How to Create a Popular Podcast

(Last Updated On: December 13, 2021)

So you want to be podcast famous, do you?

If you’re ready to become a podcast sensation, it will take more than just being able to talk. Anyone can start a podcast, but not everyone has what it takes to make a popular one.

If you’re interested in creating a popular podcast, I’ll walk you through the process step-by-step.

Coming Up With an Idea For Launching

First, come up with an idea for your podcast. Everyone has an idea for a show, but not all good ideas are created equal.

A popular podcast must provide value to its listeners or viewers. If you can’t think of anything new or inspiring to talk about, find something interesting and ask questions on the topic instead. Your listeners will want to know the answers to your questions.


How Much Does It Cost To Start a Podcast?

Next, you’ll need to come up with some startup costs. Podcasting is becoming so popular that many people are entering the market with new shows every day.

Someone doesn’t need to spend a lot of money anymore to start their own podcast.

Many podcasters simply use an old computer or laptop connected to a small USB microphone to create their shows.

Equipment Costs

Anyone can go online and purchase a USB microphone for around $30-$60 that will work well enough to start a podcast with.

Although a basic mic will work, you might consider investing in something better if you want to be podcast famous.

You should expect to pay around $100-$400 for a decent mic.

Many people will suggest you purchase an XLR microphone and shock mount because they can help with audio quality; however, stick to the USB models if you want to start your podcast as cheap as possible.

You’ll also want to buy sound dampening foam panels that attach to your mic stand and help lessen the echo from your surroundings. This will set you back about $80-$120.

A boom will help you adjust your mic to any position you want. You can usually pick one up for around $30-$60.

Of course, you’ll need a computer to capture the audio from your microphone and convert it into an MP3 file that you will upload to your hosting service.

Any room can double as a studio space. Large foam panels attached to anything will help absorb echo and eliminate background noise from opening a door in the other room.

Taking your recording process to the next level isn’t very expensive these days if you use a professional recording studio.

You’ll need some type of recording/editing software if you don’t already own one. This doesn’t mean you need to purchase something costly like Logic Pro or Adobe Audition CS6.

Many podcasters have used Garage Band in the past, which comes free with every Apple computer. Several options are available, including Audacity, which is available for Mac or PC and costs about $50 bucks.

It’s also recommended to use an external hard drive to keep your recordings safe in the event of a computer crash. These are relatively inexpensive these days. You can find one with 1TB of space for $60 bucks online.

Choosing a Podcast Hosting Service

Now that you have a microphone and sound dampening panel, it’s time to find a professional podcast host.

Many podcasters will use the free version of a podcast hosting site to get their shows out there for people to listen to or watch. This is fine if you’re just starting out, but eventually, you’ll want something more.

A paid podcast hosting service will offer you advanced customization options, better storage space for media (graphics, audio clips, video clips), and more bandwidth. This means your listeners won’t deal with the dreaded buffering while listening to your show.

You can expect to pay anywhere from $5-$20 per month, depending on the length of your show. I personally use RSS.com Podcasting because they allow unlimited episodes, and unlimited duration.

In fact, you can use code RSSFREEMONTH at checkout for a full free month of podcast hosting with RSS. Get started for free here.

In full disclosure, I’ve been on their content creation team for a while now, and I’m even hosting some of their podcast episodes for Podcasting 101 with RSS.com!!!

Picking a Podcast Name

Now it’s time to pick your podcast name. Keep in mind that if you want people to come back for more episodes, you’ll need a catchy title that describes what your show is about.

Also, think about how listeners will find your podcast in search engines like Google. Will someone be able to find it when they look up information about your topic?

When you search “podcast” or “gaming podcast,” there are hundreds of thousands of results that will make it hard for listeners to find you when they do this search.

A good podcast name should also let listeners know what type of content they’ll find on your show. Will it be a comedy podcast, news show, educational program, etc.?

The best way to figure this out is to list several ideas for names and ask friends and family which ones they think would attract more listeners.

Choosing Topics & Segments

Now that you have everything ready to go (hosting account, website domain name), it’s time to develop your show’s format.

Most shows will include multiple topics or segments which allow you to cover different things within your niche while still providing listeners with consistent content over time.

A podcast name should provide some insight into this, but it doesn’t hurt to add more detail about what each topic/segment is all about just in case someone looks at the title and doesn’t understand precisely what they’ll find on your show.

If you want to stand out, use terms like “The Best,” “#1,” etc., in the description of your podcast. If you don’t want to be as bold, you can use a word like “Informational” or “Reviews.”

Also, remember that people can be picky when picking out new shows for them to listen to, so keeping the segments simple will make it easier for them to follow along. If you get too complicated, they may give up before even starting to listen!

