One of the most asked questions (about podcasting) is how to use copyright music on your podcast. Now, to answer these questions, it’s is a little more complicated than that.
Our recommendation is not to use copyright music or content on your podcast at all. But we understand that you might need to in order to get your story across to your listers. So here are some ways you can do that.
Please keep in mind that we are a podcast hosting company. We are not lawyers that you can use as legal advice. If you are confused about anything discussed in this article or about copyright laws, we highly advise that you seek a legal team for help.
Can I Play Copyrighted Music in a Podcast?
A lot of people get confused and think that if you play 10 or 15 seconds of a song, then you are not violating any copyright rules.
But this actually wrong.
There are no rules or laws that say you can only use 5, 10, 15, or even 30 seconds of a song. The rule is that you need permission or rights (sometimes called royalty) in order to use any seconds of any songs.
Can you get away with it? Maybe. But if the artist does not like that you are using their song in their podcast, they have the right to take you to court where you could be paying huge fines.
Buy The Music
The best solution is to buy the music rights. Now, this doesn’t mean that you go on iTunes or Spotify and pay for the song and now you have the right to use it. It also doesn’t mean that you bought the rights, that you own the song.
For most of the artist’s label companies, you can contact and ask if you can purchase the rights to use their song on your podcast. Some label and production companies have forms or links on their website where you can purchase the rights.
Ask For Permission
Since you are going to be contacting the artist, label, or the production company anyways, it’s also better to ask if you can use it for free.
Most of the time, it is going to be a “No” but sometimes they might let you use their music on your podcast without having to purchase any rights from the artist or label company.
It never hurts to ask.
Will my podcast get taken down if I have copyright music?
If your podcast is on Apple or Spotify (which most podcasts are), they can take down your podcast for copyright music. Of course, even if your podcast is not on these platforms, if an artist of a song contacts any platform about copyright music, your podcast can be taken down.
Spotify recently has taken a stricter approach. They do not want you to be playing copyright music in your podcast.
What if my podcast gets taken down for copyright music?
If you never had permission to use the copyright music, then there is nothing you can do about it. If you have the episode’s raw files, then you can edit out the copyrighted song and re-upload it.
If you did have permission to use it from the artist or record label company, then you can present that to the platform like Apple and Spotify and they will review it and get it back up for you.
Please keep in mind that most podcast hosting companies will not check for copyright music. This is done by podcast distribution companies like Apple, Google, and Spotify.
Can I Use Other Copyright Stuff On My Podcast?
This all depend on the copyright law in your city, state, or country and also on what you want to use.
For example, if you want to talk about what you saw on the news today, that is ok. But if you want to use the audio from the news clip, this might not be ok and you might need to get permission (and also give credit when you play it) from the news channel.
Again, as we recommenced earlier, if you are not sure about what you can and cannot use, please talk to a professional licensed lawyer in your area. We are not a legal team and we are just giving out personal experience with copyright laws.
So can you use copyright music on your podcast? Maybe. But probably not.
You should always get permission and also give credit before using any copyright materials. If you want to use a song then it is best to contact the artist’s record label company and ask if you can. They may require you to pay for the right to use that song on your podcast.
Other Questions About Copyright Materials On Podcast
What If There is Copyright Music in the Background?
This is still not allowed. Doesn’t matter if copyright songs are clear or not in your podcast. Having them there without permission is violating copyright laws.
Does Your Podcast Need Copyrighted Music to Be Good?
Of course not. You are what makes your podcast good. So just focus on you and not on copyright music.
How Can I Get Copyright-free Music for My Podcast?
There are many places that you can find on Google or YouTube with copyright-free music. You can also search for royalty-free music as well. These are all fair to use without violating any copyright laws. But keep in mind that they might still cost money (a one-time fee) to purchase the song.
Podcast is one of the biggest growing industry right now. Edison Research, found that there are over 90 million listeners of podcast just in the United States. That is a lot of listeners.
