A new trip around the sun means new opportunities, new adventures, and new challenges. It also means that there will be many new things for us to learn in the next 365 days! And with the podcasting sphere growing so quickly, and the dynamic landscape changing constantly, we’re continually needing to add new words to our podcast vocabulary!
We wanted to make it just a little bit easier to learn all the podcasting terms you need to know in 2021, so we’re sharing our cheat sheet – our podcasting ABC’s, as it were – to help you stay up-to-date and in-the-know with all that’s taking place in the podcasting world.
Let’s start at the beginning…
A – Accessibility
First up, accessibility. In 2021, podcasters need to make every effort to make their podcasts as accessible to all consumers as possible. We don’t want anyone missing out on all podcasts have to offer, but from a legal standpoint, there could be serious ramifications going forward if podcasters do not take deliberate action to make their shows accessible. Just take a look at this case from July, 2020. Transcripts, audiograms, or even offering a video version of your podcast episodes are all relatively easy ways you can make your podcast more accessible to all this year.
B – Brand Building
While Brand Building is certainly not a new concept, it is something that podcast hosts need to do if they want to pave the way to a successful podcast. Building a strong podcast brand takes time, but the result is a thriving, energetic, excited community surrounding your show. And which podcaster doesn’t want that?! It’s always a good idea to occasionally reassess your marketing strategies to ensure that the are focused on building your podcast brand.
Related read: How To Build and Strengthen Your Podcast Brand
C – Clubhouse
Clubhouse is the new kid on the social media block. Best described as social audio, Clubhouse is an exclusive platform that allows users (those who have been fortunate enough to receive invites! I told you, exclusive!) to join different chats on different subjects, where you can simply listen, ask questions, or even share your two cents worth! It’s an attractive concept, particularly if it provides the opportunity for you to “hang out” with some of the big names in your niche, or even some of your role models. Time will still tell as to what effect the platform will have on podcasting as a whole, but it’s definitely something worth paying attention to as the year unfolds.
D – Dynamic Content
One of the first exciting developments of 2021 was Buzzsprout’s announcement of their dynamic content feature. This feature allows their members to easily “swap out the pre/post-roll files at any time and update all of your past episodes. The clips do not stack on top of each other; when you make changes the old content will be removed and the new content will be added.”¹ It’s innovative developments like these that get us super excited to be a part of the dynamic podcast landscape!
E – Equipment
E is for equipment, something you definitely need to host a podcast! There is plenty of podcast equipment you could buy, and of course, a state-of-the-art recording studio would be #podcastgoals, but you can also create a great podcast with just the basics. A good quality microphone, some headphones, and a laptop with editing software is really all the equipment you need to get your podcast up and running.
Related read: Top Tools for the New Podcaster
F – Freedom of Speech
Podcast censorship was something we got a little taste of in 2020, particularly as podcasts established themselves as valuable sources of information. The main point of contest currently is the question of freedom of speech versus podcast directories being able to remove podcast episodes or whole shows if they take umbrage at the content or information being shared. One of the latest developments in response to this issue (amongst other motivating factors), and with the motivation to keep podcasting as a platform for free speech, Adam Curry, and developer Dave Jones set up The Podcast Index, which is an open podcast directory for app developers. It’s main function is to enable developers to have access to an open, categorized index that will always be available for free, for any use.
G – Guests
I’m sure you are already well aware that guests are a great way offer your listeners even more valuable content, as well as being a fantastic way to add another dynamic to your show. We include it on this list as due to the pandemic, booking guests on your podcast will continue to look a little different for the foreseeable future. But thanks to the wonders of technology, there are still many ways to successfully have guests on your amazing show.
H – Hone Your Skills
We think “honing your skills” will be an important phrase as we move into the next phase of podcasting. And while it’s true that many new shows are launching constantly, and there’s more competition than ever, there is still plenty of space within the industry. However, we do believe that it will be important for podcast hosts to continually hone their skills – whether that’s their podcasting voice, their editing skills, or even their content creation skills – in order to keep pushing their podcast to be the best that it can be.
