This week’s interview with Jo Ingram was really interesting. Jo started her podcast messy and needing a lot of improvement, but at the same time, it was also authentic. And a lot of new and even experienced podcasters right now will resonate with her. Starting a podcast is not easy but what can set you apart is the desire to make it work and being open to learning and improving along the way.
In this episode, I want to share with you how to define the next step in your podcast growth journey. As we talked about in the interview with Jo, it’s really a step-by-step process. But, how do you figure this out? How do you figure out the exact next step to take? I have a few tips, tricks, and ideas for you.
Start With A Big Goal Or Know What You Don’t Want To Do
In starting a podcast, you should think about what your ultimate goal is. It doesn’t have to be very specific but you should at least have an idea of where you want to go. But if you don’t have a definite plan yet and you’re the type of person that goes with the flow, then you should at least know what you don’t want to do.
In my case with my other podcast, The Digital Nomad Stories I also didn’t have a big goal for it, it was a passion project that talks about my and others’ experiences as digital nomads. I did go with the flow but one thing is certain, I knew what I didn’t want for the podcast. I knew I didn’t want it to be a coaching business, I didn’t want to sell, or create a course. And that really helped narrow things down.
In defining the next step to take with your podcast, either have a big goal or at least think about what you don’t want to do.
Prioritize What’s Most Important
Podcasting has phases all podcasters go through. Like Jo, her beginning phase was messy but as she moved on to the next phase her podcast was improving. And the important element of this is consistency.
Prioritizing consistency will make sure you have processes in place because otherwise, you cannot be consistent. If you’re not consistent in releasing content, then I would recommend prioritizing that first. After that, you can finally think about what your real priority is for the podcast.
Take A Good Look At The Systems And Processes That You Use
If you feel like you are doing everything and you just don’t have time to focus on anything else, because you’re just pushing content out. Take a good look at the systems and processes that you use.
You can streamline those so that you’ll have more time for something new. Or if you don’t decide to do something new, you can streamline the production process too. That means that you have more headspace to be creative and to be strategic. Because if you are totally caught up in producing content, and that is all the time and headspace that you’re focusing on, you cannot really take the next step.
Find a way to open time and headspace for the next step. Otherwise, it’s going to be difficult. Possible ways to do that are to look into automating some parts of your processes and hiring a podcast editor, or a podcast manager. That can free up a lot of time which you can then use to do something else to figure out the next step to create more content so that you can be consistent.
Monetize Before Growing Your Audience
In prioritizing what’s most important, my advice is to monetize before you have a large audience. The truth is if you can’t monetize a small audience, you cannot monetize a large audience. I think that if you cannot monetize your podcast right now, then that also means you cannot monetize your podcast when you have 100,000 listeners to an episode. I would highly recommend monetizing before growing your audience and prioritizing this over just growing. Because as you then later grow your audience, your monetization efforts will also pay out more and more.
If you have some monetization methods in place, then as soon as you grow your audience, then you know that you can also expect those monetization efforts to increase. And as your income increases, it gives you more freedom in other aspects of your business such as outsourcing production, marketing, or advertising. And that just frees up so many possibilities.
Go Deep Into One Marketing Channel
In marketing, one important tip I can give you is to focus and go deep into one marketing channel. Once you have nailed that, streamline that process and you can look into using another marketing channel, but you also have to go deep into that. Focus on one or two and really hone in on those two platforms. Know everything about it to fully utilize them.
Podcasting is fun but it can also be overwhelming. For aspiring and new podcasters, just begin your journey. Like Jo, she started her podcasting journey messy at first but has improved and got better with experience. It’s all about starting and just being ready to take on the challenges along the way.
And how do you define the next step in your podcast growth journey? It is all about prioritizing what matters most for you in this phase. Overall advice, focus on monetizing before you focus on audience growth.