Do you dream about hosting a podcast? Is podcast hosting where you see yourself in your future? Do you have a buttery smooth voice? If this is you, check out what you need to know about podcast hosting, including some do’s and don’t’s, and let’s check out to see if this is the gig for you. And if it is, let’s go!
Podcast Host Attributes
If you’re reading about podcast hosting, you probably know a bit about podcasts themselves. This is the “It” medium right now. Podcasts are an excellent way to share your thoughts and mission, spread awareness, and bring a community together. The key is hosting. Maybe someone has a great idea but their hosting demeanor is a bit off; their listeners trickle away. On the other hand, maybe your idea for a podcast isn’t all that unique, but your hosting style is. That is what is going to keep your listeners coming back. It’s also what’s going to broaden your community through sharing and engagement.
Maya from Medium shares this:
Hosting a podcast is not as easy as one may think. It is a time-consuming process that takes a lot of will and determination to make. But being the best podcast host you can be, that engages with their audience and makes it listening to you worth their while, pays off in the long run.
Sure, it’s not easy. But are any of the most rewarding things? Let’s take a look at some of the important attributes that help make a great host.
This may be the most important thing of all. You need to be real. You need to seem involved and invested. In other words, be authentic. Think about your favorite Instagram accounts. They’re probably run by some pretty authentic people. This is a big word these days because no one likes a phony. As Holden Caufield says in The Catcher in the Rye :
You never saw so many phonies in all your life, everybody smoking their ears off and talking about the play so that everybody could hear and know how sharp they were.
And he also said this:
What really knocks me out is a book that, when you’re all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn’t happen much, though.
So you can see, even Holden Caufield wanted someone he could believe in, someone he could befriend. No one wants a phony host. So authenticity is key. Whatever you do, don’t be a phony on your show. Be the host that Holden wants to call up.
Creating engaging content is probably one of your main goals in hosting a show. Not only do you want your audience to engage with you, but how awesome when they start engaging with one another. Whether your show is focused on your business and brand and you want to draw people to your business or it just covers something you love, it’s so much better with engagement.
Here are a few ways to promote engagement:
- Reply to comments and DMs – acknowledging these things creates an immediate connection between you (the host) and your audience
- Ask listeners to engage- ask your audience to rate your podcast and tell their friends about it.
- Give shoutouts – some podcasts take a few minutes at the end of their shows to shout out some special listeners, either with a Patreon account or something else.
- Have a live show – Not all of your podcasts have to be live, but do a special live broadcast now and then. You’ll see the difference in your ratings.
- Sell merch – this is an awesome way to create a community. And keep it accessible to everyone, like include a sticker or something else low dollar to purchase. A sticker on a laptop or water bottle says a lot.
- Include a call to action – Don’t forget this all-important part of each and every show. Add a call to action to the end, even if it’s tune in next week, subscribe to our podcast, or go rate our show.
Be an expert
Ok, here’s that fine line between being a phony and being an expert. People aren’t going to listen if you don’t know what you’re talking about, but be humble about it. It’s okay for you to say you spent hours researching that topic or that you didn’t know about this until a listener turned you on to it, and now you want to share it.
The key here is to choose something that you’re passionate about. If bread baking podcasts are all the rage but you hate bread and baking, don’t go there. Choose what you love, whether it’s cars or politics or medieval French literature. Then talk about it. Research it and study it. And talk about it. Be knowledgeable and be the real expert, not just another fake one.
A few more things to think about to be a great host
- Know your guests
- Prepare for each show
- Have a few shows recorded before you release the first one
- Be likable
- Post on social media
- Make it easy for listeners to engage
- Be consistent with your show, length, subject, and release days
Some Do’s and Don’t’s of Podcast Hosting
We listed just a few attributes of great podcast hosts, even though there are many more to think about. Some will work for you, some may not. But in addition to all those podcast host attributes, here’s a nice little list of do’s and don’t’s when it comes to hosting your podcast.
- Have a great editor. Whether you edit your show yourself, you have a friend do it, or you work with someone like Bunny Studio, make sure to clean it up before you release it. No one wants to read a blog full of type-0’s and word fillers, no one wants to listen to a messy podcast either.
- Invite guests. Maybe your show is more of a format where you host alone or have a co-host, but invite a guest on every now and then. It can bring new light and perspective to your show and change it up a bit. Research your guest and make sure they fit your topic. Then have fun with them!
- Create cohesive merch and a great logo. We mentioned merch earlier, and even if your show is small, go ahead and get that logo designed and be ready to put it on a shirt or a mug. Someone will want one! And it broadens that community, remember?
- Don’t forget your outro. An outro is like the finishing touch on your show. It all also adds a familiar consistency so your listeners know it’s time to tune off. By having the same music and format, your viewers will feel connected to it. It adds that little bit of familiarity we like so much.
- Don’t forget to research. If you’re thinking of podcast hosting, you probably love to research. But make sure you don’t skip the research for the podcast itself, as in what equipment you need, how to get started, and some extras special hosting tips.
- Don’t host shows of all different lengths. Sure, it works sometimes, but most people like to know what to expect. They know that an hour-long show is great for a walk, or a 30-minute podcast works for their commute. Some hosts will divide a long subject up into parts rather than making a single show too long.
- Don’t forget to be yourself. When you are podcast hosting, be you. we talked about phonies, and we talked about experts. You can be an expert without being phony. Think of all the great things about you and work with those. If you’re just not funny, don’t try to be. If you can’t remember statistics and always get them mixed up, don’t try. On the other hand, if you’re always uplifting and optimistic, bring that to the show. If you’re bubbly and bright, don’t hold back. Be you because you want the listeners who will want to listen to you!
Listen to Some Podcasts
Remember that research component? Take some time and research some podcast hosts. Listen to different podcasts with different genres and see how the hosts resonate with you. Maybe you’d never host a book club podcast, but you love what one of the hosts does. Many of us get ideas from the things around us, it’s okay to emulate something you’ve heard as long as you make it your own. Don’t be a copy cat but go ahead and be inspired. There are so many great show hosts out there, there’s a lot to learn from them.
The Big Takeaway on Podcast Hosting
We say go for it! If this is something you’ve been thinking about it – give it a go. Do a little research, set up your space, and host away. But be yourself. Be authentic and knowledgeable, genuine and credible. Be interested and be inspiring. The world can always use new perspectives and new ideas, or old ones seen in a new light. Be that light and bring your ideas to life. No matter how big or how small your ideas may seem, someone will benefit. And that’s what being a podcast host is all about.
Let Bunny Studio Help
Hosting a podcast is a lot of work. We know that. But nothing should hold you back. Do you want to start podcasting? We can help you! Submit your first project now. Just head on over to Bunny Studio and submit your project. We’ll get our experts on it and create just what you want. We can’t wait to see your podcast takeoff! Happy hosting!