S2 Episode 37: Podcasting Promotion and Design

Note: Transcripts are computer generated.

Narrator 00:00
Sugar and Spikes is a science backed and semi sarcastic mental health podcast for a new type of business leader. Mental health concerns are occasionally addressed. But this podcast is not intended to diagnose or treat any condition, mental, physical, metaphysical, or otherwise. That's a job for your doctor or therapist, not a podcast. Now that we've got that out of the way, let's get on with the show.

Dez 00:41
Welcome back to another episode of the Sugar and Spikes podcast. I'm Dez I'm, this is Atticus, I don't know if he popped on the sound. Um, I'm a serial content creator. Atticus is a serial cuddler. And today for a special episode, which I'm pretty excited about so a few weeks ago, maybe a month or so ago, if my timing is correct. We did a like podcasting basics episode. And all y'all seem to really like that, like I got some of the best feedback about episodes in a long time. So, if that's what you want, that's what we're going to give you. And because of that, I'm also trying to figure out how many times I can say that in a sentence. But because of that, we have a special guest who I think is probably going to be like a serial, not serial, but like a consistent guest on the podcast: Dean.

Dean 01:42
Hello. I'm hoping you added in some light crowd sounds there. Uh... no.

Dez 01:50

You should.

Dean 01:51


Dez 01:52


Dean 01:53
I am not. I'm not. No, nobody. No crowd is for me, trust me.

Dez 01:59
Except they are! Our listeners like you.

Dean 02:05
Well, there's no accounting for taste.

Dez 02:06
Hey, but it's a good podcast. Anyways. So, we were talking about how to kind of incorporate more of these actionable episodes. Because if you're not taking it, like working on yourself, and thinking through things, and getting ideas around how you interact with people at work, and as you run your business, and things like those are all cool. But actual steps are also pretty awesome. Um, and since podcasting is one of the things nearest and dearest to my heart, we were talking about, well, what comes after the podcasting basics. And so Dan, and I were talking and I was like, well, in theory, if someone's kind of following through this process, if they listen to the episode, then all of a sudden, they have this
really cool content. But like, nothing that identifies it as such, maybe like a name, maybe
a brand concept. But in terms of, if you were to go to iTunes, and go to upload it or go to Lives In and go to upload it, you wouldn't have a critical visa, you will get an error message. Insert podcast art here. So that's what we're talking about today.

Dean 03:31

I don’t think that’s a direct quote, but it says something to that effect.

Dez 03:35
It's a red asterisk and very bold and very upset. Yeah. So, to kick it off, assuming you have a name, because we've talked about before about branding, like Dan's been on the podcast before, and we've talked about branding, and what's in a name, have we talked about what's in a name?

Dean 03:55
Oh, um, I think we did talk about making sure you can get, like, as soon as you possibly can get your Facebook, your Twitter, your Instagram, whatever, anything, get a handles.

Dez 04:07
Hot tip, as soon as you can get all those things. I've been super lazy about that. And actually, over the last couple weeks, made semi-automatic decisions around not having a Sugar and Spikes Twitter. But I think for the sake of the brand, it probably be good to have.

Dean 04:24
Yeah, um , and a good idea is to when you when you've got a like a name that you're feeling good about. Or even if you're not like feeling super good. Like if you think of a name, go get the Twitter for it, because you can always deactivate it later.

Dez 04:40


Dean 04:41

But frankly,

Dez 04:42

Or just sit on it.

Dean 04:43

Or you can sit on it. Yeah.

Dez 04:44

Be one of those people.

Dean 04:46

There's plenty of those.

Dez 04:47
Oh yeah. Also, if you have the funds get the URL.

Dean 04:51


Dez 04:51
Because that's also just really good to have. And you can get URLs for pretty inexpensive. It's the hosting that cost the money, but like, holding a domain can be cheap.

Dean 05:02
Yeah. Between 10 and 20 bucks a year.

