How To Start A Podcast Network That Grows Listener Reach

by | Grow

As the popularity of podcasts increases, more and more people are looking to start their own podcast network. Whether you’re an aspiring podcaster or a seasoned professional, starting your own podcast network can be an exciting way to reach millions of listeners around the world.

But with so many potential pitfalls along the way, it can be difficult to know where to begin. That’s why we’ve created this guide to help you navigate the process of starting a successful podcast network from scratch. We’ll cover everything from finding and selecting the perfect hosting platform to creating high-quality content for your listeners so that you can start broadcasting your show in no time.

So, let’s get started!

Related: Tricks to Grow Your Number of Podcast Listeners

What Is A Podcast Network?

Before we dive into the mechanics of starting your own podcast network, it’s important to first understand what a podcast network actually is. Simply put, a podcast network is a collection of podcasts that are all connected by some kind of central theme or topic.

For example, if you wanted to start a podcast about the music industry, you could create a network of podcasts that interviewed bands and talked about the various aspects of the music industry.

A podcast network allows creators to leverage their existing audience and resources to reach an even larger group of people, while also providing each other with support systems and communities. Podcast networks can range from a small group of independent creators to a larger network of multiple shows hosted by different people.

How Do Podcast Networks Work?

Now that you understand what a podcast network is, let’s take a look at how they actually work. It’s essential to differentiate between different types of podcast networks because they have distinct operating methods. Knowing the difference can be pivotal for successful connection and communication between the people involved in a network.

1. The Network That Sells Ads & Sponsorships

The first type of network is one that sells ads or sponsorships to make money. This type of podcast network typically involves multiple shows hosted by different people, all working together to create a larger pool of listeners in order to attract bigger ad deals and additional sponsors.

In this kind of setup, the host(s) of the network would typically receive a revenue share from the ads sold. This revenue share would then be split among the other shows in the network, depending on their individual audience size.

2. Network With Centralized Hosting

The second type of podcast network is one that centralizes its hosting and operations. This means that all of the podcasts in the network are hosted on one platform and managed by one team. This type of network is typically more closely knit with each podcast being part of a larger story that can span several episodes.

In this kind of setup, the host(s) of the network would receive a larger share of the revenue from each podcast in the network. This is because they are providing an additional layer of production and hosting for each show.

3. Network With Independent Hosts

The last type of podcast network is one that operates with independent hosts and a shared platform for hosting. This means that each show in the network has its own host or creator, but all of the shows are hosted on the same platform.

This type of setup allows for a greater level of collaboration among creators, as they are able to share resources and audiences in order to reach a larger pool of listeners.

These three types of podcast networks all have their own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to thoroughly research which model is the best fit for your particular needs.

Related: How To Join a Podcast Network?

Starting A Podcast Network

Now that you have an understanding of what a podcast network is, it’s time to dive into the details of how to start your own podcast network. There are several steps involved in getting your network up and running:

Step One: Choose Your Model

The first step is to decide which type of podcast network you want to create. There are two main models to consider when starting a podcast network: the hub-and-spoke model and the affiliate model.


  • Hub-and-spoke model: The hub-and-spoke model is often used by those who want to create their own original podcasts or host multiple shows under one umbrella organization. In this model, there is one centralized home for all the shows, which acts as a hub for listeners.
  • Affiliate model: The affiliate model is typically used by those who want to host existing podcasts under one umbrella organization. In this model, each show is hosted on its own separate website and does not necessarily share branding with the other shows in the network.

Once you decide which model you want to use, it’s time to move on to the next step. But before you do, make sure you’re familiar with the legal and financial obligations associated with each model.

Step Two: Acquire The Necessary Equipment And Software

The next step is to acquire the necessary equipment and software you’ll need to run your podcast network. This includes:

  • Microphone: Invest in a quality microphone for the best sound recording. You can check out our list of best microphones for recording podcasts.
  • Recording Software: You’ll need software to record and edit your podcast episodes. Some of our best podcast recording software includes Audacity, GarageBand, and Adobe Audition.
  • Hosting Platform: A hosting platform is required to store all of your podcast files online so that your audience can access them. Some of our best podcast hosting platforms include SoundCloud, PodBean, and Libsyn.
  • Website: You’ll need a website to promote your podcast network and list all of the episodes you’ve released. This will also serve as an archive for past episodes so that new listeners can find out more about your podcast network.
  • Marketing Tools: You’ll need to promote all your podcasts, so consider investing in marketing tools such as social media management and analytics software.

