Recording a podcast is less complicated than you might think. Basically all you need is your voice and a smartphone. Later you can take a more professional approach by buying special podcast equipment, for example. But what do you need?
In this article we share all the ins and outs of recording a podcast. A complete starter's guide on how to record, edit, launch and publish a podcast. And of course we'll also give you our advice on the podcast equipment you need.
Not ready yet and not sure how you want to design your podcast? Perhaps we can help you with our guide to the making a podcast. Here you will find everything you need to know if you want to start a podcast.
Do you already know what your podcast will look like? Then this starter's guide will help you take the next step - recording your podcast.
Table of Contents
What is a podcast?
A podcast is an amalgamation of two terms: iPod and Broadcast. These two words gave rise to the word podcast, which literally means a radio broadcast on the Internet.
There are two major differences between a traditional radio broadcast and a podcast. A podcast can be listened to at any time of the day and is a stand-alone show. It is often much more in-depth than a traditional radio broadcast. A podcast often covers 1 or 2 important themes, whereas a radio programme covers many different themes throughout the day.
Podcasts come in many different shapes and sizes these days. There are short podcasts of 5 minutes, but also podcasts of two hours or more. Podcasts are presented alone or with a co-host, podcasts with guests or without, and every podcast has its own theme. There are also different occasions for podcasts, such as enterprise podcasts, or private podcasts.
To give you an idea of what a podcast looks like and what the possibilities are, here are a few examples:
Left On Read
A podcast in which Lisa and Luca talk weekly about all kinds of subjects in pop culture. They share many personal experiences and stories. They also involve their listeners in the podcast by asking on Instagram for topics they can discuss in the podcast.
Studio Formula 1
In the Studio Formula 1 podcast, Roy, Thomas, Marco and Chris take the listener into the world of Formula 1 racing. An independent podcast that analyses races and brings out other news in and around the paddock, with the occasional step outside of it.
How do you choose a podcast format?
The starting a podcast is not very complicated. You just need to go through a few steps before you can actually start recording your podcast. One step is to choose a podcast format.
For this, it is important that you answer questions such as:
- Which podcast format will I use?
- How am I going to organise my podcast show?
- Am I going to do it alone or do I want a co-host?
- Do I invite guests or do I tell the story myself?
And there is also a bit of design involved:
- What will my artwork look like?
- How will I design my intro and outro?
To answer these questions, we will address each issue separately below so that you will know what choices to make.
The different podcast formats
First of all, it is useful to decide how you want to design your podcast, i.e. which format you want to use. Choose a format that best suits the topic and purpose of your podcast. There are many different types of podcastsbut these are the most common formats:
Layout podcast show
Once you have chosen a format, it's time to think about the length of your podcast. Because how long can your podcast last?? Opinions are divided on this. There are 5-minute podcasts and those that last for more than two hours. The important thing is to choose a length that works for you and fits your topic and target group.
It is also important to think about the format of your podcast. What will an episode look like? Try to create a fixed format to create recognition. And take into account the different target groups: repeat listeners and new listeners.
An example of what your podcast layout might look like:
- Optional: Advertising space
- Conclusion and call to action
A podcast with a co-host
Two people are often stronger than one, and that's certainly true when making a podcast. Especially in the beginning it can be easier because you have a sparring partner who understands you exactly. It can also be useful to split up tasks. And often a co-host leads to a more interesting conversation because you create more interaction together.
However, it often requires more preparation, because you have to coordinate all the content. You often have all sorts of ideas about what topics you want to discuss, but they have to fit in with what your co-host wants to say.
You also have to take into account a longer editing time for the recording. As we mentioned earlier, the two of you have much more interaction, but this also makes for a much longer recording. As you can imagine, not all the information is interesting for the listener, so you have to remove these bits from the recording.
With or without co-host
There are no rules about co-hosting. By this we mean that you can invite a co-host one episode and not the next. Or you start your podcast solo and later on you can structurally add a co-host to your podcast. This is a free choice ;D
Presenting a podcast on your own
You can also present a podcast alone. This is very useful if you want to respond to current events with your podcast. Or if you want to go into a specific subject, share a certain manual or discuss the news.
