Podcasting: Everything You Need To Know About Starting One

I've been a podcast host since 2017 with the launch of The Financial Samurai Podcast (Apple or Spotify). My podcast has over 200 episodes and over 350 positive reviews. If you want to listen to a podcast about everything personal finance, my show is it.

Since the beginning, The Financial Samurai Podcast has received over 1.2 million downloads. Each episode generates about 10,000 downloads.

If you want to learn how to be a great podcast host and grow your show, here are my tips.

How To Be A Great Podcast Host

Becoming a great podcast host requires a combination of skills and strategies. Here are some tips to help you:

  1. Define your niche: Define the specific topic or theme of your podcast. This will help you to identify your target audience and create content that resonates with them.
  2. Invest in quality equipment: Good quality sound is essential for a podcast. Invest in a good microphone, headphones, and recording software to ensure that your audio is clear and professional.
  3. Be prepared: Prepare thoroughly for each episode, research your guests or topics, and create an outline or script to guide your conversation. This will help you to stay on track and ensure that your podcast flows smoothly.
  4. Engage your audience: Encourage your listeners to submit questions, comments, and feedback. Respond to their comments and engage with them on social media to build a loyal following.
  5. Promote your podcast: Use social media, email newsletters, and other marketing channels to promote your podcast and reach a wider audience. Collaborate with other podcasters or influencers in your niche to cross-promote each other's content.
  6. Consistency is key: Release your episodes on a regular schedule to keep your listeners engaged and build momentum. Consistency builds trust and loyalty among your audience.
  7. Continuously improve: Listen to feedback from your audience and constantly work to improve your podcast. Experiment with different formats, guests, and topics to keep your content fresh and engaging.

How Long Will It Take To Make Money Podcasting?

The amount of time it takes to make money from podcasting can vary widely. It is dependent on several factors such as the size and engagement of your audience, the monetization methods you use, and the niche you are in.

Some podcasters may start making money within a few months of launching their podcast, while others may take a year or more to see any significant income. It's important to understand that podcasting, like any other business or creative endeavor, takes time and effort to build and monetize.

That being said, there are several ways to monetize your podcast, including sponsorships, affiliate marketing, merchandise sales, and crowdfunding. These methods can be used individually or in combination to generate revenue for your podcast.

Overall, it's important to focus on creating high-quality content, building an engaged audience, and experimenting with different monetization methods to find what works best for your podcast. With time, dedication, and the right strategies, you can build a successful podcast that generates income.

Related: Why Blogging Is The Best Business In The World

How Much Money Can You Make Podcasting?

The amount of money you can make podcasting can vary widely, depending on a variety of factors such as your audience size, engagement level, and the monetization methods you use. Here are some of the main ways podcasters can make money:

  1. Sponsorships: This is when a company pays you to promote their product or service on your podcast. Sponsorship rates can range from a few hundred dollars per episode to tens of thousands of dollars for larger shows with highly engaged audiences.
  2. Affiliate marketing: This is when you promote other people's products or services and receive a commission for any sales made through your unique affiliate link. Affiliate commissions can range from a few cents to hundreds of dollars per sale, depending on the product or service.
  3. Merchandise sales: You can sell your own branded merchandise such as t-shirts, hats, and mugs to your listeners. Profit margins on merchandise sales can vary widely, but it can be a great way to generate additional revenue.
  4. Crowdfunding: You can use platforms like Patreon or Kickstarter to allow your listeners to support your podcast with regular donations or one-time contributions.

Overall, podcasters can make anywhere from a few hundred dollars per episode to tens of thousands of dollars per month, depending on their audience size and engagement level, as well as the monetization methods they use.

Related: How Much Can You Make Blogging For A Living?

What Are The Best Microphones And Headsets To Use?

There are many microphones and headsets that can be used for podcasting, and the best one for you will depend on your budget, recording environment, and personal preference. Here are some popular options for microphones and headsets for podcasting:

  1. Best Microphones:
  • Shure SM7B: This is a popular dynamic microphone that is often used by professional podcasters. It has a smooth, warm sound and excellent noise rejection.
  • Rode PodMic: This is a dynamic microphone that is specifically designed for podcasting. It has a rich, full sound and is an affordable option for many podcasters.
  • Audio-Technica AT2020: This is a popular condenser microphone that is widely used for podcasting. It has a crisp, clear sound and is an excellent choice for those on a budget.
  1. Best Headsets:
  • Audio-Technica ATH-M50x: This is a popular over-ear headphone that is widely used for podcasting. It has a balanced, detailed sound and excellent noise isolation.
  • Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro: This is another popular over-ear headphone that is often used by podcasters. It has a warm, natural sound and excellent comfort.
  • Shure SRH440: This is a popular on-ear headphone that is often used for podcasting. It has a clear, detailed sound and excellent durability.

Remember, the most important thing is to choose a microphone or headset that fits your needs and budget, and that allows you to record high-quality audio in your recording environment.

Personally, I like the Shure microphones. They are affordable and work well. Any headset works. I just use the simple Apple headset that came with my iphone.

