Podcast Launch Strategy: 3 Phases To Growth

If you are a thought leader looking to use podcasting as a vehicle for growth – in building your brand, creating more relationships, and making a positive impact in the world, then this resource is for you. There are three phases you are going to go through in the podcasting process to ultimately get to where you want to go. In this guide I am going to help you establish a solid foundation for how to launch a podcast by creating a podcast launch strategy that puts you in a position to succeed.

3 Phases To Podcasting Growth

  1. Phase 1: Zero to Podcast Launch
  2. Phase 2: Episode 0 to Episode 20
  3. Phase 3: Episode 20 to Episode 100+

I’ll break down each of these phases of the podcasting process for how to think about them. That way you have a vision of what’s possible, and you can have the right podcast launch strategy right out of the gate.

If you’d like a master class on using the 3 Phases I put together this video and podcast which gives even more context.

Phase 1: Getting Your Podcast Launched

This is the hardest phase of the podcast process because everything is new and you’ve never done this before. It’s also the one the most people never get past. It is going from having an idea about a podcast, and seeing it all the way to podcast launch.

In the event you have the commitment, and get to the launch of your podcast, then congratulations – you are now in the game. This is where it starts to become a ton of fun because you are doing what you actually wanted to do – talk into a microphone and share your thoughts with others. Your podcast is now a real thing that others can listen to.

Two reasons why people fail at launching a podcast

The first is a lack of commitment. A lot of people like the idea of launching a podcast, and have even thought about it for a while, but they aren’t all-in. They never actually get the process started – it’s just a thought.

Then there are those who start moving forward with the podcast launch process, and even make some progress, but then business & life happens. They take their eye off the prize and stop taking consistent action. They allow other actions to take a higher priority and they lose momentum.

I have a saying “the longer it takes for you to launch a podcast the greater the chances of it not happening.” When you lose momentum it can be tough to get back especially if you don’t have the support

The second reason is uncertainty. When you don’t know what to do next you are likely to do nothing. It’s why I love the quote “Uncertainty leads to inaction.” Ya you can try and figure out how to launch a podcast on your own, I did, but it takes a very strong why, and a lot of consistency and persistence. (Tip: If you want to easily launch a podcast our next Shining Your Voice cohort is starting soon).

Phase 2: Learning How To Be A Good Podcast Host

This phase is like learning how to ride a bike for the first time. The more reps you get in the better you become. With each subsequent podcast episode your confidence will start to grow. You’ll learn the nuances of what it takes to be good at podcasting. You are learning by doing.

I’ve found that getting to episode 20 is the magic number. It allows you to do it long enough to where the lightbulb goes off (aka you have the Ah Ha moment). You also become self aware enough to know how bad you were with your first episodes compared to where you are now. And that’s a good thing. It’s just part of the process.

Once again, this is a phase that weeds a lot of people out. Most podcasts don’t get past episode 7. Why? Because people give up too quickly, or once again – they have a lack of commitment. They allow other things to get prioritized ahead of publishing their podcast. And if you don’t have a strong enough why or someone there to hold you accountable your podcast can just fade away.

Any time I see someone struggling with publishing podcast episodes I know why without even talking to them. They aren’t following a system or process. Because hosting a weekly podcast doesn’t have to be and shouldn’t be hard. It should be easy.

How? By following what I call “The One Perfect Podcast” process.

Since we have a long term vision for using podcasting as a vehicle for growth, and there is no end in sight, then it would make sense to do the same thing every single time we publish a podcast. That way it is easy to execute (because we are following the same process), which saves us time (because we don’t have to figure out what to do next), which increases our quality (because we are running an optimized system that is designed to do everything perfectly), which puts ourselves in the best position to succeed and get consistent results.

Rinse and repeat into perpetuity.

The other trap people fall into is making their podcast too complex to execute. Often times this starts with poor podcast launch design from the start. They think that their podcast needs to be 45 minutes or an hour – because they’ve got a ton to say – or that’s how long they’d love to interview someone for. If they can’t do that then they can’t publish a podcast episode.