Dez 05:05
Yeah. I mean, I've definitely let a lot go recently. But that's like..

Dean 05:11

They weren't getting used.

Dez 05:12
Well, they weren't getting use. And when you think about this, this ties into the larger like building a brand thing. But like, Where's the brand going? What is the goal of the brand, things like that? There were things there's like, not for now. And then when you kind of like weigh the decision around different like .com, .edu, .vip, dot insert cool three letters here. Like, you can let them kind of go for a bit until you need them. Which goes back to one of the consistent messages that I hope people here which is your brand, your business, your career trajectory, can ebb and flow and be what you want in the moment. And just because you made one decision at one point, doesn't mean you have to stick with that decision.

Dean 06:00
Yeah, if it stops working for you, then let it go.

Dez 06:03
Yeah, exactly. And focusing on certain things at certain times can be one of the best ways to spend your energy. Going to bring back around to podcast art.

Dean 06:13


Dez 06:14
So if you have an audio file, and it's an awesome podcast episode, but you're like, I don't know what to do this is give me an error. I know any podcast art. But what does that mean? Welcome to our episode, our goal is that you will listen to this and be fully armed with the tools and ideas that you need to not only have podcast art that gets through, but also stands out and get you like the listeners that you want, one they that I'm pretty excited about is towards the end of the episode, we're going to go through and kind of critique our season two art. Because we are coming up on season three, I cannot believe that. But Sugar and Spikes is coming up on season three and with that we've been doing our own kind of critiques and reviews of our art and where we want to go. So you guys are going to get to listen in on that, which is super exciting. But I guess to kick it off, what are the basics, like when I came to you and I said, I need podcast art for this podcast that I'm making? I have these audio files. What did you want to know?

Dean 07:26
Well, my first question is always, "How big does it need to be?" And ... I mean, that's, that's my first that's always my first question. Because that definitely affects what I can do.

Dez 07:41
Well this is assuming the name is created and kind of the brand identity is done, right? Like this is that is a really big caveat. Like you have to have that kind of your logo has been done, your lockups been done things like that are already created.

Dean 07:55


Dez 07:55
And then you're plugging it into this new kind of line of your brand.

Dean 08:01
Right. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So your,, your podcast art is going to be I mean, it's basically the like, it's your it's your it's your album mark. Like, if somebody was like, someone's perusing through the Sam Goody, because that's a nice topical reference.

Dez 08:23
I was like I don't think anybody listening knows what that is?

Dean 08:27
Well, maybe not. FYE still exists, sort of, it came back.

Dez 08:30
FYE? It apparently was in the Midwest. Um, what I trying to think Tower Records.

Dean 08:36

That's a good one.

Dez 08:36
Virgin Megastore. I wish that I had the Virgin, so I have like the Virgin credit card. I wish that all the money I spent at the Virgin Megastore as a kid transferred to points. That would have been awesome.

Dean 08:50
That would have been great. It would have had several several plane tickets.

Dez 08:54

Oh my god. Um.

Dean 08:57


Dez 08:57


Dean 09:00
For anybody that's never been to a Sam Goody or was not alive while Sam Goody existed. It basically like it's, I mean, everyone knows what a record store is. Your remember a record store? Or, you know,

Dez 09:17
You browse in that like, weird little corner of Target.

Dean 09:20


Dez 09:21


Dean 09:21

Anyway, album art.

Dez 09:22


Dean 09:23

You know, you're seeing you know, yeah, that's, that's, that's kind of I mean, at one point, it was like, records. And so it was album art was a really big thing. Because, you know, you had 12, like, 12 inches by 12 inches. Big, the big great, album art intricate details.

Dez 09:43

It was cool

Dean 09:44


Dez 09:44

People were seeing it like right up front.

Dean 09:46
And the and you're like the name, the album name, band name and all that would like be kind of smaller? A lot of them? Because it was mostly art.

