whole section for it. So let's dig in the Apple podcasts app. And what I'm going to show to you is how we can actually use this exploration. We can go into the actual podcasting app to discover what our show should be about. No surprise. We've typed in running. And it is a massive category of well over a 100 podcasts. You can see that there's a lot of papal podcasting about running. So if you just created a new podcast that is just about running in general and it's cold running. You can see you're going to have a really hard time being discovered. So let's do a few builds on this and I will show you how you can still pursue your interests. The thing that you're really interested in talking about and sharing via podcasting. But I'll show you how you can unlock your niche. Here's what's really interesting is I added to running this idea of Marathon. So running marathons. Now what we're starting to do, he is get a little bit more specialized. And because podcasting is still in pretty early days, what you will see here is when you add these qualifiers that you start to find that there is far less competition. And if this far less competition, then you've got a much greater chance of standing out. So you can see here that already the first show is bang on its marathon. The Guardian Guide to running gripe publish. Not surprising that they match the best. But you can see here across the screen a number of these mention running. And some of them were mentioned marathon, but far less. And this is really interesting because let's do a build on this. Let's get even more specific. Let's add a third qualify and do running marathon beginner. And here's the interesting thing. We can only find one match. Isn't that interesting? So there's only one showed that actually has that in the top and some of them pick up on it. You can see there's one other that's a Training Academy, which is a little suggestive of beginners. But right now we've only got a really strong match entitle with one shot by adding marathon and beginner to the kind of universe of running. We've got to a situation where there's this one competitor, which actually, that's really good. I like those odds. That means that if someone is a beginner and the thinking about getting into marathon running, well, you've got far more chance of building an audience here. Of course, depending on your view, your area of interest, your category might not be as popular as running. But it's really good to do this exercise or something that's really popular. You can see how you need to qualify the niche hearing. I need to choose this category. Well, we weren't gonna sit out on this adventure of building a running marathon or a running podcast by adding the words marathon and begin to it. We've never actually got really good chance of standing out. And actually you could complement this with some search investigation on Google. And you'll find that this is also a really good space for blogging and publishing as well. Now just to demonstrate this concept of qualifying and getting in the right sub categories. So you can get a niche that makes your chances of success much higher. I've gone to the podcasting index, which is an Open Source Index and it has over a million podcasts listed in it. But look what happens when we do the same exercise and we add the qualifies to running, this shows you the results for running and there was well over a 100 for them. As soon as I typed in marathon, I in addition, I've got less than 50. You'll notice here that I'm getting different results to Apple. But watch this when I add beginner. That previous show that we will listen to is not even listed here. There were no competitors on the podcast index. Now, take all of these with a grain of salt. But the rule still applies when you start adding these qualifies whether it's this one by actually having three actual terms, or whether you go for two. The point is this is a key thing to do for you if you want to stand out. Because if you just typed running and he used a plain old running podcasts, you are competing with so many other people. It's gonna make it incredibly had to stand out there. You have it used those qualifies. So pick a niche so that you can be unique and stand out and have low competition. Look one or two. That's no problem in terms of competitors. That was plenty big enough for several podcasts on a topic. Make sure that you really speak to the pains and gains that your audience might experience for beginners is it's a really good qualify, hey, because, you know, obviously running a marathon is super daunting, lots of challenges. So you're going to have a really good demand because you're talking to the challenges or maybe even speaking to the dreams that they have. And lastly, make sure you add lots of value. And we're gonna talk about that in future videos. But it's really, really important that you break things down, entertain people, informed people, educate people. But if you do so, you'll be on the way to having a really successful podcasts. 4. Choose a Podcast Name : And we're really starting to get into it on this video because we're going to choose a name for AP podcasts. We've thought about categories. Previously. We've thought about why podcasting is so lucrative, why it's such a big opportunity right now. And today we're going to really dealt the eye across the table. We're going to choose the name. And there's a lot to consider here. It's really important. You want to stand out, you want to have a unique name, but you also really want to consider the equivalent of search engine optimization for podcasting. I'm going to show you how to do that. Now there's two basic rules that I need to get you really into. The first of those is the plus one rule. I'm going to dig into that and I'm also going to talk a lot about using prefixes and suffixes to your podcast name so that you can be unique. Right, let's go back first one, the plus one model. Now, we're gonna use an example here of running throughout this entire series of videos, I'm going to talk about creating a running podcast. I personally really enjoy running. I'm not going to actually make this podcast. So if you get inspired, you can copy paste, you name it, it's o for sharing. The key thing here is I just want to demonstrate how you'd create a podcast. So I, for that, what's going to be a bat running? What we need to keep in mind is we don't want to be too general. What we wanna do is we want to start combining words together and there are many different ways to do that. And I'm going to