Reach More People
Just alone in the US, there are 90 million people listening to podcast.
If you are a business owner, this should be making your mouth water.
Another key thing to think about in business is what are the top dog doing. This means people on top of the industry (the 1%).
If you search any 1% person in any industry, they have a podcast.
This is not because they have free time. This is because they want to reach out to more audiences and get more customers.
Establishing Your Brand
As a smart business owner, you know how important it is to establish your own brand.
Back in the day, it was establish by having a unique logo, interactive website, and maybe making some cool videos on YouTube. Well, now add podcasting to that list as well.
If you start a podcast for your business, that will help establish your brand even more.
In today’s world, it is hard to establish yourself in any industry. It’s just too crowded. But if you are the first or one of the first businesses in your industry to start a podcast, that gives you authority in what you are doing.
A Personal Level
The best way to sell anything for a business is to be able to connect with their customers and clients on a personal level.
Calling each one of your potential clients, and trying to connect with them on a personal level is really time consuming. But you can do that in a faster way by having your own podcast.
When someone listens to your podcast, they are getting to hear from you directly. This is one of the most powerful ways to communicate with someone. For the entirety of the show, they have your full attention.
Podcast don’t cost a lot to product. So there will not be a big business expensive for you.
If you are not sure where to begin, you can check out our article here.
If you do not have a podcast as a business owner, you are missing out on sales and customers.
The podcast industry is growing at a rapid pace. With a business podcast, you will be able to establish your brand more while building an authority in your industry.
When it comes to your podcast, having the best podcasting setup can make a huge difference.
A podcasting setup includes having the best microphones, mixers, laptop/computer, room, chairs, desk, etc.
What Makes A Podcasting Setup So Great?
The most important element in your podcasting setup is the room that you record in.
Keep in mind that this room needs to be in a place that doesn’t get too much outside noise. For example, if you are recording at your house, you shouldn’t pick the room that faces the outside road because that room will have the most outside noise. Also, a room without windows helps with this.
The other thing to keep in mind when choosing a room to record in is that it cannot have echoes. This means you should not record in an empty building or big rooms. Of course, you can limit a lot of echos with blankets and pillows (the DIY way) or by having acoustic sound-absorbing panels.
If you don’t have the correct room, this can effect the sound of your podcast. You could have a lot of echoes which makes it impossible to listen. Or you could have so much background noise that your listeners can’t focus on your voice. So it is important to find the right room to record your podcast in.
Most podcaster spending the most amount of their time (and money) trying to find the best microphone.
Having an expensive microphone can make a different but not as much as we think.
If you have already picked a room (or location) to record your podcast and that room does not have any echoes, outside noise, and the perfect acoustics, recording a podcast on your phone will sound like a high end recording microphone.
So if your are beginner, don’t go out spending hundreds of dollars on microphones. You can use the $1000 microphone in your pocket (I am talking about your phone).
Now if you do need a microphone, we suggest you start off with something like the Blue Yeti (for multiple person recording from one mic) or the Blue Snowball. These are both great beginners microphones and also plug into your computer via a USB.
The Other Recording Equipment
If you followed our steps above, you will not need any other recording equipment.
But if you want to use a normal microphone or a high-end recording one, then you will need a mixer. You will also need a mixer if your are recording with more than one microphone. (You can also use a recorder to do this as well)
You can get a physically mixer, which will have all the microphones plugged into it and it will be plugged into a recorder or your computer. Or you could have a virtual mixer on your computers that your USB microphones plug into.
Using mixers can get complicated. So if this is what you want to do, we suggest spending some time doing research on it.
No matter how you record your podcast, you will always need a computer.
In most case, your computer is a recorder. You can use free software to record and edit your podcast such as GarageBand (for Mac OS users) and Audacity (for Windows users).
After your recording, your computer does all the work. Not just editing but also publishing your podcast to your podcasting host, promoting your podcast, publishing your podcast, and many more.