You don't have to prepare much if you're presenting the podcast on your own. Basically, you just need to decide what you're going to talk about, gather input and you can start recording.
However, you often miss the interaction you have with a co-host. Or if you are at a loss as to what to ask or say, having a co-host sitting next to you is also very useful. He can step in at the right moment, and vice versa.
Podcast with guests
When you choose to invite guests to your podcast, you get the chance to cover many different topics without spending too much time on them yourself. You don't have to gather input on certain topics, but you do have to prepare yourself well for the conversation with your guests.
Someone interviewing in your podcast It is not that easy. Therefore, it is important that you read up on the subject and think of interesting questions that you want to ask beforehand. Also, finding good guests can sometimes be very difficult and take quite a bit of time.
Once you have decided on the topic of your podcast and the format, it is time to create a podcast artwork. This is a cover for your podcast that listeners will see first and give a first impression.
For example, listeners might see an artwork when they scroll through a Spotify podcast playlist. It can also be an image that people see on social media when they share your podcast. In short, an important image to make a good first impression with. But how do you create a podcast artwork?
First of all, it is important that your podcast artwork is of high quality. One of the best tools to create artwork with is, in our opinion Canva. Here you will find many examples of artworks for your podcast and you can easily edit them.
You can design your podcast artwork in your own style and taste. As long as it fits the topic and says something about your podcast. In the image below you can see a small impression of the diversity of some podcast artworks. As you can see every design is possible, so make it something special ;D
Some tips for your artwork:
Meet the design requirements
Look at the requirements of each channel you want to distribute your podcast on and adjust your design accordingly. Think about the pixels, resolution, file type and RGB colour space.
Design multiple formats
Make sure your artwork always looks good. As a thumbnail, pictrogram, on large monitors and in podcast folders on platforms like Apple, Google & Spotify.
Illustrate the subject in your artwork
Make sure your listeners know right away what your podcast is about. For example, if your podcast is about your company or a brand, always use the brand colours and logo.
Use consistent branding
Use the same colours, fonts and images you use on your website and social media. This way you can strengthen the branding of your organisation or brand.
Limit the number of words in your artwork
Let the image speak for itself and limit yourself to about seven words. A podcast artwork with too much text quickly becomes overwhelming and often misses the point.
Use your artwork for other media channels too
Use the artwork as a cover photo on social media, make it into business cards or use it as a website header. Use the design on multiple channels for recognition.
There are several ways to start a podcast. An example of what an intro might look like:
- Cold open (optional)
- Brief introduction
In the case of a cold open Before you start the intro music, you play a short piece of a conversation, also called a teaser. Often, this is done in sequence: you start the music and the 20 to 30-second interview fragment at the same time. You then let the conversation end before the chorus of the music.
Sample intro with cold open Motley Fool Money
You can also start your podcast directly with a intromusic and leave out the interview fragment. That way, you can start your podcast off powerful. Just make sure you choose royalty-free music. In another article you can read more about the rules of your podcast music.
After your intro music, you can have a short introduction of your podcast. Tell people what your podcast is, who is hosting it and what the episode is about. That way the listener knows what's going on in a minute.
Example intro without cold open The Ramsay Show
In the introduction, you can also call on people to subscribe to your podcast or follow you on social media. But this is usually reflected in the closing paragraph. This is often the most appropriate place for this, because the listener is clearly interested since he or she listened to the whole podcast.
A outro A podcast therefore consists of a clear call to action to keep the listener coming back. Furthermore, you close with a fixed music track and thank your listeners. It is also advisable to mention what the next episode will be about, to tease the listeners for the next episode.
And finally, a few handy tools where you can create and edit your intro and outro for your podcast. Our number one tool is Envato Elements. Here you will find a huge database of media; thousands of jingles, sound effects and music for your podcast. You'll also find lots of stock photos and videos. But also with the tools like Garageband, Adobe Audition and Logic Pro you can make very nice intros and outros.
