101 Ideas for Things to Talk About – Smart Passive Income

Melissa M. Munoz

Table of Contents

This is a guest post by Alban Brooke, head of marketing at Buzzsprout, a fantastic platform for launching and growing your podcast.

Creativity is hard work. Whether you release a new podcast episode every week or once a month, coming up with consistently high-quality episode ideas can feel like a lot of pressure. 

This demand for consistent content is one of the major players in the podfade phenomenon and a challenging aspect of being an independent podcaster. 

In this article, we’ll…

  • share 101+ examples of podcast topics, 
  • lay the foundation for great content, 
  • provide practical methods for coming up with new podcast episode ideas, 
  • and outline ways to cultivate creativity throughout your podcasting journey.

Let’s dive in. 

Our free checklist and video guide to help you start your podcast

You get a start-to-launch checklist to make sure you don’t miss a step, and it includes a free, three-day video series to walk you through setup.

Contents

podcast ideas light bulb

101 Podcast Topic Ideas

Starting your process to think up podcast ideas can feel intimidating, but don’t worry; you have a lot of options. Get your ideas flowing with these 101 topics to talk about on a podcast.

1. Learning a new skill

When brainstorming what to talk about on a podcast, why not record yourself learning a new skill you’ve been wanting to pick up?

Start a podcast about your journey learning to play the piano, paint, or sew—the list goes on. 

2. Events/groups

Consider making a podcast about specific events or groups, such as:

  • Local or national political groups 
  • Sporting events or festivals 
  • Marathoners, bikers 

Good podcast topic ideas will often align with your own interests, allowing your enthusiasm to keep you motivated. So, pick an event or group that speaks to you.

3. Book reviews and summaries

Are you an avid reader? Let people know what you think of your latest picks with full reviews. 

Or, for the people who don’t have time to read the books themselves, put your storytelling skills to the test with engaging summaries. 

4. Book recommendations

Similarly, if you like books, you probably have a lot of recommendations. 

You could focus the podcast on a specific genre, do different genres for different segments, or take calls from your listeners and give recommendations based on their interests. 

5. Sports

If sports are more your thing, make a podcast recapping last night’s game, discussing industry news, talking about your favorite players, and more. 

Don’t be afraid to find an angle; you could discuss odd or underrated sports only or go the sports business route.

6. People who know nothing about sports

For another creative twist on a sports podcast, you could invite people who know nothing about a sport to try to explain it, narrate the big game, or bring little kids on to commentate. 

7. Location-based

People spend a lot of time in locations like the gym, coffee shops, etc., so why not go super niche and target them directly? Create a podcast dedicated to a specific place that people frequent to help them pass their time there.

8. Time-based

Use your podcast to accompany people through the seasons, holidays, bedtimes, morning hours before work, etc. 

You could create a spooky-themed podcast during the month of October or a New Years’ self-help/resolutions-themed podcast. Or, if you want to go at a more regular pace, you could do a nightly bedtime story podcast. 

9. How-to

A how-to podcast can be as general or focused as you’d like it to be. You could focus the entire podcast teaching your listeners how to do something from start to finish, make each episode a new topic entirely, or take a broader focused topic, like getting a job, with relevant episodes like “how to make a killer cover letter.” 

10. Preparation

A preparation podcast is like a how-to podcast but with a preparatory focus. Discuss things like preparing for college applications, preparing for a big race, or even just how to prepare for social gatherings. 

11. Movie and TV review

If you’re someone who always catches new movie releases, give people the thumbs up or down on whether they should check them out too. 

Or, give TV show recaps and reviews after each episode airs, offering your opinions and speculating what will happen next.

12. All things cinema

For the cinephiles, start a podcast on all things movies. You could do your podcast on the history of cinema, on a specific film movement, or humorously cover all the worst movies you can find. 

13. POV

What better way to give your podcast a unique flair than by showcasing a popular story from a new perspective? 

Take a show’s season, a movie, a novel, etc., and go through the story from each character’s (or an unexpected favorite’s) point of view. 

