Many people put off starting a podcast even though they know it’s something that would really benefit their business and audience.
There are many reasons and some of them are because of myths floating around in our heads – or shared as unsolicited negative feedback from other people too nervous to start one themselves.
So let’s peel back the layers and examine these myths.
Myths About Podcasts and Podcasting
Podcast Myth #1: My voice isn’t good enough for a show.
The fact of the matter is that we all initially find the sound of our own voice on play back a bit odd. It sounds different from how we hear it in our own heads and different tends to equal bad. But that does not mean you cannot be a host of a show!
Not at all.
Do you find that people cringe when you start speaking in person? No. Didn’t think so.
So do not let your own perception of ‘strange’ keep you from starting a terrific podcast.
You can and should do it, just as you are.
Podcast Myth #2: I won’t get good guests.
Well, what do you define as “good”?
Do guests of your show have to be Oscar winners or Heads of State in order to be considered “good”? Or do they just need to share something of value with your audience?
Your listeners may be impressed by credentials and accolades for about 20 seconds, then it is a matter of ‘is this person entertaining and/or providing valuable information?’
And most people are quite interesting to listen to when they are talking about their area of passion or expertise. Plus, you can always edit a question or piece of the interview out if it does not seem like it will be valuable for your audience.
It’s your show.
As far as getting guests to agree to come on? Most people will be flattered and jump at the opportunity to share their message with your audience if it is a good fit for them. And as you get experience and a following, it will be easier and easier to book ‘bigger name’ guests in your industry.
Podcast Myth #3: There’s already X number of people doing a podcast in my niche! It’s too crowded.
First of all, having competition is a good thing. Whaaaat?
For one, it’s a proof of concept that your idea is in demand.
Second, competitors in the podcasting space can turn into cross-marketing opportunities. Invite your competition on the show to share their expert advice (relevant!) and vice versa. Now you are both getting in front of each other’s audiences for more exposure and growth.
Remember, there are no limits to the number of podcasts people can subscribe to; it’s not a zero sum game. Think how to make it a win-win.
And third, even if there are others doing a similar type of podcast it is literally impossible to do it the exact same way. You are two different people. You have different guests, different personalities, different styles of questioning, etc. Some people in the audience will resonate more with you and you owe it to them to make your voice heard.
Podcast Myth #4: It’s impossible to get to the top of iTunes New and Noteworthy.
Not true. There are a few combinations of factors that, if executed correctly, we virtually guarantee to get you to the top of New and Noteworthy on iTunes. We do it for clients all the time.
Look for a future blog on this very topic! But for now, just realize that this is not impossible by any means.
Podcast Myth #5: I’m not techie enough. And it’s too expensive for equipment.
Podcasting is great because while you can benefit from the use of some professional equipment, it is not 100% necessary. And even small upgrades can give such an improvement to audio sound that fancier devices are just not requirements.
The essential tools you need to start a podcast include:
- editing software to add your intro and outro
(many are completely free like Audacity and there are lots of how-tos to get started)
- microphone (if you want to improve the quality of your audio)
Check out the LogiTech ClearChat Comfort / USB Headset H390:
$23.95 and free same-day shipping if you use Amazon Prime. Just this alone will greatly improve the sound quality of your podcasts above speaking into your computer’s microphone or earbuds.
That’s it. You can manage it with a few hours of self-learning or training from us. And if you already own a computer and have about $25 to spare, the rest is just know-how and follow through.
Podcast Myth #6: My niche is too small
All the advice out there that says niche down three times. And then niche again. The Internet brings together even the smallest of audiences.
As this Forbes article put so well:
“Gone are the days of advertising to everyone, because they aren’t listening.
If your message is vanilla and one-size-fits-all, people aren’t going to respond because they are busy listening to someone else’s message that is spot on for them.”
It’s not the size of your audience that matters. It’s how well you ‘speak’ to them, their needs, their fears, their dreams. To further reinforce the idea that smaller groups who resonate are better than larger groups who don’t, read Kevin Kelly’s 1000 True Fans.