Mostly all computers should be able to handle any type of podcast recording. But before buying your microphone or mixer or any other recording equipment, make sure to check if it is compatible with your PC.
Also keep in mind that there are a lot of apps for your phone and tablet that can preform podcast recording just like your computer would. So if you do not have a computer, you still make your podcast.
The Desk & Chair
This is one of the least important things when it comes to your podcasting setup.
Whatever makes you comfortable is what you should do. If you like to sit on your bed and record your podcast, go for it. If you are more of a table person, then do that. If you like to lay on the floor and talk to the mic, then do it.
The desk & chair is whatever you want to sit, lay, or stand on while recording your podcast.
Your podcasting setup is very important if you want your podcast to sound good and be successful. If you don’t pick the right room, it might be impossible to listen to you. If you aren’t comfortable then you might not produce the best content. Don’t overcomplicate things, keep it simple and follow our guide above. It’s about having fun and creating content that people will like.
When it comes to coming up with a great podcast name for your podcast, it can be difficult.
Your podcast name can decide if your podcast is going to be successful or not. So it’s very important that you come up with a good name.
Avoid Name Generators
If you are lucky then maybe you can find a good name on one of those only podcast name generators. But the chances of that are very slim.
Most of these generator will give you generic names that don’t sound unique or stand out. They take your keyword (the word you type in the generator) and combine it with common words. If you want to podcast to succeed, this is not the way to do it.
Of course you can use generators to give you an idea of what your name should be. You can use them to start your brainstorming.
Rules Of A Good Podcast Name
Here are some rules that you should follow when coming up with your podcast name.
Short & Sweet
The general rule is no more than 3-4 words.
Short names are easy to say and are easy to remember.
You have to also keep in mind that this name needs to fit on your podcast cover art (and later on it needs to been put on your merchandise like t-shirts, stickers, and etc.) so having a short name will make this much easier on you later on.
Straight To The Point
Most people try to come up with very creative names and that always leads to the name being very complicated.
Your name should also give an idea about what your podcast should be.
For example, if your podcast is about is about helping people get over their fears or get our of their comfort zone, you could name your podcast “One Step At A Time” or “Get Out & Grow” (Both of these names are creative, short, and straight to the point)
You don’t want to name your podcast something like “Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone Podcast” (This is too long and too boring!)
Don’t Put “The”
A lot of people feel like adding “The” in front of their podcast name is a good idea, but it’s not!
Remember, you are trying to build a brand. If you want a successful podcast, it has to be a brand by itself.
So just think about all the brands you know out there… how many of them have “The” in their names? (Probably none)
In some cases it might work, for example, “The Morning News” or “The Sport Hub”
But the general rule is try to avoid the word “The” in your podcast name.
Don’t Include The Word “Podcast”
People listening to your podcast already know that they are listing to a podcast, so why include it in your name?
Going back to building your brand, do your see Nike (world’s biggest brand) change their name to Nike Sport Clothes? (Probably not)
Now if you are creating this podcast for your blog, YouTube channel or show, or something that you already have followers for then it might make sense to have the word “podcast” at the end. But still, if you can avoid it, then avoid it.
Avoid special characters, misspellings, abbreviations, and punctuation
Most of your listeners are going to find your podcast by searching for your name. If your names included special characters, misspellings, abbreviations, and punctuation, it might be hard to search and find them.
Also, some podcast websites like Spotify, Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, etc. might not be able to display special characters so it is best to avoid them in your podcast name.
How To Come Up With A Good Podcast Name?
First of, make sure you follow the rules above.
But you need to keep in mind that you need to come up with a name that works with the content of your podcast. The name should also be easy to say for you because you might be saying it on your podcast episodes.
Pick a good podcast name can be tricky. But with a little help of the rules, you will have a better understand of what name will work and what will not.
But remember, don’t focus too much just on your name. People will listen to your podcast for you and your content. Name is important but it’s also important to have fun with your podcast cause that means your listeners are also having fun.