14. Comedy

If you’ve always been praised for your sense of humor, give a comedy podcast a go. Tell funny stories, perform comedy sketches, or talk about current events with a dash of your winning humor.

15. Travel tips and recommendations

Tons of people love to travel, making it one of the best topics for a podcast. 

Give great traveling tips and recommendations, talk about travel gear, and more.

Don’t be afraid to pick a niche; you could do a luxury or budget theme, an outdoor excursion theme, or some combination of themes.

16. Travel storytelling

Allow listeners to travel along with you through your storytelling. Narrate your experiences, give funny anecdotes, and provide vivid descriptions of the places you go and the people you meet. 

17. Travel interviews

Make a podcast where you interview the people you meet on your travels; ask their opinions on the city they live in, recommendations, and any interesting information they might have.

Or, invite travelers to come and document their travel experiences on your podcast without even leaving your home. 

18. Expats

If you’re an expat, you’re familiar with how daunting it can be for those just getting started. Share your expat story, the steps others can follow, and provide advice. 

You can create a community in your new home country by inviting other expats to share their stories and inspire others too.

19. Fashion

If you’re known for your taste in fashion, share your opinions or advice through a podcast. 

Topics for podcasts in the fashion niche are extensive, too; you can talk about styling tips, where to shop, models, designers, funny red carpet mishaps, or runway reviews. 

20. Beauty

Likewise, podcast ideas in the beauty industry are endless.

Make a podcast about beauty brand news, holy grail products, products to avoid, curly hair tips, or how to manage common skin problems.

21. Politics

There’s always something to talk about with politics; share your thoughts on current events, invite interesting speakers, and discuss the latest news from a political standpoint. 

22. Pets

If you’re an animal lover, consider starting a podcast on pets. Pet-lovers will surely tune in if you provide them valuable pet care information, facts, and interviews from experts. 

23. Wild animals

Similarly, if you’re passionate about animals, make a podcast giving facts about wild animals and where to find them. Interview people who have worked with wildlife and have them tell their stories.  

24. History

You’ve got thousands of years of known human history to pick from, making history one of the most expansive topics for podcasts.

And if you’re already a history buff, you’re (at least) one step ahead. Choose an era you love to research and talk about, and do just that.

25. Street interviews with strangers

Love talking to anyone about anything? Interview strangers on the street on various topics. Here are a couple of podcast topic ideas you could try:

  • Ask strangers their take on current events.
  • Have your show’s listeners submit topics to interview strangers about.
  • Interview people at mundane places, like outside the DMV. 

26. Tech

The beauty of a tech podcast is that the tech industry is one of the fastest moving around—you’ll never run out of podcast episode ideas. 

Keep people up-to-date on new products and advancements, security issues, or tech how-tos.

27. True crime

It’s no secret that true crime is one of the most popular podcast ideas. People love to speculate and search for the truth behind an interesting topic. 

Find a mystery and do some digging; interview people of interest, research facts, and make speculations from there.

28. Law

Want to put your law degree to another use? Start a legal podcast. Talk about odd or interesting laws, inform people on laws they should know, or discuss legal ethics. 

29. Celebrity news and gossip

There’s no shortage of celebrities, and they’re always up to something. Give people the gossip. 

Report the latest celebrity news, speculate the behind-the-scenes context, and snag some interviews.

30. The top 10

People love to rank and see things ranked. Give them something to talk about with top ten lists for anything and everything. You can rank musicians from Canada, TV ads, animes, and much, much more. 

31. Facing fears

Ever wanted to put your fears behind you? Make a podcast to share your journey.

Take things a step at a time; give your story, delve into the psychology behind the fear, invite specialists, and inspire others as you work to overcome it once and for all.

32. Nature

For the people who live in the city or don’t often find themselves outside, you could start a podcast that describes everything you see out in nature, amplifying the natural outdoor sounds for a serene effect. 

