Niche Podcasting: How to Create, Maintain One
Creating a niche podcast not only can be fun, but also get you to invest into your passions. Focusing on your niche can also get you in touch with other people that are also passionate about the same things. New friends and good times with content you love to talk about. How can a podcast not get any more fun.
What’s Your Niche?
My niche is my own form of narcissism, thinking what I have to say is interesting to others…
– Matt Martinez
I have two niche podcasts. Day in Tech History is a daily rundown of tech history and iPad365 features iPad apps. The coolest thing about DITH is my content is pre-scripted. The first year of putting it together was difficult. Now that I have a base, I just add last years history and push out the show. This is great evergreen content in a podcast that comes out 365 days a year.
iPad365 is a little more work. I have to talk with app creators and watch the stores for new iPad accessories. Once I find an app to talk about, I create the show and post it out. iPad365 is a video show, so post video production can increase the work time. Still, once I get it out the door, it can be great evergreen content.
The Easiest Thing About Niche Podcasting
You most likely know a great deal about what you are podcasting. Maybe it’s a movie or TV show. In those cases, you need to know plots or character names. Being familiar with line-up is key to making a niche like that work.
Sports niches get a little more difficult if you span a whole sport rather than a specific team. Same thing goes with a TV show that spans 2-3 different spin-offs. Howard Cosell was a very popular sports announcer in the 50’s-90’s. When he called a Monday night football game, he memorized all the players names and numbers beforehand. By not having that cheat sheet to refer to he could keep focused on the game.
Here is a Tip: Even though Cosell didn’t have one, you might. Create a cheat sheet of popular terms, then put it up next to your podcast rig. You never know when you have to refer back to it.
Craig Griffiths (Making Business and Sales Work) on Niche Podcasting
A niche is a niche because the people in it are singularly focused. They know their topic and are normally passionate. Fakers stand out like a second nose. You have to be able to hold your own amongst people in your niche. You must be up front if you are learning as you go. Tell your audience and they will be happy to engage and add to your education.
I am part of the passionate niche I am podcasting to. As my tagline says, “One fan’s exploration of the world’s greatest progressive rock band”. I always ask for feedback and am constantly corrected by those who know the history of the band better than me or have additional information to share. I always mention them by name on the show, acknowledge their superiority and thank them. I nurture the community of listeners via Twitter, replying to comments etc. as well as giving lots of opportunities for listeners to get involved with the construction of episodes, even interviewing them for concert reviews, their own Yes stories etc.
It’s all about genuine involvement, friendship and community.
Getting Followers for your Niche Podcast
This sometimes can be easy, other times difficult. I have heard stories of people who start a show with the right name and get an instant audience. Other times, the audience takes a while to get there – but they still do. If a TV show like Grey’s Anatomy has 10 million viewers, your Grey’s Anatomy podcast could garner a few thousand.
Other niche podcasts can bring challenge to getting audience. It’s then about going to the internet or other outlets and promoting your show.
Here’s a Tip: There might be groups on Facebook, LinkedIn and MySpace, but try to find the niche websites with active forums. Don’t just post “My podcast is up”. Interact with the users. Answer questions. Let them discover your podcast and talk about it.
Gary Leland Says (FastPitch Softball TV) on Getting Numbers for Niche Podcasts
It is harder to get a large number of followers for a niche podcast, but it is a lot easier to be seen as an authority with a niche podcast. For example baseball and girls fastpitch softball are basically the same game. I would probably not even be known in the baseball world for my podcasts, where I am a major media site for fastpitch softball.
– Gary Leland
When the Niche Ends
One thing about a TV or film podcast; chances are the show might end and you run out of things to talk about. Knowing when to wrap up the show and move on to something else is key. Even though you might podfade on it, you could be keeping your audience by going to a new series.
Paul RJ Muller (Caffination) on Podfading a Niche
I stopped doing (Caffination Podcast) when it stopped being fun, and i couldn’t see any growth over the long term. By mixing two very specialized elements within one show i may have alienated people who didn’t like one or the other. I decided that since there were only so many hours in the day I could keep the site running and recharge my batteries to come up with better shows down the line. The show ran for 6 years and 7 months, with over 500 episodes. I think it was a good run and I’m just thankful people stayed with me as long as they did.
– Paul RJ Muller
Idea: Want to keep your current audience for a new project? Poll the audience before you close out your podcast. Let them help you go in the next direction.
Will Your Niche Podcast Become Popular?
Wish I could say yes. It really depends on the content you talk about, the consistency of your show and how you interact with your audience. It helps if you already have followers that are ready to listen to a podcast you produce. It also helps to continue the promotion. If your podcast gets notice on a TV show or newspaper article, you could get a big spike in your audience.
Mignon Fogarty – a.k.a Grammar Girl (Quick and Dirty Tips) on Audience of a Niche Podcast
When I started Grammar Girl, I thought it would be a niche podcast, but the audience turned out to be much broader than I thought. Maybe that’s some advice–don’t sell your niche short. Podcasting is international. A small number of people who find your topic interesting all over the country or world can still add up to a large number of people. http://grammar.quickanddirtytips.com
Niche podcasts are either going to be popular, really fun to record or both. Plan out your podcast, figure out your audience and have fun with it. If it becomes a job, you might not want to do it – which will show through with your audience. Most important – you might put out 10-20 podcast episodes before you see an audience or someone finally responds to you. Just keep on truckin and promoting – just like the saying goes, “If you build it, they will come.”