You’re stuck at home. You’re trying to figure out how to move your business forward and you want to take action now. Suddenly, your mind turns to podcasting. You’ve heard of podcasts. You may even have a favorite podcast or three, but you’ve never done it.
Don’t worry, it’s easier than you think and it may be the best way to reach your customers.
“What I love about it is you attract people that are just like you,” said Dave Jackson, founder of the School of Podcasting. For more than a decade, Jackson has worked with businesses and aspiring podcasters to get their podcasts running or improve their current product.
Jackson recently spoke to Intentionally Inspirational founder Jason Wright and BM Customer Experience founder Brandy Montambo about some of the biggest issues he’s run into when working with podcasters.
The number one struggle Jackson sees with his clients who want to start podcasting is what he calls “Imposter Syndrome”. The, “Why would anyone listen to me?” thought that many new podcasters have running through their heads.
Jackson says with how much technology people use today, most people are skilled enough to create a podcast. Uploading an MP3 is just as easy as uploading a new photo to Facebook. Mixing audio is on par with turning down the radio in your car so you can answer a phone call.
It’s often “Imposter Syndrome” that stops podcasters before they start.
“It’s the mental hurdle of why would anyone listen to me a lot of times,” said Jackson.
And that usually leads to the next issue Jackson sees a lot of…
Get Over the Sound of Your Voice
“I’ve seen people that can’t get over the sound of their voice,” said Jackson. “That’s a science thing. When we hear ourselves, it sounds weird. The fun phrase is ‘bone conduction’. You’re actually listening through your skull. If you talk and put your fingers on your forehead, you will feel that it’s vibrating and that gives your voice extra base.”
“When you then hear it through speakers, now you’re just using your ears. It’s like somebody just unplugged the subwoofer,” continued Jackson. “People go, ‘Is that what I sound like?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah.’ And they go, ‘Ick.’ It’s like no, no, not ick. Just different. Has anyone ever hung up on you in a normal conversation because they just couldn’t take your voice? No. Then your voice is fine.”
The Right Microphone
A lot of podcasters think the best way to make their voice sound “just right” is to get the right microphone. The truth is, an okay microphone may be all you need.
“I understand that you have to find a microphone that fits your voice, to where you feel comfortable with the way you sound,” said Jackson. “But there are people that have spent hundreds of dollars on a microphone and then they’ll come to me and go, ‘Should I spend another $300 on this?’ and I go, ‘Is your audience saying your audio quality is awful?’ and they’re like, ‘No.’ and I’m like, ‘then no. You’re solving a problem that doesn’t exist.’”
The Biggest Mistake
As for the podcast itself, Jackson says the biggest mistake he sees people making is that they do not start a podcast for the right reasons. If your goal is to be able to quit your job in the next six months, odds are you’re going to be disappointed.
“When you first start, you don’t really have an audience yet, it takes a while to build that up,” said Jackson. “Any business, when you start it off, it’s not like, ‘And we’re open and oh my gosh, we’re out of inventory.’ It’s usually, not the case.”
To start a podcast, you need to find something that you’re knowledgeable about and have a passion for.
“You have to know why you’re doing it. You have to know who you’re talking to,” said Jackson. “We’re in the entertainment business. It kind of depends on some luck and timing and putting in that practice and all the other things.”
The Best Advice
And the best advice Jackson can give someone who wants to start podcasting is, “Be yourself, find out what works for you, what works for your audience and be you.”
Jackson covered a lot more in his talk with Wright and Montambo, Episode 186 including advice for entrepreneurs starting a podcast, what you can and cannot do in your podcast, and the biggest misconception listeners have about him.
Written by Erika Towne