How to Make Amazing Podcast Cover Art: A Step-by-Step Guide for 2023
If you’re planning to start a podcast, you’re probably wondering how to design the best cover art.
Indeed, creating an eye-catching show cover can help you make a memorable first impression and attract new listeners. And what’s more, it’s a requirement for the majority of distribution platforms.
In today’s post, we’ll show you how to create high-quality podcast cover art in 8 easy steps:
- Gather up some references
- Follow podcast hosting platforms’ guidelines
- Make sure your cover art is relevant to your podcast’s theme
- Make sure it’s consistent with your show’s brand identity
- Make sure your lettering is attractive and scannable
- Use spacing, wording, and images carefully
- Opt for a user-friendly design tool
- Repurpose your artwork
Without further ado, let’s dive in!
Gather Up Some References
Starting with a blank canvas can be difficult, especially if you don’t have a design background. That’s why we suggest you collect several references of what you want your cover art to look like. These references don’t necessarily have to be other podcast covers. In fact, they can be any piece of graphic art that feels relevant to your niche.
Moreover, you can make a list of what you like about each graphic piece. That way, it will be easier for you to recognize what you want for your podcast cover art, saving lots of you time.
Follow Your Podcast Hosting Platform’s Guidelines
Before you get started with your design, it’s important to make sure that your podcast art layout will look good on all platforms. In other words, it’s imperative to take a look at each platform's specifications, and design your cover art accordingly.
Such specifications include:
- Minimum Podcast cover art size
- Color space
- And more
Let’s take a look at the requirements of some of the top podcasting platforms.
- Size: At least 640 pixels wide and tall
- Format/file type: TIFF, JPEG, or PNG
- Resolution: Highest possible
- Aspect ratio: 1:1
- Color Space: sRGB, 24bits per pixel, with color profiles applied directly
- Size: Square; 3000x3000 pixels
- Format/file type: JPEG or PNG
- Resolution: The larger the better
Google Podcasts doesn’t have its own set of artwork guidelines. We advise you to follow Apple Podcast specifications instead.
Make Sure Your Cover Art Is Relevant to Your Podcast’s Theme
Generally, your podcast cover should:
- Convey what your show is about
- Be easy to understand
- Be tailored to your podcast’s visual identity
The tone and style of your design will be greatly influenced by your show’s subject and approach.
To illustrate this a bit better, let’s see some podcast cover art ideas.
Podcast Cover Art Comparison
If your podcast is part of your brand's content marketing strategy, creating a cover that reflects its aesthetic is a great idea. The cover art of Nike’s Trained podcast is a great example.
If your show is centered around your personal brand, it can be more appropriate to include an picture or illustration depicting you. A solid example is the podcast cover art for Design Matters, a design show hosted by Debbie Millman.
If the podcast is about a specific interest (such as music, film, or design), you can add visual elements that relate to the topic. For instance, music podcast covers may include instruments, while movie podcast covers may include cameras or videotapes.
Looking for an example? The Geek Cinema Podcast has a simple but effective and on-theme cover.
Make Sure Your Podcast’s Cover Art Is Consistent with Your Show’s Brand Identity
As you may already know, your cover design should reflect your podcast’s essence and have a consistent style across all hosting platforms.
To accomplish this, you'll need to take into account your podcast branding and its visual identity, specifically:
- Tone and style
- Color palette
- Podcast logo
- Key typeface styles
- Your show's stock photos and illustrations
Would you like to learn more about designing for your podcast? Check out our step-by-step podcast branding guide.
Make Sure Your Lettering Is Attractive and Scannable
Make sure your typography is highly legible as well. We recommend using a sans-serif font.
- Helvetica Neue
- Satoshi Variable
Helvetica Neue and Future are available for free on MacOS. Inter, Roboto & Satoshi can be found for free online.
Nevertheless, choosing the right typeface is only half the battle. A good contrast between the background and the font is also important. Plus, make sure that the font size isn't too small.
Use Your Spacing, Wording, and Images Carefully
Besides keeping brand consistency and legible lettering, cover art should also include:
- Correct elements & letter spacing
- Proper wording
- An eye-catching image
Let’s dive a little deeper.
Correct Elements & Letters Spacing
If you're not a designer, you may not know how important spacing is. A podcast cover's spacing is, essentially, the proper use of white space. This is what makes a podcast cover look appealing and professional.
To accomplish this:
- Pay attention to making the cover art legible
- Organize the information in a way that will allow listeners to quickly grasp the most important points
- Attempt to keep artistic elements out of the bottom fifth of the image, as buttons and play progress can hide them
If you're feeling inspired, you might want to include a lot of information on your podcast cover. Yet, when it comes to podcast cover art, less is more. So we recommend you prioritize readability.
We suggest you only include:
- Your logo
- Your show’s name
- The name of the host
- A noteworthy picture
- No more than five to seven words in total, depending to the words’ length and font size
Choosing the right image for your podcast cover is just as important as choosing the right words. Therefore, it’s crucial to:
- Be careful not to include explicit or violent images
- Avoid cliche images such as microphones or recording rooms
- Choose a distinctive art style that fits your podcast's format
- Not include blurry, misaligned, or pixelated images
A good example is the podcast cover art of Nate Dimeo's The Memory Place. This cover art is simple, relevant and moving:
Opt for a User-Friendly Design Tool
Now you know what to consider when designing your podcast cover. But which tool will you use?
We suggest you choose one that:
- Has a simple and intuitive interface
- Includes basic design features
- Offers free downloadable templates
- Is cloud-based
These are our three favorite tools for creating your podcast cover art:
- Adobe Express
Some design tools offer design templates. Although templates are great, it’s likely that many other brands are using the same template as you, which may make your podcast less distinctive and unique. Hence, we recommend using templates only as a starting point and letting your creativity flow from there.
Repurpose Your Artwork
Once you have designed the final artwork, you can keep an editable version and repurpose it by adapting it to different platforms.
- Your podcast's social media channels
- Your podcast's flyers
- Your podcast's website
As a result, you'll strengthen your podcast's brand identity across distribution & promotion channels.
Promote Your Show Like a Pro with Audiotease
In this post, we showed you how to create eye-catching podcast cover art. However, one thing is for sure: you can only reach the right audience if you make your podcast popular across social media platforms.
Short videos are one of the most engaging social media content formats today. So, as a podcaster, the best way to connect with new audiences is through audiograms. And here’s where Audiotease can help.
With Audiotease, you can easily create stunning podcast videos with just a few clicks. Plus, you can fully customize them to match your podcast’s artwork. The best part? You don’t need any design skills or complex software.
Start growing your audience with video marketing. Try Audiotease today and create your first audiogram, for free.