So you are looking at launching a podcast (or maybe even rebranding your current one) but have a ton of questions about podcast art. Do you REALLY need it? What kind of art, what sizing and how should you design it to boost your visibility and grab listener’s attention when scrolling through iTunes or other apps?
I cover the 411 on podcast art so you know the best practices, what to avoid and what to consider when creating or rebranding your podcast artwork.
Why do you need podcast cover art?
-iTunes requires it for starters lol
-it tells your audience about your brand (associated with your biz)
-it tells your audience quickly what the podcast is about (if they are confused, they are less likely going to listen or subscribe)
-visuals always grab attention
-they can entice an audience to want to listen
Always consider your branding
-fit in with your brand (you want a cohesive brand – not a stand alone silo of a podcast)
-use same fonts and colors as your website / as your business.
-you can incorporate your logo or business name but is not required
-stick to 1 or 2 fonts otherwise it gets too ‘busy’
-a clean look always wins (vs something that is intricate and busy)
Use your words sparingly
-the title you use can share WHO it’s for or WHAT it’s about
-don’t have too many words. Podcast art only has so much ‘real estate’ and the square images are small so too many words will be hard to read and won’t grab attention. Ie no taglines on the art.
-don’t use cutesy terms or acronyms. Clever is confusing.
How to choose your imagery
-people are attracted to people so having your picture (especially if it’s a solo show) is a good idea
-images that represent what it’s about or who it’s for is helpful. IE if it’s about cars – you’d likely have some imagery showcasing a car.
-avoid clutter – too much going on is hard on the eyes, is distracting and won’t pack a punch and grab their attention. Remember – the images a small square in podcast directories and apps.
-give the image breathing room. Don’t ‘pack it in’. Leave some white space around the letters, don’t go so close to the edge.
-use high resolution, high quality images
-use contrasting colors to grab attention. If they are all soft creamy colors for example it washes out and won’t be impactful.
-steer clear of controversial and ‘adult’ content and imagery. You don’t want to violate terms or turn people off
-ensure you have the rights to share the images. Don’t Google and ‘use’. Buy images from sites like istockphoto
Clever is confusing. Avoid acronyms and cute terms. Be simple, clear and direct so people know what the podcast is about and if it’s a fit for them.
The 411 on episode Art
-you want separate artwork for each episode for social media and your website post that features each episode *see Step 1 in my Podcast Leverage System that refers to webposts for episodes
-you’ll want a size for Facebook and LinkedIn, a different size if you are sharing on Twitter and also Instagram (square). Usually I make 2 versions. A horizontal version (for the website and Facebook and a square version for Instagram, and then can resize the horizontal version if need be easily.
-it’s helpful to send to any guest you have aswell so they too can share!
-most episode art features the image of the guest (or image that supports the topic), the name of the episode and name of the podcast.
-it is basically the cover art but extended horizontally, and adjusted to make room for the guest image or title etc
Tips on size and specs
-iTunes requires the image to be 1400 x 1400 so make the art that size. Feel free to make an 1800 x 1800 version for your website or Instagram or wherever else.
-Episode art is typically placed on website posts. I use a ‘Facebook Ad’ size (Canva term) which is 1200 x 628. Every website can be slightly different though so test it first
-If you are distributing your podcast to YouTube from your host (ie it has a static image and the audio) you’ll want to make sure the YouTube Thumbnail size is uploaded into your host, which is1280 x 720
-if you are uploading the ‘video’ recording to YouTube separately, you MAY want to consider a slightly different design – but it’s completely a choice.
Who can create your podcast art?
-you can easily create it yourself with amazing templates available in Canva.com
-you can hire someone to create the podcast art in Fiverr (but if you are doing new art each episode for the episode art, that may not be feasible)
–99 Designs creates create work too. If they design the podcast cover art, get the design files and then you can send that to a graphic designer to make each episode graphic
-many podcast agencies (like us for example) creates the podcast art and episode art for our clients, using the designers on our team.
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