33. Time-crunch

For those who just don’t have the time or attention span to sit through a long podcast, give them some quick facts, short stories, or extremely condensed how-tos. 

Our free checklist and video guide to help you start your podcast

You get a start-to-launch checklist to make sure you don’t miss a step, and it includes a free, three-day video series to walk you through setup.

34. You

So, you’re trying to figure out what to talk about on a podcast… why not talk about you? If you feel you have something to share, your unique experiences and perspectives, you might find that many people will relate. 

35. Educational

Are you an expert on a topic or want to learn it yourself? Do a load of research or round up the information you already know into bite-size pieces to teach others. 

36. Language learning

Give people a hand learning your native language, or another language you know fluently, with a language learning podcast! Share vocab and grammar tips, mistakes to avoid, and cultural tidbits. 

37. Perspectives by the generation

Each generation tends to view things a little differently than the one before them; start a podcast comparing and contrasting views from all different generations.

38. Acting

If you’re an experienced actor, younger actors could benefit from hearing about your insights, the challenges you’ve faced, auditioning stories, etc. 

Or, you might turn to interview other actors on their experiences and start a discussion from there. 

39. Local foodie

Are you really into your local food scene (or wanting an excuse to be)? Start a podcast taking listeners to restaurants, cafes, and food trucks around your city. 

Conduct some interviews, talk about the places, and review the food itself to create a full experience. 

40. Household chores

Everybody has to do chores—now and then, anyway. Consider making a podcast where you talk about household chores and hacks. 

You could talk about all things chores, record yourself doing your chores and have people guess what you’re doing, or simply give tips and hacks. 

41. Marketing

No doubt, the marketing industry is incredibly popular; if you have some insight or expertise from working in the industry, or find marketing data and trends fascinating, make an informative podcast about it. 

42. HR 

Start a podcast about what it takes to be in HR: the skills people need, the recruitment process, and difficulties they might face.

43. Live events

Go to live events solo or with a friend and chat about it—provide interesting, in-depth coverage with a full review. Interview people at the event and get their thoughts too. 

44. Business

Know a thing or two about running a business? More and more people are curious to start their own and could use some insight and actionable advice, so start a podcast with all the business know-how.

45. Medical

If you’re a health professional, why not start a podcast in your field? Answer questions, talk about fascinating medical conditions or discuss medical policies. 

46. Music

Does your life revolve around music? Make a podcast that dives into the lives of your favorite bands, discusses the industry, or gives your local indie bands a spotlight.

47. Self-Help

Make a podcast to help others on their self-improvement journey. Discuss topics like focus, stress, depression, and more. Provide tools and information to help overcome personal struggles and share inspirational stories. 

48. ASMR

ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, and many people find it relaxing to listen to. Whisper to your listeners on a variety of topics, providing them a calming experience or sleep aid.  

49. Freelance

Whether you’re a freelancing newbie or pro, invite people along on your freelance journey with a podcast. Share your experiences, advice on how to get clients, business and organization tips, and more. 

50. Investing

If investing is your thing, make a podcast discussing strategy, market news, and giving your best “this is not financial advice” speculations. 

Go for a penny stock, REIT, tech, or another niche to make your podcast a go-to place for specific topics.

51. Ads

Ads—love ‘em or hate ‘em, they often give us something to talk about. Rank the worst of the worst or the best ads out there, or provide some analysis and industry insight. 

52. Casual advice

Everybody needs a little advice sometimes. Let listeners call in, share what they need advice on, and give the advice yourself or bring someone else in to help. 

53. Quote of the day

Share a quote each day; this could be business, motivational, or literary quotes for people to start their mornings with. Analyze and dive into the quotes, and let people know where they can read more.   

54. Blogs and blogging

Blogging is still prevalent across the internet. However, it can be surprisingly difficult to find good ones. Make a podcast that covers the best blogs in one or more niches. 

Alternatively, create a podcast that helps bloggers get started with tips and other helpful information. 

55. Cooking/baking

There are a lot of different options for a culinary or baking podcast; you can give recipes, focus on the culture behind dishes, talk about food science, create peaceful ASMR baking sounds, and the list goes on.

