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How to Plan Your Podcast Topics … And Never Run out of Ideas!

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How to Plan Podcasts

Written by: Gabriella Schilling

Have you made the exciting decision to start your own podcast? Or maybe you’re a little hesitant. Many aspiring podcasters wonder how much work will be involved — specifically, how will they ever come up with enough topics for every single episode?

I have written this short guide to provide you with useful tips so you will never run out of things to talk about on your podcast.

Let’s jump right in…

Listen to the people around you

Are your clients asking you the same questions frequently? If so, address those questions on your podcast. If your clients are often asking about mutual funds, for instance, plan to have a “Mutual funds 101” episode. As another example, if your clients are constantly asking you about the differences between wills and TODs, build an episode around that topic. Of course, you can also ask your clients directly about what they would like to learn and use those requests to form topics.

Topic ideas abound outside of the office too. Think about the industry events you’ve attended recently. What were the presentations and workshops about? Grab those topics and run with them! And you don’t even have to have attended the event; check out an upcoming conference’s website to see what topics they have lined up. Those ideas are yours for the taking.

Now think about networking events. What were the hot conversations topics amongst your centers of influence? Are they offering a new service or product? What client challenges are they solving right now? Consider having COIs on your podcast as a guest and let those hot conversations unfold.

Use your expertise

Part of what makes you a great advisor is the vast array of financial knowledge you possess. If there is a particular area of financial planning you enjoy the most and have solid expertise in, use it as inspiration. For example, if you specialize in estate planning, think about what you enjoy the most about that aspect of planning.

What do you offer your clients that other advisors don’t? What do you excel at? What makes you different? Share that knowledge with your clients. People love to know what other people are passionate about.

Keep an eye on current developments and new laws

Tax season, new bills, and other developments will generate many questions from your podcast audience. Put yourself in their situation and think about what questions you would have about that subject. Next, plan a podcast episode that answers these questions and offers solutions during times of change.

On a similar note, consider how people need to prepare for significant personal-finance events, like tax season. Develop a checklist for your audience, lay it all out during your podcast, and become your audience’s go-to source for getting prepped.

Think outside the box

What do you and your clients have in common outside of financial services? If you enjoy golfing and you know your clients do too, talk about that in your podcast. How does golf resemble financial planning or business opportunities? What lessons can you learn from golf that also apply to your financial life?

Another idea: Have you watched any of your acquaintances make bad financial decisions due to market volatility? Make a podcast about the emotional cycle investors experience and how to make better decisions.

Organize topics and subtopics as you go

Topics like budgeting, 401(k)s, and retirement are pretty broad. These are examples of main topics that you can draw millions of subtopics from.

For example, if you would like to talk about budgeting in your podcast, here’s an example of how you can make the most of that topic:

Main topic: 

Budgeting

Subtopics:

–     Benefits of budgeting

–     5 reasons people hate budgeting (and how to overcome them)

–     Top 10 things a budget should include

–     How to balance savings vs. fixed expenses

–     How to manage debt (does the debt-snowball method work?)

To stay organized, plug your main topics and subtopics into mind maps through MindMeister. Alternatively, you could simply keep a list on your computer or in a notebook.

My parting words for this guide? Whatever method you use to brainstorm podcast topics, always keep your audience in mind. This is your opportunity to educate people, help them solve their biggest challenges, and showcase your expertise.

Related: What Does It Take to Build a Million-Dollar Company?

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