Discover Tips of What to Look for When Sourcing a Podcast Production Company. Read Our 10 Tips Now!
Starting a podcast is a heavy lift and not a small time or financial investment. But if done properly, it can yield great returns. For companies looking to build out their own series, a quality production company is a key factor in success. They can act as a partner throughout your podcast journey to set you up for success as well as provide audio expertise as your show grows.
But it’s hard to figure out what you should look for when choosing a podcast production company. A lot goes into producing a quality podcast – everything from strategy, scripting, equipment, recording, editing, podcast publishing, and marketing to analysis. So, in this blog, we break down what to look for in a perfect match.
Keep reading for our top 10 do’s and don’ts to look for when selecting a podcast production company!
Before you invest time and money into your podcast, you should have a specific strategy in place. Any qualified production company should offer a comprehensive strategic plan so that everyone is aligned on the vision and next steps.
The plan should cover many aspects of your show, including a defined target audience, an understanding of brand and voice, a clear POV as well as a list of the potential opportunities you can seize with your podcast.
Once there is a well-thought-out strategy in place, your production company should work on podcast concepts. Often a brand will come to the table with a specific idea but if you’re working with a quality production company, their job is to make suggestions that would help you refine and improve your initial concept.
The right partners will be willing to challenge the client’s ideas in pursuit of ultimately creating the best podcast.
Anyone can host a podcast but learning how to be a great, engaging host is challenging. Your production company should understand the importance of an excellent host. Often, brands will want to use a voice from within their company as their host so it not only boosts awareness but also showcases expertise.
Whether you’re sourcing an external host or you’re bringing someone from within your company forward, your podcast production company should assist in working with the host to ensure they’re comfortable and captivating whenever they sit in front of that microphone.
Depending on what exactly you’re looking for from a podcast production company, your agency should be assisting you in the audio recording process. For full-service production companies, this is most definitely a service offering that you should be searching for.
Depending on the company, some recordings may be done in studio and others may be done virtually through platforms like Riverside.fm.
If the podcast production company that you choose to work with has a local studio or if they can bring a studio to you (yes, that is something many people do!) then it takes a lot of pressure off. The studio will be full service and will include the full range of equipment you would need to record a quality podcast.
On the flip side, if you’re working with an agency that is fully remote, then they’ll typically either send you information of the equipment that you should buy or they’ll actually send you the right microphones, headphones, etc.
A qualified podcast agency will also have exceptional project management skills. They should provide clear timelines and budgets, so you know what to expect. Budgets need to be built around your podcast’s unique needs such as custom music, remote or in-studio recording, length of episodes, etc.
A show that has a strong project manager is key as it keeps things on track and allows you to be consistent with how often you release the show. It’s also a point of contact so you always know who to go to within the agency if you have any questions or concerns.
It’s smart to find a podcast production company that has solid skills for post-production – everything from editing, recording intros, and outros since this is where the magic happens. A qualified podcast agency will make the production process seamless and handle minutia for you.
They will provide a full-spectrum team that boasts all of the skills required to produce a killer series. Typically, their team should include a producer, writer, creative director, engineer and editor.
A successful podcast will also involve comprehensive distribution across all major podcast platforms. Your podcast production company should be able to assist in making sure that your show is formatted correctly and distributed. It is important that your show is available on major platforms like iTunes, Spotify, and Google, but also on all the smaller, lesser-name platforms too.
Typically, agencies will have podcast hosting platforms that they recommend you use or it’s just a cost within your overall price structure. Either way, once the episode is produced, your agency should manage the process from there.
Aside from distribution, the key to a successful podcast is marketing. There are plenty of promotion strategies that will help you get your podcast in front of your target audience and your production company should be well-versed in all. Social media obviously plays a key role. There are also many other promotional techniques including audiograms, SEO, leveraging other podcasts, live events, collateral, PR, paid media sales and buys guest co-promotions, and relationships with major directories including Apple, Spotify, and Stitcher.
Before hiring a company, make sure they present a case study that outlines all the ways in which they will market your show so that it can go far and wide. This service isn’t as popular with all production companies but if you’re looking for assistance on the growth side, it’s definitely an attribute to look for.
Additionally, you want to look for traits in your podcast agency that show they’re willing to get creative and test out new promotion tactics with you. The world of branded podcasts is still so new and there’s no correct formula for growth. Sometimes all it takes is getting creative with marketing and positioning your podcast in front of the right audience.
Once your podcast goes live, your agency should be able to make sense of performance data and use it to accelerate growth. Data and analytics provide valuable info that an effective agency will use to inform creative or directional shifts that will get you closer to your show’s end goals.
So, there you have it, our top 10 do’s and don’ts to look for when hiring a podcast production company. A branded podcast is a big investment and one you should not take lightly.
Hence, taking the time to hire a company that not only understands your vision and brand but also one that is set up with all the capabilities to make your show a success.
Remember, an exceptional agency should be your guide, partner, and expert consultant through every single step of this process. And if you’re looking for one that will be in your corner, get in touch with the team at Quill.
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