Advice On How To Become A Great Podcaster

This last week I received an email from a student of mine who was inquiring on how to become a great podcaster.  When I read the reason why she wanted to become a great podcaster, I saw this as an opportunity to lift her spirits so she doesn't find the podcating process so daunting. 

I want to share parts of the email exchange I had with her in this blog post. I hope that when you read this post, you can understand that you are not alone in your quest to becoming a great podcasters.

 

Meet Sharia

Sharia has been communicating with me since the start of the pandemic.  She reached out wanting to take my training course on designing a podcast and had many other questions that she wanted answered.

Her background was that she had a podcast at one point in time, but didn't like the outcome of how it sounded or where she was publishing her podcast.

The nature of her podcast is to help parents and students with getting more information for student athletes.  She could tell you a lot more about her podcast and what she intends to do with it. 

But her main concern is becoming a great podcaster.  Here's part of an email exchange I received from her this last week:

I really want to master this podcast thing. I want to be a great podcast. Mainly, because I believe in my work, and also I think a lot of parents and kids are confused in the information that they are given. But that's why I'm so focused on building the right way and the sound being right, and once I start, growing the youtube channel as well. 
 
Any advice to becoming a great podcaster? 

This was my reply to her:

You WILL be great at podcasting.  If you believe in what you do and know what you have to say is going to help parents, then the idea of becoming great really doesn't apply. 

 
You can learn the editing and the recording, but at the end of the day, the content is what will shine.  The recording and editing then become secondary to what you are presenting.  Recording and editing just amplify your ability to create better content opportunities. 
 
If you think of podcasting like anything else that requires you to develop a skill set, you have to go back to those fundamentals and remember the struggle in the very beginning.  Whether it's learning how to play basketball, the guitar, weight training, painting or whatever--everyone has a starting point and the starting point is always messy. 
 
From my own personal experience, I recently took up yoga.  For years I resisted the idea of doing yoga because of my misconceptions that it wasn't going to give me a sweat or even help me with endurance.  So I stuck with all the normal things I knew that gave me results in the past.  
 
When the pandemic started, I couldn't go to the gym, so I started walking.  Then one day I sprained my ankle a few months back.  Since I couldn't walk and couldn't go to the gym, yoga seemed like the only thing I could do from home.
 
When I started doing it, I wasn't great at it and I'm still not great at it.  But over the course of the last 6 weeks I have made noticeable strides because I keep trying.  I haven't necessarily lost any weight, but I HAVE noticed that I stand taller and that my core is far more strong than when I started. I'm more flexible and my ankle has healed CONSIDERABLY. 
 
Still, this doesn't make me a yoga pro because I'm only 6 weeks into it and there are days when I just can't do a twist or hold a lunge.  But one thing that you and I have in common is that we don't give up.  We get better no matter how messy. 
 
I don't believe anyone is a pro at anything until they make that one thing their own.  When you set the bar for yourself in an area that you're just starting, you tend to raise that bar each time and soon people start to say, "You are amazing. How did you get to be so good?!"
 
I still don't consider myself a great radio personality.  I've been doing it for 21 years and I still fumble and stumble all over my words, but for some reason, my audience thinks the world of me each time I get ratings reports.
 
Try to remember that you can't compare the beginning of your podcasting journey to someone else's middle. Blazing your own trail with podcasting starts with the fundamentals.  Learn the fundamentals and then get better over time.  That's how you will become a great podcaster.

I truly believe that when you take into account that you have a passion for what you are creating, you won't have to worry about becoming a great podcaster.  

The people who we perceive as being successful or great at something didn't consciously go out and say, "I'm going to be great!" 

Instead, they chose the path of how they could improve their audience's lives with the knowledge they have. As they worked on their craft, they refined it over time.

Don't worry about being "great" or "successful".  Just focus on impacting lives.

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