Dez 09:57


Dean 09:58
To be eye catching. Nowadays, you need, basically, you need to be able to be readable at the size of a postage stamp.

Dez 10:08
You need to convey your brand in a thumbnail.

Dean 10:12


Dez 10:13


Dean 10:14
Yep. So you want you want to start out with making it as big as possible. Because that basically future proofs you, however you want to design it, such that you can read it as small as possible.

Dez 10:31
Okay, so I was gonna say, like, if I'm looking at this giant file, and I have all of these tiny words, and all these interpret images and things like that, that's not what I want.

Dean 10:42


Dez 10:43
I want something that is big, like a bold billboard, but could have the same effect as so why not design like, in like the 300 by 300 square

Dean 10:59
Well, so currently the the the minimum upload for for iTunes podcast art is 1400 pixels square.

Dez 11:14


Dean 11:14
But it's changing, it used to be 300 pixels. And it's just been going up because as as displays have gotten better, you have more pixels per inch in a screen. And I mean, print real is print resolution has stayed pretty constant at 300. It's the equivalent of 300 pixels per inch. It doesn't quite work out like that, because print is weird. And printers use dots of ink

Dez 11:46


Dean 11:47
Yes, but DPI is measured in, it's complicated.

Dez 11:53

It's different, yeah.

Dean 11:54
It's different. There are a lot more dots per inch, like a printer, say something like 2400 to 9600 dots per inch. And that's how many little tiny ink dots. But it does it like one pixel would be several hundred dots of ink. Because they're only working with four colors. So they're going to do like, you know, a 6040 split of red and yellow is going to be different from a 50/50 split. And so they can get all the colors, anyway. So you want you want to design like design it so that it can be seen small. But you want to give yourself as much room as possible. Because, you know, the older the older podcast art that that was designed and uploaded for 300 pixels by 300 pixels. That's not even close to the minimum anymore.

Dez 12:50


Dean 12:51

And so now it's you know, the their current spec as of today is between 1400 and 3000 pixels

Dez 12:59
Today being sometime in 2019. Yeah.

Dean 13:06
Yeah. So you want to give yourself room to grow, uh assuming you because I mean, you may, you may just decide you're so happy with your podcast, you want to use it for years. Which can be a good thing. I mean, that's

Dez 13:22

A lot of podcast do it.

Dean 13:24



Dez 13:25


Dean 13:26
And so, you know, the very long running podcasts will a lot of the time have, you know, the same podcasts art for a very long time. But if you suddenly like if Apple ups their minimum, and now you're below the minimum,

Dez 13:43
You're gonna have to like recreate it.

Dean 13:44
If that's all you got. Yeah, you'd have to recreate it. Because you want it to be a good like a high quality image because they will,.... if it's if it becomes leave it looks pixelated or, like, if there's like J, JPEG, relegating relics, digital artifacts in the image, then Apple won't promote your podcast. Which they may not do anyway. But, D

Dez 14:13
You want everything in your favor.

Dean 14:15
Yeah. It's better to be able to be promoted, and not be then to just not be able to be promoted.

Dez 14:23
So when someone's looking up, like how big should I make my podcast are, when in doubt, veer towards the maximum size?

Dean 14:32
Yeah, and I mean, I would say even just make it big. Like, this is one of those times when make it bigger is absolutely the way to go.

Dez 14:40
So like, if it was a square, like, is it just you need to know oh, it needs to be a square. So right now like the minimum is, like 1200. If I made like, a 3600 Square like pixels,

Dean 14:52

That'll give you a lot more time.

Dez 14:54


Dean 14:54
But I mean, I would I mean, you can grow like maybe 10,000. Because you it's like it's really easy to make things smaller. It is impossible to reliably make things bigger.

Dez 15:07

Right, okay.

Dean 15:10
Downsizing are is always easier than upsizing.

Dez 15:13
I'm just trying to think of like a good guidepost for folks that want to start off, like if I were to start off or if you were to make our season three art right now, where would you start? Like what size would you make it?

