Episode #100 | What We Learned from Our First Year of Podcasting

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Episode #100 | What We Learned from Our First Year of Podcasting

In today’s episode, we’re talking all about what we learned from our first year of podcasting.

The first thing we learned is that it is okay if it isn’t perfect.

We are both kind of perfectionists. So when something isn’t perfect, it’s hard for us to accept. But we realized that we can’t be like that with podcasting, because if we were it would take us ages to edit an episode and we might never even put it out.

So we just really embrace not being perfect. We do try to make it as polished as possible, but it there is a dog bark or something happens that can’t be edited out, that is okay. We are not going to freak out about it.

We think it’s something people should embrace, because so many people are afraid of starting a podcast because they want it to be perfect. And that’s just going to hold you back.

The next thing we learned was that there is no need to publish an episode twice a week.

So if you listen to our last episode, we did talk about how one of our goals for this year is to be more intentional. And part of that is only publishing an episode once a week.

With posting an episode twice a week, that means we had to double the interviews, double the editing, write double the show notes, etc. There was just so much that went into it. And we got so burnt out that we let other stuff slip.

Now, we are very excited that we ended the year with 100 episodes because now we have a bunch of content to get out on social media. But we still think we would have been fine with just 50 episodes.

So next season, we’re only posting once a week. We think this is really going to help us have more time to promote.

Because while we do love podcasting and ending on 100 is great, it’s just not sustainable for the long term. So once a week is perfectly fine.

Jenny actually just went down to once a week for her podcast. She realized it’s not going to ruin your business, people aren’t going to unsubscribe if your content is good and they want to listen to it. So going down to once a week is not going to be a big deal.

We also learned the importance of backing and planning ahead.

We always recorded our guests episodes in advance. It might have not been that far in advance, might have been like two or three weeks in advance, but it was always in advance, but we struggled to do our solo episodes in advance.

But that’s going to change as we’ve already recorded all of our guest episodes through July 1 as well as all of our solo episodes (except ones that are event related such as our summit results).

We really learned that batching and planning ahead is super important. It helps us have more time to do other things in the business.

The next thing we learned is we are the hosts.

Basically we are the hosts and we are in control of the show.

That means if we need to reel in the conversation or be more direct during an interview to reel stuff back in, it’s totally okay. Especially since we edit. So if we physically need to say, “Hey, can we stop and let’s redo this again, it’s kind of getting off topic” it’s 100% okay for us to do that.

We would say for two reasons.

  1. We we like to try to keep our episodes to a certain point. Our ideal length is 30 to 45 minutes. And we have some that have gone way longer and we don’t think needed to. This was because we weren’t comfortable saying, “this is our show, we know what our guests want, this is what we want” and we weren’t directing like we should have.
  2. To make sure we’re in charge of what content is shared. Now, we might not be the expert in the topic that somebody is talking about. But we do know if we don’t want it to go in a certain direction, such as completely off topic. This is the main thing that we’ve had issues with in the past. This results in an episode that just goes way to long.

Now we love all of our episodes and all of our guests, we just know we could have done a better job on guiding the conversation and that that was our responsibility, not the guests responsibility, so it’s okay for us to be in charge.

We are in control of what is published.

We actually had made an executive decision to unpublish one episode this year for a very specific reason. And that’s okay, if you need to do that. We no longer felt okay supporting whatever was on that episode. We’re not going to go into detail because that’s not important. But it’s your show, so it is 100% okay that you do you.

We’ve also learned how to better vet people to be on the show.

The difference between Season One and Season Two in terms of the episodes and the different topics is amazing. They’re more in depth and we had better direction with our questions.

In the beginning, when we were looking for guests we weren’t as strict as we should have been. Now of course we have always vetted, but we now know what to look for to make sure that what they have to say is going to be unique or different.

You also don’t need to publish every interview if you don’t feel that meet your standards.

So we actually didn’t have any episodes we didn’t publish.

But we want you to know that you don’t need to feel that pressure to publish every single interview. Maybe the sounds quality isn’t great or maybe the interview wasn’t as good as it could have been.

If you really liked the guest, you could ask them to re-record because maybe they were having an off day or something. But you don’t have to do that either. You can just kind of scrap it.

If you feel there’s a big issue with audio when you listen back, ask them to re-record if you really liked the interview. It’s not a big deal.

It’s your podcast, you can do whatever you want, you don’t have to feel obligated to do anything.

You’re like a director, like if you’re directing a movie. In movies there are cut scenes, there’s stuff that gets cut from the movies. Sometimes scenes or even characters get completely scrapped. And that is because the director had to make a decision to cut it. So don’t feel bad if you need to do the same, it’s your show, it’s your vision. You have that control. They do it in Hollywood, just treat your show like you are professional.

The importance of batching and planning ahead.

You don’t want to be in a situation where you’re like, Oh crap, this is supposed to go out tomorrow or in a few days and the audio is bad or it’s something you don’t really want to publish.

So planning ahead and batching allows you to re-record or reach out to somebody if you have that time and it’s not last minute and you’re freaking out, you don’t have anything to publish, right?

We needed more time to promote and get our episodes out there.

Because we were creating so much content, because we were publishing twice a week, we did not have the time or the energy to actually promote the content.

Sure, we did an Instagram post that day and we did an Instagram story the day too. But that was pretty much it. We were pinning and adding them to SmarterQueue to automatically recycle the content, but we don’t really count that. We didn’t put much into our Pinterest strategy when it came to our podcast episodes. Though we’re going to change that.

We didn’t put too much thought into our show notes. We just had very basic notes. Now, we are going to transcribe them and take the transcription and make it a more like a blog post form (like this!). That way you can read it instead of listen to it, if that’s more your style. It’s also better for SEO.

We will also have more time on social media to get the word out.

We know our efforts haven’t been fair to the guests who have been on our show. But we are changing that, if you’re an old guests, we are going to be transcribing all of our old episodes and working on that too.

Even with two people there is still a lot of work.

We didn’t want to minimize how much effort a podcast takes because a lot of people just think it’s just recording an episode and throwing it up there. But that is not the case.

It definitely can be easier with two people because you can split up the show notes and the graphics and there’s two brains when it comes to creating questions, but it can also make it a little bit more harder because sometimes we have to check both schedules to schedule guest episodes and now it’s not just two people it’s three people’s schedules.

Also, if you don’t pick a good partner and if you have different views it might be hard agreeing on guests or questions or topics to cover, so if you are considering doing a podcast and a joint one, just make sure you find a good co-host and you guys work well together.

If you guys are interested in learning more about podcasting, you should check out Jenny’s podcast, Savvy Podcasting for Entrepreneurs because she does podcast management and she interviews other podcasters about their podcast.

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