Can AI tools grow your podcast and free up your time? The answer is not as straightforward as it seems. AI is certainly helpful in some areas of podcast production and promotion. But does it really save you time? As with any other software, we need voices of experience to give us the verdict, and Tracy Hazzard and Tom Hazzard are here to share theirs. Tom and Tracy have been dabbling around with various AI tools to see how they can contribute to a more efficient podcast production process and help promote your show to more listeners. Tune in and learn how specific AI programs measure up to human performance in the same areas and what tools Tom and Tracy recommend to use to get the most bang out of your buck.
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Can AI Tools Grow Your Podcast And Free Up Your Time?
We’ve got a great topic for you. Can AI tools grow your podcast and free up your time? I think every podcaster at least has been thinking about this issue and wondering if it will. I think that’s a fantastic question to ask. I can’t think of anybody to answer that better than you because you’ve been working with AI tools and our team here at Podetize for a few years, even before the bandwagon that came along at the advent of ChatGPT in 2022.
There are so many different AI tools. We’ve been an advocate of AI transcripts for a long time. It’s something that we utilized in our team as early as 2018. This isn’t something new to us. Here’s the thing about AI tools. I debated about it because our question here is can AI tools grow your podcast and free up your time? I don’t think it can do both right now. That’s a real question as to whether or not I can give you good advice here. I felt like our title here might have guided me in a different direction on my advice today.
Isn’t that interesting? Are you suggesting that AI tools might be able to grow your podcast or might be able to free up some of your time but not do both, or are you suggesting that it will only do one of those two things right now because it’s not good at doing the other?
That’s what I’m suggesting. I think you can definitely use AI tools to grow your podcast. However, if you are not an expert in, let’s say, SEO or YouTube or an excellent writer and you know what a good title is, and all of those things, you will have to spend more time utilizing the AI. If you sub it out and let an assistant use it, it could even be worse and not have the effect you want of growing your podcast. If you’re not using someone with deep knowledge in those areas right now, the selection process, how you prompt and guide your AI, and the things that you have to do at the beginning are not good enough yet.
There are diminishing returns with using the tools that everybody else uses, which free up your time, so that’s valuable. I want to caveat this by saying that if you’re putting these one-word titles or the guest name as your title because you don’t have the time, go use all those cheap tools. Go use them even if they’re going to give you the same title that everybody else has. It’s going to do better from a search optimization process and clickability. It will grow your show than that one-word or one-name title is doing for you right now.
It surprises me how many shows I find when I’m reviewing shows on a regular basis that have the guest name as the title. I’m amazed people do publish that, but I see it. They do.
Here’s the thing. You think that it’s great and it’s good to have some association with your guest. It’s an authority association. The reality is it doesn’t tell me why I should listen to your episode when a more famous show than yours or a better show than yours that has been around longer has a better title. It tells me what that guest is going to talk about that might be valuable and interesting to me.
If you aren’t doing that today, go use an AI tool. You can use Jasper or Capsho. You can use ChatGPT yourself, although I highly recommend Bard. Go use Bard. It’s free and it’s easy. Capsho and Jasper are paid, but they also do podcasts and titling and follow the rules, which Bard and ChatGPT don’t know unless you tell them what the rules are. That could be easier for you.
However, not having a good title isn’t going to grow your show. You’re not going to grow if you don’t attract people in. If that’s holding you back from growing your show, use the AI tools, but they won’t take less time and not become programmatic. What we see is diminishing returns with tools like Capsho and Jasper even. We’ve seen diminishing returns over time because once you say, “That’s a good title,” they give you the same thing all the time if you don’t spend the time adjusting it, rejecting it, and redoing it. It’s going to take you more time than you think.
The flip side of that is if you aren’t using video shorts, YouTube shorts, TikTok, and Instagram Reels, you’re not growing your show. Using any one of those tools like Opus.pro or Vidyo.ai to help choose clips for your show is a huge time saver. I highly recommend it because they’re going to choose down, but they’re still going to give you 10 to 15 clips that you have to go through and choose.
If you weren’t doing it before, it’s now going to take you some time to choose them. It’s not like you’re doing a complete trade-off here, but the growth on your show from using those video clips is going to be so high that it’s going to be worth the time spent. That’s the conundrum here, Tom. Are you getting what I’m saying?
I am. In fact, I’ve experienced enough of the AI myself and certainly seeing you doing it that the operative word in ChatGPT is what the G represents. Generative means generations of information. It takes a lot of passes sometimes and continuing to prompt it further to get more to something good.
Honestly, I don’t think using these AI tools would save me time. That’s because I would take a long time to do this stuff anyway because I’m not a good writer. If I was a good writer and I could come up with an interesting title and be given enough time to think about it, then maybe I wouldn’t need it, but I’m not a good writer. To me, it wouldn’t matter how much time it takes. I could use it to generate what is a good title that I’m not capable of writing myself. That’s how I feel about it.
