Podcasting 101

podcast

So…You want to start a podcast? That’s great! I’m just here to give you a few pointers. I’ll give you the basic tools I received at the Ohio Media School and from what I’ve read online myself.

First off…pick a topic of discussion. This part can be a little tricky. You want to find a topic that you are passionate about, because if you don’t like the topic you are discussing, then everyone will know. A range of narrow to vague topics is something to consider as well. Although having a slightly vague topic sounds like a good idea, remember this: no one wants to hear about gardening one day and video games the next. A podcast on either one of those topics standing alone is great, just don’t bounce around that dramatically. So thats leads me to: narrowing your topic. So yes, you want to be narrow. On the other hand, too narrow can be a death sentence to your new podcast. If there was a podcast that only talked about house flies…they are going to run out of steam fairly soon. (Plus, I don’t really think anyone wants to hear about house flies)…

After you pick your “niche” or topic…it’s time to have a little fun. You can choose a name for your podcast. Although choosing a name for your podcast is very important, this should also be a fun experience. When choosing a name, try to incorporate your topic. This will make is easier for listeners to find you using itunes, soundcloud,spreaker,ect… For instance, a blog about baking “edibles” could be called “Half-Baked” haha!!!

Keep the audience that will listen in mind when choosing a name, niche and platform that you are putting your podcast on. Someone interested in alcohol may be interested in a podcast called “Brews and Bro’s”…but their target audience would be men in their 20’s just by hearing the name of the podcast. I doubt “Carmen’s Cat Facts” would be a podcast that someone who just bought a puppy and needs potty training tips would be interested in.

Then I would invest in a decent microphone. Although it’s fine if you record on your phone or something…having the best possible audio quality is key in a podcast. You don’t want people tuning out and choosing another podcast because of poor sound quality.

Then let’s choose a hosting site. A few examples are: youtube, soundcloud, and itunes. They are all perfectly fine and do similar things…choose which one is the easiest for you to upload your content and that your demographic uses the most. Then you will want to try and learn basic audio editing. Adding a little music, sound effect and making it the best work being posted is wise. There are tons of tutorials on editing, and there are plenty of people that would happily do it for you (just ask some people at the Ohio Media School for instance)…so don’t stress.

My last bit of advice is to be yourself. Anyone can mimic anyone else…but no one can be YOU. People gravitate towards podcasts because of the person behind the mic. So choose a topic that you are interested in and passionate about and get to work!

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