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🚀LAUNCH Podcast Quick - MINIMUM Formula🤏

As you know, I am a champion of podcast preparation (I couldn't in good conscious use "Podcast Prep" as the name of my newsletter otherwise.😁) Sometimes though, we get stuck in preparation and research, never getting to the point of creating something. Preparation should lead to action . . . not endless research. How can we get past this hurdle? Consider launching a minimum viable podcast.


MVP - Minimum Viable Podcast


A minimum viable podcast would be the bare minimum needed to get your podcast published. For example, if you have no podcast today and wanted to publish next week, what would you need to do in order to make that happen? Just like in grammar class, ask the who, what, when, where, and how questions. If you want the short version, skip down to the bottom where I list the questions. If you want more context with the questions, continue reading.


Who


Who is involved and who will do the work? Let's say you want to start with short episodes with no interview or co-host. This is the easiest form to get off the ground. These are the three main roles you need: speaker/host, writer (what will be said), tech person (deals with the audio files and uploads it for distribution).


Who will be your listeners? Are you speaking to plumbers or painters? How about carpenters or cartographers? Homeschool moms or hotel security? Everybody is NOT your audience and can't be. Pick a group to start with. You can always change later.


What


What is the focus of the show? This has some overlap with the "who will be your listeners" question. Will you position yourself as an expert, a learner, an observer, or something else?


What is the name of the show? Go with something clear that is obvious to anyone who sees it. Google it to see if anyone else is using that same title. If someone can't understand what your show is about in 2 seconds, your name is not clear enough.

Brainstorm 10 episode topics which you could talk about. I use 10 because 10 is the number of episodes I recommend. Initially script what you want to say in the first episode, either as bullet points or word-for-word (whichever works better for you).


When


Pick a day and time to publish your episode consistently. You can publish weekly or fortnightly. I publish my podcasts on Wednesday morning, 5am CT (GMT-6). There is no perfect day, so don't stress over it. Pick something that makes it easy for you to hit consistently.


Where


Where will you host your podcast? There are a bunch of options to choose from. My suggestion would be to pick one that is easy to use and set up and that connects you with the most podcast platforms. My favorite is BuzzSprout--it's what I use for my shows. The hosting service has a monthly fee, yet you can get the process started without being charged. You can also receive a $20 credit by using this link.


How


How will you record it? Since March 2020, most of us have gotten used to using Zoom, Google meets, a Slack huddle, or any of a dozen others means of connecting. It's likely you have experience using one form of recording software. Whatever you decide to use, make sure you can download an MP3 of the recording. I know Zoom let's you do this. You can also record into QuickTime if you are an Apple user or record into Audacity, which is an excellent audio software available for free. You can also use your smartphone to record it. If you go the smartphone route, you will need to convert the file into an MP3 to upload to the hosting service.


How will you edit it? This can be a tricky one, but it's not as bad as it seems. A tool like Descript can get you editing quickly. Instead of editing an audio file, Descript let's you edit a text document (just like you were editing a Word or Google Doc) and it then edits the audio accordingly. You can import audio or video files into Descript and export an MP3.


Two Other Necessities


Now that we have covered the who, what, when, where, and how, let's look at two other necessities for launching your podcast.


Microphone


Don't sweat this one and don't overcomplicate it. If you want to launch quickly, use your earbud-style microphone or headset microphone that you use with your computer. You could also buy an inexpensive lavalier microphone to plug into your computer or smartphone.


Artwork


If microphone sent you into panic, artwork likely has caused you to hyperventilate. It's not as bad as it sounds, so pause, take a deep breath through through your nose, hold it for four seconds, then exhale through your mouth. Do this two or three more times to help calm down. 😁


Each hosting platform has it's own specifications for art size. My recommendation is to go to Canva and make something simple which meets the platform parameters. In BuzzSprout, they have a button which let's you "Design with Canva" (see image below).


Don't let your artwork keep you from launching your podcast because it is easy to change at a later date.



Let me summarize the above with a list of questions to ask as well as one specific task:


  • Who is involved and who will do the work?

  • What is the focus of the show?

  • What is the name of the show?

  • What are 10 things you can discuss in the first 10 episodes?

  • When will you publish consistently?

  • Where will you host your podcast?

  • How will you record it?

  • How will you edit it?

  • What microphone will you use?

  • Create artwork


Now What?


My goal was to show you it's possible to launch quickly and help you think through the basic requirements to make it happen. It can feel daunting, yet it is doable.


P.S. And is an affiliate link or two above. It doesn't cost you anything to click them.

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