If you’ve been listening to the show for a bit, you know we keep it pretty upbeat and encouraging. But we want to give you the truth about what isn’t so easy and do-able as well. So when we got a question about the top things new podcasters are surprised by, we were happy to answer.
In this episode Tiff and Christine lay out the top 3 podcast misconceptions that they encounter regularly and what the truth about each is.
“These are misconceptions that you can avoid if you just educate yourself and invest in some planning and resources.”Christine Baird
- (1:03) Misconception #1: Underestimating time, money, and resources
- (6:15) Misconception #2: Audience growth over time
- (11:04) Misconception #3: How quickly podcasts can monetize
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- Christine Baird
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Transcription of this episode:
(auto-generated, please forgive typos)
Welcome to Think Like a Producer podcast. I’m your co-host Christine Baird
And I’m your co-host Tiff Tyler. Being in the podcast industry, being in the content creation industry. This is what we learned, and this is how you can get out of your own way and get started.
You name it. We’ve probably done it. This podcast is about bringing all the wisdom to you. Tune in weekly, to learn how to think like a producer.
Oh my gosh. Going back to, we don’t make mistakes over here, buddy. We’re always recording.
We never make mistakes. Okay. Welcome to a new episode of think like a producer. Today, we are covering frequently asked question wrapped in a different package. And it’s the top three misconceptions about starting a podcast. Now we’re guessing since it’s the start of a new year, a lot of you are thinking about starting a podcast this year.
If you haven’t already, or maybe you started one at the end of last year, and you’re still getting it going and trying to find your way. So we want to just address right up front for you. The top three misconceptions we see around new podcast hosts so that whether you’re dealing with them already, or you are trying to avoid them, you’re really set up to handle these with great expectations, realistic outputs, and also like actual tools to navigate around some of the problems that can arise. If these misconceptions are running the show. So number one, you won’t be surprised hopefully, but it’s pretty big. We get this a lot. People come to us and say, I had absolutely no idea how much time and energy and resources producing a show actually takes. And this is going to look different for everyone. So you may have already run into this, or you may not because you have a really simple, slim, easy to produce show, but to give some perspective, let’s say you’re kind of in that self-development personal brand business wellness space.
And so you’ve seen a lot of your peers in the industry have these shows that are on YouTube and audio and they’re ranking in the charts. And you just are like, wow, that is what people in my space do. And I’m going to do it too. And I’ve hired an audio editor and we’re good to go. Well, as it turns out to produce a pretty robust show where you’re doing high quality video, you’re managing a YouTube channel. You’re also doing high quality audio. You have an audio only podcast. You’re promoting it constantly on social. You have an email list, a blog, a website. It’s a lot of time. It’s a lot of energy. It’s a lot of resources, meaning team members and overhead. And this is something that a lot of people just simply can’t know until they get into it. Now we don’t want to scare you with this.
This is truly just a top three misconception because it’s super to see those flashy ads on Instagram. I see them all the time where it’s coming up in my feed, like, are you ready to start a podcast? And it’s like this beautiful picture of someone at home with their microphone. And you’re like, yeah, of course I’m there sounds too breezy, super easy. And that Instagram ad totally like maybe some of the influencers you follow they’ll sometimes grab their phone and do like an Instagram story and be like, I just recorded an awesome episode with so-and-so and you’re like, sign me up. I can do that all day long. Well, yeah, I mean that part of it, but what’s not shown. And what is oftentimes kind of the hard reality check when somebody gets into producing a show that has some, you know, meat on the bones, if you will, is that there is not just the time to record an episode.
There’s the time to plan an episode, the time to schedule an episode, the time to record the episode, the time to manage all the data and the storage and organize it the time to get it out to all the right teams and editors, the time to edit the episode, the time to proof the episode, the time to do a second edit of the episode, the time to plan the social assets and launch it and market it and follow up and then do it all over again the next week.
Ooof. That just like, my head just was like oh man . . .
Before you have a panic attack and you’re like, I can’t keep watching this video or listening to this episode. We want you to, for sure, check out the episode, we dropped just a couple of weeks ago about the actual roles on a production team and the all the different moving pieces that create a robust show that will really help you wrap your head around it.
