The how-to-make-a-podcast, podcast

Illustration of a woman with a laptop resting on her lap.

When I was asked to host a virtual session at Adobe MAX, my first thought was “Let’s make a podcast about making a podcast.” My next thought was, “How do I teach someone to make a podcast? I just learned myself!”

I didn’t intend to be the creator and host of Dropbox’s Remotely Curious podcast, but when the world went remote, we knew we needed to learn a lot — and fast. So I started recording in my bedroom closet (I still do), and a podcast was born.

I’m going to introduce you to the people who taught me how to podcast, walk you through the steps a podcast takes, and help you get it right — directly out of the gate.

What’s the big idea?

How hard can it be to produce a podcast? You just need to record yourself talking about something, right? Not exactly.

First, you need to have something to say that people actually want to hear. And speaking of people, you’ll want to have guests, or co-hosts.

When we got to the “idea” stage in our Remotely Curious process, we called in the experts: Jacob Winick and Eliza Smith from Cosmic Standard, an award-winning podcast production studio trusted by everyone from NPR, to CBS, to Disney.

I’m exceedingly happy to share what I learned from these podcast powerhouses. You’ll hear from them in my Adobe MAX session.

For now, I’ll share the basics:

The big 4 podcast ingredients

Producing a podcast — a talent we at Dropbox had to learn quickly and are still learning — comes down to a few basic steps:

  1. Creative Development: These are the questions you’ve already asked yourself. What’s your show going to be about? Who’s going to host it? What will it sound like? Is it a straight-up delivery, a conversation, or an interview format? What’s the cadence for releasing episodes? Have you got a marketing plan?

  2. Pre-Production: This is when you lay out your production calendar, choose your guests, get them scheduled, and prep your interview questions.

  3. Production: Roll the tape. Here’s where you record your interviews, write the scripts, assemble the episodes, edit, gather feedback, edit again, do a few pickups, and edit some more. It’s critical at this stage to collaborate well between your home studio and creative team. And it’s where tools like Dropbox and Adobe come in handy.

  4. Post-Production: Scoring, mixing, mastering, magic. This is a very technical step, but it’s what makes your podcast sound professional.

In our Adobe MAX session, Jacob, Eliza, and I will go over these four phases in detail — with plenty of tips for working through them in a remote setting.

Learn more about how to podcast

Podcasting is a lot of work — and a ton of fun. Register for Adobe MAX, then register for our session for professional-grade tips on how to DIY your podcast, and get it just the way you want.

This Adobe MAX 2022 post is sponsored by Dropbox.