show you how to do that. The other thing we can do is once we've got either to maybe sometimes three combinations of terms, we can also consider the role of adding some prefixes, suffixes to that. And that will really help us get a unique and distinct name. Because of course, in this case, we've got the idea of running. And there's going to be a lot of podcasts that have the word running in their title. So we need to play around with that a little bit. Alright, let's do the exercise. So the first thing I wanna do here is do the build. So you start with running. And for my example, I'm choosing Marathon as a kind of a subgenre category or a type of running that helps me get a little bit more specific. It helps me get a little bit more niche. And that's really critical because we don't want it just another running podcasts because there's already plenty of those. But what I'm going to demonstrate for you here is you can add a third qualifier, which could be a segment. Now this may or may not be in the title of your podcast. It might be what we call a payoff or strap line, or something that comes up in your description and your general copy. So we've got running. Let's add marathon and you know what? Let's add begin as to that. So running marathon begins, these are our three key concepts that we're going to build the name out of. Now you could also, just to show you how this model works, you could also do running gear that's comfortable. So you could have shows on shoes, shorts, tides, tops, hats. I mean, you could go all over the place. And this model you can replicate not only with him running, but you can see that any area of interest is going to have the General category. But then there could be sub genres and types. And then you can call that an audience segment or play around with it, like I did you have running plus k0 plus comfortable. And that could give you the opportunity to talk about everything from shoes to one. So this is the model that we're gonna go full. One I like here is I'm going to take the word marathon and I'm just gonna go for the would run for my podcast name. The reason for that is it actually, it's really just classic SEO. I just don't want the title to get too big, too long. I want to keep it as short Shop and sweet as possible. So Marathon on Ron are two words that I'm going to play with to come up with the name. The next thing that I'm going to do here is I'm gonna leave. I really liked this idea of marathon running for beginners is, is, it's really nice. It's very clear, speaks to an audience. Very important because, you know, running your first marathon, he's incredibly daunting. So this really works for me. So we're going to stick with the name, kind of terms of Marathon and Ron. But what I'm gonna do is I'm going to look for a suffix or prefix that will work well for that. And you can use words like marathon run, heaven, balks podium guru. Or you can actually my marathon run, get my marathon or you can start playing around with that. But actually, he's what I really like marathon run zone. This is short, tight and I think xi1 has a lot of good sporting connotations is very active getting InDesign and Cephalus. So there we go. We've got marathon runs xi1. And you know, if I think about Welcome to the marathon runs on podcast, welcome to math on R1 zone, where we get you in the zone. I can see this kind of working as a nice podcast name. Now, what I would then do is presented as marathon runner zone. That's the name of my podcast. And then I would just as a strap line for beginners. And this feels really tied with talking to the category of running. We've got the subgenre of marathon with code add a segment that's really tie. Now the crazy thing is, as of 20.521 on runs is actually still available as a domain name. By the time you look at this, I'm not sure that it will be, but hey, marathon runs is available. That really kind of closes the deal for me because we've got a really tight package here. We've got the name, we've got the URL. And I can really see this being produced in the show, hey, welcome to marathon runner zone, where he had to help begin is do this and that. I mean, that that really does feel like it could work well with radio, well with Podcast. So getting the domain and getting adult calm with it as well pretty much is a slam dunk. 5. Create a Podcast Logo : Now if you're just starting out, you're going to need a logo for your podcast. And so today in this video, we're gonna do is we're actually going to build from scratch. You going to watch me build a logo for a podcast. And I'm going to show you all the little tips and tricks and there's a few watch apps when building. You'll poke castle logos. So let's make sure we get it right from the start so we can be professional and build your audience and really enjoyed the success of a good podcast. What we're gonna do here is we're actually going to create our very own podcast brand. We're gonna do it in a literally a matter of minutes using natural. So you can choose different categories here, obviously way sport and rec. Now, the next step of this is we've got to think a bit about the personality of the brand that you can see here that there's lots of different ways to think about the emotion behind your brain. You can be innovative, energetic, bald, you name it. I think we might go for something like modern. Strong. You can choose up to three here. Maybe energetic is good for a marathon running theme because you need some energy exists of a marathon day. Okay, so here we go. We've got our business name, marathon runs zone, and we've got a little slogan, handful begin is not sure if we'll use that. Let's, let's see how that goes. But we can now simply, we've chosen the emotions were put in the nine. Now we can actually choose the different instances, all that. And I like choosing Social Media here on hatch role as the place where the logo is going to be used. And this will give us instantly, I mean, how good is that? That just put together a bunch of designs. Now, I know that they're not all going to be bang on, but just remember, we didn't have to get at Illustrator or anything like that. Let's see what we've got here. So some of them are using obviously some sporting metaphors like golf and soccer, which is not good for us, but there's going to be tons. So don't worry. Kay? So yeah, don't actually don't mind that ONE where there it's bit more iconic and not necessarily showing an icon of a figure running. I mean, we might come back to that. Let us see what else we've got here. Yoga