Tips after choosing your format
To help you design your podcast in the right way, we want to give you a few tips from our experience. How do you create a good format that draws your listeners into the episode, keeps them interested until the end and makes them want to listen to the next episode?
Create interest in the first 30-60 seconds
A good start is half the battle. Have a clear, energetic and interesting intro to your podcast. Give a clear description of the episode so that listeners can immediately decide whether they find it interesting.
Ensure consistent layout and branding
Whatever podcast format you choose, make sure you always keep the same layout. This makes for a familiar format. Look at radio shows or talk shows on TV, they always have a fixed format. The same goes for the use of branding. Make sure everything you show your audience is in the same style.
Go in depth during your podcast
A podcast is often meant to go into one or two topics in depth, so the listener gets to know all about it. The listener often takes the time for this, so make sure you give them this depth with your podcast.
Your podcast may have a fixed format, but make sure there is variety in between. Even if the content of your podcast is so interesting, people need some distraction between listens.
You want to tell the listener a story so it is important to tell it in a fun and exciting way that makes them want to keep listening. Use literary storytelling techniques such as dialogue, monologue, voice-over, music and sound design.
Use good call to actions
Focus on the listeners in your podcast. All the information you share in your podcast is obviously intended for the listeners, but try to really connect with them too. A good time to make contact is for example during the intro or outro of the podcast.
How do you record a podcast?
You can use various software tools to record your podcast. You can use free software programs like Audacity or Garageband. For a small fee you can use advanced tools like Adobe Audition or Logic Pro. In another article we listed the best software for recording your podcast and provide a detailed description of each tool.
Record podcast with your phone
This way, you don't have to buy expensive podcast equipment right away. You can always buy more when you've been doing it for a while. We know plenty of examples of experienced podcasters who still use a phone to record their podcasts. A good example is Kim Munnecom's podcast.
Podcast of Kim Munnecom
Kim Munnecom is a life and business coach and owner of NEVER AGAIN on a diet. In her podcast she shares all her knowledge on topics like mindset, money mindset and the Law of Attraction.
Record Podcast Iphone or Android
Recording a podcast with your phone is very easy, both with an Iphone and an Android device. You do not need any technical knowledge for this and the quality is very good.
Do you record your podcast with an Iphone? Then you can use the Dictaphone app that comes standard on the device. With this app, you can also shorten, replace and resume recordings.
Are you recording your podcast with an Android device? Then use the standard voice recorder on the device. Also with this app it is possible to shorten, replace and resume recordings.
Record Podcast with app
In addition to the standard recording apps on your phone, there are many more apps available that allow you to record a podcast. We share a number of useful apps for Iphone and Android devices with you.
The best podcast apps for the Iphone:
The best podcast apps for Android:
Record Podcast remotely
Interviews are a common element in a podcast and sometimes it is not possible to get together for the recording. You can then choose to interview guests remotely. There are a couple of possibilities for this:
- You can use Skype or Google Hangouts to record remote interviews.
- Make use of special podcasting platforms designed for remote recording, such as Riverside. Een leuk weetje: zelf Hillary Clinton maakt gebruik van Riverside 😉
- Schedule a telephone interview to record the conversation.
Because you are dependent on many external factors when you record a podcast remotely, it is certainly It is advisable to always use a double shot. Have each speaker record his or her own audio track that you can later merge and edit. In order to lead the conversation and to be able to understand each other, schedule an online interview.
Don't have special podcast equipment? Don't worry! You can also record these with your phone. Just put your phone on a pile of books to bring it closer to your mouth and start recording ;D
Record Podcast tips
Recording a podcast does not have to be expensive and difficult, but you have to take a number of things into account. Good preparation, the right strategy, equipment, different kinds of software tools, you name it.
In addition to this article with all kinds of important information about recording a podcast, we have a few tips for you to keep in mind when recording.
If you record your podcast with your phone, it's a good idea to set it to aeroplane mode so that you don't receive any more notifications. The recording function will still work.