But in this top three misconceptions episode, we just wanted to kind of address the elephant in the room that the actual time, even if you’re doing an audio only show simple, the actual time to produce from start to finish, uh, episode, let’s say like a 60 minute episode, it’s probably going to be two to three to potentially four times, as long as it took you to record it. Just the audio editing alone is going to take double as long. So you’re going to count two hours for editing an hour for recording. You’re probably going to spend at least 20, 30 minutes prepping for that episode, which could include scheduling with a guest or you doing your own work for a solo episode. Then you’ve got the actual promotion of it. And that might include making multiple assets or writing an email to your list. You know what, you know, your marketing channels.
And that’s just one episode. And that happens week after week, if you’re in a consistent posting schedule. So one of the big misconceptions is actually how much time, energy and resource it takes. And we already have some great episodes on the show to help you kind of get a good reality check about that. Whether it’s hiring the right team members or just understanding how it fits into your business. And we’ll also have more episodes down the line to really help you figure out the rest the best way to do this, but, you know, there’s a misconception we had to address it. Uh, it’s very likely if you’re thinking of like a big, robust show with beautiful video and really great audio and really great social promotion, you’re spending a lot more time than just that recording time. And you’re also spending a lot more resources as far as team members editing. And you know, it depends on what kind of software and equipment you’re using, but there is ongoing resources that you’ll need to using. For example, if you have kind of a studio setup with film, you’re going to need the cameras, the lights, the batteries, the cords, you know, there’s just more that comes into it. So misconception one down, hopefully we haven’t scared you off. There is a possible way to do it. Just don’t don’t underestimate the time and resources. Tiff. What’s the second misconception?
Audience growth, people listening to your podcast. Um, I think some people who are starting from scratch, who don’t really have an audience already a community already think that this is the one thing I needed and now I’m gonna, you know, go into hundreds of thousands of people, millions of people are going to listen. Cause I decided to start my podcast. Probably not. Uh it’s you know, I think I just want to bring it to the surface here. There are a lot of people that started their podcasts after they already started their community. After they had different audiences in different places, maybe they had a couple hundred thousand people on their Instagram. Maybe they had a few million views on Facebook videos that went viral and they were like, I’m gonna start this podcast. And all of a sudden, you know, they’re in the new and noteworthy because they had a community of people who are already there, who are ready for them to do something new and down the support.
Christine and myself are the perfect example of, we both have our own businesses and our own brands and the people, the first hundred people that are following us on our Instagram account are people who know us, not random people, not this huge community, people, people who know us already. And we’re like, Oh, now you’re doing a podcast course or educational kind of series. Awesome. I want to follow. I want to be a part of it. I want to support you. Well, think about that. Audience growth does not go from zero to 100,000 overnight. There is consistency. There is trust that you build with an audience. There is, you know, there’s so much data when you kind of like Google or just look up and search how many people convert from you, just even giving a free offer, a free, listen to me, talk free education, free, whatever your podcast is.
There’s a small amount of people that actually convert to people who are going to be listeners or who download or subscribe to the YouTube channel to the podcast where whatever platform you have and think about that as well. Christine and I decided that we were going to have both audio and video cause you know, I can’t do anything without video. We decided we were going to have both. So we are actually splitting our audience attention, a growth at this point, right? Like you might be someone who listens to audio, but you really like video more and you prefer to listen to our watch on our YouTube channel. And then we’re splitting attention and we’re splitting growth in numbers on different by kind of doing our best to be as widespread as we are. So anyone can find us. But that doesn’t mean that the audience is going to be a hundred thousand on YouTube as soon as it’s a hundred thousand on the podcast to different kinds of people.
So think about that. You know, misconception is I’m going to start, I’m going to hit, I’m going to go. And everyone’s going to be listening and watching. I’m going to get so many people to interact with me. And my mom is our number one podcast. Listener has listened to every episode, watches. Every video gives me all the critiques on how I can be better. I super appreciate that mom. Um, so just understand that right now in the beginning, you’re going to have those really core people who support you, but the audience growth is going to take that consistency over time. It’s going to take the production and that huge list that Christine mapped out for you that kind of gave me a, like a, uh, Whoa, a little bit on what it takes for each episode for you to get this done. So we just want to preface that it’s not to scare you.