The reason this is a trap is the longer your podcast is the more time it takes to execute. I get it, finding 45 minutes or an hour to record every episode could be challenging for someone who is a high performer with an already packed schedule. But what if I told you the way you throw this excuse in the trash is by shrinking the length of your podcast. Instead of 45 minute episodes, what if your podcast was only 5 minutes long, or 12 minutes long.

Wouldn’t that feel a lot less daunting?

Yep, and here’s the thing, not only would it be easier to execute, you’d likely get better results. Because your podcast episodes would be more laser focused on one topic, and that’s all you have time for, that would force you to just talk about the best and most transformative content.

And here is the cherry on top. If we know that getting to episode 20 is the magic number, then you have the ability to compress time (if you’d like). Ya you could do a weekly podcast that is 45 minutes long, and publish one episode a week, and after 5 months you get to episode 20. Great.

Or, you could publish a podcast 3 days a week – call it Monday, Wednesday, Friday – that is only 10 minutes an episode – that gets 20 episodes published in less than 2 months.

I share this to get your gears turning about what’s possible for you and your podcast.

Phase 2 is the growth stage for you as a host – where you start to see the vision of what is possible. And once you get to episode 20 congratulations, it’s time for phase 3.

Phase 3: Using Podcasting To Build Your Brand

This phase of the podcast process is rarified air. Most podcasts never get here. It is when you go from episode 20 to episode 100+ of your podcast.

You’ve published podcasts enough times to know what you are doing. You are confident in who you are as host. The lightbulb has gone off multiple times for you. You’ve had several Ah Ha moments.

You are no longer worried about not publishing episodes because you’ve built that consistency of process. You know you can do it.

You now see your podcast as a growth engine. There is no stopping you because why would you want to stop connecting with new people, building your audience, and creating impact in the world?

You see what is possible. You’ve transcended just getting it launched and now your podcast is a tool in your creator tool belt now. Where you can do whatever you want with it.

This is the phase where you break all the rules you’ve been taught.

When launching a podcast, the biggest thing you learn is consistency. How to do the same thing over and over again to get the results you want – which at the beginning is just a live podcast episode (Tip: here’s a podcast checklist that can help).

Because you are a mastery level now, you are living in your vision. You know the more episodes you publish, the more opportunities and impact you create.

When previously it was, “I need to publish an episode every Wednesday – and all of my episodes are 30 minutes long” – now you can open up the possibilities of how else would I like to use my podcasting platform.

“What if in between my weekly Wednesday episodes I did a 5 minutes podcast where I give one nugget of wisdom that that helps you on your journey?”

“What if I asked my podcast guests one extra question at the end of every episode that I save for its own specific micro episode that I publish a few days after the first one launches as a bonus?”

“What if I add in a Q&A episode from questions I get asked by clients?”

“What if I repurposed the live streams I do on LinkedIn as another way of providing value for my audience?”

“What if you did a solo episode of something that inspired you in real time and the episode was only 1 minute and 37 second long?”

What if… becomes a prompt of possibility.

No longer is your podcast rigid, but it is fluid – or so you give yourself the opportunity if you want.

If you like the way things are publishing consistently and keeping it simple, then keep doing your thing.

But Phase 3 is when you see your podcast the same way someone would a YouTube channel or even their Instagram. You can turn up and down your cadence and content to your liking.

This is also the phase in which you might be asking yourself, “Since I am delivering such amazing audio content – what if I start also publishing videos?”

BOOM. Welcome to the next lightbulb.

Now you are elevating your thought leadership by seeing your podcast as a multi-channel vehicle for creating growth and impact in your business and your life.

Yes that creates a whole new process but now you’ve created a new level of excitement and possibility. Because you can now see how you can level up.

And the best part is, this is all a ton of fun and you are doing what you know in your heart you are meant to do.

Podcast Launch Strategy Wrap Up

So those are the three phases of the podcasting process. Each one is brick that stacks on top of the other. As you head through each phase you will find your confidence and excitement for what you are building growing.

If you are considering launching a podcast, and you are looking to get your podcast launched faster and easier by following a proven blueprint, and you don’t want to make the same mistakes that I did – then head to RobCressy.com/voice to find out more about how I can help.