Searching Your Niche For Ideas

Now that you have a topic in mind, it’s time to search your niche for existing talking points and popular ideas.

This might be a “best of” list or a roundup where you highlight several different things within your niche.

In some cases, you can look at social media posts to find common questions people have about something, which is another excellent way to draw from the crowd when coming up with new segments.

Remember that talking about current events within your niche might lead to more exposure as well.

Newscasts are always looking for guests who can talk about breaking news stories, so don’t be afraid to reach out if something big happens in your area of expertise!…

Recording Your Podcast

Now that you have a solid idea for a show, found a mic and podcast host to work with, and recorded your feed’s intro and outro, it’s time to get started recording.

Most people use an audio interface rather than their computer’s built-in sound card to record their shows.

The best option is usually going with something that has XLR inputs since they will provide the best quality possible over USB microphones.

Be sure you get one with at least two preamps so you can plug in more than one microphone if need be.

Preamps are essential for getting the cleanest sound from your mics because it prevents noise from being introduced into the signal chain when they are plugged in.

For the best results, you should use a condenser mic for your podcast.

You’ll also need to get some boom arms and cables to connect everything.

If you’re not comfortable making all these connections, I would recommend getting a mixer that has everything pre-wired.

Mixers will come with additional features such as EQ knobs and effects units, so they cost more than an audio interface; however, they will still be cheaper than purchasing individual pieces of equipment separately.

Recording software can also help clean up your sound if it starts to get too noisy during the recording process. Sounds from different sources can be plugged into one input on your computer and end up in one track when you listen back.

Recording software will help make these types of issues easier to manage post-production. You can usually find a free recording program or download Audition from Adobe, their audio editing suite.

Editing Your Podcast Made Easy

Once you have your show recorded, it’s time to edit out any mistakes or unwanted sounds.

Depending on the software used for recording, some minor cleanup may be needed before you can import your audio into an editor.

If nothing else, always use noise reduction on your tracks to remove any background noise that might have been picked up while speaking into a microphone.

Sounds from your computer fan whirring away in the background can probably be picked up during a recording session. Using background noise reduction is a great way to get rid of annoying hums and buzzes that would distract from the actual content of the episode.

Noise reduction should leave your voice sounding clear and let you focus more on what you’re saying rather than anything else.

Be sure to cut out all dead air, too, because there is nothing worse than going back and listening to an awkward pause for several seconds.

Mixing Your Podcast

Once your podcast is ready for release, you may need to mix it down at a much lower volume level so listeners won’t blow their speakers when they play it back.

Some people like to boost their podcasts’ overall sound, which can be helpful if you want them to seem more high-end; however, most prefer not to boost or distort vocals unless absolutely necessary.

A compressor can help level off dynamics, so everything sounds consistent no matter what the volume is.

Most podcast hosts will have a maximum file size that they can upload, so be sure to keep it under the limit, or you may lose listeners if their connection gets cut-off before your show is done uploading.

You’ll also want to know what type of audio codecs are being used on your host. Most hosts generally support mp3 format without any additional necessary conversion.

AAC formats tend to provide better quality, but some podcasting services are not compatible with them…

It’s best to check with your host first and see what they recommend before deciding which one works best for what you’re trying to accomplish.

Be sure to save all your files as uncompressed waveforms (.wav) if you need to go back and make changes later down the road.

Mixing music into your podcast can be a tricky process and will require someone who has experience doing these types of edits before.

If you don’t want to pay for pro mixing services, several sites will help match musicians with podcasters for little to no charge.

Some Creative Commons-licensed songs that fit within your target audience can also come in handy when trying to add spice to an episode without spending any cash.

Creating Artwork

Now that you’ve got your audio recorded and edited, it’s time to make some artwork.

People like pretty things, so make sure your podcast’s cover is something that captures attention.

If nothing else, show off a nice headshot of yourself with a decent-looking microphone in the background. Keep the focus on you and what you do best!

Check out this post on RSS.com on how to create your podcast artwork.

How to Market a Podcast

Once your podcast is finished, you’ll need to get the word out there, so everyone will know it’s available.

Your website is the perfect way for you and your podcast to grow. You can use it as an extension of yourself, showcasing what you have in store for listeners and building excitement with key details about new episodes!

Remember that every time you guest on another show or mention what you’re working on in some capacity, that’s an opportunity for more people to discover what you do.

You want to make sure that you are building others up and supporting them before asking for support from them yourself!