Dean 15:24
Well, that depends on if you are using, like if you're using like a photograph, just however big you can get the photo,

Dez 15:31
That's true photos are completely different than kind of Vector images and things like that.

Dean 15:36
Yeah, so the Sugar and Spikes art is Vector. And Vector art is not pixels, like it is like so Rasterart is pixel pixels. Vector art is basically math. And so it's a series of calculations saying that there's a point here and a point here and a line connecting them. And curves by varying definitions, which means you can blow that up to a mile wide, and it will be exactly the same. And so if you, if you want to use Vector art, and have that kind of more illustrative style for your podcast art, then by all means do that, because that will be that I mean, that 100% well, not 100% because if a file formats change, that'll be basically it.

Dez 16:29


Dean 16:29
Like, size wise, you'll always have exactly what you need.

Dez 16:33

I mean, that speaks to why so many of the podcasts are so many podcasts are out. I don't even know how to say that plural. But why so many are in more of that illustrated format versus the picture of someone like I can't think of

Dean 16:50

Gilmore Guys.

Dez 16:52

Okay. Thank you. It's the one thing

Dean 16:56
I mean, there are there are a lot of...

Dez 16:58
There are a lot but for the most part, like if you think NPR things like that, kind of your your big guns.

Dean 17:07
Yeah a lot of them are, yeah, a lot of our are illustrated and done as vector art. And yeah, that that'll get you like, that'll give you a lot more mileage

Dez 17:19
More effort right now. So aside from sizes, what else should people be thinking about?

Dean 17:30
Well, you want to be readable, as small as possible, which means don't have anything with like, really delicate details. Don't have a lot of text. Just looking through the ones like that I'm subscribed to currently. You've got things like, like, oh, I love Laura's podcast art. It's a gray background with lore. And it's a very distinctive font. But it is like that is the whole of the the art. And it's readable. I mean, I can cover it up with my thumb. But it's 100% readable. D

Dez 18:10


Dean 18:14
You've got things like oh, Song Exploiter. Just a big E. So, it doesn't necessarily have to have your full title on the album art, or the podcast art. Most do. But it doesn't necessarily have to.

Dez 18:32
What are your thoughts, I know we briefly touched on like pictures versus kind of vector art or illustrator of styles, what are your thoughts on people using their picture as the cover art like? Like a headshot, essentially?

Dean 18:48
Yeah. I mean, if that's your, if that's your brand, then by all means go for it. Just get a really like a get a high quality picture. Which that's always useful. Having a really big, high quality, well photographed headshot of yourself that, I mean, that's always good to have

Dez 19:12
Speaking from a creator standpoint, and as someone who's kind of managed this podcast as well as others, I will say there have been a lot of times where I've been glad that it wasn't just kind of the co host picture, things like that, especially as like we've grown and flex been just behind the scene conversations like Sugar and Spikes as a brand is bigger than Tammy and I it's bigger than, you know, me and a guest or if I wanted to bestow upon someone like an episode that they just kind of ran with, you know, their it lenses sort of flexibility. And I've been glad that we haven't just had this sort of stagnant headshot thing going on, which is also come up in another podcast that I produce where we did use more of a headshot style art and then because of like rotating hosts, rotating guests, things like that.

Dean 20:16

And added hosts

Dez 20:17
Yeah, added host different guests, just the flexibility of what a podcast is, which is essentially like a delivery method of information. Because that rotation, we changed out from that headshot style after about seven or eight months to a more evergreen kind of version. So I will say that Dean's right like if it if your face is your brand, and that's all it's ever going to be, then cool. If it's something bigger than something that allows you a bit more flexibility can be very important and nice to have. Because I will say like promoting it. Like I get that, you know if Tami's unavailable when we like people are gonna be like, Well, why is she on the cover, but it's someone else like I get people aren't going to like hold us to the fire like that. It also just feels nice. Like when you have a brand, you care about those nuances. And again, like the evergreeness of our cover has just been, like a comfort in the times when there's been other stresses. And I didn't need that other piece of well, that's annoying, you know?

