You want to start a podcast? Seven Tips for a Church Podcast
Recently, the Social Media Church Podcast post this article about why people are listening to religious podcasts.
Following seeing that article, I have had a few conversations about Browncroft’s podcast, Why God Why.
I still remember the day I sat with John Iamaio, a cohost of Why God Why, in the Brighton Twelve Corners Starbucks approximately two years ago. We discussed engaging Millennials and Generation Z when he blurted out, “We should just start a podcast…”
Now, we find ourselves on the precipice of 100 episodes. Several church leaders I talk with seem to see a disconnect from digital and in-person. I can tell you in starting this podcast in digital has enhanced in-person conversations.
One couple mentioned to me that they listen on car rides and stop episodes to discuss. Recently, a leader said this podcast works great on LinkedIn. Our guests from Browncroft and beyond have shared about connecting with other people. I have also received unsolicited feedback on the podcast.
Interestingly, people shared with me that they engaged podcasts in general because we started a podcast.
As you look to start a podcast for the church you serve, I want to share with you seven tips to help you get started:
1. Discover the need and purpose for the church.
What does a podcast offer that other programs and ministries cannot? That question has become much more clearer in the pandemic. It requires you to become a student of the church you serve. I would suggest three of the following purposes for a podcast.
- A follow up to the Sunday sermon.
- A pastor or leader personally engaging topics.
- An interview-style show with guests.
You can find a variety of these styles of podcasts from churches. The critical point becomes to discover the need for the church you serve.
2. Identify what winning looks like.
Podcasts require work. Identifying what winning looks like means qualitative and quantitative data. Whether you produce the podcast yourself or as a team, you will need to understand what winning looks like. That will help you to see if you should keep doing it or redirect your efforts.
3. Invest more in the technical pre-work & testing, not less.
When you host a podcast, I believe you want to give as much of your energy to creating useful content. You want to have technology and support that frees you up to do so. That requires testing. Do your best to get the setup and test how it will work in non-recording situations.
4. Get ten episodes in the can.
There’s no magic number in ten episodes, but it helps get you in a rhythm. It allows you to have a clear direction of where you’re headed. Also, Apple requires a two week start time to podcast. Lastly, ten episodes gives you time to record more, whether weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly.
5. Do your best to do video and audio.
Knowing what I know now, I probably would have advocated for video sooner. I made that decision based on how I like to listen to podcasts through audio. YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world. A younger generation is looking for your content.
6. Decipher what additional support you need.
We’ve had the opportunity to work with my friend Adam McGuffie from the Joy Ethic. He’s helped the podcast grow on social media and provided us with super helpful metrics, among other areas. The pandemic is assisting churches in clarifying their resources. When it comes to volunteers, staff, and contractors, it’s vital to redisperse the time to reflect the digital need.
7. Develop the communication plan.
You will want to make sure that you invest personally and as an organization into communicating. I offer just a brief checklist in the bullet points below. Remember, people in the church you serve might not engage podcasts yet, so take time to clarify the why and help them get access.
- Announcing at the Sunday service
- Website space
- Social Media posts
- Weekly emails
What podcasts from churches would you recommend? Share them in the comment section below.
Originally published at https://peterenglert.com on January 11, 2021.