You can record your podcast with your phone just fine, but we still recommend that you get a microphone. One that you can connect to your phone and computer. These are generally very affordable and provide better audio.
When recording a podcast there is another very important aspect - editing your podcast. This is often not an easy job and you need to set aside enough time for it.
When recording, make sure to eliminate annoying background noises. Think of a ticking clock, a running dishwasher or a rustling air conditioner.
Preferably record your podcast in a quiet room and try to avoid recording outdoors. The wind blowing into your microphone makes the recordings difficult to understand.
Try to speak between 3 and 6 centimetres away from the microphone. If you talk too close to the microphone, the recording will explode. If you sit too far away you get the bathroom effect.
Test all your equipment before you start recording your podcast. Check, for example, whether your signal is strong enough and what your voice sounds like.
Use a cheat sheet with a few key words to help the recording go as smoothly as possible. Never read out texts verbatim, this often makes your podcast boring to listen to.
Listen to your podcast recording on various devices; on your headphones, earbuds, computer speakers and in the car.
Podcast recording equipment
As a beginning podcaster you can choose to record your podcast with your phone. That way you can find out if podcasting is for you before you spend a whole month on equipment. That might be a bit of an exaggeration, but if you're looking for professional podcasting equipment you can make it as crazy as you want.
Microphone for podcast
Of course, you can also choose to do things a bit more professionally right from the start, without making a big investment. For example, you can connect a microphone to your phone to make your recording sound more professional. This (small) investment is certainly worth it in our opinion.
It is important that the microphone picks up speech well, but not unwanted background noise. There are various microphones for this, but a directional microphone or a studio microphone is the most suitable. A directional microphone gives a classic radio sound. A studio microphone is placed right in front of you and ensures that your voice can be heard well. In another article we share the best microphones for podcasting with you.
Podcast equipment; mobile kit
If you want to go a step further, you will see that there is a lot of podcast equipment available. Of course you don't have to buy it all at once. You can make a list of the equipment you want when you start podcasting. You can then buy the equipment on this list as you go along.
To give you an idea of what such a list might look like, we are sharing our mobile kit with podcast equipment. In it, we share some essential podcasting essentials, including:
How do you edit a podcast?
Editing your podcast is a very important part. You want to get your episode across to the listener in the best possible way, without any noise or unwanted sounds. Before you can publish your podcast, you will need to do some editing.
There are various software tools for editing your podcasts. In the article software for editing your podcast we share a number of useful tools with detailed descriptions.
Editing your podcast will take some time, so keep this in mind. Of course there are tools that can do this easily for you, at Springcast for example we have Audio PolishIn time, you will be able to edit the podcast episodes faster and faster.
Editing your podcast
Before you start editing your podcast, it is a good idea to listen to the whole recording once. Write down the things you notice and the things you need to change. Also make sure that you remove any big silences. Try to remove as much superfluous information as possible, such as repetitive information.
Then it is time to edit the voices. Try to make them stand out properly and remove noise. Use functions such as the equaliser, compression, saturation, noise reduction and reverb. The latter is only necessary in well-isolated spaces. Often the voice sounds "dead" in these rooms and with this option you can mimic a natural reverb.
While editing your podcast, you can also add effects, transitions, music or background sounds. In the article about podcast music We will tell you what is allowed and what is not allowed under your podcast recording.
How do you publish a podcast?
Now that you have recorded and edited a number of podcast episodes, it's time to publish your podcast to the online platforms. Give your podcast a great title and description and publish it. You can do this easily with a podcast hosting platform.
Here you can upload your audio files and create your own podcast show. Additional features are your own podcast website, podcast analytics and private podcast possibilities. Then all you have to do is register your podcast with the well-known platforms such as iTunes, Spotify, Google and Apple podcasts.
Spotify is one of the largest platforms for listening to podcasts. The platform has 389 million listeners across 187 markets worldwide. Listeners can stream or download podcasts on Android, iOS, desktop, cars, TVs and smart speakers, among others.
