When I launched the Grit Meets Growth podcast eighteen months ago with Chris Cathers, we had bold ambitions for what we wanted to build. Chris and I had bits and pieces of a plan put together, but the reality was that neither of us had ever built a podcast before. It took a ton of online research initially, asking other podcasters for advice, and some trial and error to create what we have today. Over time, there were plenty of mistakes and lessons to be learned.
Here are ten things we picked up along the way…
- Define Your Message – The first thing you need to understand is your podcast’s message, or put another way, the “WHY” behind your podcast. Are you trying to educate, empower, or entertain? When you define that and then spend some time developing your podcast’s core values, you create a solid foundation to build from. You also set some immediate guardrails for what fits your mission and what doesn’t, which will keep you from going off-course.
- Understand Your Audience – Alongside understanding your message and what your podcast stands for, you need to understand your audience. Who are you trying to engage with, and what do they want from you and your podcast? When you develop alignment between what you’re trying to and what people want, you now possess infinite potential.
- Marketing is a Must – Even if you have a great podcast, it won’t matter if no one knows about it. It’s important to promote your podcast through various channels, such as social media, email newsletters, and online communities related to your podcast’s topic. Marketing takes work, and sometimes it can be challenging to get it all done. Create a content calendar, automate what you can, and when you’re ready, start to delegate some of this work. We’re using Sendible to help automate our social posting, YouTube Studio to prepare our videos, and Spreaker to distribute episodes.
- Consistency is Key – It’s important to consistently produce and release new episodes to keep your audience engaged and coming back for more. Being consistent can be challenging, but it’s important to establish a regular schedule and stick to it as much as possible. This will help you build your audience and create a sense of expectation and anticipation for your listeners.
- Planning and Preparation Are Essential – Having a clear plan for each episode and taking the time to research and prepare beforehand ensures a smooth and successful recording. When we record episodes for Grit Meets Growth, we have a good idea of what we will discuss together. When you include guests in our conversations, we have prep meetings with them to outline what we want to discuss together and what will add the most value for our listeners.
- Quality Matters – Invest in good equipment, such as microphones and recording software. We’re using Blue Yeti microphones for recording and Adobe Premiere for editing. We recently began recording video versions of our podcast and sharing them on YouTube. Premiere has been a fantastic tool to use for that and allows us to edit audio and video simultaneously, as well as clipping out portions to share on social media.
- Engage with Your Audience – Building a relationship with your listeners is crucial to the success of your podcast. Engaging with your audience through social media, email, or other channels can help you understand their interests and needs and make your podcast more relevant and valuable to them.
- It Takes Time to Build An Audience – The best advice we received, before we even launched Grit Meets Growth, is that building an audience for your podcast takes time and effort. During the first six months, we grew slowly. Today, we’re starting to harvest the seeds we planted back then, and the podcast is starting to grow quickly. It’s important to be patient and continue to produce high-quality content that resonates with your listeners. As you continue to produce new episodes and promote your podcast, you will gradually build a larger and more loyal audience.
- Technology Can Be Fickle – There are many technical aspects to consider when producing a podcast, such as recording, editing, and publishing. Be prepared for technical issues and have a plan in place to troubleshoot and resolve them. When we began recording with guests and changing our recording location, we ran into a few unexpected hiccups. Flexibility is key.
- Collaborate With Others – Inviting guests onto your podcast or collaborating with other content creators can bring new perspectives and ideas to your episodes and can also help expose your podcast to a new audience. Bringing in guests has helped us keep our content fresh and positioned us as being relevant within our space.
Launching and growing a podcast is one of the most challenging and rewarding things I’ve ever done. And, now that Grit Meets Growth is starting to grow more quickly and gain new exposure, that initial hard work is beginning to pay off. We hope the lessons we’ve learned are helpful to you as well!
Ready for more?
Follow me here for more insights just like this one as you begin working on your goals! You can listen in to the Grit Meets Growth podcast here or on your favorite podcast platforms. Episodes are also available here on YouTube.