“Podfade” is the term for podcasts that start out strong but slowly (or abruptly!) disappear into the ether, when the podcaster loses interest, gets too busy, or just gives up. Don't let it happen to you! Take these tips to heart to become a podcaster of longevity, not brevity:
1. Pick a topic you're truly passionate about. If you're not that into Barbies, don't start a podcast on them just because you think the market is going to be hot. Your lack of enthusiasm will show. True enthusiasts and rabid fans know a faker from a mile away. Don't be that guy.
2. Don't go too narrow. Want to talk about all-natural wart remedies? That's a viable business, indeed. But will you run out of topics in a month or two? Make sure you have a list of topics for the next six months, at a minimum. If you can't come up with at least a dozen topics, broaden your topic area. Maybe you could talk about all-natural skin care, or skin problems.
3. Don't be overly ambitious. Saying you're going to podcast every day for the rest of your life is a bit insane. You can still take advantage of that early burst of energy by recording dozens of podcasts, if that's what you're inclined to do. But rather than releasing them all immediately, space them out, with one a week or so. Treat them like your kids treat their Halloween candy: Make it last.
4. Incorporate new items. After you've been podcasting for a while, you may lose your enthusiasm because you feel like the whole thing is just a bit too routine. Incorporate some new items into your podcast; bring in a guest host, add interviews or product reviews, take Q&A from your audience. Mix it up to get your mojo back.
5. Take a break. Some of the best podcasters out there take regular breaks from podcasting. They create a podcast series – 10 or 15 podcasts on a theme – and then they take a few weeks off to create their next series and recharge their batteries. Just let your audience know your intentions so they don't think you've disappeared without a trace.
6. Podcast with a friend. Many radio shows rely on multiple hosts. Not only does this break up the flow, it also gives you someone to bounce things off of, to generate new ideas, and to cover if you need to take a break for a while. Think about sharing hosting duties with a colleague in your niche.
7. Get feedback. One of the toughest things about podcasting is feeling like you're operating in a vacuum. You're never quite sure if anyone is out there, or if they're just downloading your show to leave on for their parakeet to listen to while they're at work all day. Asking your audience for feedback is a great way to keep your energy from flagging, as well as to generate new content for upcoming shows. Ask what questions people have, what they think about a topic, and who they'd like you to interview.