How do you get started as a Podcast Producer?
You might be wondering how to get a job in podcasting because:
- You’re a regular podcast listener and appreciate podcast shows
- You have a passion for audio entertainment
- You want to work from home and have a flexible schedule
Or perhaps you’re a blogger, a YouTuber, or in another business where you produce content. Podcasting will allow you to reach a brand new audience – people who prefer to listen to get content. Like with YouTube, you know how hearing a person’s voice can quickly connect you to them and build trust.
Either way, whether you’re helping a podcaster or creating your own podcast, you have no idea how to technically launch, manage and grow a podcast.
While you can learn as you go, you know that it will take a lot of time and time is money. You want to learn the best practices so you can be competitive in the podcasting space.
In this post, I’m excited to share an interview with Melanie Scroggins. Since 2017, Melanie has been producing podcasts for businesses. She’s also a Voice Actor and has been featured in a national commercial, a documentary series and a video game.
With her experience with podcasting and audio production, she’s now teaching people how to be a Podcast Producer at Podcast Production School along with Hailey Thomas (the Podcaster Melanie used to assist) and Gina Horkey (a professional Writer and Creator of this successful Virtual Assistant training course).
Podcast Production School has these 3 FREE workbooks and checklists on the skills and strategies for launching, managing and growing podcasts for businesses you don’t want to miss!
In this interview, Melanie discusses her 3 tips on how to be successful as a Podcast Producer, her biggest challenge, and the biggest mistake people often make producing podcasts.
But first before the interview, if you’re unfamiliar with what podcasting is…
What is a Podcast Producer?
A Podcast Producer helps Podcasters create and grow podcasts.
Basically, they help with any service the Podcaster needs for their business. In the interview below with a successful Podcast Producer, you’ll see exactly what services this can entail.
Some Podcast Producers also extend their services outside of the podcast to other aspects of their client’s business like project management or Pinterest management.
When that happens, they might call themselves a Virtual Assistant or a Virtual Assistant Agency. Here’s a list of over 150 services Virtual Assistants could offer to help businesses.
- If you’re interested in learning how to become a Virtual Assistant, check out my interview with a successful Virtual Assistant.
- If you’re interested in helping people specifically with Pinterest, here are my interviews with 2 amazing Pinterest Virtual Assistants Yi Ming Lai and Megan Haskin.
What is the demand for Podcast Producers?
Podcasting seems to be all the rage these days! And for good reason!
Podcasting is an accessible medium. It’s easy to listen to a podcast. Once you download a podcast app and find the podcast you’re interested in, you can download the episodes and listen to them at your leisure.
You can listen to a podcast while doing other things like driving, cooking, and cleaning. You can’t drive while watching YouTube videos or reading blog posts.
Adding a podcast to a business makes sense.
These 2 statistics exhibit how the demand for Podcast Producers is just beginning to heat up:
- There are currently over 1 million active podcasts.
- Just 2 years ago, there were only 550,000 active podcasts.
In a short period, the number of podcasts have almost doubled!
With a growing number of podcasts, the demand for Podcast Producers will only go up!
How much do Podcast Producers make?
According to Ziprecruiter, the average salary for a Podcast Producer in the United States is $47,041 a year.
Naturally, your income largely depends on how many podcasts you help produce. The more podcasts you produce, the more money you make. It also depends on your experience, expertise, services offered etc.
Interview with a Successful Podcast Producer
Here’s the interview with Melanie!
1. What is podcast production?
Essentially, podcast production is the process through, and by which, a podcast is made. The podcast production process includes:
- Setting up equipment and recording audio
- Retrieving and editing audio
- Uploading audio to an online hosting site
- Publishing content to an external source (like a website)
- Promoting content online via social media, email lists, etc.
For more context, someone who offers podcast production services is known as a Podcast Producer, and a Podcast Producer is someone who offers technical, administrative or marketing support to podcast owners.
But who would hire a Podcast Producer to offer podcast production services?
The benefits businesses and brands get from podcasting is unlike any other medium at the moment. Podcasting is accessible in ways that blog posts and other forms of media traditionally aren’t, and business owners are realizing this more and more.
So, folks who have podcasts often need someone else to manage things. And there are tons more businesses and brands that aren’t currently using audio but really want to be. In either scenario a Podcast Producer can help – they can step in and take over, improve a client’s existing show, or help them to start a new one from scratch.
2. How did you get started producing podcasts?
Back in the summer of 2017, my husband was working for the Bureau of Land Mgmt on the coast of Oregon. So we moved to the coast and lived in an RV for six months. Most days, I found myself with a lot of extra time and thought I might give podcasting a go to fill the time and stretch my creative muscles.
The kicker was, I knew ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about podcasting. I’d been a podcast listener for a couple of years but I had no audio experience at that point. But I’d been inspired to create one and decided to give it a go. So, with a USB mic we had on hand and a free DAW (digital audio workstation) for editing, I started interviewing friends and friends of friends and my first podcast came to life!
Fast forward about six months, I had friends within the RV community reach out to me about producing their podcast for them… for money.
WHAT?! Someone wanted to pay me to make a podcast for them? That’s exactly right. Thus started a career in podcast production.
At the beginning of 2019, one of my past clients, and now colleague, Hailey Thomas, reached out to me about producing her podcast. She’d found me online and we got along really well, so we ended up working together.