56. Wedding

If you love weddings or are a wedding expert, share what you know for all the newlyweds-to-be. 

Or, share your best funny, dramatic, or sweet stories—basically, the podcast version of a 00’s romcom. 

57. Day trip

Take listeners with you through your steps to plan and go on day trips. Invite some friends or family and let the conversations flow. 

You could also let viewers pick or guess where you go to add extra engagement. 

58. Philosophy

If sitting under apple trees or questioning the absurdity of life sounds more like you, start a philosophy podcast. Discuss one or multiple philosophical schools, interview leading thinkers, and have healthy debates. 

59. A hiking/camping

Make a podcast about all things hiking and camping; talk gear, stories, and advice. Take listeners along with you for a peaceful or exciting experience. 

60. Astrology

If you’re an astrologer or simply into astrology, consider doing a podcast all about it. Analyze the birth charts of famous people, your listeners, or go deeper into the philosophy of astrology. 

61. DIY

Everybody wants to know how to do things themselves, so teach them how with a DIY podcast. You can focus on themes like organization, repairing clothes, or DIY crafts. 

62. Social media

Everyone and their mom is on social media, so consider taking advantage with a social media-themed podcast. You could discuss social media companies, hashtag trends, influencers, marketing, and more.

63. Musical instruments

Invite listeners to learn new instruments with you, share your knowledge on an instrument(s), or teach people how to play. 

64. Weather

Who says talking about the weather has to be boring. Make a podcast going in-depth about the weather. Discuss extreme or pleasant weather, science, forecasting, and how to prepare for certain weather conditions.

65. Adrenaline junkies

Take listeners along on courageous outdoor activities like skydiving, bungee jumping, paragliding, and more.  

66. Sailing

Make a podcast taking listeners out to sea with you, detail your sightings and experiences, or give educational how-tos.

Our free checklist and video guide to help you start your podcast

You get a start-to-launch checklist to make sure you don’t miss a step, and it includes a free, three-day video series to walk you through setup.

67. On the road

Always on the road? Start a podcast narrating your experiences on the road, whether you’re just driving around for fun, for work, or you live on the go. 

68. Paranormal

Raise some hairs discussing paranormal phenomena. Invite people to share their close encounters, narrate ghost stories, and share your own spooky sightings.

69. Nutrition and weight loss

Make a podcast helping others with all things nutrition and weight loss. Share the science, helpful tools and information, meal ideas, foods to avoid, and more.

70. Home improvement

With some home improvement knowledge in your tool belt, start a podcast about all things home renovation and repair, home design, and general home DIYs. 

71. Gameshow

Get people involved with your very own gameshow podcast with tons of fun segments. 

For some gameshow podcast segment ideas, do one segment with a classic game (e.g., trivia), another where you take that classic but add an extreme twist, or try making your own whacky game for a segment.

72. Improv

What are some things to talk about on a podcast for improv? The beauty of this one is that you don’t have to plan much ahead. Start with any random topic and put your improv skills to the test from there. Consider inviting your listeners to join in the fun. 

73. Art

There’s no shortage of good podcast topics for an art-themed podcast. Talk art theory, art history, the modern industry, or place a spotlight on underrated or minority artists. 

74 Feminism

Make a podcast discussing current events and topics from a feminist perspective, talk about theory, and invite activists and authors on to your show.

75. Taxi/Uber driver interview

Many of us are familiar with the chit-chat you make with Uber and cab drivers—but what if you took the conversation a little deeper. Make a podcast interviewing drivers about their story and their experiences.

76. Mystery

Keep people guessing; create a podcast with a secret theme and hide clues within stories that seemingly have no rhyme or reason. Wait until the final episode of the season to reveal the theme and award listeners that got it right.  

77. Human rights

Take a more serious tone with your podcast and discuss human rights. Cover parts of the world in violation of these rights—in need of help—and create awareness with options to help out.