These are the basics you need to get started, but other equipment and software may be necessary depending on the type of podcast network you want to run. For example, if you’re looking to create video podcasts, then you’ll need additional video editing software and video hosting.

Do some research into different types of equipment and software that might help to improve your podcast network. Just a couple of small investments can make a huge difference. Once you’ve acquired the necessary equipment and software, it’s time to move on to the next step.

Step Three: Create A Content Plan

Now it’s time to start planning your podcast content. Think about the type of content you want to create and how often you want to release new episodes. Make sure you have a solid plan in place so that you can keep up with your production schedule. When creating your content plan, consider the following factors:

  • Frequency: How often do you want to release new episodes? Will they be weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly?
  • Length: How long should each episode be?
  • Topic: What topics will you cover in your podcast episodes? Do you have any specific themes or topics that keep popping up throughout your content plan?
  • Guests: Are you planning to interview any guests for your podcast? If so, it’s important to plan ahead and make sure you have enough time to book them. All your podcast content should be planned and organized in advance.
  • Format: Will each episode follow the same format? If not, what type of variation will you introduce?

Creating a content plan is an essential step in launching your podcast network. It will help ensure that you have a consistent production schedule and that all of your podcast episodes are well-planned and engaging. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different formats, topics, and guests – it’s important to keep things interesting for both you and your listeners.

Related: Ideas For Podcast Segments

Step Four: Record The Podcast Episodes

After you’ve created a content plan, the next step is to start recording the podcast episodes. Make sure you have your necessary equipment and software ready and that you know how to use it. It’s also important to take time to prepare for each episode so that everything runs smoothly during the recording process.

When you’re ready to start recording, make sure you have plenty of time and a quiet environment to ensure the best sound quality. Don’t forget to take breaks between each episode so that you can rest your voice and refresh your ideas.

Also, don’t be afraid to record more than one take if something goes wrong. It’s better to be overly prepared and have multiple takes of each episode than to not have enough.

Once you’ve recorded your podcast episodes, it’s time to move on to the editing process.

Related: Podcast Starter Kit: Everything You Need To Get Started

Step Five: Edit The Podcast Episode

A podcast network is only as good as its content, so it’s important to take the time to edit your podcast episodes. This is where you can refine each episode and make sure everything sounds professional. This process involves removing any unwanted noise and making sure that the audio levels are consistent throughout each episode. It also includes adding in intros, outros, and music if necessary.

Editing your podcast episodes can take some time, but it’s worth the effort. A well-edited podcast episode is much more likely to engage listeners and keep them coming back for more. While you can certainly do this editing process yourself, it’s often better to have a professional audio editor handle the job.

Related: Best Podcast Editing Software

Step Six: Publish And Promote The Podcast Episodes

Editing your podcast episodes is only half the battle – you also need to publish and promote them. Depending on how you plan to host your podcast network, this process may involve submitting your content to various platforms such as iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, etc. Once you’ve published the podcast episodes, it’s time to start promoting them.

You can promote your podcast network in various ways, from sharing it on social media to creating a dedicated blog or website. You may also want to consider investing in paid advertising for your podcast networks, such as Google Ads or sponsored posts on Facebook and Twitter. Additionally, you could reach out to influencers or industry professionals who might be interested in your podcast network and invite them to be a guest.

No matter how you choose to promote your podcast network, the key is consistency. Regularly sharing your episodes on social media and other platforms will help draw in new listeners and ensure that they don’t forget about you.

Furthermore, you could consider partnering with other podcasts or businesses to cross-promote each other’s content. This could be a mutually beneficial relationship that helps both of you reach new audiences and build your respective brands.

Related: PODCAST PROMOTION: The Complete List

Step Seven: Monitor And Optimize

Once your podcast network is up and running, it’s important to monitor the success of each episode. Pay attention to how many people are listening to your episodes, where they’re coming from, what topics they seem to be most interested in, etc. This information can help you optimize future episodes and create content that specifically appeals to your target audience.

Monitoring the success of your podcast network also involves paying attention to reviews, feedback, and other comments from listeners. This can help you identify any issues with sound quality or topics that need further exploration. By listening to what people are saying about your podcast network, you can make adjustments accordingly and ensure that each episode is as engaging and entertaining as possible.