pose is totally not right for us. This one's quite active. I mean, if you wanted to have like these icon just feels a little bit to standards may kind of done before. Say I kinda like this, how it's like a son, a horizon with the Finnish flag. And I'll tell you what, a marathon. Definitely, you gotta make it a cross that finish line. Whichever, ooh, that one's kinda, kinda a little bit more sporty. Kinda like that. That's a good, good 5B. Where else? Very iconic if you just wanna go something simple, marathon runs. So here we've got a choice. I like this one. The marathon runs on yellow outdoors. So it doesn't support payoffs and slogans at the bottom, but that's okay. And what we can start to do is play with this a little bit. We can have a look at the color sets. Ok, this is getting good at this. So yellow fills GU. I wonder if we can get a little bit more energy into this. Let's have a look here. So I'm thinking now really about also the cover of your podcast, the album. I said this feels really strong, dynamic and energetic. You could almost imagine, you know, maybe Nike would have something like this. Let's have a look here. Let's have a look at the icons. I call it like the, the, the icon. Let's have a look at the layouts. Let's have a look here. I think this what do we think? We prefer these footer on the bottom here? I'm not sure that I do. I think that actually I actually, that's nice. That's nice. We've got a horizon thing happening. K, what fonts? We could have. Just check out some modern fonts. That's alright. Let's have a look. He, not only that when I prefer this one or this one. Yeah, this one looks pretty good. Okay. So I like this. It's not unexpected font. I like the color set. Its energetic. Okay, this is great. Hey guys. There we go. We've got a logo. So we can download this. This is gonna get sent to us. This is a great, here's another variation I've done before. So really, really good. We've got now got our logo. It's distinct, it's colorful, it's iconic. And here's the great thing. As you'll see as we go through these different videos together, you can use this very small. One of the biggest mistakes that people make is they put in lots and lots and lots of small text into their logo that can't be read as a thumbnail. Okay? So golden rules, make sure it looks small, make sure it's iconic, and make sure it's colorful. If you do those things, you're going to have a really distinct standout podcast brand. And that gets you on the way to success with your new podcast. 6. Make a Podcast Cover Art: This is a bit of a hidden and dark secret of the world of podcasting. Many people do not make specific episodic cover-up for their podcasts. And I think this is something I've had great success with. And it's something I want to teach you how to do. First thing we have to realize is people make a bunch of mistakes with their opera. About what I've done here is I've taken three podcasts, running things, did church radio and keep track. And each and every one of them have made the classic mistakes. Big one for the first two, what you can see here is that when they design their arm, like it was honestly on a big screen. But actually the thumbnail of their outlook that appears here in the Apple iTunes podcast at it's so tiny, tiny, you cannot read it, so there's no point for it to beat it. In addition, this last one with keeping track, they've used a very creative phoned, but actually when it scales down, it's illegible. I really don't know what they are saying below their title. So these are some of the mistakes that people make when they're making their artwork. But he's the big opportunity. This is the outlook and cover up from my podcast, The moon shots podcasts. And what you can see here is that there's two variations. You can see here where we've got our show title and the person that we're focusing on in the branding of the show. Super clean, supermen and minimal, nice clean shot of the person that we're studying. But what you'll see here right in the middle, we've got Tony Shay for with these episodes. But in the middle is the same material slightly tweaked to become social. Things that we can share via Instagram, Facebook, you name it, we can put it on our blog as well. And this is the key insight that if you make great cover on it can also be something that you shift socially and it's a great way to drive audience to your sharp, particularly new people can discover you, and that's how you can grow and that growth will make you successful. Let's go and do this together. So now we're in Adobe Illustrator, and I'd previously we use something a little simpler, which was hatched full. And now we're going to get into a little bit more complex tools. You might be able to use Canva, that plenty of other free tools out there. I'm just very familiar with illustrators. I'm going to show you how to do this on illustrated. So the first thing you wanna do is have a place to put the branding of your podcasts. And you can see down the bottom here, we're using the example of our marathon running podcasts that we're going to create from scratch together. And you can see here I've just put the branding below. You'll notice that compared to my when I put the branding at the top for moon shots, it's really good to use a top or bottom anchor point for the branding. Now, in this case, we're gonna put the episodic tidal right up the top here. And it's a little bit different to the outlook that we have for the brand itself of the podcast itself. This is now Episode odd, so we need to create time in space over here for the title of the show. And you might even want to put episode one there as well. I, in this case, I like to keep it minimal. So what we're gonna do. So we're actually just gonna strip that out and keep it nice and clean. So we've got our episode about the essential running gear. It's on the mouth on a run zone podcasts. You can imagine this is going to get scaled down a lot. However, it's important to realize that you can go up to 3 thousand by 3 thousand pixels for Apple, which sort of sets the standard for podcasting Outlook. And you could leave it like this. We could go right in the middle here. We could even have a couple of key topics written under here. So instead of episode, let's do this. Let's go back here. And we might have shoes, dot shorts, the types. We can have a lot of other different things. It's sort of like suggestions of what's inside the shot. Okay. Again, I'm not going to crab mine out. But what I would like to do is to show you a big trick. You could