78. Gaming

To appeal to all the gamers out there, you could make a podcast about a specific game you love, review multiple games, cover new releases, talk trends, and so much more.

79. Short story/poetry

If you’re a writer or just a lover of short stories and poetry, create a podcast where you immerse your listeners through readings of short literature and poems.

80. Children’s stories

Similarly, if you have strong spoken narrative skills, make a podcast dedicated to reading out children’s stories to keep kids entertained on the bus, in the car, or as a bedtime story.

81. Dating

Make a podcast all about dating; share date night advice, activities, and invite listeners to share their funny, bad, or sweet dating stories.

82. Relationships

If you’re somewhat of a cupid or just like to play one, offer relationship advice to listeners and guests, or invite a professional to share their expertise.

Another option: create a podcast with couples games and let people share their experiences and funny anecdotes.

83. Wine

Turn your love of wine into a full podcasting gig. 

Wondering what to talk about on a podcast for wine? You could discuss wine varieties and pairings, rank and review wines, or even interview sommeliers. 

84. Coffee

If you’re a coffee enthusiast, share your passion and teach people about the world of coffee. Cover brewing techniques, bean fermentation, and all other coffee-related knowledge. 

85. Boozy

Give people a place to turn to when they have a glass at the end of the day. Talk about what you’re sipping, have a casual or lively chat with a guest or listener, and review the drink at the end. 

86. Documentary

Wanting to deep dive into an interesting topic? Start researching and conducting interviews for the inside scoop, and make an enthralling documentary podcast. 

87. A look into an industry

Take listeners behind the scenes of an industry, from publishing to farming, showcasing its inner workings. 

88. All things geeky

Start a podcast to geek out with your listeners about a topic(s) of your choice. Create a community of discussion around The Lord of the Rings lore, Doctor Who, programming, or grammar.  

89. Retirement

If you’ve retired yourself or know a lot about retirement, share wisdom on how people can set themselves up for a successful retirement. 

90. Meditation

Provide peaceful meditations to help your listeners relax. Your meditation podcast could be as short as 5 minutes or as long as a full night’s sleep. Pick a focused topic like stress, sadness, motivation, etc. 

91. Psychology

Create a space to discuss the human mind and behavior; focus on mental health, psychoanalyze fictional characters, or take a look at certain psychological phenomena. 

92. AMA

Take a page from Reddit’s book and create an “Ask Me Anything” podcast. You can answer questions as an industry professional, an author, or simply anything about you—or anything you’ve done—that people might want to know about. 

You could also add this to your list of good podcast segment ideas. 

93. Habits

Want to form better habits? As it turns out, so do a lot of people. Start a podcast where you can take your listeners on the journey of forming better habits together. 

94. Alternative living

There are several different kinds of alternative living out there. You could do your podcast on what it means to be a minimalist, a van-life person, or a WWOOFer. 

95. Bad bosses

A lot of us have had bad bosses, but at least they make for good stories, right? Yep, bad bosses are a podcast topic idea many can relate to, so you won’t have any shortage of listeners to tune in or share their stories.

96. A day in the life of the successful

We’re used to hearing the broad, vague answers on how successful people found their great success, but wouldn’t it be nice to know what they actually do on a daily basis? 

Interview the people who have it all figured out, following their day from breakfast to their nighttime routine to give listeners up-close inspiration. 

97. Spotlight

Want to put a movie, event, destination, artist, or anything else in the spotlight? Pick something amazing that’s underrated or trending to feature and go in-depth with all facts. The podcast episode ideas here are endless.

98. E-commerce shop owners

More and more people are getting into E-commerce. Get the inside scoop from shop owners to find out how they got their start, their favorite tools, tips, and more, and share it on your podcast.

99. Mythbusting

There are a lot of widely-believed myths floating around; explore these myths on topics like history, science, nutrition, etc., and reveal the truth to your listeners. 

100. News

Sure, there’s not much new about a news podcast, but there are several ways you can switch things up. For example, only discuss only good news or focus solely on environmental news. 