To publish your podcast on Spotify, you first need a podcast host necessary. Your podcast host will make sure that you create a unique RSS feed for your podcast show so that you can share it. Then you go to Spotify for podcastersThen you create an account and fill in your RSS feed. Fill in some more information about your podcast and when you're done, click submit. Spotify will check your podcast and will let you know when it has been approved. Once approved, your show will be on Spotify and any new episodes you publish will be automatically picked up - handy, right :D?
If you host your podcast with Springcast read the full guide here to get your Publish podcast on Spotify.
iTunes and the Apple podcast platform is the most used platform among listeners. Many Apple users have the app on their phones by default. The Apple's podcast platform is very accessible and easy to use. To publish your podcast on the Apple platform, you first need a podcast host and you must have an iTunes account.
Again, you can use the unique RSS feed you create with your podcast host to register your podcast with Apple. To do this, first create an account at Apple Podcasts Connect and sign in with your Apple ID or create one. Enter your RSS feed, add the appropriate information about your podcast, and click submit. Apple will then check your podcast, which can take up to 5 business days.
If you host your podcast with Springcast, you can find the complete manual for the Publishing your podcast on Apple Podcasts.
With Google podcasts You can reach your podcast listeners who discover podcasts through Google search, Google Assistant or by using the Google podcasts app on their Android or iOS device.
You will also need the RSS feed from your show to publish your podcast on Google podcasts. Once you have copied the RSS feed, go to Google Podcast Manager and create an account. Here you can enter the RSS feed and then Google will ask you to verify ownership. It can take up to 14 days for your podcast to appear on Google, the status can be found by logging into your Google managers account.
Do you host your podcast with Springcast? Then you can find a detailed guide here to help you Publish podcast on Google.
If you have a WordPress website, it can also be very useful to share your podcast there. The more your podcasts are shared, the better known they are and the more listeners you'll get. On your website you can easily an embedded player or playlist places, at Springcast we have designed a very nice one, which you can also design in your own house style....
If you host your podcast at Springcast, you get a own podcast website that you can design in your own style. Here you can find all information about your podcast and listen to all podcast episodes.
YouTube is the largest video site and second largest search engine in the world. It can be a good way to get more listeners for your podcast. All you need to do is turn your podcast into a vodcast or videocast. A podcast with a static image in the background or a video of your podcast recording, for example. Then you can create an account and use your Publish podcast on YouTube.
Adding a video to your podcast can be a good strategy if you:
- Want to create more reach or reach a different target group.
- Give your podcast not only a voice, but also a face.
- Want to increase interaction with listeners.
- You want to increase the findability of your podcast through valuable YouTube links.
How do you launch a podcast?
You have recorded, edited and published your first podcast episode at your podcast host. Your podcast is registered with various podcast platforms such as Spotify, Apple and Google podcasts. And then... it's waiting for your podcast to be listened to.
Of course, you can boost it, for example:
- Announce your podcast episodes on social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram, share nice teasers about them in the run-up and make listeners curious about your podcast. Springcast offers Springs for that; these are small video clips that you can share on the socials as a teaser.
- You can also Clubhouse Use it to create awareness for your podcast.
- Share your podcast episodes in newsletters. It's handy to add an option to your podcast landing page to let listeners subscribe to the newsletter!
*This year it is also possible to be on LinkedIn live audio conversations share. This feature is not yet live, but you can use it very soon.
Tips for launching your podcast
Try to enthuse your target audience in advance by sharing quotes, images, videos or short pieces of podcast audio on various channels. Make sure you put three to five episodes live when you launch your podcast. That way you make sure your target group gets a good impression of your podcast and stays connected.
Don't forget to tell colleagues, friends or family around you about your podcast. They can become good ambassadors. Make them enthusiastic, take them along in the process and the creation of your podcast.
And after the launch of your first episodes, keep promoting each podcast show on social media, podcast platforms, newsletters and any other channels you manage.
More tips for launching your podcast? We wrote another article about what Dutch experts have to say about successful launching a podcast. A blog with useful information to make your podcast a real hit ;D