Dean 21:29
And it doesn't mean you can't use headshot

Dez 21:31


Dean 21:32
Use those for you know, promo pictures, social media posts.

Dez 21:35


Dean 21:36

Um, like,

Dez 21:38

Pictures of the podcasts

Dean 21:39
Right. Like, I mean, like, Gilmore Guys, they would do like, and a lot of podcasts, I think do this, they'll, you know, put up promo pictures of, you know, the hosts with whoever their guest is, if you're in the same area.

Dez 21:55


Dean 21:56
You know, do they'll do you know, picture of everybody that's on that one episode to promo that episode.

Dez 22:02
Yeah. What we do is, you made kind of like, a layered image, where we asked folks for their headshot, and we just like, drop it behind the rest of like, our logo and where you can find the podcast.

Dean 22:18
Yeah. That's got some space for the episode number. And the guest's name nice, big, so it's readable. And then a little bit about them. Very, very short blurb

Dez 22:32
Is there like a minimum font size for those types of things?

Dean 22:39
Well, your font size is going to vary based on how big your image is. But, I would say you want it I mean, you like you really, you want to take it down. So if you zoom out to where if you can cover the image with your thumb, like cover the whole image with your thumb, you still want it to be readable enough at that size. And I mean, yeah, you can get closer to it. But still, like if you can, if you can put your thumb on the screen and cover it, then that, like that's about the size, you want it to be mostly readable at. And there might be other stuff that you can put other stuff on there that's not readable at that size. But like another Aaron Mahnke podcast, Cabinet of Curiosities. One of his newer ones, it has the title and it says Cabinet of Curiosities at the top, it says Aaron Mahnke's Cabinet of Curiousity, so it's, it has his name, it's very small, you can't really read it, thumbnail size, but you have enough, you can see what the podcast is. So, you know, you can, it doesn't all have to be readable. But enough it has to be like, you don't want to be trying to figure out what it says or what it is.

Dez 24:08
You got to be able to get the gist.

Dean 24:10


Dez 24:12
Um, we kind of started talking about in terms of like guest headshots and everything. What sort of images do you need to be prepared to kind of like have in your arsenal of graphics to, you know, like, having covered is one thing, but then talking about it like, you don't just want to show like the same cover all the live long day? Maybe you do? What are your thoughts on like alternative imagery and things like that?

Dean 24:45
Well, I know that Lipson can do episode art. I, I have not yet figured out where that shows up.

Dez 24:55
It shows up when you do the the embed.

Dean 24:58


Dez 24:59


Dean 25:00
So I yeah. So you can have those for individual episodes, that's great. You also probably want to, I mean, you'll need social media images. So, that's the one where like, if you get your assets as big as possible. So, any photos you're using, get them as big as possible, then you can, you know, resize them and create yourself. Like, you know, your your Facebook, cover photos, Twitter, images, all that sort of thing. And those, I mean, those, I won't even touch on sizes here. You can like any like, whatever year you're in you Google "social media image cheat sheet with the current year", you will find plenty.

Dez 25:53


Dean 25:55
A lot of them are like, there are a lot of great ones out there. And they'll give you all of the dimensions. And if you're lucky, you can find the ones that have, like, you know, this is this is what size you want to upload it at here is what will be visible on mobile, like so it's really nice, because it lets you keep the important things in the portion of the image that will be shown on everything.