Or, try out some podcast segment ideas to switch things up, like a rapid-fire Q&A or a round of Mario Kart with your guest to keep things interesting or lighten things up.

101. Podcasting

Why not start a podcast on podcasting? The sky is really the limit for podcast topic ideas here. 

You can take people along on your own podcast journey, provide advice (tech tips, how-tos, etc.), talk about podcasting industry news, discuss other podcasts, and interview other podcasters. 

Our free checklist and video guide to help you start your podcast

You get a start-to-launch checklist to make sure you don’t miss a step, and it includes a free, three-day video series to walk you through setup.

podcast topic ideas magnifying glass

How to Find Topics for a Podcast

#1. Lay the groundwork: Know your audience 

Ultimately, your content ideas won’t get far without a solid understanding of your target audience and what they want to hear. And how well your ideas land once you choose them is heavily dependent on getting this step right.

So if you aren’t already clear on the audience you want to reach, this is an essential place to start. 

Knowing your audience doesn’t only help you develop more ideas for episodes but also keeps you from experiencing creative burnout. If you’re trying to create content for an audience whose needs you aren’t familiar with, you’ll run dry pretty quickly. 

So if you don’t already have a good read on your audience, start by asking yourself who you want to reach with your content, being as specific as you can. What’s your target audience’s age and geographic location? What are their struggles, goals, and interests? 

Some podcasters find it helpful to create an avatar to visualize who you want to reach.

A well-defined listener demographic narrows your focus, gives you invaluable insight, and goes a long way toward connecting you with a wealth of podcast topic ideas. 

#2. Find out what’s already been done 

Before you try to develop ideas for episodes, it’s best to survey the land to see what’s already been done with your podcast topic. From there, you have a strong foundation for coming up with your own unique angle on the issue.

If you don’t yet have any ideas, researching the competition can help get your gears turning. And if you have a vague idea for a possible episode, you can use this research to see what other creators have done with the topic. Here are a couple of ways you can start.

Research competitors & fill in the gaps 

Researching episodes in your podcast’s genre is a powerful tool for seeing what ground is already covered and what gaps still exist. The only way you can fill in said gaps is to consistently keep an eye on other podcasters’ content and do something different from the rest.

Search out other shows and find ways to answer questions better than they’ve been before. You can also spin a topic that’s been done a thousand times before with your own unique take.

You can go to Apple Podcasts > Browse > Categories to find your podcast’s genre and search the top shows within its category, or just search a topic in the search bar. Browsing other podcast episodes is a great way to quickly survey your genre and see what kind of content is out there.

You can also run more specific searches using tools like Listen Notes for a deeper, more advanced search. This tool lets you tailor searches to quickly get an idea of the shows within your podcast’s niche.

Search the topic on YouTube

Similar to researching the competition on Apple Podcasts (formerly iTunes) or Spotify, YouTube is a great way to see what people are already doing with your topic so that you can veer from it with your own take on the subject.

This method works best as a way to see what’s already been done with your topic idea, vs. finding new ones—although you might end up finding some along the way.

Once you get an idea of what content exists around a topic, you’ll have a sense of what you can do to stand out. From here, you can get more creative using tools to help generate specific ideas.

Our free checklist and video guide to help you start your podcast

You get a start-to-launch checklist to make sure you don’t miss a step, and it includes a free, three-day video series to walk you through setup.

#3. Use idea-generating tools and techniques 

Creativity isn’t just about waiting for inspiration to strike; there are many tools and tactics you can employ to help get your gears turning. Here are ten methods you can use when you need some assistance brainstorming episode ideas.

Answer the Public 

Answer the Public takes the data from over 3 billion daily Google searches and puts them into one big well of data—and it’s a treasure trove of episode ideas for podcasters. 

The tool works by taking data from search engines like Google and collecting every phrase and question the public asks about virtually any topic you can imagine. Let’s say you have a podcast on entrepreneurship and are considering doing a podcast episode on getting started. Just enter “entrepreneurship” in the search bar (it’s usually best to keep your search to one or two words vs. a phrase or question). 

