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Heads up aspiring podcasters! Audio content – a clear pop culture fave – is here to stay, and tech advancements are making podcasts easier to create, more accessible… and more addictive than ever.

Yup – there’s an audience just waiting to hear your voice. According to an Edison Research Infinite Dial Study, 10% of the South African population – that’s an estimated five million people – listen to podcasts.

Now while it’s easy to assume that podcasts are easy to produce because they’re audio-only, don’t be fooled. They can take time to put together, especially when you’re just starting out. Which is why we chatted to a pro for the shortcuts…

READ MORE: The 10 Podcasts That Are Getting Us Through Lockdown 2.0

Podcast host, producer and founder of Tinzwe Media, Rutendo Nyamuda launched her first podcast “In My 20s” with zero podcast or audio experience. Since then, she’s spent hours honing the craft, producing Bizcommunity’s marketing and media-focused “BizTakouts”, plus “The Podcast Sessions”, created to help people with their podcast journeys.

Rutendo shares five top tips for first-time podcasters:

Tip #1 Refine your idea

Right now, you’re probably brimming with ideas, and have a guest list as long as your arm. But before you start sliding into people’s DMs, you need to be able to express your content idea as simply as possible.

“Most people struggle to articulate their idea and will spend 20 minutes explaining every aspect of it,” says Rutendo. “Ask yourself if you can summarise your idea in two to three sentences? If you can’t, then refine [it] until you can. Remember, if your podcast idea isn’t clear to you, it won’t be clear to anyone else.”

Tip #2 Plan. Plan. Plan.

Think podcast hosts just sit behind a mic and press record? I mean, it can’t be that difficult, right?

The truth is, what seems like 30 to 60 minutes of seamless audio probably took a few weeks to create. “So much goes on behind the scenes. Most podcasters have a detailed pre-production, production and post-production process, which includes, but is not limited to: planning, researching, scripting, sourcing hosts, setting up recording times, creating graphics, editing, uploading… The list goes on,” she says.

For Rutendo, it’s the episodes where she’s spent the longest time planning that usually give her the least headaches – because she’s less stressed.

READ MORE: 4 Practical Steps To Feel Optimistic And Get Motivated – Despite The Chaos Around You

Tip #3 Choose the right style and format

Pick a podcasting style that best suits the content you’re creating. Think: solo, interview, panel or doccie-style. Each has its own benefits and requires unique processes.

As for the “format” of your podcast, we’re talking about the flow of the content or conversations. Think about key elements that guests can expect in each episode. For example, Rutendo’s podcast “In My 20s” is broken up into three parts: Part 1) Career and life history of the guest. Part 2) The topic or theme. Part 3) A discussion around the quarter-life crisis and the subject’s 20’s journey.

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I’ve spent a large part of the last few weeks working on @thepodcastsessions 🎧. The process has been both liberating and challenging, but has certainly stretched me in all the best ways! I’m truly excited to FINALLY share this new podcast with everyone and hope it assists people along their own podcast journeys. • The full podcast trailer is available at the link in my bio ✨ • #thepodcastsessions #podcast #podcasting #podcasts #spotify #podcastlife #podcaster #youtube #itunes #podcasters #instagood #entrepreneur #motivation #marketing #inspiration #love #startup #audioengineer #musicproducer #music #recordingstudio #audio #producer #mixing #studiolife #musicproduction #behindthescenes

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Tip #4 Recording

You don’t need the most expensive equipment to have a great podcast. “Think of your podcast as a wholistic production comprising many elements – the recording side is just one of them,” says Rutendo. Ways to record a podcast range from using your cellphone (yes, this is a legit option!), signing up to an online app such as Zoom or Zencastr or using special equipment.

Tip: Rutendo goes into more detail about podcast equipment and compares various audio editing software in the July/August issue of “The Podcast Sessions” digital podcast magazine.

Tip #5 Ready. Get set. Record.

“If there’s anything I’ve learned about the podcast journey, it’s just to start… because you’re never going to be fully ready,” says Rutendo. “This week I challenge you to set aside some time to listen to a few podcast trailers – the trailer, usually about one minute, is where the host gives you a summary of the podcast before the first episode.”

Script your own one-minute intro, then record your audio. “Now for those who want to take it to another level,” she continues, “I challenge you to create a podcast graphic (Canva is a great app). Combine your audio and graphics, and just like that, you’ll have a podcast trailer!”

Want some serious podcast inspo? Check out Go Hustle: The Podcast.

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