Dez 26:19
Um just as a 2019 lazy girls hack, one thing that I've definitely been known to do to promote the podcast is I will go to either iTunes, Spotify, or even Overcast and take a screenshot of this week's episode, make it square, and then post that to Instagram. And that does currently seem to meet kind of the criteria of if you put your thumb over it like so it gets down to that thumbnail size, and it's still readable like in my feed and everything and we you don't get that pixelation. So, there is some, some creative ways to create promotional images, I think when I go to promote individual episodes and stuff, it's it's not just a matter of sharing that it's a podcast, but so much of it comes down to copy and content within the post as well. And making sure to always drive people were were to listen. But so besides. So I'm not sure if we have covered the types to have because there was kind of the rotation that we work with? We work with kind of cover art, right? And then the guest headshots that we have that template for and then audiograms are another really good and highly valuable way to promote. And what is it audio gram? Audiograms are where you have either an image or your cover art, anything like that with the with a snippet of your episode playing or snippet of audio playing on it. So if if we look at like in my feed, there's one was Noelle right now we're shows it, and it turns it into a like little bit of a transcript. Those are really great because you're working with a you're essentially working with an image that becomes a video. So you're kind of hacking the algorithm. Because as we know, preference is given to videos. Yeah. And then if people are scrolling with like the sound on then they get a taste of the episode, which is really nice.

Dean 28:45
So that doesn't transcript. So it has it has subtitles.

Dez 28:48


Dean 28:49
That is fantastic. Because I mean, I don't know about. I don't know about most people, but I think that a lot of people these days keep you know, they're not going to be like if you're scrolling through something you're not gonna have the sound on.

Dez 29:01
It's like, it's in the 90%. Yeah, it's in like the mid 90s. I can't remember the exact percentage, but I was looking into it for work stuff. And it's definitely extremely high. You want things to be enjoyable and for your audience to interact with them with no sound.

Dean 29:21
Yeah. When I find that, like when I scroll past the video on Facebook, and it doesn't have subtitles. I will often just scroll away.

Dez 29:30


Dean 29:30
Just out of like, what why am I even looking at this? I can't tell what's going on. Yeah, I'm not going to turn the sound D

Dez 29:37
Well in it with everyone I've talked with, so a pretty small end but still like random opinions anyway, what happens a lot of times is people will read the subtitles, and then be interested in it and then like be in a place where they can turn the sound on or like have that decision to turn the sound on. And they do and they rewatch it, which only helps

Dean 29:58


Dez 29:59

Your account.

Dean 30:00


Dez 30:01
So subtitles, and transcripts are key, not just for the well this is good for the algorithms. But it's also if we think of, you know, people that can't hear and things like that, like you want to be able to hit as many people as you can. So being able to read it or hear it if people are browsing it through through an audio only type of experience. It's important.

Dean 30:32
Um and so what kind of tools are there for creating these audiograms?

Dez 30:39
So for audiogram, I was using Wave but it was unnecessarily spendy. And I switched to Headliner, which is awesome. You get 10 watermark free audio grams a month up to 10 minutes. So 10 up to 10 minutes a month. So in theory you could get 100 minutes, give or take free each month, which is awesome. So I started using that. It's a bit slow, but it works. And it like I said it does the transcript for you Wave wasn't doing that, things like that. So Headliners great. And I think also, I did want to touch on kind of the other tools to make these images like the podcast art, the promo art things like that. So aside from Headliner, because that assumes you have the art

Dean 31:30


Dez 31:30
What what tools, would you recommend or at least acknowledge exist to make things happen?

Dean 31:38
Yeah. So, I'm going to go ahead and assume that most people don't have access to, I use Adobe Creative Cloud. Because I use it for work, and I already have it. It's...

Dez 31:58
It's like why we use it Audition? Because it's there.

Dean 32:01
Yeah it is. Yeah, that's the same reason I use Audition to to edit the podcast, because it's part of it. And I'm already paying for it. I would not, I honestly wouldn't recommend just getting Creative Suite.

Dez 32:13


Dean 32:14
Unless you're unless you're gonna use it.

Dez 32:16


Dean 32:17
It's like it is really much, it costs more than it's worth.

Dez 32:22
Well, and it is, it is it's its own degree. But yeah, it is complicated.

