Should YOU start a podcast?

podcast mic‘Can I talk to you about podcasting?’

I’ve spoken to at least 6 people over the last month or so who are interested in setting up their own podcast and wondering what’s involved and, crucially, whether it’s worth it for them. 

I can’t tell them that, of course, but here’s what I say: 

  • First of all, you need to love doing it. It’s a long-term commitment and a lot of work (if you do it weekly, which I think you need to if you’re really going to make an impact) and that means you need to find it enjoyable for the long term, otherwise you’re going to end up resenting it. And nobody likes a resentful interviewer. 
  • You need to be clear about why you’re doing it. What will a podcast do for you and your business? For me, there are three main reasons (apart from the sheer fun of it, see above):
    • it’s a fabulous platform from which to connect with top authors and thinkers (did you hear the episode with Seth Godin?) and to build links with business book publishers, as well as a lead-generation and discoverability tool for prospective coaching and publishing clients;
    •  it’s the engine of my content marketing strategy, providing a steady stream of new ideas and interesting insights for my weekly guest blogs (BookMachine for the publishing angle and Birds on the Blog for the business and personal development aspects) as well as this, my own blog – and now that I’m blogging every day, that’s helpful, believe me; and
    • it’s forcing me to write my own book, after 18 months of going round in circles, because of the public accountability, and it’s also providing much of the raw material – examples of creative techniques and practical strategies for making your book work for your business.

Only if you’re clear about those two pieces is it worth going into the mechanics (which aren’t actually as complicated as you might think). 

I aboslutely love hosting my podcast, The Extraordinary Business Book Club. I’ve spoken to some of the world’s most interesting writers and thinkers, I’ve developed my own writing and thinking and, judging from the feedback I get from listeners, that of many others around the world too. I finish each interview feeling electrified and inspired, and each time I reread the transcripts I notice another gem that I missed first time round. It’s brain food of the highest quality, and I get to share it with anyone who’ll listen. 

And here’s the thing: I just decided to do it. I had a million reasons not to, and paralysing fear about looking an idiot or messing up the tech, but I decided to do it anyway. I knew I’d enjoy it and I knew it would be good for business, and that was good enough. 

Hovering on the brink of an exciting/scary idea? Try just deciding to do it, and work out the detail as you go.