PodSchool Podcast | Do you need a podcast intro and outro?


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Do you need a podcast intro and outro

The audio icing on your podcast cake

Having a professional podcast intro and outro can mean the difference between sounding like you’ve thrown something together and sounding like a professional show.

If you’re going to create a pre-produced introduction with voice over you’ll probably need to get someone to create this for you (unless you’ve got sweet audio skills).

So how do you make sure you end up with the right podcast intro and outro for your show?

Apple Google Spotify

Have a detailed idea of what you want

There’s nothing worse, as an audio producer (that’s the person who you’ll get to put your podcast intro together) than having a client come to you with a brief that says “make me something.”

Why? Because they’ll have no idea where to start and the chances your creative vision matches theirs is almost zero. Unless, of course, you’ve worked with them before and they know what you like.

When you’re hiring a professional you have to give them as much detail and direction as possible.

This will not only make it a lot easier for them to do their job but it’ll save you time and money because you won’t have to go back and forth making changes.

If you’re not sure how to explain what you want in words, send them audio examples of other intros you like so they can get a sense of your preferred style.

It’s also a good idea to give them a really clear idea of what the show is about but also what you want people to feel when they hear your intro.

How to come up with a great podcast idea


Choose your music

Finding the right music takes A LOT of time, so this part of the process is something you’ll want to do yourself if possible.

Giving an audio producer a track you like will make things much easier and cheaper because you won’t have to pay them to do the searching (which can take wayyyyyyyyyyyy longer than you think).

It’ll also help them further understand the tone and vibe of your show because the type of music you choose will say a lot about how you hear the style of your content.

Should you use music in your podcast?


Come up with a tagline

It’s a great idea to introduce your podcast using a tagline that sums up what the show is about.

This brings new listeners up to speed quickly without having to annoy regular listeners by resetting your concept every week.

At the end of your show, it’s also a good idea to have an outro that wraps things up. This can be a great place to include your website or social pages so you don’t have to waste time covering that inside the content of your show.

The other thing to think about is that the intro and the outro should always match.

You want these pieces of audio production to sound like bookends that wrap up your show in a way that makes audio sense, which means you want to use the same piece of music for both pieces of audio.

To hear what I’m talking about check out the intro and outro for my podcast, You’ve Gotta Start Somewhere (NB: the outro is at [01:13:45] because I do a postscript for each episode)…

Apple Google Spotify

Why is an intro and outro important?

Think about these two pieces of production as your audio version of McDonald’s golden arches or Apple’s partially ingested apple.

When people see those logos they immediately think something about the brand they’re associated with.

Similarly, when people hear your intro you want them to feel something. And you want it to set the tone for your content.

If you’re creating a positive show, the music needs to reflect that, as does the voiceover.

Your intro and outro is also something your audience will become attached to, so you want to put a fair amount of creative thought into it to get it right.

How to improve your podcast with segments


So where do you get this magical podcast-altering stuff done?

A lot of people use websites like Fiverr and Upwork where you can trawl people’s portfolios and choose someone you like. I’ve also found decent people on Airtasker.

Audio production can be expensive but on these sites, you can find affordable options. Just make sure you do your due diligence.

Read reviews, listen to examples of people’s work and when you find someone you like and you can see other people they’ve worked for, get in contact with them and ask whether they did a good job.

Whoever you go with make sure you have a really detailed brief for them to follow. That’ll save you time and money.

Got a burning podcasting question you’d like answered? Send me an email.

Want to start your own podcast but need a little help? Download my “How To Start A Podcast” guide or sign up for my online podcasting course, PodSchool.

Got some time on your hands? Read the full episode transcript

[00:00:00] Hello and welcome to the show. Today I'm going to be talking about the most important thing you can add to your podcast to make it sound professional - an intro and an outro. This is really the audio icing on your podcast cake. It is the difference between sounding like you've just thrown something together and sounding like a professional show.

[00:00:24] You will have entered this episode through my podcast intro which consists of a male voice over and some music and you'll exit the show through a podcast outro. This is what separates the men from the boys. And it's not expensive to get one done but it is really important if you want your show to sound like a show.