Dean 32:29
Yeah, most of my graphic design degree was a learning thing, or maybe not most, but half like half, my first year of my graphic design degree was just learning software.

Dez 32:40
I think for like you marketers out there. Or if if you are building like a long standing brand as an entrepreneur and things and definitely learning enough to be dangerous, and Creative Cloud is essential. I can speak to the fact that in my full time job, I've had to switch to Creative Cloud, because using the alternative methods such as Canva stuff have just been too restricting for what I've needed to do. So I think when you think like growth path, it's something that may end up coming up unless you outsource.

Dean 33:18


Dez 33:18
You know, like, that's why. That's why I have someone else doing everything else for me.

Dean 33:23
Yeah, and I mean, as far as, as far as software, there are other there's other things you can use. So like I use Adobe Illustrator, but if you want something free, there's like Inkscape, which is getting better every day. And from what I hear it's it's pretty comparable. You know, you've got Canva, like you mentioned for page layout

Dez 33:55
Social media stuff, that's their bread and butter.

Dean 33:58
Yeah, their bread and butter is social media. And I don't like I don't like it. Because ...

Dez 34:03
It's not a great user experience. But it'll get the job done.

Dean 34:06
It'll get the job done for a lot of things. And I mean, it's it's good for what it does, but I am just so used to having a lot more control and a lot more granular. Like, I can't get the precision that I'm looking for out of it.

Dez 34:21
Which I don't understand. They don't have,

Dean 34:23
But it's but it is good for like if I'm just doing you know, I mean, I would say if you're doing it for just like podcast, art and episode art, that it totally works.

Dez 34:32


Dean 34:34
I've tried to do more than it can do. And for that, no.

Dez 34:39
Yeah. And if you spend a lot of time in it, it starts to go wonky, which means just like a lot of refreshing.

Dean 34:44
Yeah. But yeah, there are other there are other alternatives. If you Google Creative Cloud alternatives or, you know, like Photoshop alternative, illustrator alternative, there's plenty. There's plenty out there.

Dez 35:04

Awesome. So many so many tools. And it can be overwhelming.

Dean 35:11
You know like, these are things as with so many of the other topics that we talked about on the podcast, like take over for you leave the rest, a really don't want folks to get bogged down in the different older alternatives and feeling like they have to learn new software things. Honestly, for about 78% of people out there Canva is going to do you just fine. Yeah.


Dez 35:40
And then really, this leads us into "Well, what happens if you want to do like a bear change, drastic change?" Things like that? We, I mentioned like this why I outsource. Like, know the limits, right. But kind of leaning into that topic. What about when you want to change your cover? Like you mentioned that a lot of podcasts keep it the same? At what point is it kind of beneficial to create new cover art? What do you need to think about when you're thinking about it?

Dean 36:23
Yeah, so I mean it, that's a really, there, there is no real hard and fast answer to that. But if it's not, like, again, if it's not working for you anymore, or if it doesn't, if it doesn't reflect what your podcast is really about anymore. If it does, if it's not reflective of your brand, then consider changing it.

Dez 36:51
Yeah, we changed, we updated cover art between season one and season two, mainly we want for lighter colors to make noting things and stuff on the cover art a little bit easier. Because initially in season one, we had a really high contrast, which is good, like you want things that all stand out and have, you know, some definition contrast. But with the style that we had going, it was a bit harder. We needed something just a little softer. Like, we learned what we're looking for after working with it for about a year.

Dean 37:28
Yeah. And we still got it we've got high contrast where it counts. So the logo stands out against the background. M

Dez 37:36


Dean 37:36

That's the main thing.

Dez  37:37
Yeah. And now with season tw-, with season three coming up, what have been some things that, you know, you felt like needed to changes like the designer?

Dean 37:49
Well, one thing you want to do is you want to avoid, like, big, like the cliches. So like a business podcast, you probably don't want just a handshake, because it's overplayed. And honestly, for the more I think about it, the more the microphone is very much a cliche. You don't you don't see like movie posters don't have movie cameras on them.