Related read: How to Improve Your Podcasting Voice
I – International Podcast Day
The 30th of September is a day where podcasters and podcast enthusiasts from all over the world come together to celebrate International Podcast Day! Starting in 2014, it’s grown from strength to strength, with the core purpose of celebrating the power of podcasts, and ever since that inaugural event, hundreds of hours of audio have been broadcasted in celebration, by podcasters from nearly 70 countries! It’s never too early to start planning a celebration, so head over to the website to see how you can get involved for this year’s event.
J – Joe Rogan
Censorship, fact checking, exclusivity, it all happened on Joe Rogan’s podcast in 2020. There’s no need to be a fan (and in all honesty, there is not always time for four hour episodes!) but he is one to watch when it comes to certain developments in the industry. But one big takeaway we can all learn from is the importance of fact-checking the information you share on your show! While you may not have quite the large audience that Joe Rogan has, it’s still important to insure that the content you’re putting out is not only of high quality (more on that later!) but also, that it is accurate!
K – Knock-Out Content
This may be the most important point on this list! And that’s because, at the end of the day, a truly great podcast will always be one that has knock-out content. Sure, a podcast needs to sound good, but even the best-edited, clearest-sounding audio will never outweigh great content. Creating valuable content that’s worth your listeners’ valuable time will always be what makes your listeners come back episode after episode. Make this your mantra, and you and your podcast will be sure to continually reach new heights!
L – Links
L is for Links, and this is just a reminder of the importance of making sure that the link to your podcast is accessible to your followers! This means putting it in your pinned tweet on Twitter, making sure it’s in your Instagram bio, and basically wherever else you are able to place a clickable link on your platforms. If you want more of your target audience to listen to your podcast, make sure you’re making it as easy as possible for them to find it!
M – Marketing
Marketing your podcast effectively is more important than ever. With so many shows entering the sphere, on an almost daily basis – there are over 1,788,031 and counting –you need to make sure you’re doing everything you can to reach your target audience. And we want to help you do just that! Check out are posts which give you handy tips for marketing your podcast using Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, email newsletters, and Pinterest!
N – Niche Expertise
Building authority in your niche will never go out of style! With so many new podcasts, you need to make sure that you know your niche and that it is clearly defined so that you are better able to establish yourself as an authoritative voice. Consistently putting out stellar podcast episodes is always a must, but you should also look at diversifying your content. Writing a blog, starting a YouTube channel, or even offering coaching courses are all ways you can really amp up your niche expertise!
Related read: Top 10 Ways to Monetize Your Podcast
O – Online Podcast Events
We saw a LOT of online events taking place last year, for obvious reasons, but we think they will continue long into the future. Being able to host successful live podcasting events has meant that podcast hosts can connect with their listeners from all over the world, and they’ve also made it possible for more people to “attend” some of the bigger podcasting events and conferences that they wouldn’t have been otherwise able to. And with the help of technology, and some careful planning, hosting a successful podcast event is a possibility for any podcast host, no matter the size of their audience!
Related read: How to Host a Successful Virtual Podcast Event
P – Podfade
Podfade is the term used to describe what happens when podcasts, for whatever reason, disappear into cyberspace and cease to exist. (Sounds scary, I know!) Statistically, this tends to happen around episode 7 (if you’ve made it past that, things are looking good for you and your show!), but really, podfade can happen to any podcaster if you don’t have clear plans in place to prevent it. And with life getting more crazy, it’s more important than ever to have clear aims and objectives for your show, as well as the strategies to achieve these in place.
Related Read: Podfade: What It Is And How To Avoid It
Q – Quality
This is not a new podcasting term, but it should always be mentioned because quality will never stop being important! From consistently creating and putting out high quality content, to ensuring that your episodes sounds as good as they possibly can, even to the content you share on your social media platforms, striving for top quality should remain at the top of the priority list!
Related read: 10 Editing Tips to Improve Your Podcast Sound Quality
R – Remote Podcast Recording
Being able to record podcast interviews or other content remotely might not have been something you thought you needed to be able to do before 2020, but it has become a staple in the podcast industry. Mastering this will allow you to keep putting out top-notch content, even when you’re not in the same room, city, or even on the same continent as your next podcast guest or even your co-host!