Finally, don’t forget to check the analytics of your podcast network regularly. This will help you gauge the effectiveness of your promotion efforts and provide insight into what’s working and what needs improvement. With this information in hand, you can fine-tune your marketing strategies and aim to keep listeners coming back for more.

Related: How to Find Out the Number of Listeners of a Podcast

Step Eight: Grow Your Podcast Network

Starting a podcast network is just the beginning – you also need to focus on growing it. This could involve expanding your content topics, adding new hosts or guests to existing episodes, or even creating additional shows that branch off from your main podcast network. Additionally, you could pursue monetizing opportunities such as sponsorships and paid subscriptions to help generate revenue and make your podcast network a sustainable business.

You should also be sure to market and promote your podcast network as much as possible. Develop a marketing strategy that incorporates different elements such as social media, email campaigns, content promotion, and more. Additionally, consider creating an additional website where you can post information about each individual podcast show, archive past episodes, feature guest bios, and more.

It’s also important to stay up-to-date with industry trends and technologies so that your podcast network can continue to grow and thrive. Some of the most popular tools for podcasters include audio editing software, music libraries, analytics tools, collaboration platforms, and more. Take advantage of these tools as well as other best practices to ensure that your podcast network is successful.

Related: How to Work with Other Podcasters

What Are The Requirements To Start A Podcast Network?

After you have decided to take the plunge and start a podcast network, there are certain necessary requirements that should be met in order for you to have a successful run. The above-mentioned steps are a good place to start, but let’s take a closer look at what you need in order to get your podcast network up and running.

1. Release Schedule

Before you even start recording, you should create a release schedule to keep track of all your episodes even if you’ve more than one podcast. This will help you stay organized and ensure that you’re releasing content regularly. Your release schedule should include the dates when each episode will be released, what topics they will cover, and who the guests or podcast hosts are going to be.

Many podcast networks create a specific release schedule for each show, with a certain number of episodes released every month. This can help you plan out your content in advance and ensure regularity. Additionally, it will give listeners something to look forward to and allow them to get used to the frequency of your releases.

Once you’ve created your release schedule, stick to it. Consistency is critical when it comes to podcasting, as listeners will appreciate knowing exactly when your new episodes are coming out and what they’ll be about. A consistent release schedule helps boost your discoverability on popular platforms like iTunes and Spotify.

Related: The Best Day to Release a Podcast

2. Branding

Branding is an important part of starting a podcast network. Choose a name that reflects the type of content you plan to produce and resonates with your target audience. Make sure it’s unique and stands out, then create logos, social media accounts, and other visual elements to capture the attention because podcast networks require more than just audio; they need visuals to help promote the content.

Don’t forget about creating a podcast network joining a website that will serve as the central hub for your network. This will be the go-to place for all your podcast episodes, news, and other content related to your podcast network. Make sure it’s easy to navigate, visually appealing, and functional on a variety of devices.

Once you have established your branding elements and website, use them to start promoting your podcast network. Use social media to share updates, post teasers of upcoming shows, and spread awareness of your network.

You can also use email campaigns to reach out to potential listeners, partners, and sponsors. As your network grows, be sure to keep the branding consistent across all platforms. This will help solidify your podcast network’s identity in the minds of your listeners.

3. Formatting

Formatting is an important part of running a successful podcast network. Decide what type of format you want your shows to take, such as:

  • Interviews: Have a guest or two on the show to discuss their experience and perspective.
  • Roundtables: Invite multiple people to join in on a discussion about a particular topic.
  • Solo Shows: Focus on one person’s stories and experiences.
  • Monologues: Create an engaging narrative by telling a story or giving a lecture.

Experiment with different formats to find out what works best for your network and the type of content you want to create. Once you’ve chosen a format, stick to it and ensure that each episode follows the same structure as the others.

This will help your listeners get used to your style and make it easier for them to follow along. Before joining a podcast network, many potential listeners will want to know what kind of content they can expect. If you have a consistent format and follow it, your audience will be more likely to tune in.

Related: How to Write a Podcast Script

4. Content Creation

The requirements above are all important steps in starting a podcast network, but the most important part of all is creating great content. Most podcast networks failed to find success because they put too much emphasis on creating a brand and not enough on the content.

To start, create a plan for each episode. Write out a few bullet points of what you want to cover and any questions you have in mind. This will help keep your conversations organic, interesting, and engaging. When recording, make sure to stick to the plan while giving yourself enough room to be creative and have fun.

