In the first article of our 6 part series we discussed how to come up with an idea for your podcast. In this article we will be talking about how to come up with a title for your podcast and how to create eye catching cover art. Your title and cover art are crucial to getting potential listeners interested in your podcast.
6 Step Guide On How To Start A Podcast
- How To Come Up With A Podcast Idea
- How To Create A Great Podcast Title and Cover Art
- How To Record Your Podcast - Coming Soon
- How To Distribute Your Podcast - Coming Soon
- How To Launch Your Podcast - Coming Soon
- How To Make Money With Your Podcast - Coming Soon
Create a Unique Podcast Title
So let's jump into it, and let's talk about naming your podcast. There are a few things to keep in mind when naming a podcast. For your podcast title you want to make it something unique. Start brainstorming names for your podcast and as you come up with names type them into Apple Podcasts search and see if a podcast already exists with that name. You don’t want to share a name with another podcast or it will result in people looking for you and getting confused when they see multiple podcasts under that name. You don’t want to compete with other podcasts so ideally when you search your preferred title no other podcasts come up. Even if podcasts don’t share your exact name, if other podcasts pop up when you do the search that is another way for your potential listeners to get distracted and not click your podcast. Once you have confirmed you won’t be competing with a bunch of podcasts on your name do a search on Google. See what comes up and hopefully there aren’t a bunch of already popular websites that show up. The lower quality the results look the better it is for your podcast. I wouldn’t let Google be a deal breaker though, Apple Podcasts is much more important.
Check Out Your Podcast Competition
Use this tool to search for prospective podcast titles. See if your podcast title is already in use. Also use it to search general categories to see what your current podcast competition is.
Why Apple Podcasts Is More Important Than You Think
Alright so I am mentioning Apple Podcasts a lot and that is because it is still far and away the most popular podcast search engine. Something most people don’t know is that the Apple Podcasts search engine actually powers more than just the Apple Podcasts app. Their search engine actually powers a lot of the smaller apps. I actually built a podcast website app before I built PodServe.fm. That web app is PodParadise.com and I didn’t write the search for that site. PodParadise’s podcast search is powered by the Apple Podcasts search engine. That is true for the podcast app I built and for a bunch of other smaller podcast apps. Since Apple Podcasts powers so many other podcast apps it is the most important podcast search engine.
How Does Podcast Search Work? It's the Reason Your Title Is So Important
Now that you understand why the Apple Podcasts search is so important, I will explain a little bit about how Apple Podcasts search works. It is very rudimentary and prioritizes the title of the podcast when someone searches. That means your podcast title is very important. When you sign up for PodServe.fm and are filling out your podcast’s title I recommend using that name we just came up with followed by a dash “ A <general category> Podcast”. Here is an example of what I mean, “3 Under Par - A Golf Podcast”. The unique name is what you would brand your podcast as and use for marketing. If someone searches your unique name “3 Under Par” only your podcast shows up. The other part “A Golf Podcast” means that when someone is generally searching for “Golf Podcasts” your show will be one of the results. The people searching “Golf Podcasts” don’t have an exact podcast in mind. That means if your podcast shows up they may end up clicking your podcast and giving it a listen. Getting someone to click on your podcast when it shows up depends largely on your podcast cover art. So let’s discuss how to create great cover art that people will click on.
Great Cover Art Helps You Stand Out
Your cover art is the most important marketing material you have for your podcast. If you are lucky enough to end up on a variety of the Apple Podcasts Top lists, or to show up on their new and noteworthy lists having great cover art is crucial. You will want to catch the eye of people just browsing and get them to click and check out your podcast. First I will talk about the specs of your cover art because using it effectively is key. First of all, a podcast’s cover art is always square, the length and width are the same size. The cover art needs to be between a minimum of 1400x1400 pixels up to a maximum of 3000x3000 pixels. So there are thousands of software products you can use to create an image of that size. If you have a favorite image editing tool feel free to use that. If you aren’t a photoshop expert or don’t have great image editing skills I would recommend checking out canva.com. They have templates to start with that are already the correct square image size.
The Dimensions Required For Your Cover Art
So a 3000x3000 pixel image is actually a really large image, but don’t forget that your image is going to be viewed mostly at 170x170 image aka less than 10% of the size you create it. You will want to periodically save smaller copies of your image and see how it looks. You don’t want much text on the cover art, you don’t want small intricate details. They art may look great at the 3000x3000 image size but as soon as you shrink down to 170x170 the art is hard to read or is indecipherable. You want large, simple, cover art that entices someone to click on it.
Make Your Cover Art Something People Want To Click
I know it is dirty but you want your podcast cover art to be a little “clickbaity” at least. High quality images and text are key. Humans are drawn to faces so adding either your face or someone’s face can increase your chances of getting clicked or tapped on. Also take a look at some of the podcast searches that you will want to show up in. Using the example we had before, do a search for “Golf Podcasts” and see all the podcasts that show up. That is your competition. How is your podcast going to be the one people click on compared to the others showing? You want to stand out between those podcasts so think about how your podcast will look next to those cover arts. Would you click on your cover art if you saw it next to those other podcasts? If you don’t think you can create something good enough to compete and you are willing to spend some money, I would recommend hiring someone else to do it. You can check out fiverr.com where you can find someone to create podcast cover art for you as cheap as $5 there. If you don’t think you can create great cover art yourself it may be worth doing that.
Don't Let Cover Art Prevent You From Launching Your Podcast
Now your cover art is important but it also doesn’t have to be perfect right at launch. It is not locked in forever when you launch your podcast and it can change whenever you want to change it. You can always launch with a pretty good one and as things progress you can improve it and change it. There are actually some podcasts that update their overall cover art with every episode. They match their cover art up with their most recent episode. Now that is a lot of work and not necessarily worth the effort to do that. It really just illustrates that you can change your cover art whenever you please and you don’t have to feel locked into a cover art. It can change and progress the same way your podcast changes and progresses. If you have some great audio ideas recorded and are ready to go don’t let the cover art get in the way of you launching your podcast. I always recommend getting started and getting rolling with your podcast. A lot of people will build up excuses on why they haven’t actually launched their podcast. Don’t let your cover art be that excuse. It can be updated and changed at any time; don't let it hold you up.
Alright so now that we wrap up part 2 you have a podcast idea and your podcast format decided. You also now have the title of your podcast and hopefully an idea of what you think your podcast cover art should look like. In the next article we will go over how to record your podcast.
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