Related Read: How To Successfully Record Your Podcast Remotely
S – Self-Care
Resist the urge to eye roll and hear me out! Taking care of our mental wellbeing is a vital component of our overall health! And taking self-care seriously can go a long way to improving our happiness (who doesn’t want to feel happier, right?), helping us focus better, and be better prepared to tackle life’s challenges. Just a little self-care can help you to consistently function at your optimal level, and continually create valuable content, put out high-quality episodes, promote and market your show, and connect better with your audience.
Related read: Self-Care Tips to Help You and Your Podcast
T – TikTok
No doubt you’ve heard of TikTok, and seen at least some of the video trends that have taken the world by storm. But what you might not know is that it could be a great place for you to grow your podcast audience and strengthen your podcast community! With a little practice and a healthy dose of creative juice, you could be creating your own podcast-focused viral videos in the not-too-distant future!
Related read: How To Use TikTok to Promote Your Podcast
U – Unmatched Ad Spend
According to the statistics and very many clever people who have crunched the numbers, 2021 is set to see unmatched figures when it comes to podcast ad spend. And when I say “unmatched”, we’re talking to the tune of a cool one billion dollars! Crazy! Brands are sitting up and taking serious notice of the power of podcasting, and if you’re hustling to make your podcast the best that it can be, there’s no reason why you won’t be able to get a slice of that podcast ads pie! Look for businesses or brands who align with your niche and who will appeal to your audience, and then make your pitch!
V – Video Podcasting
Video podcasting is a growing trend as podcasters are constantly looking for new ways to connect their target audience with their content. Video podcasts add that visual element missing from traditional podcasting, and a video podcast also allows for a lot more creativity when it comes to the final product. But most of all, a video podcast takes your show one step closer to being accessible to all users.
Related read: The Whys, Whens, And Hows Of Video Podcasting
W – WFH – Work From Home
A phrase that grew greatly in popularity in 2020, and set to continue in 2021. While working from home became a necessity in 2020 to flatten the curve and stop the spread, it did show us that we are able to do more than we thought we could from the comfort of our homes. With a little help from the post below, you can even create your own WFH podcast recording studio!
Related read: How To Create A Home Podcast Recording Studio
X – eXclusive Podcasts
Okay, so we cheated a little with this one, but phonetically, it still works! “Podcast Exclusivity” was a topic that gained a lot of traction in 2020, with a number of exclusive podcast deals taking place. And although we may not be sold on the idea of exclusivity in the podcasting industry, while Apply and Spotify, as well as the other big names continue to vie for space at the top, we predict that we will see many a “Exclusive Podcast Deal” become a reality in this next year.
Y – YouTube
We mentioned video podcasting above, and if you’re looking to start your own video podcast this year, then starting a YouTube channel could be in your future! YouTube can do great things for podcasters (case and point: The Joe Rogan Show!) as it’s a really effective way to reach more of your target audience with your amazing podcast! But it doesn’t end with simply sharing video episodes of your podcast! Think niche-related how-to videos, tutorials, or even using it as a place to cover those topics you want to share on your podcast but will just be so much better with visuals! The cross-pollination of podcasts and YouTube provide a whole host of new opportunities that you definitely do not want to miss!
Related read: How To Use YouTube to Grow Your Podcast Audience
Z – Zoom
And lastly, Z is for Zoom. If you didn’t have at least one Zoom meeting, group chat, or Zoom birthday party in 2020, you would be one of the few! Zoom certainly took off during the pandemic, as we all turned to the platform as a way to stay connected. Zoom also proved handy for podcasters as it provided a way to record their podcast interviews long-distance. You can even get creative and use Zoom to start your video podcast! (hint, hint!)
And there you have it, the podcasting terms you need to know in 2021. You see, it really is as simple as learning your ABC’s.
1. Buzzsprout: https://www.buzzsprout.com/help/154-dynamic-content