The site breaks down your topic into questions related to the topic, comparisons to help you bring in other related issues, and even a list of common searches for each letter of the alphabet (i.e., “entrepreneurship books,” “entrepreneurship courses,” etc.).

“Google searches are the most important dataset ever collected on the human psyche.” — US data scientist Seth Stephens-Davidowitz 

Answer the Public gives non-paying customers one free search per day, and the good news is that’s more than enough for podcasters. One search gives you hundreds of ideas per topic the first time around and enough to chew on for quite a while.

If you want unlimited searches and a deeper dive into other pro features, you can upgrade to the Pro plan for $99/month (and cancel anytime). Again, this isn’t necessary for the vast majority of podcasters, and the free version should do just fine.

Google the alphabet 

In our opinion, Answer the Public is the best way to get an alphabetized list of searches on your topic. But what if you don’t like the platform, feel stifled by the once-a-day search limit, or just want to do the research yourself? You can use the “Google the alphabet” technique to access some of the same information—with a little more footwork on your end.

Here’s how to do it. Open Google and enter your podcast’s topic. For example, you could enter “entrepreneurship for” or simply “entrepreneurship.”

Then, enter the first letter of the alphabet after your search phrase to let Autocomplete work its magic. Other ideas automatically generate when you type in “a,” letting you see what people search for related to your entry. 

Next, enter “b” and continue going through the alphabet until you get enough ideas jotted down. You can go back and alter your phrase or question to get more ideas or a slightly different slant on the topic, and this can usually get you pretty far.

Again, Answer the Public does this for you automatically, but it can be helpful to know how to do it yourself, too. 

Ask your social media followers 

Social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook have made it simple to run polls, take Q&As, and stay connected with your audience’s struggles and questions. 

If you aren’t already familiar with this feature, just take a picture or video in your stories, select the “poll” icon and place it in your post. You can ask questions like “What content do you want more of?” or “What’s something you wonder about but are afraid to ask?”

You can also turn the tables and run a Q&A to let your audience ask you the questions. Running social media Q&As is a great way to get content ideas with little effort. 

Ask your podcast audience

If you don’t have a big social media presence yet, you can directly poll your podcast audience instead. 

Asking questions via the podcast is an excellent way to reach your core audience and most loyal listeners—the people who care most about the content you create. 

One of the most direct ways to get feedback from your audience is by posting a survey in your show notes using a tool like Survey Monkey. You can announce the survey in your episode and even provide an incentive for completing it, like a free ebook, guide, or cheat sheet.

Researching your topic is great, but nothing beats getting feedback directly from your audience to use as inspiration for future content.

Search Reddit & Quora

Reddit and Quora are network communities featuring forums based around people’s interests and exist for nearly every topic imaginable. 

These platforms are an excellent way for podcasters to get inside the heads of the public to get you brainstorming and help connect you with specific, niche questions you wouldn’t find elsewhere.

Continuing with the entrepreneurship example, you can search these communities for related subreddits and see what kinds of questions the public has about it. 

Forums attract people passionate about the topic, making them great resources for finding those nitty-gritty questions and untapped topics.

As a bonus, if you have an episode that answers a question, you can freely promote your own podcast (in the form of an answer). So you might attract some new listeners in the process!

Make a list of all your ideas (good and bad)

Some of the best podcast ideas come from writing down all your ideas—without judgment or holding back. Just list out your thoughts until you hit a designated number, let’s say 50. If you write 50 ideas, you’ll not only get your creativity flowing, but you’ll likely come up with several unique ideas you wouldn’t have thought of otherwise.

If you prefer, you can set aside a designated time, say 20 minutes, to write as many ideas as you can on a sheet of paper or in your Notes app. 

The main takeaway here is to not second guess your thoughts, overthink, or hesitate to write them down. And when you find a good idea, you can flesh it out using a similar technique called freewriting. 

