Podcasts: the trends and how to make yours stand out
Updated: Aug 19
If you've been lurking around the internet lately (which, if you're here, you probably have been), you've noticed the surplus of podcasts out there. It seems like everyone has decided to start their own podcast recently.
The podcast trend is huge right now - and lots of new people getting involved means lots of new competition for new and existing podcasts. It's easy to get buried under all the other options. Established podcasts that have been around for a long time that already have a large following overshadow the small new ones, too, making it even harder for a brand new podcast to get discovered and grow.
We like to think about this situation as similar to the way breweries have popped up all over Charlotte. There used to be only a few breweries in the area, and they were popular because it was something different, a unique place to hang out, get a drink, and socialize. Over the last several years, countless breweries have opened in the area. At this point, it's hard to keep track of them all! There are still those few that stand out, though, and I bet you have one or two that you frequent.
As the market becomes saturated with thousands of options, it gets harder and harder to get discovered. But it's not impossible to find success in the podcast realm!
Here are some tips to make sure your podcast stands out.
Make sure what you want to do isn't already being done.
If your podcast doesn't bring anything new to the table, there is no reason for anyone to listen to it. Listeners are looking for unique perspectives, topics, or insigthts. If you're the 400th true crime podcast to come out, it's likely that the already established and popular one that talks about the same things will be the listener's choice.
Look at your competitors. These will be people that create podcasts about similar topics to you. It's great when you have a community of like minded individuals. It's a good place to be in, surrounded by people who have found success in similar ways. But it is so important to look closely at these people (remember, they are also your competition!) and make sure that what you offer isn't the same as or too similar to what they offer.
Just like you can't open a store without a business name or products to sell, you can't start a podcast without a brand. Along with your brand should be your podcast cover art - this needs to be eyecatching, engaging and speak to the energy of your podcast. Many listeners will click your podcast based only off the cover art. Make sure you represent yourself in a way that you love and that others will love, too!
Who do you want to reach?
Is it a specific age group, gender, or other demographic? Figure out who you want to talk to, and from there you can figure out how you want to talk to them. From here, work on finding your niche. Your title should also appeal to your target audience - make it creative, try using interesting words or plays on words.
Your niche will greatly narrow down the topic that you are covering. For example, if you're in the art community, you might be interested in painting. From there, you might be interested in specifically acrylic painting. Perhaps you are particularly interested in surrealistic acrylic paintings. This is your niche.
It might feel like the more specific you get, the smaller your audience will be. This can be true to an extent, but also the people who do relate to and enjoy your podcast - and have the same amount of excitement about the topic as you do - will be more likely to engage with you, share with their friends, and come back for more.
If you follow these tips you can find a place for yourself in the podcast community. And with hard work and consistency you can rise to the top!