Months later, Hailey mentioned to me that her friend and colleague, Gina Horkey, saw a need in the small business space for podcast production services and wanted to create a course for those interested in offering those services to clients.
So, the three of us got together and began to work on what is now Podcast Production School. Between the three of us, we have 15+ years of online experience, so that combined with our unique skill sets in podcast production, project management, sales, and marketing we have been able to create, what I believe to be, the most comprehensive online podcast production course out there.
3. How much money do you make monthly producing podcasts?
When I was offering podcast production full time, I was making, on average, $500-1000 per client, depending on their needs, and had about 3-4 clients at any given time. I was working about 25-30 hours per week.
4. How did you obtain clients as a podcast producer?
There are so many ways to find podcast production clients. The internet and social media have opened up endless opportunities for pitching and prospecting.
But for me, referrals from past clients were key. I also spent a lot of time prospecting in Facebook groups about podcasting and reaching out to cold leads via email on a regular basis.
5. What costs are involved with producing podcasts?
I’ll break it down by step:
- Setup, recording, editing
- Episode publication & distribution
- Online hosting (Libsyn plans start at $5/month)
- Marketing (varies depending on the medium)
- Social media (free, unless outsourced)
If you’re interested in offering these services to business owners and want to know what it would cost to start offering these in demand skills, learn more in our FAQs here.
6. What is your favorite aspect about producing podcasts?
My favorite part about producing podcasts as an audio editor first, has always been the ability to take something that is “RAW” and make it something clean and something people want to listen to. I really enjoy creating an experience with all the podcasts I produce.
7. What is your biggest challenge with producing podcasts?
When it comes to producing podcasts, whether for myself or others, it’s important for me to be sure I focus on one task at a time and give each show the right amount of time and not overdo it.
I’ve experienced the desire of wanting to make everything I work on ‘perfect’ but that is simply impossible. So my focus has become ‘make it the best it can be and move on.’ Which is good to remember in life in general!
8. What’s the biggest mistake people make when producing podcasts?
I’d say the biggest mistake people make when producing podcasts is they don’t spend enough time thinking about their goals for their shows.
For example, while there are now well over 1 million podcasts out there, only a certain percentage of them are actively producing regular episodes. Which tells me, as a producer, that somewhere along the way, something gave… whether that was time, money, energy, desire, etc.
This also tells me, from experience, that if a podcaster’s goal is not specific (i.e. I want to make $2500 this year from my podcast) it is very hard to measure and attain that goal.
So, podcasters need to set specific goals for their shows and actively work toward attaining those particular goals. This can look like doing some research, taking a course, or hiring out podcast production all together, depending on what you want to achieve with your podcast.
9. What are your top 3 tips to get started producing podcasts successfully?
This is such a great question. I’ll start where I left off in my last answer:
1) Do some research.
Due to the increased popularity in podcasts in recent years, there’s a ton of information out there. Dig into the podcasting industry and read about what shows are doing well. Listen to podcasts if you don’t already. You can listen to podcasts on a variety of apps on your phone, computer, and even TV!
2) Take a course.
Hands down one of the best ways to learn anything nowadays is by taking a course, specifically one that is online and self-paced (available 24-7/365 forever). Courses tend to be a great option because they provide a one-stop-shop for learning information about a particular topic or skill.
3) Outsource/hire out.
For most of the business owners I’ve worked with, and our students have worked with, hiring out podcast production all together has been a game changer for them and their business. We refer to this as ‘hiring out so you can focus on your genius.’ Contrary to popular belief, we don’t need to be everything to everyone, including ourselves. If you’re a business owner interested in hiring out for your podcast, we’ve got you covered here.
10. Can you tell us about Podcast Production School?
Podcast Production School is an online course designed to help individuals master the skills + strategies needed to launch, manage, and grow podcasts for small business owners or themselves. We teach everything from setting up podcasting equipment remotely to marketing and monetizing a show.
What makes this brand and course unique is that we are a woman led business and brand focused on the education and success of our students. And we offer 15+ years of experience and expertise in both the course material and our community.
We also have a private Facebook community available to our students ($1/first month, $49/each month after) where we offer program and business support, regular (LIVE) office hours, and job postings just for our students.
Thanks, Melanie for sharing your insights!
If you’re interested in learning more about how to be a Podcast Producer:
If you’re interested in Podcast Production School, here’s an interview with a Podcast Production School student sharing an insider’s look at the course.
Interested in other work-from-home opportunities?
Here are additional work at home options that are well-paid:
- SEO Writer – make more than $20,000/month
- Online English Teacher (no degree required) – earn $26/hour
- Transcriber – earn $100,000+/year
- Scopist (editing legal documents) – make $4000/month
- Pinterest Virtual Assistant – earn $30+/hour
Other ways to make some money from home
If you only want to earn a little bit of side cash quickly and easily each day, here’s a list of legitimate survey companies with user-friendly sites that I’ve personally tried and liked:
The more companies you join, the more surveys you’ll qualify for taking. If you like taking surveys and being able to voice your opinion and know that it’ll make a difference with brands and products, taking surveys might be right up your alley.
Related Work at Home Articles:
- How to make up to $4000/month as a Scopist
- 9 steps to achieve financial freedom for your family
- 11 Flexible Work-from-Home Jobs for Stay-at-Home Moms
- Become a Real Estate Virtual Assistant
- How to become a Proofreader
- How to become a Virtual Bookkeeper
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