Moreover, make sure your audio quality is up to par. Invest in good recording equipment and do some research on techniques for reducing background noise and making sure each voice registers clearly. Poor audio quality can discourage listeners from tuning in, so take the time to get the right creative control.

These are the basics of creating top podcast networks. When done right, it can be an incredibly rewarding experience both for you and your listeners. With hard work and dedication, you can create a thriving podcast network that people will love to tune into.

Related: Planning a Podcast

The Benefits Of Starting A Podcast Network

There are many benefits to starting a podcast network. This section will outline some of the most notable ones.

Reach A Wider Audience

A podcast network can reach a much wider audience than a single podcast. By creating multiple shows, you can talk about different topics and appeal to different demographics. This will help you expand your reach and get new listeners who may not have been exposed to your work before.

Take Advantage Of Cross-Promotion

Cross-promoting can help you boost your network’s visibility and reach. By promoting each show on the others, you can introduce new audiences to your content and get them interested in listening further. This is an especially effective strategy when launching a new podcast within your network.

Increase Brand Recognition

Establishing a successful podcast network can help you build your brand and increase recognition. Consistent branding across all shows will create a recognizable identity that listeners can identify with. This will make it easier for them to follow along and develop an affinity towards your content.

Generate Revenue

Having multiple podcasts within your network can be beneficial when it comes to generating revenue. You can monetize your shows through sponsorships, donations, and other sources of income. This will help you generate more money and make your podcasts sustainable in the long run.

Grow Your Network

Starting a podcast network can help you build relationships with other podcasters and industry professionals. This will create opportunities for collaboration, guest appearances, and information exchange. This kind of networking is invaluable when it comes to building a successful podcasting business.

Enjoy The Benefits Of Community

Having a podcast network can be incredibly rewarding in terms of community involvement. You will be able to form relationships with people who share common interests and support each other’s work. This kind of community is invaluable for any podcaster and can help you create something truly special.

Related: Grants For Podcasts

Create A Legacy

Starting a podcast network is an amazing way to leave your mark on the industry and create something you can be proud of. Your shows will become part of a larger body of work that you created from scratch and that you can pass down to future generations. This is one of the most rewarding aspects of starting a podcast network. Some of the most popular and biggest podcast networks in the world have started out as small, humble operations and now have millions of listeners tuning in every week.

So there you have it, the benefits of starting a podcast network. With hard work and dedication, you can create something truly special that will appeal to many different audiences. If this is something that interests you, don’t hesitate to get started today.

FAQs

Do podcast networks make money?

Many people may be wondering one important question: do podcast networks make money? The answer is yes, but it will depend on the individual podcast network. Generally, podcast networks generate money through sponsorships, donations, advertising, and other sources of revenue. Especially the digital audio journalism industry is growing and the demand from advertisers is increasing. But it is important to keep in mind that a successful network takes a lot of hard work and dedication to make money from podcasting. You can learn more from our other post, “How to Make Money Podcasting.”

How much does it cost to start a podcast channel?

The cost of starting a podcast channel will vary depending on the type of equipment and services you use. Generally, it is recommended to invest in high-quality audio equipment, music licensing, podcast hosting platforms, and other hosting services. It can be difficult to estimate an exact cost due to the variability involved—but generally speaking, you should expect to spend several hundred to several thousand dollars on your podcast.

How much do podcast networks pay podcasters?

The amount that podcast networks pay podcasters will depend on the individual network and show. Generally, podcast networks either pay a flat fee for each episode or offer a revenue share model based on ad revenue sales, sponsorships, etc. Depending on the size of the network, podcasters can expect to make anywhere from a few hundred to several thousand dollars per episode.

Are podcast networks worth it?

The short answer is yes—podcast networks are generally worth it. Having multiple podcasts in a network can help you reach more people, generate more revenue, and create a larger community around your content. Plus, starting your own podcast network gives you the chance to leave your mark on the industry and create something meaningful.

Conclusion

Now that you know the basics of how to start a podcast network, you can begin planning and executing your own. This guide has provided some essential information to help you get started, but it’s up to you to create a successful podcast network. Remember that success doesn’t happen overnight, and it takes dedication and hard work to make your podcast network thrive.

With the right strategy, determination, and willingness to learn, you can build a thriving podcast network that brings in listeners and creates great content. Plus, you’ll be able to share your passion with the world and build a supportive community. Good luck on your podcasting journey!