One of the best things about podcasting is that it's a medium that's often much more open to anyone creating than other mediums. However, while podcasts are the new exciting thing that most people can get into, that doesn't mean everyone should.
Whether or not people should start a podcast doesn't have much to do with who they are. Instead, it's more about how they think. Let's take a look at some people who should NOT start a podcast.
People Who Want to Start a Podcast Because They Think Podcasts Make Money
Here is a secret about podcasts: many, many people have podcasts. Very, very few people make a living on having a podcast.
Podcasts are–especially at first–usually worlds more expensive to make than they are lucrative. Podcast mics can be inexpensive, but they cost more money than no money–and no money is likely as much as you will earn at first. The same goes for hosting platforms.
There are ways to make podcasts for free if you have a computer. That doesn't mean that they're necessarily free, though. What about the time you'll be putting into a podcast?
Podcasts have a lot in common with YouTube. People think that anyone with an internet connection and basic equipment can record something and become rich and famous. In reality, though, fame can be much more about luck of the draw than anything else–especially for podcasts that don't put the work in (more on that in a moment).
It is unlikely that your podcast will make money for a good long while. If making money is your only motivation for making a podcast, you'll be sorely disappointed.
People Who Think Podcasting Is Easy
Podcasting is just two people sitting down to record a conversation and put it up on the internet, right?
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Well, it can be–but it's rare that the best podcasts are that simple.
Podcasts take time to record, time to edit, the knowledge of how to edit, time to write show notes, time to get show art, marketing skills, and so much more. If you're doing it right, podcasting will not be easy–at least, not at first. Even if you outsource most of your podcast's work, or use helpful tools like our own Alitu, you'll still need to do some of that work yourself.
That work will almost always be more than you expect.
At the end of the day, podcasting isn't “radio but easy,” “TV but easy,” “books but easy.” Podcasting is its own medium with its own hurdles, learning curves, and frustrations.
People Who Think They Should Have a Podcast Just Because
“Everyone has a podcast” is sometimes interpreted more as an initiative than a joke. It should not be.
This isn't the same as someone who wants to make a podcast because they think it will be fun. Podcast hobbyists are valid members of the medium who should be allowed to make something for fun.
This is, instead, the category of people who think they should make a podcast just because–people who don't care about podcasts, who don't think of it as a hobby, but instead just think they should have one because they're what people do nowadays.
Podcasts take money. Podcasts take time. Podcasts take work.
If you just feel like you're supposed to have a podcast, you probably don't really want to have a podcast. And that's okay! Not everyone has to write a poem or a novel or make a video game or a movie. Not having a podcast doesn't make you less creatively important. Sometimes, podcasts just aren't the right medium.
Think about what you want to say, why you want to say it, and how you want to say it before getting waist-deep in something that might be a bigger commitment than you expect.
So, Who? Probably Not You.
If you're reading this article, you're probably not someone who falls into these categories.
The people who should NOT make a podcast are the ones who think it'll make them money, the ones who don't want to do the work, and the ones who think they just should have a podcast.
If you're reading this, it already shows that your heart and mind are in the right place. You almost definitely already care about your prospective podcast.
So go forth and create. But always remember to ask yourself: Am I making this because I want to be rich? Am I willing to put forth the effort? Am I doing this because I want to?
If you can answer yes to all of these points, you're someone who SHOULD make a podcast.
Get Help from People Who Should Be Making Podcasts
Want more people like you on your side? Want to help learn how to make money, or how to decrease your workflow? People who will help you remember why you want to make a podcast? Join the Podcast Host Academy!
In our Academy, you'll not only have access to Q&As with the Podcast Host Team. You'll also have access to forums filled with beautifully exciting voices who can help you learn, grow, and stay motivated.