The Danger & Play Podcast is approaching its one-year anniversary. Having recorded over 80 podcasts, I’ve learned a few lessons. Learn from my mistakes.
Why do you want to start a podcast?
What is your reason for starting a podcast?
I’ll share mine:
- Create a new medium for existing readers.
- Attract new readers.
- Change up the monotony that comes from writing.
- Improve my public speaking skills.
Your reasons may vary. You need to spend a few hours finding your why before starting a podcast.
You may want to start a podcast in order to be able to network with big names. If you have a successful podcast, people will “take your call,” as they will want to promote their books on your podcast.
Or maybe you’re a better speaker than you are a writer. Podcasting may become your primary form of engaging with and creating an audience.
There are no right or wrong reasons. There are simply your reasons.
Find those reasons and your podcast will be better from the outset.
Sound quality matters.
I usually don’t wear headphones when recording a podcast. If you want good headphones, here are my headphone recommendations.
Put the microphone as close to your mouth as possible. This will prevent white noise or other distractions from coming in and also improve the sound quality of your podcast.
I have had someone doing dishes in the same room while I recorded a podcast. None of that background noise was heard in the podcast.
How long should your podcast be?
My personal experience as well as data I’ve seen in studies all say the same thing: You want to keep your podcasts between 20 and 30 minutes. Attention spans drop after 30 minutes.
I keep the lecture/Gorilla Mindset podcasts short. Those podcasts are cool when they contain a quick lesson. They would be insufferable if they were hour-long lectures.
For Q&A and interviews (where waning attention spans are OK), I go longer.
Generally speaking, however, I aim for an average podcast length of 20 minutes.
Niche podcasts or one general podcast?
My biggest podcasting mistake was not spinning out podcasts into separate niches. To understand why, you need to understand computers.
Apple’s iTunes system will recommend your podcast to an entirely new audience. If you play the game right, iTunes will be your free marketing machine.
But you have to know the rules of the game.
Before recommending your podcast, iTunes look at the number of ratings and reviews your podcast has as well as what other podcasts your listeners subscribe to.
Because Danger & Play is such a general-interest podcast, it doesn’t show up as a recommended podcast often enough. Thus my message is not getting out to as many new people as it should be.
I should have spun off the fitness stuff into a separate podcast. There is a some overlap between fitness and mindset. I’m not getting new fitness people listening to the mindset material as they don’t know the podcast exists.
In 2015 I’ll likely have three separate podcasts:
- Danger & Play/Mike Cernovich show (Q&A, guests, and general “life” stuff).
- Gorilla Mindset.
- Gorilla Fitness Podcast.
Hindsight is 20/20, so I’m not mad or crying. And the podcast has been a massive success and is only one year old.
But if you’re a content-creating machine, start thinking about having separate, niche podcasts. This will give you a boost in iTunes and thus provide you with free marketing.
How to get more podcast ratings?
The Danger & Play Podcast has 279 ratings and reviews in the U.S. alone. If you poke around other podcasts, you’ll see that 300 is actually a lot of reviews for what is still a relatively new podcast. (Old podcasts like the Joe Rogan Show have thousands of ratings.)
How can you get a lot of ratings and reviews? You have to ask for them. Call me Captain Obvious, right?
(Have you left a rating or review yet?)
Yet James Altucher didn’t ask for ratings until I started teasing him. (Altucher has a much bigger name and audience and yet my podcast had more ratings and reviews than his.)
If you have a website, be sure to link to your iTunes page on the sidebar.
Reply to emails with a request for a rating or review. (This comes from the John Lee Dumas who owns Entrepreneur on Fire.)
When people email you about your podcast, reply with, “Have you left me a comment? You can do so here.” I don’t do that and need to start.
Tell people how simple it is to leave a rating. It takes less than 30 seconds to leave a rating. You can click the number of stars the podcast deserves. That’s it.
iTunes does not require you to type anything or to write a book. You can just click on the stars and then hit save. That’s it.
It’s easy to pivot when you work for yourself. There is no bureaucracy. If I want to take the podcast in a different direction or create niche podcasts, I can.
I don’t need to persuade anyone or get permission. I decide to change direction and that’s that.
Podcasts will be around for several more years. The Danger & Play/Cernovich family of podcasts are still in their infancy.
Want to be a podcast guest?
In 2015 I want to bring on guests. I want that guest to be you.
Want to be on the podcast? Email me.
I’m not interested in helping people who haven’t supported me or the site, though. If you don’t post comments, link to D&P, or leave ratings, then why would I want to help you?
That should seem obvious, but the world is full of scarcity-mindset takers who look to extract value from you before giving value. Some “men” will even stab you in the back after you have promoted their sites.
If you’ve supported the site, let’s talk about your perspective on life. If you want to plug your book or website, cool.
You don’t need to have a huge audience to be a guest on my podcast. I am not going to join the podcast circle jerk where everyone goes on everyone else’s podcast. I would rather promote you guys than help out scammers like the Art of Charm.
Have feedback about my podcast or questions about starting your podcast?
Post them below!