use. You could have other content in here, like a quote or like the big idea from the show, whatever suits you. But here is a really great way to add a lot more Kala and visual effect here are what we're going to go to a free website. It's called And it is great free stock photography. And here you can see there's a whole bunch of running photos that I've found. We're gonna take this one here. And what we're gonna do is we're gonna try adding a little bit more richness to our outlook here. And remember this is not any something that's going to describe the show and bring it to life. Very good for visual search. But what I'm trying to do at the same time as creating the outlet for the show is I want to create a visual that could be really powerful on social media. So what we're going to do now is we're going to add in this image. And what I've done is, I've got it here. I'm just working super fast, so I'm really just pasting this in and running quick. So I'm going to drop this at the back. Now, we oversee have these great color palette that we made in the previous video. What we wanna do here is, I think we want to drop the opacity right back. So let's go full. There we go. This is nice. And what I'm going to do is so this is kind of evocative. So I think we've got something here. What I am going to do is I'm going to keep the color balance in here so that those lines still work nicely. So if I put that in there, I'm going to get back to the opacity. So I wanna keep that brand colors here we go. Working here just to keep things. Actually, I think I can try this right back. There we go. So let's zoom in. And I want to select this and just get the alignment right. Let's have a look here. I think what we gotta do is we're going to turn this off for a second. Have photos bleeding out to the edge of the, this is what we need to bring across one picks. Ooh. Let's have a look up here. And. Would come down one mole, I k. We now is starting to look tie. What we're doing here is we're getting essentially with building the template. And this is pretty, pretty good stuff because once you've done this, you're going to be able to come back and do this many, many, many different times. He had done, don't worry that it's not every time is going to be so much work we do outward for asha every single episode, but we run it off this kind of template thinking and it is a godsend. So we want to come back over here. What, what I'm gonna do is crop this up so that we good place. And here we go. So now we're starting to get really good. So what we've done here is created a great episode cover on. Now what we could do is have a quote, this is the only thing that we need to change. So what we'll do is we'll, we'll keep we'll keep out title he we might, should we try and see if this looks good in the blue central running Gibbs, actually it looks a little bolder, doesn't it? That's good. Maybe what we could do is to get our format just right, is maybe we always have our outlook, something like this. So here we've got great artwork. What we'll do is we'll exploit that and we'll be using that when we submit at podcasts to Apple on Spotify. But in the meantime, what we're going to do is we're going to use the same outlook. And this would be the only thing that you need to change. The only thing that needs to change is as following is we go like this. And what we're thinking of now is making this something super social. And that's going to work really well. Thinking about Instagram. And maybe it's not about the geek. It's about a mind sit. So that would be kind of like a nice inspirational thing to have. If I'm thinking about social. Boom, there we go. So we're gonna get this nice and lined up. Ok. So this could be shared socially. And then we come back here and we turn, and this is our outlet for Ashoka. And there you have it. We've built the artwork. The only thing you need to do for the next shot is just adding a different image, just change that out and everything there is sit up. It's a template ready to go. I've done this in Illustrator. You could do it in Canvas, whatever you owe tool of choices. This will be really helpful for you because you'll have a template can be super foss and it can help you build your audience. Okay, so a couple of rules just kind of round out how we think about our, Make sure you stand out, choose those rich color sets. Don't overcrowd with all that information, make it reusable. That template that we set up means that we can use it for orbit for the podcast or walk on social. Hey, and you know what? Remember that you're going to be in a competition with every other podcasts when people search, have bright distinct colors that stand out and make people really drawn to your podcast. 7. Structure a Podcast Episode : Structure. That's right. If you want to be creative. In fact, if you want to just be comfortable as you produce your show, it's really important that you've got a structure that you know, you're working within. We'll make life so much easier for you because if it's a bit unstructured, particularly if you have more than one host, it's gaining it pretty messy. And if it's pretty messy, people aren't going to want to listen. So let's get into the right headset. Let's get into the right mindset. Let's think about structure. We're gonna do a bunch of things together here we're gonna talk about formats and some tools that you can use to structure your episode really well. And so you can be tight, well produced, and sound super professional. There's actually several different formats that you'll podcasts can take. It could be any interview, panel, discussion, monologue, chat, or story. Now I know you're thinking, OK Mike, I need a little bit more detail than this, but these are, for lack of a textbook here. This is either defector standard formats that you can choose from. Yeah, you could do a combination, you can be creative. There are some other obscure formats, but this is the five main styles of formats of podcasts. Let's dig into the pros and cons of h. Now, I really like interviews are great for growth because you can leverage the social network of the person that you're interviewing. But it is a high workload. Key things that I've experienced with my shows is that actually getting guess is a lot of logistics. And then one of the big things that people don't talk about much is that often your guests don't have a mic. Now, right now you're listening to me and I sound really good studio quality because I'm using a studio Mike was soundproofing and so-forth. Often your guests