The Largest Listening Platforms

Here are some popular podcast platforms to consider:

  1. Apple Podcasts: This is one of the most popular podcast platforms, with a huge audience of listeners. If you're looking to reach a wide audience, Apple Podcasts is a great choice.
  2. Spotify: This platform has grown rapidly in popularity in recent years and is a great option for reaching younger listeners. It also offers features such as music integration and personalized recommendations.
  3. Google Podcasts: This is a free platform that is easy to use and integrates well with Google Assistant and Google Home devices.
  4. Stitcher: This platform is popular among podcast enthusiasts and offers features such as personalized recommendations and a premium subscription service.
  5. SoundCloud: This platform is popular among musicians and creators of all types, and offers features such as track sharing and comments.
  6. Podbean: This is a platform that offers a wide range of features for podcasters, including hosting, monetization, and promotion.

Remember, it's important to choose a platform that aligns with your goals and audience, and that allows you to easily publish and promote your podcast. You may also choose to publish your podcast on multiple platforms to reach a wider audience.

I use Riverside.fm to record audio and video of my guests. Then I upload my audio file to libsyn, which hosts my audio and sends my podcast out to all the major podcast platforms.

The Best Episode Length For The Most Engagement

The best podcast episode length for the best listening experience can vary depending on the type of podcast and the preferences of the audience. However, many listeners prefer episodes that are between 30 minutes to 60 minutes in length. Here are some reasons why:

  1. Attention span: People tend to have shorter attention spans when listening to podcasts than when watching TV or reading. A shorter podcast episode can help maintain the listener's attention and prevent them from getting bored.
  2. Commuting time: Many people listen to podcasts during their commute to work or school, which may last between 30 minutes to an hour. A podcast episode that is around this length is convenient for listeners and fits well into their daily routine.
  3. Depth of content: A podcast episode that is around 30-60 minutes allows for enough time to explore a topic in depth without overwhelming the listener with too much information.

However, it's important to keep in mind that there is no set rule for how long a podcast episode should be. The best length will depend on the type of show and the preferences of the audience. Some podcasts may benefit from shorter or longer episodes depending on the content and format.

Ultimately, it's important to focus on creating engaging and informative content that keeps the listener interested regardless of the episode length.

The Best Way To Grow Your Podcast

Growing a podcast takes time and effort, but there are several strategies you can use to increase your audience and build a loyal following. Here are some tips:

  1. Consistency is key: Consistently publishing high-quality episodes on a regular schedule is one of the most important factors in growing your podcast. This helps to build an engaged audience and keep them coming back for more.
  2. Promote: Use social media platforms, email newsletters, and other channels to promote your podcast and reach new listeners. Collaborating with other podcasters or influencers in your niche can also help you reach a wider audience.
  3. Optimize your content: Make sure your podcast is easy to find by optimizing your episode titles, descriptions, and tags for search engines. This can help your podcast show up in search results and attract new listeners.
  4. Engage with your audience: Encourage your listeners to leave reviews, ratings, and feedback, and respond to their comments and messages. This helps to build a connection with your audience and keeps them engaged with your podcast.
  5. Attend events and conferences: Attend events and conferences in your niche to meet other podcasters, network with potential guests, and learn from industry experts. This can help you grow your audience and improve your podcasting skills.

Remember that growing a podcast takes time and effort, but by consistently creating high-quality content, promoting your podcast, and engaging with your audience, you can build a loyal following and reach new listeners.

I publish a podcast once a week on topics I find the most interesting. But if I want to really grow my podcast, I should probably publish two or three times a way. The more effort you put into your podcast, the more it will grow!

The Best Time To Start A Show

The best time to start is when you are ready to commit the time and effort needed to create high-quality content and build an engaged audience. I always say the best time to start something is yesterday. So get going!

Here are some things to consider:

  1. Your content: Before starting, it's important to have a clear idea of what your podcast will be about, who your target audience is, and what type of content you will create. Take the time to plan your episodes and create a backlog of content before launching.
  2. Your schedule: Podcasting takes time and effort, so it's important to make sure you have enough time in your schedule to consistently create and publish new episodes.
  3. Your resources: While podcasting can be done on a shoestring budget, you'll need some basic equipment such as a microphone, audio editing software, and a hosting platform. Make sure you have the resources you need before launching.
  4. Your audience: Consider the best time to reach your target audience. For example, if you're targeting working professionals, it may be best to release episodes during their commuting hours.

Overall, the best time to start a show is when you have a solid plan, the resources you need, and the time and commitment to consistently create and promote high-quality content.

The Hardest Part About Podcasting May Be Getting Started

Once you set up your accounts on Libsyn, Riverside.fm, Apple, Google, Spotify, etc, start recording! You'll get better as you go!

You'll learn how to ask more engaging questions, find better guests, and promote your show to the world. I plan to keep The Financial Samurai podcast going for as long as possible.

In addition to helping listeners achieve financial freedom sooner, another goal is to create a huge library of audio content for my children to listen to after I'm gone.

For more nuanced personal finance content, join 60,000+ others and sign up for the free Financial Samurai newsletter and posts via e-mail. Financial Samurai is one of the largest independently-owned personal finance sites that started in 2009.