One of the biggest problems as a podcaster is getting burnt out.
We’re working on something that has no distinct line. There is no line saying it’s a success, failure, or even how long it should go. This is definitely a problem. Why? To many podcasters make it for 3 months and then gradually fade off into the distance… Way to many.
We’re not going to talk about “if it’s good” or “if it’s bad”. Just how to deal with potential burn out, when you’re thinking about quitting.
Change the Format
It’s really easy to get burnt out when you’re doing the same thing over and over again… Really easy.
One of the simplest ways to feel creative and motivated again is to change the format.
Often times if you’re relying on guests and you start to struggle to find new guests for every show – life get’s tough. Instead of simply trying to double down and find more guests maybe it’s time to split it up. Have a couple episodes be with guests, and then a couple without. It might also be a great time to think about adding a co host or a regular contributor to help you create great content
Another option is to break up your show into specifics series or seasons. Michael Hyatt recently did this with his podcast. You can check out his thoughts on it here
I love that concept and although I haven’t implemented it yet, I’m planning on it with one of my shows and one that we produce here at Just Hit Publish.
Another idea around this idea of breaking up the show into series…
Something I have done that has helped me to break things up is to create a series of shows on a specific topic. If your podcast is on social media marketing – do a series of 6 shows just on Twitter. Bring on experts, just share your thoughts and craft a whole group of content around it. Not only will your audience enjoy it – you’ll have the opportunity to be creative and come up with some unique content.
It’s about producing something really education and entertaining. Getting out of rut is essential to keep you going.
An element of Random
If you’re bored of your show – you probably haven’t done anything lately.
And – If you want to keep listeners listening this is essential ( I talk about my thoughts on it here )
Here are some “random” ideas. *ha
Switch up your music on a regular basis. Here at Just Hit Publish we’ve built up a library of music from independent musicians looking to get there music out there just for this reason. It’s a great way to mix it up.
Change the way you introduce the show. Have different call to actions. Try saying “howdy” when you normally would say “welcome”. The little things can go a long way in keep your audience (and yourself) entertained..
Put a music break in the middle of your episode for no other reason than to break up the episode.
There are so many different tasks involved with podcasting. Being a part of the entire podcasting process can definitely lead to some burn out.
Getting yourself out of the admin and focused on the creative can be a great way to start feeling good about continuing. The classic E-Myth (a book by Michael Gerber) reference – Work on your business not in it.
This is a great time to do a plug. That’s why we do what we do at Just Hit Publish. We take those tasks off your plate and help you to create better content on a regular basis (without getting burnt out) If you want to chat about it… I’d love to.
Have a purpose or a goal
What I’ve noticed is that most people start podcasting just for fun or because they’ve heard it’s a great way to build an audience. Neither of these implies that you have a goal. If this is you and you’re on the verge of quitting… Maybe it’s time to set some of these goals.
Take a step back and get some perspective on where you’ve come from and where you think you can go. It might surprise you.
It might be a time to see that you need to do one of the things we talked about earlier so you can meet some of your goals.
*Thanks to some kind people (like Jared Easley from Podcast Movement) for getting this post out there… I got some additional ideas I wanted to add in here.
Taking a break.
Scheduling a time to step away and get a new perspective and come back with the energy of someone just starting. Idealistic I know but if you tell you audience and have a plan on what you’re going to do after you get back it could be the difference in stopping for good or continuing on.
I think this is a great idea. If you’ve been podcasting for long enough most of your listeners haven’t heard all of your episodes. Recycling those will definitely help you get a better grip on your schedule and being creative with you content. And I mean come on if This American Life can do it you and I can do it as well right?
This is what somebody commented in the Podcast Movement Facebook group.
Great list. Rather than taking an unscheduled hiatus that might scare away listeners, we decided to take scheduled breaks that our listeners knew about ahead of time and play “rewind” episodes during the break. Now we have eight weeks of shows and then a week off where “Autumn the intern” takes over (I recorded my daughter introducing an old show that I attach to the file…..). Those breaks are HUGE for recharging the batteries.
I love that idea and will have to play around with it.
Thanks for the comments everyone!