do not. So you get all sorts of post-production issues with sound quality as well. So be aware that if you're inviting third parties in for an interview, it can be some more work. Panels. Now panels can be really good, but much like the interview, but it's actually multiplied. The workload is higher because you're getting different people in on a group coal to record the session. Now here's the other thing. Once you get into three or more people and it becomes like a panel, the format can be hit or miss because you're effectively, you have three people competing to share ideas. So you only need one of those people to be a little unaware of pauses and listening and letting the flow of the conversation moves. It can be a hit or miss format, so it is quite difficult in that respect. Monologue, super-easy to produce. You can record on your time, your place, you're totally in control. But obviously they are lower Garth formats because you're not leveraging social networks. You'll really just sitting there and having a go. Now the other thing here is that unless you're a great storyteller with lots of energy, it can get a little monotonous. So be careful of the monologue chat. This is really good. In fact, this is the format that I've had a lot of success with. Two people always getting together and chatting about topics. Good, good, good for many reasons were chain. You do it Same time every week, every month, you get to know each other and you actually learn the art of having great conversation together, which is actually appealing to an audience. And the key thing here though. Is that if you don't have good roadmapping for your shows, you can sort of start to repeat yourselves a little bit, can get boring. So you've really got to spice it up to keep it really interesting and engaging. Last one, and these ones are really helped format for 2021. This is storytelling. So you've seen a lot of fictional work, particularly crime stories. Really booming, beautiful to listen to, but watch out. It is a ton of work, a lot of production, a lot of script writing. Be careful for that one. That one is really hard work. That's why you see that a lot of those are episodic. A bit like a, like a season in Netflix, they produce ten and I think they have a bit of a break. Okay, so there you have five formats. You need to choose which one of these works for you. Hopefully, I've illustrated some pros and cons which help you make good choices. Let's talk about length and frequency. Now, a big question that I often get is how long should the podcasts pay? How long should eat showed bay, and it could be in a range of ten to a 100 minutes. There's no definite rule here. Now, the key thing is you should only go for as long as you've got something worth saying. Something engaging, something new, something compelling. If you can do a great short Shop show in ten minutes or an epic 100 minute show. Then do it, but don't make the mistake of going for 304560 minutes because you think you have to, people will tune out. It's really easy to swap. To skip. The rule here is stick to where you actually have something worth saying. And next thing I want to talk about just quickly here is frequency. And when we started the moonshot show, we did roughly every month. And then after about a year, year and a half, we switch to once a week and am numbers really took off. So we saw that once a week was way better than once a month for a chat style podcast. It could be different for you. But I am seeing more and more that the week frequency is working better for most of the people that I know in podcasting. So you can do once a month or you could do a series as we've talked about earlier. But I would really get you to think about whether you can do once a week. And if you can, I think what you're going to find is that it's a really successful frequency. Now, in the end, whether you're a month, whether you're ten minutes or a 100. It's all about value. It's a real judgment area, it's a gray area. You need to think about what is a reliable, consistent format in terms of length and frequency that you can sustain your listeners are really going to love. A lot of people, get lost on the podcast and the conversation ambles along and it just doesn't have any life and momentum. And this structuring continues with this idea of a script. So let's talk about how you construct your, your show. There is some sort of outline or script. Now what I'm showing you here is this is the actual shall outline the script if you will, that we follow for the micelles podcasts and. Because mock and I know each other very, very well. And we have a chat format for an hour. And you can see here we've got an intro and outro and five segments. And each segment is a little audio clip, Pfam, a famous entrepreneur, innovator, and then we play it and we discuss it. So what we actually do for the structure of our show is we simply get this outline really crisp. This goes through several rounds of revisions and invariably we will have potentially a long list of ten items and we always kind of cut down to 506 because we've got this rough rule of six clips for 60 minutes. That's how structure and that works well, you could have three news topics that you wanted to discuss in 30 minutes that might work well for you. But what you can see here is that we've got a Title II and Title voucher and then five discrete chapters. So let's do an exercise. I'm actually going to return back to our marathon runs on podcasts. This is additional podcasts at we're just building to demonstrate how to build a successful podcast. And what I'm doing here is showing you how I would go about building this podcast. So the first thing I did is I came up with an episode about the running essentials that you need. So I've described it as Jane Doe and John Doe discuss the essentials you need for your first marathon listening is they shed their learnings about running shoes, jackets, food and the biggest questionable Schultz, whole tides, fumbling, pretty relaxed and kinda signaling it's entry level, it's full beginning is not too serious. So that's sort of my episode introduction. Quite nice to write one of those before you jump into the structure. Now if you haven't look on the right-hand side here, I've said, Look, let's make this a 30-minute show, and let's actually build this out at a full minutes per section structure. So we've got an intro where we have a welcome, what we're going to cover today and why it matters. Introns need to be great. You essentially need to tease out why it's worth