It’s not to tell you that this is something you can’t handle, but I will be honest. And I will say it every day until like I have no breath in my lungs. I would not have started this podcast without Christine. I trust her. She has a lot of proof. A lot of years of doing this over and over. She has her own show. That’s been on for three years, very consistently. So for me, a newbie who, yes, I’ve produced podcasts, but I’ve never had my own podcast. I’ve never had to grow my own audience. I really, this is the first time in a while that I put any effort into a YouTube channel at graphics and design and different things. Having someone else, who’s a veteran in this who can support me even when we don’t get the comments, even when we’re starting out and people aren’t, you know, giving us that feedback.
We can give that feedback to each other. That’s been very supportive for me, even just in the beginning in the infant stage of this podcast and of this show. So think about that audience growth takes time. It’s not that it’s impossible, but we don’t want you to think that as soon as you hit upload, as soon as you get go, everyone’s going to come. It’s going to take you talking about it over and over again, sharing your story, pitching yourself over and over again in different avenues and different platforms to get that community in that growth. And eventually which Christine is going to talk about. If you decide that you want to make a living off of this, maybe possibly whatever, uh, it’s going to be a small conversion from that audience growth that actually converts to customers and paid and buying and all that. So think about that. It’s a misconception audience. Growth takes time. It takes years for you to get hundreds of thousands to millions of downloads. Even a couple thousand downloads could take a year for you to really be able to show up and gain trust and build your community. But I’m gonna let Christine blow your mind again here a little bit with the third misconception that we’ve seen when it comes to podcasting.
Okay. Number three, hopefully again, not a surprise is how quickly or not so quickly podcasts can monetize. And when we say podcasts can monetize, it means they’re actually generating money for you purely from your, what you shared on the show that could be sponsorships from outside companies. Everybody knows what that means. If you’ve ever listened to a podcast with an ad that runs, that’s what we’re talking about, or if money is coming in from you promoting your own products or affiliate products, right? So if you’re in the coaching space and you have online programs or monthly membership groups or books or coaching sessions, people can book with you and you’re promoting that on your podcast. That would be another way you’re monetizing your show, right? You’re essentially running an ad for your own services. Or if you have affiliate group affiliate agreements with people in your space and you’re promoting, you know, your peers products and you get a cut, that would also be a way to monetize.
So it all sounds really good and it is really good. However, these opportunities do not just magically appear when you start a podcast and the truth about sponsor ads will totally have deeper episodes about this, but on a surface level, I tell the clients this all the time, it’s generally not worth it for you to even consider taking sponsor revenue until you’re getting tens of thousands of downloads per episode, the numbers just don’t make sense for most people. So unless you have existing relationships with brands that you know, maybe you’ve had a lot of Instagram sponsored posts or you’re in a space where you’re already kind of a sponsored brand. It’s going to take a while before that sponsor revenue comes in in any meaningful amount, right? The stories you hear about podcasts, I was making thousands of dollars per episode, passive income. They’re real.
That’s true. That happens. Those people are generally getting hundreds of thousands of downloads per episode, at least multiple tens of thousands of downloads per episode. They’ve typically been podcasting a long time, or when they started their show, they had a really huge audience that had been well-trained and ready to receive a podcast. So sponsored revenue not appear overnight. It doesn’t mean you can’t monetize early on. There’s some great ways to do that. We’ll cover that in future episodes, but the big misconception about money in podcasting is the money does not just show up. As soon as you start podcasting for a lot of hosts, it doesn’t show up for the first year or two or three. We worked on shows that chose not to even start to monetize years in. They gave themselves a huge runway before they took outside sponsor revenue. Now, of course, you’re always welcome from day one of your show to promote your own products, whatever those may be.
But like Tiff just said, audiences take time to develop. And every platform is different. So just because you have a really robust engaged Instagram audience or Facebook audience or Twitter audience doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to come listen to your show right away or ever. So even the people who are listening to your show are not necessarily going to be the exact same people or quantity of people who follow you online or have read your books or, you know, are on email list. And that’s why monetizing a podcast is a bit of a different game. And it’s just a common misconception, because like we said earlier, it’s easy to look at those flashy, Instagram ads or posts by really big podcast hosts and be like, no problem. Start a podcast, monetize it in a few months and we’ll be good to go. We’re not saying it’s impossible.
