The Most Successful Podcasts Do This With Their Co-Hosts

The best way to have a podcast with multiple people is to get all the cards on the table when you start. Make sure everyone knows what they are responsible, and then approach each other with respect when surprises arise.

Getting on the Same Page with Your Podcast Co-host

You've decided that you want to do a podcast with a co-host. That's great. Some people feel having a co-host makes podcasting easier because it's not just you talking into a wall.

But there some things you might want to think consider. Number one, who owns the show? So if it's the Bert and Ernie show, and Burt decides he wants to quit, does that mean Ernie can't find a new co-host and change the name?

You'll see this all the time with bands like Pink Floyd and Queensryche who spend tons of cash in court arguing over who owns the name.

Secondly, what if somebody wants to leave, let's say after nine months of doing the show, Burt says, I've had enough. I thought this was going to be fun.

How are you going to handle these situations?

Now here's the thing you have to keep in mind, this is going to be an awkward conversation because you're going to talk about what happens if things go wrong. And you don't want things to go wrong. But if you talk about this, (put your big boy put your big girl pants on), and have this awkward conversation, then if things do go wrong, it will be better than if you didn't have any exit strategy.

So what happens if somebody wants to leave?

What if somebody wants to quit?

What if somebody doesn't want to quit? What are the grounds to get fired?

Setting expectations eliminates surprises, and it identifies what is required for things to run smoothly.

You have to figure out who does what. And sometimes it's, “I'll record and edit. You do the social media and the website.”,

What you might want to do is divide up the list. This way, everybody knows who is responsible for everything

You avoid conversations that have people saying, “Wait, I thought YOU were going to write the show notes. No, I thought YOU were going to write the show notes.”

While this is an awkward conversation to have, it eliminates any miscommunication. Communication is the lubrication of your podcast engine. And many, many, many moons ago, I was a musician I played in a band, and we had what we call the “band fund.” I would come into our rehearsal, and I would say, Hey, guys, we have whatever $117 in the band fun The last thing we spent money on was Ryan need a new set of bass strings. It was very transparent. Nobody had to guess what was going on with the money, and consequently, we never argued about it.

If you answer all those questions and you keep everything transparent, you are much less likely to have issues with your co-host.

The thing you might want to do is revisit it regularly. I do a show on Saturday morning. It's called Ask the podcast coach. We're there every Saturday 10:30 AM eastern standard time

My co-host is Jim Collison from the average We've been doing that for three years with a lot of fun. It's a lot of work. That's fine by me because I have a Patreon account that has patrons who donate.

I went to Jim, I said, “Hey, is this still cool?” and Jim said, “You're doing all the work.” He's a color commentary guy, but he brings a lot to the table. The show is different when Jim isn't there, and he's fine letting me take the money. I still revisited that every year.

When you don't talk about things, and you let it fester, that's how you end up in situations where things get ugly. Now I work for a company called Libsyn. It's a podcast media hosting company. You can get a free month there using the coupon code, SOP free all one word. And I see situations where Ernie and Bert aren't getting along. Bert will log into the account and change the password trying to lock Ernie out. And then Ernie will somehow get back into the account and start deleting items, and it gets ugly.

These ugly situations are why you need to put your agreement in writing and have everyone sign it. This document is you saying. “I agree to do this.” I've seen other things where you do that show with your best friend that you've known since the fourth grade, and four years later, it's gone to the dogs because you didn't have these conversations.

Then all the sudden money got involved. I'm here to tell you money changes everything. What was a discussion is now an ugly argument because money's involved. So the best time to have this conversation is when there is no money.

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About the Author
Dave Jackson has been podcasting since 2005. In 2018 he was inducted into the Academy of Podcasters Hall of Fame. He has over 2 Million Downloads. Has helped thousands of podcasters plan, launch and grow their audience. He is part of the Tech Support Team. He is a Featured and Keynote speaker at events. He is the author of the Book More Podcast Money

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