An excellent place to start promoting your podcast would be podcast directories, such as iTunes.com. If people can find your podcast on their site, you will receive a substantial amount of traffic at little-to-no cost. Here are some awesome posts on how to upload your podcast to a few of them:

Utilize some smaller social media sites that you can create an account on and post about your show regularly.

Posting your podcast on related forums is another wonderful way to get more people interested in what you have to say because most of them are very active. You’ll likely get plenty of new listeners this way if the forum’s moderators don’t mind having links posted within their threads too.

Writing guest posts for other people’s websites can also help bring attention to your podcast, so it may be something worth looking into if you’re willing to trade promotion with others.

If you still haven’t landed any big-name guest appearances, then don’t worry because you can always create a mini-resource page with a list of related topics that your listeners might be interested in.

You can also try reaching out on social media platforms such as Facebook group pages (which tend to grow more relevant over time).

Lastly, creating a mini-resource page with links to related episodes is the perfect way to let your listeners know what they’re missing out on while providing them helpful information.

Be sure to add lots of links and social media buttons to this page for anyone interested enough to check it out after reading about something interesting they stumbled across while browsing through your site.

How To Become A Guest On Other Podcasts

Making a guest appearance on another podcast is a great way to get your name out there and create more exposure.

Reaching out to other hosts is relatively easy, thanks to the abundance of contact forms available on many sites.

There’s no reason why you can’t be on a whole bunch of shows, even if you’re just starting out.

If you want to become a regular guest on multiple podcasts, it will take some effort on your part.

Here are some tips for getting more exposure from your guest appearances.

  1. Know The Type Of Show You Want To Be On

Podcasts vary in topic and tone, so make sure you research the show and make sure your episode will not only fit in but add to the conversation.

Not only should the topic of discussion be something you’re comfortable talking about, but it should also come naturally to you.

If you feel forced or uncomfortable to participate in such discussions, it will likely come off as such for listeners.

  1. Prepare Ahead Of Time

You don’t want to send your appearance to the bottom of someone’s to-do list.

If you have some notes or ideas ahead of time, it will make your appearance on a show feel more special for both hosts and listeners.

For example, you could plan out some of your talking points or come up with some questions to ask the host and their guests.

  1. Be Prepared To Bring Your Best Game

If you’re going to be on a show, make sure you’re bringing your A-game.

That means you should practice talking about the topic beforehand and be able to handle any curveballs that come your way with ease.

  1. Make Sure To Follow Up

After you’ve had your appearance, follow up with the host and let them know how it went.

They will be more likely to have you on again in the future.

If you had a positive experience, let them know how much you enjoyed being a guest.

This will encourage them to have you back or invite you to other shows.


Pro Tips For Getting Famous Podcasting

Here are some of the top tips you will need to get famous podcasting.

Pro-Tip #1

Promote your podcast everywhere. This is the only way to ensure you’ll get more listeners.

Pro-Tip #2

Your podcasting topic should be interesting and informative enough for people to bother with it. If not, listeners will drop off very quickly.

Pro-Tip #3

Try to find a topic that hasn’t been covered yet online, then cover this topic on your show every week or whenever possible.

Pro-Tip #4

You need some social media followers if you are going to expand your listener base fast. It’s always better to have 100 true fans than 1000 who don’t engage with you.

Pro-Tip #5

Optimize your podcast for Google by including keywords in your show notes and episode descriptions. Keywords are essential to get high rankings on Google, YouTube, and other platforms. This will help you to get more listeners organically instead of spending a boatload of cash on ads for your podcast.

Check out this awesome post from Congruent Digital on exactly how you should be optimizing your show for search!

Pro-Tip #6

Never give up. Everyone gets discouraged from time to time, but if you keep going, listeners will appreciate whatever you can offer them.

Pro-Tip #7

Make sure your show is well documented. This will attract more listeners and also help you to communicate with your audience effectively.

Pro-Tip #8

Have a great email list for your listeners if you want to build a strong community and monetize at some point. If people can’t contact you, then what’s the point of podcasting?

How to Get Famous Podcasting?

The answer is to have patience and keep practicing.

Podcasting isn’t something that you learn overnight; everyone has to start somewhere.

If you are determined, it’s just a matter of time until you can create something extraordinary for yourself.

If you love something enough, people will listen. So make sure that your show stands out from the crowd by offering real value for listeners!

In Conclusion

Getting your podcast to climb the “top podcasts” lists is not an easy task. It will take some work, but with determination and genuine connection (to both topics AND audience), you’ll be sure to get there soon enough!

The best way to get famous podcasting is by staying on topic and engaging listeners as much as possible while also personalizing your show in a way that’s different from your competitors.

And most importantly – never stop learning! The more you know, the easier it will be to come up with something that people love.