How to Create Your Podcast Cover Art

Podcast Launch | Podcast Production
February 16th, 2017

Your podcast cover art is your first opportunity to reach potential listeners. It's critical to make a great first impression and stand out from surrounding cover art. Let's dive in.

Technical Considerations

The default starting point for size/resolution specs is going to be following iTunes requirements. Most directories have the same standards, and as iTunes is the most popular/used, it’s important to get this right.

Requirements

  • Min 1400 x 1400 pixels
  • Max 3000 x 3000 pixels
  • 72 dpi, JPEG or PNG format
  • RGB colorspace
  • *Recommended compressed files for tablet/mobile devices

If you’re doing this on your own you can make sure you’re creating/exporting the image to match the above. If you have a designer creating it for you, make sure they provide it at the above specs.

Different Device Sizes

You can’t know the environment or which device/platform your listeners will come across your podcast so it’s important to make sure you cover art is legible even on small sizes.

Small text might look great at 1400 x 1400 or even 400 x 400, but make sure it still gets your message across at 100 x 100.

Image Quality/Resizing

Start with a quality image and don’t scale up. If you’ve got an awesome image that’s 700x700, scaling it up to 3000x3000 doesn’t count as a 3000x3000 sized image - you’ll just have a super blurry 3000x3000 image. Don’t scale up.

Image Compression

When you’ve finished your cover art image, you’ll probably need to compress the final image. This is mainly for mobile/tablet devices that have to download your image over limited bandwidth.

If compression is done correctly, you won’t be able to tell a difference from the pre and post compressed image.

Design

The whole idea behind successful podcast cover art is letting the right people know what to expect from your podcast. You know your content and who you’re trying to reach. Keeing your content and your audience in mind along with the following best practices will keep you going in the right direction.

Best Practices

Keep it Simple

You want your potential listeners able to know what your podcast is about and what to expect with just a short glance. Imagine your show in a listing next to similar podcasts, make sure is simple and direct enough for someone to understand what to expect with a quick glance.

Speak to your Audience

Use language and imagery that your target audience relates to. Not everyone has to connect with what you’re podcast is about - but that’s totally okay. You’re looking for the listeners that are tuned into your content and topic.

What's Already Working?

Have a look at some of the different podcast cover art on iTunes and how it changes from category to category. See which covers catch your eye as you glance through and make notes of why it grabbed your attention.

Think about what’s working with other cover art and what the equivalent ideas, language, images, etc. would be for your podcast.

Get out there and Create!

Don’t let creating your podcast cover art hold you back from launching your podcast. The important thing is having fun with it and getting your podcast out there.

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