And do not forget something very important: when you think about your ‘potential audience’ your braing is likely thinking about those around you and adding on a bit more. When really, the ENTIRE GLOBE is full of people who could fall in that niche. It is hard for us to wrap our heads around this.
So, so what if there aren’t a bunch of your target audience within 100 square miles of where you are? Podcasts reach so much farther than that. Do not underestimate the potential audience outside your current sphere of influence or purview.
Podcast Myth #7: I will look dumb or unprofessional if I mess up.
Wait a second. This isn’t live TV. If you mess up majorly, that can easily be edited out! The audience will never know the difference.
The first time I was a guest on a podcast (IMA Leader Show) I was super nervous during the interview. Dominick asked me far more questions than appeared on the final show. He likely sensed my nerves and let us talk longer for me to warm up, then used the best bits. So do not let performance anxiety creep in.
Plus, people want real.
We have enough fake and polished talking heads on TV and heavily produced radio programs. Most people just want to feel like they are a fly on the wall of a real conversation that interests them. You do not have to be a professional journalist to have a well-liked podcast.
In fact, some flaws are actually a good thing. Your audience can better connect with you when you are real.
“The best thing about a podcast is it’s intimacy. You want mistakes. They make you more accessible.” – Dominick Sirianni
Podcast Myth #8: I don’t have enough time.
Whether you start your own podcast or we run the logistics for you to fully leverage yours, with proper planning and systems in place to stay organized and efficient, launching and maintaining a podcast can be far less time consuming (1) than you would think and (2) than other content mediums.
Let’s make a quick comparison.
Write a good blog vs. Record a podcast:
Think about the time it takes to write and publish a blog. You have to brainstorm a topic, look up keywords for title ideas, write, revise, source photos for the featured image and other photos inside the post, and revise again. How long does it take? No less than a few hours, I would say!
How long does it take to have an interesting conversation with someone about a topic you are both passionate about? 15 minutes?
Plop that recording in with your intro, outro, guest introduction, and some final thoughts and you have a solid 20 minute podcast to share with millions and millions of listeners around the globe.
Podcast Myth #9: Not that many people really listen to podcasts.
Americans listen to approximately 21,117,000 hours of podcast audio each and every day. Source
And it’s growing.
This research shows the increasing percentage of adults who have listened to a podcast during the last month.
And just think about the potential market:
- 30 million people have a gym or a fitness club membership in the USA Source
- 97 million people in the USA drive to and from work every day alone in their car, with an average commute time of 26.2 minutes Source
- Apple CarPlay: just rolling out, this allows people to listen to podcasts in their car as they drive More
- Spotify: Is jumping into the podcast streaming game adding it to its music and video streaming. Source
And these stats are just from the US!
And it gets better: For every 2,000 bloggers covering a topic there’s 1 podcaster and for women it’s 7,500 to one. “If you want to stand out from the crowd, podcast.” Rob Walch
Sure, but audio may go away some day in place of video and other higher tech mediums, you argue? I disagree. We human are not able to multi-task when we watch videos or play games. But we are able to do other things while simultaneously listening to audio.
I listen to my favorite podcasts as I wash the dishes, get ready in the morning, walk the dog, fold clothes, run errands, and workout. So does your potential audience.
Podcast Myth #10: You cannot monetize your podcast beyond getting sponsors.
Having a podcasts bring so many benefits besides monetization like: increased brand recognition, increased industry authority, improved speaking and listening skills, and the chance to open doors to networking with other top people you would not have otherwise.
But if you want to focus on the monetization potential, here are a few other options beyond sponsorships / advertisement revenue:
- private mentoring/coaching: your audience will start coming to you for help with their businesses and needs
- increased sales of your products and services
- affiliate marketing if you link out to a product or service that helps you, you could get a small commission on it at no charge to the person who clicked
- speaking gigs: as your authority increases you may find yourself being invited to paid speaking engagements
- and more!
It is amazing the opportunities that open up that you never could have anticipated when you move boldly forward.
Starting a podcast is not necessarily for every person or every company. But hopefully if you were on the fence before reading the debunking of these myths, you feel renewed energy and confidence to jump in.
Please comment below or email us with any and all questions and feedback.
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