listening and what you'll see here if you're running a chat show with two different highs and you always nominate which host will cover which points. Now to keeping our allotted time here, I've got six different topics, and each topic relates to one essential item to discuss. That's really important for marathon running. And you can see I alternate between them. And this would be a great chance for John to talk about shoes, Jane to talk about shorts and Harry experiences back to John, back to Jane and so on and so forth. This is like a really tight, well produced format that will make it pretty hard to go wrong. Now, the big thing you have to work out is can you stay on time? Lot of people like to talk and particularly as they're getting used to podcasting, they find themselves talking a little too much. And using ten minutes when they could have used just five minutes to make that point. Finding that structure is really important. And of course, at the end of the show you want to say thanks to you listeners. You wanna remind them to visit the site. You might have some sort of call to action. And don't forget to tease them what's gonna be in the next show. And they go, if I was producing the marathon runner zone podcast, this would be the sort of script I'd run. Now what you might find in the early days is you actually need some sub-bullet points in each of these areas to stay on track. What you'll have noticed from my one, we've done over a 100 episodes. So we really know the things that we want to say, but you might want to add that for a little bit more detail. 8. Prepare a Podcast Episode : Because today we are preparing first episode. So in the previous show, we've really talked about what's required in terms of structure and organize. You've chosen your format and so forth. But now that that's done, it's time to prepare everything for the podcast. And the better you are prepared when you're in the moment, when you're recording the show, it'll be much easier on you. The worst thing is when you don't have everything in hand and you're recoding, it's really stressful trying to find things while you talk because you kinda obviously led onto the audience, particularly during alive. So it can get really messy and distracted. So if you're really well prepared, then you've got nothing to worry bat and you can just focus on the conversation at hand. Now I will introduce to you the key weapon for you. If you're going to produce a shows, you're gonna get prepared for your show. And that is what I call our run sheet. Now, a run sheet should include a lot of different things. What I'm showing you here is the run shade from a recent episode I did for my podcast. This podcast was on petri Alinsky onee. And what you can see here is all the content that we gathered together and that we prepare before anything has recorded. That's the important thing. Let's dive into what should be in your podcast run sheet. And let me remind you. You should have a different run sheet for every single podcast shut. So Episode one has orangey, episode two has a different run shape. Now you might template at a little bit and you might change some things up at each show needs a specific run sheet. Let's dive into it and let's see how you can get really prepared to produce a really successful podcast. First thing, this is going to be really funny to hear, but actually, we still write the even though we'd done a 100 plus episodes, we still write the intro because a good stock usually means a good shut. So we write the first few lines of the show together for both of us, for mark, my caused and myself. And it just helps us get going. So it might sound a little trivial, but actually to script at the beginning at least to so you can, you know, make a good stat. Okay, the next thing that we have is production nuts. And these are timely. They're actually timeless production techniques that we use in the show. Particularly on how we interact with each other, the questions we ask and how we generally, Dewey's. Now I'm going to cover a bit later on in this deep dive into production notes because this is really the secret sauce or how you cook in the kitchen with your podcast. So you should have these once again, timely reminder. Now another thing that we do is we love to celebrate all the feedback that we get from our audience. So if we get emails. Social posts or writings in any of the major podcasting apps like Spotify. We actually thank our audience out loud. So the next thing we do is we have audience feedback at hand. And I'll show you later on like we can come and mentioned this sometimes at the start or the middle of Ashoka. But having that to hand, it's a really good one. Particularly in the early days, you really want to encourage and celebrate audience feedback because those reviews will help you rise to the top of the search rankings in podcast apps. Another thing we do is we discuss audience stats. So we invariably if we go into the top 100 in a particular country. So in this case, I think it was, I think it's Zimbabwe actually that we got into the top 100 for that show. A recent development. We welcome that community will say, hey, thanks, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, UK, Australia, New Zealand, whatever it is, we will actually welcome those folks and thank them for their support. Now, for our show, we will do a deep dive on an author, book or entrepreneur. In this case, a little classic is Five Dysfunctions Of attained by Patrick Latin Ci Ni. So what we actually have here, we have a background slide. This is just something for us to refer to during the show. If we're like thinking about something and we want to be able to find it real easy. We toggle between. Now, what you'll notice here is some shows and particularly people who just start make the mistake of putting all of these content in different places. Now, once you're recording, you do not want to be clicking around looking for files. You want to everything at your fingertips. And that's why you should have a run shaped with everything in it. In this case, we also have a key talking points, something I loved about the book. I think it's really important to talk about or even gathered here this chat where we can actually get into it and talk about it. We also have a list of topics, clips, or segments. Now not all of these will be used in the show. We actually have usually cut from ten down to five. But we have the long Lee said just in case we need it. And then that's followed by the actual time-based outline where we're