We’re saying it’s very, very, very rare that a show monetizes in a substantial way right away. So hopefully we have given you some grounded-ness some reality checks and gratitude in your heart that you now are wiser than you were 15 minutes ago about the three biggest misconceptions in no way are we trying to dissuade you? We just want to give you the heads up. Like these are big misconceptions that you can avoid. If you just educate yourself, invest in some really good planning and resources and things strategically about how your show is going to not fall into this bucket. Tiff, anything last you want to add to wrap up?
I want to encourage you to start your show. Um, Christine already said it, this is not meant to deter you. If you are anything like me, there’s a good chance. You’re overthinking everything we just said and thinking you have to spend like six months planning out everything for this podcast before you launch it. It’s not what we’re saying. What we want to do is give you as much information as possible. We want to sort of expose you to the pain of podcasting a little bit more because we, like she mentioned earlier, there is so much advertising and you can do it. And yes you can. And yes, it is fun. Once you get into it, especially if you find a host, a co-host partner that you really love to hang out with and talk to you for hours. Like it can be a very enjoyable experience.
Does not mean it doesn’t take hard work or that it’s not something that you may not feel like doing, but have to do anyway, because you made a commitment to coming out with these shows or these episodes every week. It’s, it’s just a, a wake-up call. That’s all this is. But I would encourage you that if you are thinking about starting a podcast, give yourself some prompts based on what we talked about in this episode, we’ve talked about in previous episodes, why do I want to start this show? What’s the goal three years from now with this show still being alive. You know, if my podcast were to ever die, right? Like what’s the, my biggest fear, my podcast dying, which we talked about in that previous episode about why most podcasts die, just giving yourself some space to think about it. But I would say don’t mull over it for more than a month.
Like if you get to four weeks of, I’m not sure if I want to start all those different things. And I would say maybe right now, it’s just not in the cards, but if you’ve kind of spent a month thinking through these things, deciding who you want to talk to about it, maybe you even talked to a few people who, you know, have podcasts and you’re like, what do you think about this idea? I would say, just start, get it going, make the mistakes that you’re going to make. Even if you’ve listened to all of our episodes, twice, three, four times, you’re still gonna make mistakes. There’s still going to be a learning curve. Don’t let anything that you even hear online or what we say necessarily deter you from starting your show. Just be aware that it takes hard work. It is a free resource that you can have for your business or just for your personal self.
If this is just something you want to have fun with, maybe you’re not looking to monetize. Maybe that’s not the goal of the show for you. Maybe you just want to Mike and you want to talk and you want to be able to send the link to your grandma so she can hear you and hear the podcasts that you have. It is completely up to you, but just please don’t mull over it too much. Don’t overthink it too much. Just be clear and plan things out and start and just be ready for the imperfections that comes with starting anything new and anything you haven’t done before. But thank you so much for listening to this podcast on the millions of platforms that Christine has posted this podcast on. And also for watching us here on YouTube, if you’re watching the podcast, be sure to subscribe and leave a review.
It helps us to get in front of more people like you, who are looking to grow and learn about starting a podcast, but also leave any questions and comments you have on our, I think like a producer Instagram account below in the comments we wanted to, we want to continue to chat with you. And every episode comes from you. The idea is that we get to talk about the topics that we talk about all comes from you and your questions about starting a podcast or really launching any kind of media online. So if you’ve been listened to us for a couple of weeks and you’re like, I really appreciate you got to talking about podcasts, but actually I wouldn’t do a YouTube channel. Can you talk more about that? Or actually, maybe I’m thinking about, you know, teaching something that I know. Can you talk a little bit more about that? We’re going to talk about whatever we feel educated to talk about, but whatever you ask us to talk about, so please be sure to leave a comment and a question in any of the messages, DMS emails, we try to avoid emails, but any way that you want to get in contact with us. Thank you so much for watching this episode. Thank you for tuning in for listening to this episode. We appreciate it. Have a beautiful Thursday and we’ll see you next time on think like a producer.
Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Think Like a Producer. This has been a Worthfull Media production. Massive thanks to our team who makes the show possible. Worthfull Media for audio editing, Jorge and Veronica from Mosaico Productions for video editing and effects and Amela Subasic for our amazing artwork and graphics.
If you want to learn more about how to market, monetize, and grow your podcast, we have a membership group where you can get more access to us and feedback on your show. As a special bonus, you get free access to Christine’s DIY, do it yourself, podcast course when you join the group. Check the link in the show notes for more information.