How to Start a True Crime Podcast

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Starting any podcast – no matter the genre – requires dedication. But for true crime especially, research is the most important ingredient, along with the personalities and vocal talents of the hosts. To begin working on a true crime podcast, first think of the angle in which you want to present the crimes you cover, such as if it will be funny, or if it will focus on a specific aspect of crime. Then, equipment, software, and writing are all involved to record a great sounding and interesting true crime podcast.

What makes a true crime podcast?

A good true crime podcast requires a great deal of research and the ability to tell a story. Several true crime podcasts take the listener deep into the inner minds of criminals, from murderers, to conmen, to thieves. In order to get the most interesting information, podcasters have to dig deep below the surface to find rare interviews with these people, news stories, books, and more. For a good episode on a killer, for instance, you will need to first uncover the crime, including the who, what, when, where, and why, and all the details that make the crime unique. Then you will have to unravel the crime in such a way that reads like a mystery, with twists and turns that keep the listeners hooked until the end.

Another aspect of a good true crime podcast are the hosts. Most true crime podcasts involve at least one speaker detailing the crimes. If they do not have a knack for storytelling, it can usually end up boring the listeners. Most of the time, these podcasts involve more than one host, with one speaker detailing the crime and the other commenting on it. Sometimes, gallows humor takes place where the hosts banter back and forth about the crime and comment on the criminal’s work.

What percentage of podcasts are true crime?

True crime podcasts need to focus on a specific niche that will set them apart from all the other true crime podcasts out there.

According to The Cut, half of all podcasts in 2019 were of the true crime genre, and in the last six years, nearly 200 true crime podcasts launched. That means that the genre is one of the top favorite types of podcasts available currently.

How to record a true crime podcast

Recording any type of podcast will take the right equipment, software, research, and vocal talents to pull off. The right equipment includes good quality microphones with noise reduction built in. Editing software will allow you to trim and edit out noise or clip unwanted parts of audio. To create the content, you will need to go into a deep amount of research to uncover the crimes you want to focus on. From this research, you will need to either create lengthy notes to follow or a script that will keep you following the story and the way you want to tell the story. The vocal talents are key to this, as the hosts will need to speak clearly and have a storytelling ability that keeps listeners interested and coming back for more episodes.

Related: How to Write a Podcast Script: Step-by-Step Guide (2023)

Summary

In order to develop a true crime podcast, it takes dedication and time. First, you have to be willing to put in the hours it takes to research and write a script or outline that covers the essential elements of each crime.You can get inspired by the Best Forensic Podcasts for True Crime and the Best White-Collar Crime Podcast.

Then, you will want to have the appropriate audio recording setup and software to ensure that the quality of the recording is good. Once those things are in place, making sure that the vocal talents and personality of the show are also top notch will ensure your podcast ends up being popular.