The time has finally come; it is time to record your first podcast episode ever! Podcast topic, check. Equipment, check. The storyline, check. A little bit of panic? Check!
Luckily, you’re not the first podcaster to experience the challenges that come with starting a podcast. There are literally thousands of other podcasters there who can provide wisdom and warning. For this article, we asked our own Audry community to give that wisdom. And when we read all the pieces of advice about your first episode, the bottom line is: just start.
The first shows will not be perfect
It’s like Jonathan from The Joney Talks Podcast says: “Do not overthink it. The first shows will not be perfect. Focus on the process and try to simplify it”.
Especially in the early days, it can be challenging to nail down your own podcasting roadmap, process, and even hosting style. There are so many things to keep in mind when establishing a podcast, and there are many decisions that need to be made early on. The longer it takes you to mull over these choices, the longer it will take to publish your first episode or season. You just have to start creating. This is the fastest way to learn and improve.
Take your time to optimize
Start creating doesn’t mean that you need to push your first episode out right away. “You can always consider recording the first episode a few times,” according to Doug from The Road Less Travelled, the More of God. Take your time to optimize and finalize it. Edward Bloomer from And What Do You Do, did it like this: “Make a complete first episode and force yourself to listen to it critically. You may get used to some stuff (the sound of your own voice, for example!), but others aren’t going to magically get less annoying the more you hear them… It can save a lot of stress and irritation to fix things right at the start.”
When starting a new podcast, remember to give yourself time to make the stumbles and mistakes that come with every podcasting journey. As long as you focus on creating excellent content, continuing to improve your work, and keeping a consistent publishing schedule, you’ll start to see your project and audience grow.
Talking about consistency, many community members advise having at least 3-5 episodes ready before you publish your first episode. This way, you’ll give yourself a little space to breathe when you want to keep posting consistently. It doesn’t matter if that’s weekly or monthly. Working ahead also prevents podcaster burnout.
Don’t focus too much on the numbers
Many people who start a podcast will become frustrated when their audience or traction isn’t growing as quickly as they’d hoped. But you must understand that it takes a long time for a podcast to gain a substantial listenership. In the meantime, continue elevating and improving the content, and the audience will follow.
Just like Sayaka from The South Asian Mind says here: “Just rip the band-aid off and do it! Don’t worry if you don’t have a huge following or number of listeners. Just keep showing up and eventually, you’ll receive those messages from strangers thanking you for your content.”
It takes real effort, time and skill
Last but not least, some advice from us at Audry: just have fun! Do you know how many people say they want to make a podcast, but never follow through? Starting a podcast is much easier said than done. Many people don’t realize that you can’t just produce a podcast overnight. It takes real effort, time and skill to get your idea recorded and published.
When you begin producing your own podcast, you’re not just making a piece of content. You’re starting a brand new journey.