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PodSchool Podcast | Why you need to HURRY UP and get on with your content

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Do your listeners a favour and respect their time

If you’re one of those podcasters who likes to spend the first 10 minutes of your show faffing around with your co-host before you get into your content may I ask you, ever so politely, to please stop.

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Why waste people’s time?

Often, when you’re new to presenting, this is more about nerves than anything else.  Sometimes, in the worst cases, it’s more about ego.

I’ve heard shows where co-hosts turn the mics on and are walking around the room talking while they get ready for the show (insert rage face).

I’ve even heard shows where the hosts were talking about their day then stopped to take a bite of their sandwich…WTF?

Unless this is a strategic content decision this is a huge mistake.

Back in the early days of podcasting, when it was still a novelty and there wasn’t much competition, you might have gotten away with it.

But these days, when you’re planning the content for your show, every decision has to come from a place of respecting your listeners time.

People are busy and the competition is fierce.  So if you want to grow an audience outside your inner circle of mates, you have to offer up a show that has your ideal listener in mind.

Why you should design your ideal listener

Read

What about warming up the audience?

Newsflash.  They’re warm.

In fact, if someone has chosen to put their earbuds in and press play on your content they’re not just warm, they’re red hot.  And they’re expecting to be taken straight to the gold, so take them there.

The more you meander through the conversational weeds the more it looks like you think your time is more precious than theirs.

People have a lot of options for entertainment and it’s important to get to the good stuff as soon as possible.

And if you feel like you need to warm up with your co-host that’s fine.  Just record it and scrap it so your listeners don’t have to hear it.

How to keep an audience engaged when you’re presenting solo

Read

Remember, less is always more

When your show wraps up you want your audience to think “It’s over already?  I want more!”

The stats show the majority of people don’t make it through 15 minutes of a podcast.

So if your episode is an hour and you’re still not at the meaty bit by minute 20 there’s a high chance people won’t stick around.

What’s the best length for your podcast?

Read

What about getting new listeners up to speed?

If you’re conscious of setting up the premise of your show for new listeners that’s fine but it doesn’t need to take 15 minutes.

In fact, you should be able to sum it up in a quick line during your intro.

I have this in the voiceover that leads into both my podcasts so the production can do the heavy lifting and I can get on with my content…

In each episode, you’ll be catering to new AND old listeners so you don’t want to drive regular listeners crazy by repeating yourself.

A quick line at the start of each episode will bring newbies up to speed without annoying your hardcore fans.

At the end of the day your show should be about your listeners, not you, so get to the good stuff quickly and they’ll love you for it.

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 do a bit of whip cracking. If you're one of those people who takes a long time to get into the meat and potatoes of your podcast content, may I ask you politely, to please stop.
One thing I notice a lot with podcasts that don't end up going anywhere is that they waffle and waffle and waffle. Sometimes if you are new to presenting, this can be a nervous thing or alternatively you can be doing it to warm up. Either yourself or your audience. But your audience are already pressing play and they want to listen to your show so you don't have to warm them up.
People are time poor. They have a lot of options for content and entertainment and it is really important that you get to the crux of what you're doing right off the bat. If you need some warm up time with your co-host that is 100 percent fine. Just record it and then scrap it or record it and then start the show proper and just edit out that front bit where you were wasting time. Less is always always always going to be more and you want your audience at the end of every episode to think "Oh it's over? I want more already!"

[00:01:33] The stats are show the majority of people don't even make it through 15 minutes of your content and if you're doing an hour show and haven't gotten to the meat of what you're talking about by the 20th minute then your audience is not going to stick around.
Your audience has so much choice and you want to be respectful of their time and make sure you give them what they've come there for really quickly. Usually waffling and getting comfy is more about you and your co-host than it is about your audience and you need to think what is best for the people who are listening to your show.
When it comes to resetting the idea behind your show, which is a good idea because with each new episode there might be new listeners, it can be done in one simple sentence. At the beginning of most of my shows I have a tag line for the episode that explains to the audience what the show is about e.g. with You've Gotta Start Somewhere, my tag line is "the podcast that goes behind the scenes of show business to prove there's no such thing as an overnight success." Saying that at the beginning of each episode means I don't need to explain what that is.
You should be able to do a super quick elevator pitch in that introduction to get new listeners up to speed and then get into your show.
It is a tough market out there and it is a lot easier to fail as a podcast than it is to succeed. So to give yourself the best chance of success you really have to prove to an audience that they're not going to be wasting their time by coming to your show. Every single show needs to be presented like it's the very first time and that means not getting self-indulgent or complacent but really giving your best content upfront and really quickly. So your listener can get into it and s/he's never thinking "Oh can they just hurry up. I've got better things to do with my time!"

[00:04:28] So there you go. I hope you found this episode helpful. If you are enjoying the shows please head to iTunes and leave a review so other people can find it and if you would like a little bit more handholding in creating your own podcast then head to podschoolpodcast.com or you'll find a link to my online podcasting course PodSchool. That's it from me. I will see you next week and until then, happy podcasting.

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