Podcasts are a crucial part of the content marketing and distribution plans of organizations in almost all industries. You might have thought of starting your own podcast for personal branding or to increase your brand’s visibility but stopped because of the podcasting myths that revolve around the concept of podcasting.
In this blog, we’ll explore those myths and help you gain a different perspective on them.
So, let’s understand the podcasting myths that you should stop believing:
MYTH 1: Peak Podcasting
If you have ever thought about starting your own podcast or pitched an idea to start a podcast to someone, you might have received negative feedback saying that it has already been done.
This podcasting myth comes from the perception or speculation that we are experiencing stage experts call peak podcasting. A stage where everything that can be done is already done or being done. A stage where there’s no room to grow – a stage of saturation.
Why do people have this perception? Mostly because, along with the increase of podcast listeners, the number of people producing and launching podcasts is also rising. Currently, iTunes, solely, houses over 1.5 million podcasts [though not all of them are active]. It’s not completely wrong to say that there are too many podcasts being produced for people to navigate and discover new ones. But to put things in perspective, there are over a half billion blogs, 15,000 TV channels across the world, and over 500,000 movies made to date in Hollywood alone.
But that does not mean that we’ve stopped writing blogs, making movies, or adding new TV channels.
Then why stop ourselves from starting that podcast we’ve been dreaming of for the longest time. There’s still a lot of unexplored territory in terms of making the podcast content more engaging, and creating an experience with them and around them.
Additionally, if we put podcasting numbers against numbers of any other media form/platform, you’d realize that podcasts are at the nascent stage and will be growing many folds in years to come.
MYTH 2: A Podcast is Radio of the Internet
This is one of the most wide-spread podcasting myths but it’s not true. As a matter of fact, podcasts have more in common with OTT platforms than radio since they are available on-demand – which means they can be downloaded or streamed online as and when needed.
Radio and podcasts are from the audio segment but that’s the only similarity they have.
Radio shows are live, have a very limited shelf life, a fixed schedule, and target a mass market. Whereas podcasts are not live, have a longer shelf life, target a niche audience and don’t have a fixed schedule [consistent but not fixed].
MYTH 3: Well-know Guests are Important than the Host
It’s a common misconception that having well-known guests is more important than the host. It is important to bring some experts in but they are not more important than the host.
Bringing in a celebrity can create a buzz and you might experience a surge in your listenership but it doesn’t guarantee success. Your podcast is as good as you. At the end of the day, you are going to create and curate content for your audience. They might come to listen to their favorite celebrity/guest but they’ll stay for you, what you stand for, what you create, and bring to the table. So, if you think that to be a successful podcaster you must host celebrities on your show, then you are wrong. Create to add value, make it engaging and interesting, and you won’t have to worry about bringing in celebrities.
MYTH 4: Podcast – The Entire Business Model
In general, relying on a single channel to make you money is wrong and it applies to podcasts as well. Expecting your podcast to make you money from the beginning will bring you nothing but disappointment. Podcasts are generally considered a part of an elaborate content marketing and distribution plan. So, if you are starting a podcast to earn quick money, then you are in for a hard lesson.
On the other hand, given the versatility of podcasts, there can be a podcast for any and every niche and category, so it’s definitely worth investing in. But you need to keep in mind that the direct output can be networking opportunities, creating awareness about your brand, or establishing your expertise in a particular niche.
With podcasts, you need patience and consistency before you start monetizing it.
MYTH 5: Creating a Podcast is Expensive
It might seem like an expensive activity but it’s definitely not.
In fact, you can start creating a podcast today with less than $100 from which the recurring amount will only be of the hosting fees of the platform which will range somewhere between $10 – $25 [there are free hosting platforms available as well].
You might think how is that even possible, right?
Well, it is.
To start podcasting, you need headphones, a microphone, and editing software, or a podcast editing service provider. You might already have good headphones. And for the microphone, you can buy a decent USB microphone [costs between $70 – $100] which will do for the initial level of production. Editing software you can use that comes with a Macbook [if you have Mac] or you can use the free editing software available online as well. In case you don’t want to edit yourself, you can always go for an editing service provider like us [we charge around 75 cents for a minute and we give $40 in credits when you first sign up with us which you can do it from here.]
MYTH 6: Monthly Downloads is the Metric to Track
It is not wrong to track your monthly downloads but this metric is usually inconclusive and one of the vanity metrics in the podcast industry.
You can read this piece by Daniel Lewis, an award-winning podcaster, about monthly downloads – podcasting myth where he has already explained beautifully with proper examples as to why this is the wrong metric to track and has also mentioned the metrics that actually matter if you are a podcaster or thinking of starting your podcast.
If you don’t want to read the whole blog, here’s the gist – monthly download is an inflated metric since it shows the number of downloads of all the episodes cumulatively from the past as well as new subscribers and won’t do justice to the subscribers you’ve added or the new content you’ve produced. So, it’s better to use proper tracking services or keep in mind the details like past subscribers, new subscribers, etc. while tracking monthly downloads.
Anything that manages to become as big as podcasts or at least is on the path to becoming the next big thing brings in a lot of speculation and with that, comes misconceptions and myths.
In such cases, it becomes necessary to seek out facts and truths to make the right and unbiased decisions. Only then, you will be able to achieve the great things you have brewing right there in your mind.
If any of the above-mentioned podcasting myths were holding you back from starting your podcast, now you are free from them and can go on starting the podcast you’ve always dreamed of.
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