running through a schedule of the show. You'll see the outline is there. And just in case we need it, we have the wrap-up voucher for the show. This is a great run shaped. Now you might change this a little bit, but this is a very good structure to fall. It's taken me over a 100 shows to kind of refine this. But it works really, really well and it's very easy to systematize your production when you walk like this. Now I did mention production nights and I just want to come back to that. What makes out show sound good, what makes it flow? You will start to learn these things about your show. Now, I just want to call out some of the ones that we have for the moon Schultes podcast is before we jump into an author, we always set the context because not everybody has read the book. Or if they know of the book or the author, or they know if the entrepreneur, they might not quite have all the information. So we like to say, look, this is why these posts and Matt is, this is why that worked. Matt is that, that really works format wise for us. We try and answer questions. What does this Poston done? How did they do it? What are their beliefs? What are their techniques? We always make sure we have an inspiring, closer and outright to the show with a call to action. And while we're recording, we actually write down the things that are really jumping out. And that's a chat directly between me and my co-host. And so this helps us really square and 0 in on topics that we think are really interesting. Ok. we're all about getting ready. We're all about preparing the show, file management. This is another big one. I went spend too long on it. But I gotta tell you, it is so important to get your files organized. Here is a little peek behind the scenes into the moon shots podcasts. Now, what you'll see here, we're just looking at my directory listing on my computer. It will sink to the clad. So you might have this in Google Drive. But what we do is we follow a really strong structure. We have all of the shows available with their explicit show number, the title, and then inside of each of those show photos, these are the photos you'll use the mice where you go in to say, I need the outward from Episode ten or you need the raw files from Episode 44. So we will even include in that folder this folder that I've highlighted here, which is the raw recordings. Because if you're not very deliberate about where you put those, the worst thing you could ever have as a podcast producer is to lose your source files. You'll know uncompressed or what we call lossless audio files that are WAV web. A format, if you lose as, Than, I mean, that is just a producer and editor. Westernized nightmare. So let's break it down. We have all of our art in a nice structure. We have the YouTube versions, Instagram, we have everything nicely labeled there. We have all the audio together. So the clips, the final audio transcripts, faunal clips, the recordings. And then lastly down the bottom here, we only have two dogs. They're both anchored inside of that folder. And that is a research doc. And then there's actually the show one-to-one run shaped that last fall that's highlighted. That's the most important one. Whatever works well for you. Keep it in a nice template ID system like this. Because the true test is when somebody else needs to access a file, they'll know where to look. And here's the killer. It's actually in the photo. This is some very timely getting organized, getting prepared for your show tips. I hope they've help. Let's just remind ourselves of those again. Make sure you collect everything into one sheet. Always write that stotting script just to get you going and centralize all your files. If you do all of these things, you're going to be so well prepared for your show. And in the future as people request artwork is you need to build different mini series. It will save you so much. 9. Submit to iTunes and Spotify : Submitting your podcast for the first time to iTunes and Spotify. It's important that you get this right. Lots of details. Here. I'm gonna give you a few of the most important ones, but it's really important. Take your time as you do this. So I'm going to actually go through how to do this. I'm going to show you the submission from my podcast. I'm going to point out some of the things that we've changed over time. You'll get to have the benefit of lining all the lessons that have taken me. A lot of time and effort and things that have happened over what's now over a hundred and five hundred and six different shows. So yeah, I hope I can give you some really good learning so you don't have to make some of the mistakes we did. So the first thing I'm going to do for you is just introduced to you this idea of podcast hygiene. I use a transistor. That's these guys over here transistor. There are many other options. Buzz spread is another popular one. What is particularly good about these guys is they offer you like a sort of a free entry-level virgin that's actually quite handy to play with if you're experimenting. So I know that a lot of people like Buzz proud as well. Personally, I've been using transistor for a long time. Before this, I used SoundCloud, which was far from optimal. And I'm going to do a whole show on statistics and so forth. And I'll explain a lot more about the difference there. But what I wanna do now is introduce you into how to submit your show. When you go to submit a show, you're getting presented with a request for all sorts of information. And it's really important that the things that you enter here for the first time will go a long way in setting the direction of your show and it's popularity and its searchability. We're gonna go through a couple of basic things here. First of all, your title. It is really important to give a clue in your title as to what people can expect from the show. Now, you know, we've come up with this idea on some of the previous episodes. This example, if we were creating a new show at the marathon runner zone, would be what we would enter here if we were creating a brand new one for my little pet project of creating a running podcast. But in this case, my show has been going for a couple of years now. Men shots podcast learning from innovators. So there's two things. He a moon shots is very distinct and so we don't call it the innovation per couscous is like a gazillion of those. But we changed the emphasis. We have a unique name, but then we have a little slogan or pay off learning from innovators. And we know here that there's learning pot is really