Discover more from Be a Better Podcaster
A Podcast Wish List for 2024
just some little things to make a podcaster's life easier
As we approach the end of the year, it’s usually time to sit back and take stock of the previous 12 months, and how we’ve done when it comes to meeting our podcasting goals.
And that’s highly recommended - after all, we need to see where we’ve done well and where we need to out a little extra work in next year. For me, that’s continuing to build on a strong second half of the year for my One Minute Podcast Tips show, as well as do more videos and build on the Magic Mic membership.
But there are also some things I’d love to see become standard in the industry, whether that’s from a platform, software, or hardware angle. So, in no particular order, here’s my podcast wish list for 2024.
More Support for Pre-Editing Production Tools
I posted this over on Twitter (yes, I know it’s X now but it’ll always be Twitter to me!) and it’s something I would love to see happen.
If there’s one thing that’s been the bane of my recordings, it’s when I have visible mouth clicks that are very audible. As I mention in my status above, I do all the proper things like hydrate and have good mic technique, but every now and then I just cannot for the life of me remove these clicks until it gets to post-production, when I remove with a plugin.
So I would love to see a solution that takes that post-production resolution, and enables it in real-time when either recording or live-streaming. There are already great tools like the Rodecaster Pro II, that I use, or the Mackie DLZ Creator, that has advanced pre-production settings that you’d normally add in post-production. So, stuff like compression, EQ, de-esser, etc - everything to make your voice sound its best at every part of the recording process.
But so far, I haven’t seen anything for mouth clicks, apart from in post-production and using something like Izotope RX De-click. Now, I’m not really a tech person, but if interfaces like the Rodecaster Pro II and the Mackie DLZ can offer pretty much every other audio optimization/repair tool in the recording phase, I’d like to think they can also include a de-click solution too. This would be the last piece of the pre-record puzzle.
And since these two products are at the higher end when it comes to cost, it’d be great to see more hardware manufacturers (MOTU, Focusrite, etc) offer some of these processing solutions with their interfaces, so more podcasters could benefit.
Industry-wide Support for LUFS Settings
This one’s a bit of a bugbear, since the “Big Three” - Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and YouTube - have different preferences, with Apple setting the industry standard at -16 LUFS, and Spotify and YouTube preferring -14 LUFS.
Side note: if you’re unsure what LUFS is, and why it’s important, Podnews has a great breakdown on LUFS and loudness.
At its simplest, setting the correct LUFS for all your audio ensures it stays the same loudness throughout. So, if your episode has an intro, the episode audio, ads or sponsor messages in-episode, and then an outro, everything is at the same level. If you’ve ever listened to a podcast and had to turn the level up on the episode audio because it was quiet, and then an ad comes blaring in at 2-3 times the volume of the actual podcast, almost deafening you in the process, you’ll know what I mean.
Ideally, and to make things easier, there would be an industry default for LUFS across the board, and everyone would adhere to it. If there was a standard that everyone used, then it would make it a bit more feasible for platforms to set the LUFS before sending out to the listener. Whether this is at podcast hosting company level or platforms/podcast apps, there’s no real preference - it would just make everyone’s audio at the same level, and ensure the listener experience is the best it can be at all times. Which is the most important thing, after all.
Improved Listener-to-Podcaster Interactivity
By default, podcasting is a pretty passive medium.
follower listens on app/web player
And, for the most part, that’s fine - it’s how we’ve been accustomed to podcasts, both as a listener and a creator. But it’d be nice to offer more, do more, especially when it comes to getting feedback from your listeners.
Currently, that’s limited to reviews and ratings, or maybe an exchange on social media. There are more advanced options like Speakpipe, which lets listeners send you a voice message from your website. But I’d love to see podcasting be a little bit more proactive at encouraging a more interactive connection so listeners could leave feedback on stuff like:
would you recommend it
Better still this would be platform-agnostic, so it wouldn’t matter if you were on a podcast website or a podcast app - the option would be there.
The good new is, there is a push for this by tech companies and podcast platforms. The Podcasting 2.0 initiative, for example, is looking to make the RSS feed more interactive, and podcast hosting companies like Captivate (where I’m Head of Podcaster Support & Experience), as well as podcast apps, are adopting these features. Podcast platform Goodpods supports comments as well as ratings/reviews, and cross-app commenting is a feature that the Podcast Index team are looking to make a standard.
So, the options are there - now to make them more widespread.
Share Your Wish List
These are just some things I’d love to see become standard in 2024. There are more (better monetization options for smaller podcasters who don’t meet some fabled download threshold, less reliance on AI, etc), but the above are my three main ones.
Now I’d love to hear yours - what would make your life easier primarily as a podcaster, but also as a listener of podcasts? If you’re reading this via email, hit the reply option and let me know. If you’re on the web version of this, drop a comment below - I’m super keen to hear your ideas!
Until the next time, happy podcasting!