Are you looking for a system that you can follow to record and publish your podcast on iTunes and beyond? Would you like to be able to save time by easily delegating portions of the podcast publishing process to a virtual assistant or other members of your team?
In this article, you’ll discover the exact step-by-step process that Trent Dyrsmid has used to publish 300+ podcast episodes on his Bright Ideas website.
Types of Podcasts
Before we get too deep into the weeds on recording and publishing a podcast, let’s quickly cover the two main types of podcast episodes that you can create.
The first is the monologue, and as the name suggests, you are the only one doing the talking. This format is a lot of work, and for that reason we recommend your focus on the second type; interviews.
In the interview format, your goal is to be the one asking the questions, and then you let your guest do most of the talking.
Interviews are a fabulous way to tap into expertise you don’t have, they are much easier to produce, plus, as a side benefit, you are going to develop one heck of a professional network.
Finding potential guests to be on your show is actually pretty darn easy to do. The easiest way to find experts in your niche that are pre-disposed to being interviewed on a podcast, is to simply look at the existing podcasts in your niche.
Once you have a list of these shows, start reaching out to guests that were interviewed more than 3 months ago and you will find they will most often warmly accept your invitation.
I’d suggest you create a Google Sheet where you can have a virtual assistant make a list of all the potential guests in your niche.
Here’s what my guest list sheet looks like.
The process is very simple.
Trent provides a virtual assistant (VA) with a list of shows to review and then his VA handles the outreach using their own brightideas.co email account.
Inviting & Scheduling Guests
Once you have a list of potential guests, now you need to start reaching out to each one with an invitation to be on your show.
Back in 2010 when I started, I was pretty early in the podcasting game, so pretty much everyone I invited said yes.
These days, there are a lot more shows, so, depending on the caliber/fame of your guest, you are going to have to work a little harder to get them to say yes.
Tip: Don’t go after A-list guests right out of the gate. Instead, you need to work your way up to them. I’d suggest you focus first on less well-known guests, connect with each one on LinkedIn, and then once you have recorded your interview with them (assuming it went well), you can ask them if they know of anyone else that would be a good fit for your show.
Email Invitation Template
In the email template that we use for invitations, the first paragraph is generally customized in such a way that they know I’m not spamming hundreds and hundreds of people with my invitation. The easy way to do this is to say how you found their name.
From there, I explain how being a guest on the show will give them exposure to my audience of 50K entrepreneurs, etc…
If you don’t yet have an audience of 50K people, you simply need to be smart about how you position your invitation and/or look to invite people who you know are actively promoting something (like a new book) so that they are keen to get as much exposure as they can.
When sending the email, you can choose to include a link to your registration page in the very first email, or better yet, you could just ask them if it is ok to send the link. By taking this softer approach, you are more likely to get some engagement before you go ahead and send the link.
The Landing Page
Here’s the page we link our potential guests to once they say they are interested.
Each time we invite a guest to be on our show, we are keen to make a positive first impression and look as professional as possible.
Ensuring you have great looking album art, info about the show, info about the audience, etc… is a good step in this direction.
The last thing you want to do is go back and forth trying to find a date that works. That is a waste of everyone’s time.
The simple solution to the issue of finding a mutually beneficial time is to use an online calendar. I use Calendly and that way, guests can simply pick a time that is convenient for them and self-register in my calendar.
Thanks to Calendly’s interface, I’m also able to ask for certain bits of information, as well as have the appointment show up in their calendar, and automatically send reminders, etc…
Structuring the Interview
After producing hundreds of interviews, I have found that it is much more effective for both the guest and myself to have a pre-determined roadmap for the interview, before hitting the record button.
This is the purpose of the pre-interview.
I use the pre-interview to first get to know my guest, and then to map out the questions that I’m going to ask them during the interview.
Once the pre-interview is complete, I email my guest a copy of the questions so both of us are now well prepared to conduct the recorded interview.
The final step of the pre-interview call is for my guest and I to agree upon a date that we are going to meet online again to record the actual interview.
