Podcast like a pro

Nick Westergaard

I recently met Nick at a meetup where he shared some information on why you should consider having your own podcast, how to create your own podcast. I thought he did a very good job and I want to keep his notes handy on the topic so I figured I would do like what I usually do and publish my notes for others to enjoy.

Anyway, Nick is the host of his own podcast called "On Brand". The experience he shared with us was with a podcast that he did previously along with this new one just launched in January, On Brand.

on brand. Nick's podcast

On Brand. Nick's podcast.

Why should you have a podcast?

I did not take many notes here because it all got summed into this one statement: you should have your own podcast. It is becoming more popular these days as people are enjoying audio entertainment and news. You do not have to have all the time and focus like videos require and instead of radio, podcasts is like radio but what it's info you care about. This is the reason that I am starting to enjoy podcasts myself.

Nick showed statistics about how many people these days are enjoying podcasts and how they are growing in popularity year over year. It depends on who your market is of course, but Nick showed some pretty convincing information that made you want to start podcasting. If you want the statistics, they are out there.

I just started listening to podcasts very recently.

I am new to podcasts but I am already starting to get involved with listening to it. I just started listening to them a month ago and just today I added my second podcast subscription. I only listen to them when I am in the car but I drive quite a bit so having these two subscriptions are perfect for now. Just enough to entertain me but not overwhelming and turn into one of those, "Netflix queue" problems where I feel like I need to listen to a giant back log of episodes. Just my own personal view on podcasts for all you people looking to target me with your podcast.

I just started listening to podcasts because well, I thought they were extinct. I remember downloading my first podcast back many many years ago when I had my first generation iPod video (the one with the wheel you spin around you know?! Check out my phone below for a blast from the past.) I downloaded a few I thought were cool because well, I was a poor young kid without a credit card and this was free stuff I could put onto this new device so I worked as fast as I could to fill the entire 64gb hard drive on that thing with junk because well, I could! But, I never listened to them because they were lame to me.

It was not until the past few months I have heard people talk about podcasts again. Like, who started bringing them back? Have they been popular this whole time? When did this happen?

first generation ipod video

I had the black one!

How to start your own podcast (the easy part)

The easy part believe it or not is the tech behind it. All you need are these items:

  • A audio recording software to record mp3 files.
    • I personally use audacity because it is a great software and open source.
    • Windows has Windows audio recording software built in and Mac OSX has Garage Band built in so you should be good to go already.
  • Microphone.
    • Nick owns the Yeti.
    • Or he also recommends the Snowball. I have used these myself as well and they work really well.
    • A pop filter
  • An Apple and Stitcher account to publish podcasts to.
  • A blog with a RSS feed to publish new episodes to after every episode.
    • Nick uses WordPress and a WordPress plugin specifically for publishing his new episodes with. Not sure what plugin he uses as I use Ghost instead of WordPress but this plugin looks promising with the high reviews.
    • Nick is not sure if there is a way to manually publish your new podcasts to or to create your own sort of RSS feed if you do not use WordPress. There is a way though, not everyone in the world uses WordPress with a plugin and RSS.

That is the easy part. Record the audio, publish it online which then gets published to iTunes and Stitcher. Easy. Now comes the hard part.

How to start your own podcast (the hard part)

The hard part is actually making it. Writing the content, recording the content, marketing your content, etc. You should be recording your content 20% of the time and 80% of the time marketing it.

Your show needs to have an identity. A format your listeners will become used to. Why do they need to listen to this? How does it help them? What is the perfect length of time for each episode? How do you present it? Is it entertaining or informative? Do you do it once a week or once a day?

Each podcast needs the following information:

  • Name
  • Description. A two sentence description on the
  • Logo. Must be 1400 x 1400 pixels.
  • Sign off. A way you always say hello and good bye that you become known for.
  • Music for an intro and outro.

Think about getting the audience involved with the podcast more then just listening. Let them send you stuff and you talk about it on air. Read tweets from people every week.

Hopefully you found this information useful. It was a great meetup I enjoyed very much and was really all I needed to be able to create my own podcast if I was ever wanting to do that. If some of these notes seem kinda all over the place and you have a specific question, please reach out to myself or even Nick if he is not too busy.

Nick is a super super guy and very fun to listen to. Even off the air he has a great speaking voice! The entire talk he never said "um" and his voice was not monotone.