Take the idea you want to explore, and write out your stream-of-consciousness thoughts. Set a timer and write everything that pops in your head. You’ll surprise yourself with the ideas you can generate when you relax, lower the stakes, and get your thinking brain out of the way.

Advanced searches on Google & Twitter 

Twitter can be an excellent tool for seeing what people are saying about a given topic, and a simple search on your subject matter can yield a lot of helpful results. For even more tailored results, you can use the advanced search filters to narrow your search by date, hashtags, accounts, and mentions.

You can use Twitter’s search option as a time capsule to view past conversations or stay current with what’s trending.

Google also has an advanced search tool that lets you tailor your search results with more exact parameters. Most people using Google results stop after the first one or two pages, and in podcasting, using the same sources can lead to a lot of repeated content.

Narrowing your focus using advanced search tools is key to finding highly relevant, relatively untapped podcast ideas.

Join Facebook groups

Like Quora and Reddit, Facebook groups serve as a helpful forum where people gather and discuss a given topic in more depth.

You can join a handful of Facebook groups related to your topic and occasionally browse the page to see what people are saying. You’ll likely find a lot of questions, recognize some common themes, and get great podcast ideas from threads.

Consider the opposite viewpoint 

Also called asymmetrical thinking, studying the opposite viewpoint of a given topic is a mind-expanding practice that opens you up to a bigger picture and can prompt more ideas for your episodes.

You can also study different ways people approach the same topic, question, or problem. Taking in conflicting or paradoxical ideas can clarify your own thoughts on the issue and keep your content well-rounded and dynamic.

#4. Cultivate the habit of creativity

The ideas listed above work best as part of a consistent habit versus a last-minute effort to develop podcast content. Here are a couple of tips to help you cultivate the habit of creativity and integrate it into your workflow.

Schedule time to brainstorm

Coming up with quality content ideas is probably the most critical aspect of creating a successful podcast, so it’s a good idea to schedule time specifically dedicated to content idea generation and brainstorming. 

Scheduling blocks of time, or even an entire day, solely for coming up with content helps you stay one step ahead of the game and gets you in the habit of being creative instead of waiting for inspiration to strike.

Remember, as a podcast host, it’s entirely up to you how often you publish new podcast episodes. You can build in scheduled gaps between episodes if you feel overwhelmed at the idea of posting new content every week.

Use a spreadsheet to stay organized 

Once you start coming up with podcast topic ideas, you’ll need an organized way to keep track of them all. Using a spreadsheet really pays off here, and a little organization can free up valuable mental space you can use to focus on your content. 

You can use this free Buzzsprout podcast ideas spreadsheet to serve as a content calendar for months, or even a year, ahead of time. (Just go to File -> Make a copy.)

writing podcast episode ideas in notebook

Keep the Podcast Episode Ideas Coming

Now you have a ton of podcast ideas to get you started and the steps you need to keep the good ideas flowing.

To recap, coming up with podcast episode ideas takes a four-pronged approach:

  • Know your audience
  • Survey the competition
  • Use the right research tools and methods
  • Be persistent about cultivating the mental habit of creativity

Content generation is a big part of podcasting; whether you produce content about tech or the arts, it requires persistence and commitment. 

We hope these tips can help you integrate the practice into your workflow in a way that feels feasible for the long term!Haven’t nailed down your podcast’s overall concept yet? Check out SPI Media’s complete podcasting tutorial and our blog post on untapped podcast ideas for more content inspiration and podcasting tips.

Alban Brooke is a former lawyer and the Head of Marketing at Buzzsprout, one of the largest podcast hosts in the world. Since 2014, he has helped over 200,000 people launch their own podcasts through Buzzsprout. He co-hosts two podcasts, How to Start a Podcast and Buzzcast. He lives in Jacksonville Beach, Florida with his wife and daughter. You can find him on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook.

Our free checklist and video guide to help you start your podcast

You get a start-to-launch checklist to make sure you don’t miss a step, and it includes a free, three-day video series to walk you through setup.

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