In the screenshot below, you can see a portion of the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) that I use for producing every one of my podcast episodes.
As you can see above, the pre-interview is step 4 (of 74 total steps) of the podcast production and promotion process that I have developed and refined over the years.
Recording the Episode
Anywhere from just a few days to a few weeks after the pre-interview has been completed, my guest and I will meet online again to record the full interview.
Prior to hitting the record button, I quickly run through another portion of the SOP I described above.
As you can see in the image below, I have a few other items on my checklist to run through before we hit record.
In step 9, I am going to ask the which conferences they attend, plus I’m also going to plant the seed about asking them for a referral to another guest.
In step 10, I’m reminded to apply a specific tag in my CRM.
In step 11, I’m reminded to start my stopwatch when I hit the record button so that I’m able to note the starting time of one of my guests answer’s that I’m going to subsequently have my editor use as the 30 second intro clip that plays at the very start of each episode.
Then, in step 13 (shown in image above), are the pre-recording safeguards that I (and my guest) need to run through before hitting record so that we virtually eliminate the possibility that either one of us is going to end up contributing an unwanted noise into the recording….which would then result in increased editing time to find/remove said noise.
Editing & Post Production
Once my recorded call with my guest is completed, I have plenty yet to do in my podcast production workflow.
Change File Names
Right after I get off the phone with my guest, I fire up Garage Band and I record the additional sound clips that my editor is going to need in the editing process.
I then export those sound clips into the dropbox folder and rename each one as per the instructions in my podcast workflow – shown in step 16 in the image below.
Each time I record an episode, I take every precaution I can to eliminate the need to edit the recording of our conversation after the fact.
With that said, the final episode will need some editing by my editor VA and the instructions for that are highlighted in red in the image below.
Highlighted in green is the portion of the workflow that allows me to assign this step to one of the people on my editing team, as well as give it a due date. This person will then receive an email notification to let them know that a portion of this workflow has been assigned to them.
As you can also see in the screenshot above, we also have steps 18 through 29 to work through (my VA does all this) to ensure that we are ready to create the draft post in WordPress.
In step 25, the final .mp3 file is uploaded to Auphonic where all the levels are balanced, the .mp3 file is tagged, and then it is uploaded to Soundcloud and iTunes all automatically.
Publishing the Episode
Whenever I publish an episode, I publish the audio only portion to iTunes and the video version to my YouTube channel.
Create a Draft Post in WordPress
As you can see in the screenshot below, in this podcast workflow, steps 31 to 40 are devoted to creating the post in WordPress.
By providing my VA with this level of detail, they are easily able to do everything needed to get the blog post containing the episode ready for publication on the date specified in my editorial calendar.
Upload To YouTube
Once the draft post is ready, the next portion of the workflow instructs my VA to upload the video file to YouTube, and as you can see below, steps 52 through 60 provide my VA with all the necessary information to upload to YouTube in the exact way that I prefer.
Once the YouTube upload is complete, the WordPress post, the audio file, and the YouTube video will all go live at the exact same time, on the date that we have determined in the editorial calendar.
Now that the content is live, it is time to begin promotion.
Once the draft post is ready for publishing, we then have our editor review all the aspects that are called out in our workflow.
As you can see below, creating a meta description is just one of the 6 steps that are a part of our final review.
Promoting the Episode
For every episode that we publish, we promote it by:
- Posting on social media
- Asking my guest to mail their list
- Emailing my list
All of this is covered in the steps 64 through 74 of my podcast production workflow.
Want to Download My Workflow?
By now you have probably concluded that I’m a very process-oriented guy…and you’d be right. I own 3 companies and have people that work for each, and without all my Standard Operating Procedures, we’d be lost!
If you like what you have seen in this post and don’t want to have to create these systems from scratch, you can purchase my Bloggers Content Production Pack.
Included in this collection of SOP templates are SOPs for:
- Creating podcast episodes
- Creating videos for YouTube
- Creating webinars
- Creating blog posts
- Email broadcasts
Should you wish to purchase only the workflow for creating podcast episodes, you can get it here.