[00:00:47] I'll put links on the show notes page for this episode (which you can find at PodSchoolPodcast.com and then just type "intro" into the search bar) to websites that you can find someone to do the audio production. I will also put a link to the guy that I use who is a professional radio producer and does a fantastic job. He does the intros for both this show and my show You've Gotta Start Somewhere.

[00:01:17] The difficult thing with getting this kind of work done is that it can be hard to trust someone. Not only someone who does great work but someone who is on time with their delivery and also understands what you want creatively.

[00:01:31] Darcy, the guy I work with is spectacular and you are more than welcome to use him. He set up a company for this distinct purpose to create intros and outros and production for podcasters and he is superb to work with.

[00:01:44] Some of the things you need to do as a podcast producer who is looking to somebody to do their audio work is that you have to be a good client. And some of the things that you need to think about when youre putting together an audio intro an outro is.

[00:02:01] 1. You have to have a clear idea of what you want.

[00:02:07] There is nothing worse as an audio producer than having somebody come to you with a brief that says "make me something." The chances that your creative vision matches their creative vision is almost zero unless you have worked with somebody very closely for a long time and they understand exactly what you want. So when you go to an audio producer and you ask them to create an intro in an outro make sure you have thought about everything.

[00:02:35] 2. Pick the right music.

[00:02:35] I've got links in the show notes page to music websites where you can find music that you can purchase to use in these kind of things. And its important to trawl through those websites and find the music that you think properly suits your show's tone so that you can give that across your audio producer. Thats the stuff that takes the most time.

[00:02:56] I spent days and days on those web sites looking for the right tune for my podcasts so that I could hand that mp3 file over to Darcy and he knew exactly the kind of tone that I was creating because the music gave him a sense of that. Its a punish. There is no doubt about it. There is no way around it but it is going to take much less time for you to trawl through those things than for your audio producer to trawl through send back a piece of music and then for you to go "No its not at all what I want." You are just better off to go through those music sites, find the song that you want and then hand that to your audio producer.

[00:03:34] 3. Think about how to sum up your podcast in one line.

[00:03:39] I always think in the intro you should have a little one line summary of exactly what the person who is listening to the show is going to get. Ditto with your outro. A quick thank you to your audience is always useful but also in your outro it can be a great way to pop information about your social pages - your Twitter, your Facebook or your Web site - so that you don't need to be harping on about them all the way through your content. The other thing to think about in the intro is popping your name in there saying that you are the host so that you don't have to introduce yourself. When you come off the back of that you can just get straight into your content and it can be all wrapped up in the production.

[00:04:59] You've got to think about your audio intro and outro as your version of McDonald's Golden Arches. When people see those things they think something about that brand. Similarly when people hear your intro they think something about your show, about your brand and about your content. If you are a positive show that's all about lifting people up then the music needs to reflect that as does the copy of the voiceover.

[00:05:28] It's really important that you set the tone for your show and that matches what people are going to hear when that introduction is finished. It also cannot be underestimated how important familiarity is to an audience. It seems like a small thing but people get real damn attached to that little intro because if they love your show those first couple are notes on that piece of music immediately fills them with the excitement to hear your content and that is such an important part of building a relationship with people who listen to your podcast. You'll notice people care if you ever change your intro because people will email and say "why did you change that?" It's bizarre what people are attached to but it becomes something that they're very familiar with and if they like your content they like your show that becomes part of the reason that they feel comfortable with what you do. So it's really important to think about it strategically and creatively before you get started on your show because you don't want to think "oh I'll just throw in a bit of an intro there that's a bit crappy and then I'll change it six months in." You want to start your show with the audio branding that you're going to use till the bitter end because there's really no reason to change that intro and outro. The other thing to think about just quickly is that the intro and the outro must match. It's really important that you use the same music or the same style at each end. You don't have to use the same copy but the beginning and the end has to be like bookends to your episode. So they have to sound like they are part of a whole package.

[00:07:33] I hope that's helped you understand the importance of an audio intro and outro. Again I've got links to websites where you can find people who will help you create that piece of audio production. I've also popped the link to the guy that I use and some of the music websites where you can trawl through and find the right song for your show.

[00:07:53] If you're enjoying these episodes and you're finding the tips useful please leave a review wherever you download the episodes. I will see you next week and until then, happy podcasting.

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Discover all the tools and tech you need to get your podcast started. Plus get access to my weekly podcasting tips delivered straight to your inbox!