important to our audience. And they love it. They love learning from those people. So this has worked really, really well for us. Let's scroll down. And this is the description that we have. You'll notice first of all, that is not that big, but it does a couple of things. First of all, is why we exist, is we'll want to help out audience be successful. And we're really discovering the secret source behind some of the world's greatest innovators. Giving our audience the chance to be successful really as why we exist. And it's really important that when you actually write your description that you start really strong on the purpose of your podcast, the Y. Now, what you'll notice here that we do is we are, each episode deconstructs the skills and behaviors that define breakthrough business ideas from Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, to emerging talents from across the globe. Where doing a ton of things here, we're talking about in each show, we're actually looking at skills and behaviors. This is really getting into the, into some of the details of what people can expect. And you'll notice here, deconstruction is how we do it and what do we deconstruct skills and behaviors. So within a few lines, we've just already given wide what and how. And just to sweeten the deal here, we've mentioned Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos. Now for your show, if you can in two sentences cover your what, your how, and your why. This is really, really good because people's attention to detail is incredibly low. Then knock in a raid hundreds and hundreds of lines of text. Be sure, be shop into the point. And my biggest advice to you is cover your why, how you do it, and what you're covering. We blow it out a little bit here. We just talk about joining the guess, make it filled personal. And then we actually kind of take it even a bit further, is we say here, uh, why innovate innovation matters and how you can do it too. So it's pretty clean, pretty compelling. We then remind them of our title and then we just have our social tag hash at sign whatever you wanna call it, just to pay it off. So people know that almost every single social or web handle is us mugshots dot IO, Mencius, AIA. So very good to remind them of that. Okay, so we've got our title and description keywords really important up in your title. That description, the what, the, how, the why. Let's move through and actually get into this in a little bit more detail. You'll see here that the artwork for the show, this is the main cover. I've chosen something that is super simple, iconic, and memorable and works at a very, very small sizing. We have a whole video dedicated to this. So if you're interested in, go back in and check that as well. Okay, the next big thing in submitting your podcast to iTunes and Spotify and is one of the most important things. Is your category choices. Now, what you'll get is you'll get to choose a primary and a secondary category. And you'll notice here that you get a ton of different themes, subjects, genres, categories to play with. You need to make sure that you've really spent some time in I chains checking out all of these options, go into Spotify, see which categories best represent your show. And the other thing is that you can choose a secondary category. And what has been interesting for us that we index really well in entrepreneurship. And that's actually really being kind of our sweet spot that we've learned. I know for other podcasts, they've changed their categories. Sometimes they've had to really kind of start from scratch. But think through your category, make sure the primary role that you are unique in this category. Make sure you're doing something at least a little bit different to everybody else. Because there will be every single month hundreds of thousands of new podcasts being published. And is so critical that when you choose your category that you're actually able to stand out, you got a fighting chance of being successful. So categories are really, really important. This will also be where if you are lucky enough to make the top 100 shots, you'll see yourself listed there. And once you make the top one or 200, you really see that you break away from most podcasts and you'll have a disproportionately high audience. So if you just choose to be in a category which is lot of competition and you're just doing the same as everybody else. You're going to have a huge, huge challenge, even making the top 500, let alone the topology heard. Last one I want to point out to you is your keywords. These are so important because this is your chance to be discovered by people who have never heard of your show, but who are interested in the subjects that you cover. So once again, do your research, look at the keywords that best describe your shop. And really look to find at least six of these, maybe up to ten of these that will really help you become discoverable. Ok, so quick recap here. Make sure that you take the time to get the tidal distinct and tease them a little bit, give them something learning and innovate, as in this case, really starts to showcase what we're gonna do. Remember for you a description of what, how, why remember these category choices? Research, research, research people, very important. And lastly, your keywords. There is also a bunch of other advanced settings. One of the things we do here is we connect to charitable, which tells us where we were ranking globally and in every single country. So this is really important and you can see here all the different services that you can link to. So we get really good feedback there. You can actually change the name of your RSS feed. That's all full. Another time. Lots of details there. I think if you get the things we talked about, right, you'll be on your way to a successful podcasts. Okay, so when we submit this golden Venn diagram, look like. Describe what, how and why your show works. Carefully select your categories and make sure that those keywords are done and do not submit before then. Yes, you can change in any of the major platforms such as bedspread in transistor. But do it right the first time. And that is all about research. If you do that, you'll be so excited because you'll be pressing the button onsubmit. And then your show will be listed in Spotify and iTunes. Stitcher and all the other apps. Transistor in this case will do it for you by sprout. They'll do it for you. They'll connect you up into all those services. And you'll be talking to millions of people around the world.