That’s understandable. You’re upping your game, which is upping the optimization of clickability. They’re thinking about somebody choosing your show, clicking out and clicking play, or choosing your video, clicking play, subscribing, or any of those things. If by being more searchable and optimized, you’re making that happen, then you’re doing something to promote your show in a better way. You’re using AI to do that. It is saving you time because you would agonize over something you’re not good at.
I hate editing. I would never edit my show if that was a choice. We would go here from the livestream. That screw-up you made at the beginning when you were coughing was edited out of video and audio, but if you were live-streaming it, you saw Tom cough. That part of it I wouldn’t edit out. I would leave it because I hate it. It’s a waste of my time and energy to watch my show or listen to my show again and cut things. I don’t think it is worth it for my time spent. I could do so many more things with my time to promote my show and get more views. My listeners are probably going to be pretty forgiving for one little cough here and there. It’s not going to be the end of the world.
We rarely have anything we need to edit out of the middle of these episodes. To be fair, we’re co-hosts. No one is a guest. We’re both pretty experienced podcasters. There’s a certain authenticity in the way that we do this that I don’t feel the need to polish it and make it any more perfect in the middle than it otherwise is. In that beginning, we have some tools on Podetize and we could trim that and start where I restarted. That’s some minor editing tools we have built in.
We’re recording right here in Zoom. We’re recording in an event portal for all of our clients to watch, listen, and comment, and for us to have a Q&A session at the end of the podcast recording. There are tools here within Zoom where I can filter out ums and ahs and all those filler words. I can also edit at the beginning and end, and even make a cut in the middle if I need to.
There were actually tools there. If I needed to cut something urgent, I could do it, then it’s done before it even gets to the publishing platform or goes anywhere else. Those tools are useful and they are using AI, but they’re built into the system that I’m already using. I’m also not a fan of using a third-party AI tool when you’ve got good enough tools for your job within the things that you’re already using. For us, that’s right here on Zoom.
Those are the things that I look at and think about. Am I saving time in my workflow? If I needed something fixed, could I fix it? Yes, absolutely. I don’t need to go and use a third-party editing tool. I’m not a fan of some of those. I think they over-filter and over-edit because they’re trying to justify the cost of using them.
You’re now wasting time and probably hurting the listening experience by using some of those sound editing tools when you don’t have a necessity to use them because you’re doing a good job recording and the authenticity matters more. All of those things are there. This is where we spend our time and what we spend our time on. I am a proponent of using AI to do the things that you will not do, like writing titles for you, Tom. Do the things that you will not do that have a powerful impact on the promotion and clickability of your show. That’s where we can use our time best spent.
That makes sense. Do you think there’s anywhere it would be a time saver or not right now?
Right now, I’m a big proponent of Opus.pro and the video tools where they’re choosing video clips for you. I think they do a better job than human beings do because we get a little caught up in our own lingo and our own ideas. We don’t think about the fact that most of the people watching our video are not as far along as we are in our journey of whatever it is we’re teaching.
They’re already tapped into the things that people will respond to better, so they do a better job. In a 30-minute-long video, they’re going to give you about ten different clip options. You still have to be selective and take the time to make the selections that are right for your brand and for you. Don’t just go with the first three they give you.
The video clips are more about promoting your podcast. They’re not the podcast itself. I bet there are a lot of people who probably aren’t even going to the extent of using those video clips to promote their podcasts.
What I’m saying too is that’s where you’re missing the biggest power. If you use that tool, this is where you’re going to get the most engagement and views back. Put those into YouTube shorts, TikTok, and Instagram Reels, wherever you have an audience. Go there and put them there and see what happens. If you’ve never done that on YouTube shorts, go do it right now. Go do one.
You can go to Opus.pro. I think you can even do a free trial. I’m not 100% sure on that. Don’t quote me on it. For under $30, you can get enough to do a month’s worth of videos and get your clips. Try it for one month. What we see on YouTube shorts is about 300 views and hits per short we put up. If you think that doesn’t have a translating power to people checking your channel and checking the long video out, you’ve left them with a teaser. As long as you put the actual link to the real video, they’ll go check it out. There’s going to be a percentage there of who likes the tip and wants to hear more. That’s going to grow your show.
I would think from a growing your show perspective also that using Bard, ChatGPT, or some of these tools helps write an engaging description for the episode, and a more lengthy one. A lot of people phone in the description, so to speak. They don’t spend a lot of time on it. It does figure into the search functions of all the listening apps.
I want to clarify what you said, in case the audience did not hear that properly. Tom is talking about your show description, not your episode description. I think it’s a waste of time on the episode descriptions right now because the listening apps aren’t good enough yet. The show description matters way more because that’s somebody deciding whether or not your show is worth listening to and subscribing to. If they subscribe, they’ll hit all of your episodes.