Dez 38:31


Dean 38:32

Unless they're about moviemaking.

Dez 38:35


Dean 38:35
And even then, usually not. But you don't have your, your your podcast art having your method like your distribution method isn't maybe the greatest way to do it. So, I think maybe see if we can find something that's a little closer to, you know, show what the podcast is actually about, rather than how it's recorded.

Dez 39:04
Yeah, I would say that that has been the biggest thing. But it's also taken us a couple years to find, really the way we want to go with the podcast and finding our voice and everything. So as the podcast has grown and refined, so is our branding. We're still going to keep the name and things like that. But and talking and talking with Dean and with talking with Tammy, it's been well, if you look at our name, and the cover art, no one has any idea what it's about. So we need to solve the problem in one way, either change the name or change the art. Right. And that has been kind of what I have tasked Dean with coming up with by October , is art to describe everything that we talked about. I'm excited to see what happens.

Dean 39:57

Yeah, I mean, we I guess we'll see.

Dez 40:00
Yeah, I think if we were going to critique the rest of kind of the cover, or like, the art that we have been using? Um, I mean, I think you're right. Like, it's, it's that there it's, it's pretty generic, like it's, it's well branded, and it doesn't look like I like we just bought, you know, stock stuff. But it, it doesn't answer questions, which marketing needs to do is answer questions. And the other thing is, is there's a lot of like, empty space around it. That's not usable when you need it to be usable.

Dean 40:39


Dez 40:40
Which is difficult. So like there, and I think that speaks to thinking through the covered and what, what it may be used for. And these are learnings that again, have happened over the last couple of years. You know, when we were making the podcast art we weren't thinking about like tossing in quotes, or well, where's the transcript gonna go? Things like that.

Dean 41:01


Dez 41:02
These are all are all things that have come up, as we think about what's the easiest flow for marketing? What communicates the most, the fastest? And what conveys the brand?

Dean 41:18


Dez 41:19
So, that is our critique of season two. And like I mentioned, season three is coming very fast in October, which is super exciting. Um, any final design sentiments question, not questions, but answers, comments.

Dean 41:40
I don't think that I can answer. Like, there's always something else. I would say that there are, there are a ton of resources for every aspect of podcasting. And the goal is to find one that speaks to you. That's why they're like, that's, that's why the like, you talk about doing a podcast about something even if somebody else is doing a similar one, because your voice might be what somebody,

Dez 42:25

What someone hears.

Dean 42:25


Dez 42:26


Dean 42:27
So I think that, like I would be there's there's also other resources for learning more about podcast art, and about podcasting in general. So, I mean, I'd be thrilled if this was a jumping off point. But also, I'm not going to claim to be the voice that speaks to most people. So I think just like

Dez 42:58
But people do like your voice. And if people do want to learn more about you and maybe like, talk about helping them with their art or even like doing a consultation, where can folks find out more about you?

Dean 43:15
You can find some my work at deanwdesign.com, including the Sugar and Spikes podcasts art

Dez 43:29

Season one and season two

Dean 43:30
Season one and two are both up there. I think they're both up there. And you can you know, find out more about me if you if that's what floats your boat. (laughter) And, yeah, that's I mean, that's about it. I'm not really active on social media.

Dez 43:50
Cool. Alright. Well, I am. We are, as Sugar and Spikes. You can find us on the Instagram @sugarandspikespod. That's kind of where we live and breathe, you can find it me, myself and I @dezwmsmba across the board. And as always, if you want to reach out to either me or Dean or Tammy, go to sugarandspikespod.com, there's a form. And if you liked this episode, leave a review. That would be amazing. Even just selecting a number of stars would be greatly appreciated. And if you know someone else that could benefit from this episode or any of the other episodes, go ahead and share this with that individual. That would be fabulous. Okay byyyeeeeeee!

Dean 44:41

See ya!

Desiree Wiercyski