Maintaining your church’s content can be stressful.
There are numerous platforms you need to manage.
Write a blog.
Record a video.
Post to social media.
Upload a podcast.
How do you have time to keep up with all of that while also managing your church?
The secret that most churches don’t realize is they’re already creating enough content to maintain all of these platforms. You just have to know the right place to look. And that place is your weekly sermon. This is a long-form, well-researched piece of content you’re already creating each week.
All you have to do is repurpose your sermon into different pieces of content.
When it comes to launching a church podcast, the easiest first step is to publish your sermon in audio form that people everywhere can digest as podcast episodes.
That’s where podcast hosting comes in.
And this is your handy guide to turning your church’s weekly sermon into a great audio podcast.
We’re going to cover:
- How to get started hosting a church podcast
- Church podcast hosting solutions
- 4 tips when turning sermons into a podcast
- How Tithe.ly can make podcasting easy like Sunday morning
Let’s get started!
How to get started hosting a church podcast
Does this sound like a good idea?
We think so, too!
But how does a church turn their weekly sermon into a podcast?
Here are a few steps to take to get your church started:
- Audio capture: Make sure you’re recording each sermon in a high-quality audio form. If you have a soundboard and your pastor is wearing a wireless mic, this is probably already taken care of.
- Test your audio: Take a minute to test out the audio quality of your sermon recording. Take a few of the most recent audio files and listen to a few minutes each. Is it easy to hear what’s being said? Are there any pops, cracks, or feedback? The quality of the audio is important in podcasts, so make sure yours is up to par.
- Pick out a sermon podcast host solution. To launch a podcast, you’ll need a service to host and distribute your audio files. There are a ton of solutions, and we’ll break some of them down in the next section.
- Start uploading files: Once you have an account, start uploading a few past episodes to fill in your audio listing. Give something for people to start listening to once they tune in. This will also give you time to practice uploading and find a good system for doing so.
- Share your new sermon podcast: Now that you’ve done the hard work to create this podcast, let people know about it! Add it as a section on your church website. Post about it on social media. Share it as a church announcement on Sunday morning.
- Keep it going: It’s easy to start something new. It’s harder to keep it going. Don’t waste your initial effort by giving up after a few weeks or months. If your church keeps preaching sermons, keep posting them. Even if that means training a volunteer to help out.
Church podcast hosting solutions
There are multiple podcast hosting solutions your church could turn to.
We’ve collected a few of our favorites.
But keep in mind that this list is far from comprehensive.
Here you go:
- Podbean: This is a widely used podcasting platform, both by churches and beyond. They’ve got a few pricing options, including a free tier. The main limitation of the free option is the amount of audio you’re able to upload to your account (5 hours) per month.
- BuzzSprout: Similar to Podbean, BuzzSprout is widely used and has a free podcast hosting option. However, their free accounts are limited to only two hours per month and are only hosted for 90 days before being archived.
- Libsyn: Founded in 2004, Libsyn is one of the original podcast hosting platforms and still one of the biggest. They don’t have a free plan like some others, but their basic plan starts at only $5 per month—not bad for the options you get.
- SoundCloud: Unlike some of the other hosting options, SoundCloud is primarily focused on hosting music rather than podcasts. So it’s more difficult to distribute to other podcast networks like Apple Podcasts. But it’s great for embedding on your church website.
- Anchor: Anchor boasts a completely free podcast hosting platform. That does come with some limited features, but they do make it easy to set up and get a podcast started. They also make it simple to switch over from other hosting platforms.
- WordPress Plugins: If you use WordPress for your website CMS, there are a few plugins you can use to distribute sermon audio. These plugins include Sermon Manager, Sermon Browser, and Advanced Sermons. These plugins are all free (or offer a free option), and hosting the audio files is handled directly within your WordPress installation.
- Sermon Cloud: This is a podcast hosting site specifically dedicated to sermon audio. They’ve got a platform where you can search other churches' content. It also allows you to distribute via podcast apps and RSS feeds. Sermon Cloud has both free and paid options.
4 tips when turning sermons into a podcast
At this point, you know how to launch a church podcast.
Now it’s time to ensure you’re reaching people with it.
Here are four tips you can’t afford to miss:
Perhaps the biggest indicator of success with hosting a sermon-based podcast at your church is whether or not you’re able to keep up with it. Can you consistently post a new audio episode each week when there’s a new sermon?
If you’re not able to, you might want to do more preparation before launching your church podcast.
Create some systems to keep it moving.
Enlist church volunteers.
Formulate a plan that also maintains the consistency of when you’re publishing new episodes.
2. Audio quality
As mentioned previously, audio quality is a huge focus point when coming out with podcast episodes.
Think about it—do you want to listen to a podcast that you can barely hear?
Or where the volume continuously jumps up and down?
You probably wouldn’t listen longer than a few minutes. And neither will your congregation—no matter how good the sermon quality is.
Take the time to get the audio sounding good before you share it with the world.
3. Tell people about it
If a pastor preaches in the woods where no one can hear it, did he actually give a sermon?
Jokes aside—you likely don’t want to put in the time and energy to create a sermon podcast if no one will listen to it. And no one will listen to it if they don’t know it exists.
So tell people about it!
Post about the sermon podcast on your church website.
Share about it periodically (with links) on relevant social media accounts.
And mention it during the announcements on Sunday morning.
These are all different parts of a church communication strategy.
Let people know why they’ll want to listen in.
4. Add intros and outros
Want to take your sermon podcast to the next level? Make it sound more like an actual podcast. Add a short introduction and outro with music and a host to introduce the sermon. This may take slightly more time, but it will instantly increase the quality of your content.
Keep in mind that people may listen to the sermon weeks after it originally aired. That’s the goal after all. So consider that before adding timely church announcements that might no longer be relevant if someone listens to the episode six months later.
How Tithely can help with sermon podcast hosting
With Tithe.ly Sites, you can create a beautiful website in minutes—and add your church podcast with ease.
One of the features you can add to your site is sermon podcast hosting. We’ve even got more articles and resources on how your church can create a podcast.
Preaching a sermon every week and then turning it into a podcast can seem like a daunting task. But with our help, it really is possible. Once you have the right podcast hosting service and a good system in place, it becomes much easier.