I agree that the show description is more important. I was talking about also doing the episode descriptions because they figure into search, but they’re not as obvious when people search. They are way below the fold in the search results. All the shows come up first. The show description is more important, no question.
It’s worth it there is what I’m saying. I would rather see you, if you have to prioritize your time, do AI video clips or shorts under 60 seconds or 59 seconds. Keep it at 59 so you don’t mess it up. Do those first. Title your episode second, and then do your show description third. Your show description is a one-time thing. It shouldn’t take that long. You might need to sit down and do it for an hour, get it right, get 4,000 characters in, finesse it back and forth, and get it looking right. One hour of time is going to make a huge difference long-term for you and for your show. That’s the biggest impact we see in sort of subscriber growth from one single show change.
It is the single most important factor that if you don’t optimize it or maximize its value, you’re blocking yourself from being found by more of your ideal listeners when they are searching for content to listen to in their listening app. It’s super critical. I can’t tell you, every single day, literally not a day goes by that I’m not doing an appraisal of a podcast, reviewing somebody’s existing podcast for them, and seeing that they have a one or two-sentence description. Every day it happens. It’s shocking to me.Don’t use a third-party AI tool when you have good enough tools for your job within the things you’re already using. Click To Tweet
Tom is not talking about the episode. He is talking about the show description.
I am talking about the show description there.
That’s where we see over and over again, if you spend your time and knowledge because you have a better sense of that than anyone on your team, any assistant you could job it out to, anyone on Fiverr, or anything like that. If you fix your show description, if you fix your episode titles, and choose your video clips wisely, you’re going to promote and grow your show. Those are the best AI tools to use right there. There are lots of other AI tools that can do the descriptions, edit the show, and do those things. I don’t see enough effect to make it an ongoing worth your time. It’s a trade-off. I’m trying to give you the things that you wouldn’t be spending time on and getting effective results for.
Tracy, is there anything else you want to share with our audience about AI in this regard as it relates to podcasting?
From what I am hearing from people who have been taking the classes that I taught on AI for the last few months, from the model of it, there are things that you might find in your work process that you need to save time in, but that’s not necessarily the best use of AI. If it’s already plugged into a tool you’re currently using, add the AI and use it.
My favorite thing to use right now, and I have saved hours and hours of time using it, is Google Search because it has a generative AI search at the top now. Does it work for everything? No. If it works the first time I type something in and it gives me the right results, then I don’t have to spend time scrolling through pages of Google Search to find what I’m looking for. I got the summary of what is in the pages of Google Search. That’s what ends up happening. It saves me hours of time.
I think so few people understand that that’s there and capable of being used in the browser.
You have to click on it. It’s like a little gray bar that says, “Do you want to use this?” Say yes and see what happens. Test this stuff out. Play with it. It’s also a black hole. As with anything, you can spend a lot of time doing it. I’ve been hearing from our team, for instance. They keep using the AI. They’ll drop it into Bard to improve an email. That’s more time than they would do if they sat, looked at it, reviewed it, and thought about it. They don’t realize they’re spending more time. Are they being a little bit better and more effective communicators? Absolutely. I found a lot of times, I’ll drop something in and I’ll go, “That made it a lot clearer to somebody who’s not in the know like me.”
Also, somebody who doesn’t think the way you do.
It points it out to me. It’s good and it’s giving me more effective results, but it’s not saving me time.
That’s a good example. That’s why you said that it will grow your show. You asked the question, “Can it grow your show and free up time?” Probably it could do one or the other or maybe more to grow your show, but not really save your time. That is what I’m taking away from that.
Think about it this way. Long-term sustainability is creating growth. If because you’re doing some of these things, it’s making it easier for you to stay a podcaster, then you should do it because that’s long-term growth for you and your business. If using one of these tools makes it easier and less stressful for you, even if it’s giving homogenized results like everybody else, but it’s keeping you podcasting, your voice is still original and it’s getting out there. It’s way better than quitting your show. I would want you to do that. Think about the tools. Think about the things.There are things that you might find in your work process that you need to save time in, but that's not necessarily the best use of AI. Click To Tweet
I’ve always said this. There are three areas that I always like to look at any new tool, any new thing, any new ability for us to do something and utilize something, create it. If it’s my procrastination point, like Tom will never write a title. It would not happen, I. It would never get there. The working title would end up going live because he’d never get around to writing it.
The procrastination point, the thing that you don’t like doing, the thing that is the black hole for you where you could spend hours and hours doing it, use a tool or a support staff to do that. You don’t need to spend hours and hours finessing something that doesn’t need it. The third thing is if it keeps you going, then do it. That’s my advice for you out there on the AI tools. I’m always happy to keep you updated. Message me on social media. Find me on LinkedIn. I’m happy to talk about AI tools with you and go back and forth with what your experiences are on that.
Tracy, thanks so much. Thanks so very much, everybody.