The Internet is going crazy over podcasts. Any enterprising person ought to get in on the ever increasing popularity of podcasting. However, many web publishers haven't gotten into podcasting because of the technology that seems to be required.

In fact, it's pretty easy to get into podcasting. Anyone can create a podcast. You don't really need podcasting software to get started making your ownpodcast.

If you're using a Windows OS, you'll find everything you need preinstalled. You will have to make sure you buy a high quality microphone, so that your audio will be clear and easy to understand.

Windows Sound Recorder is what you'll use to record the episode of your podcast. Then, go back to different sections to do a little editing and tighten things up.

Use Windows Media Player to review the finished product and figure out where you could stand to improve.

Windows Front Page is available to help you get your podcasts uploaded to your web server. From there, your visitors will be able to download and listen to your podcast.

So why are there all those special pieces of podcasting software on the market? It's because many people want to stay competitive. Podcasting has some big players, and a lot of smaller ones. Going through any sample of podcasts, you'll soon see that some of them stand out in terms of production values and quality.

Some publishers online even go so far as to hire professional voice actors to deliver their message in the most appealing way possible. There's a good chance you'll be competing with them.

If you want to keep up, podcasting software might be the way to go. Professional programs offer many different and useful features.

So, in the end, you'll have to ask yourself whether or not you really need podcasting software. It's more expensive, and can be intimidating, but it will help you make a better podcast.

You can create a basic podcast with just the bare bones available with Windows, but the quality might suffer. Ask yourself a few questions first, to help you decide.

* What's the target market? A market that's more concerned with quality means you might need podcasting software.

* Are you planning to sell this content or use it for profit? People want better quality when they pay for something.

* Who are the competitors in this market, and how have they been doing?

* How big a role are you expecting podcasting to play in your marketing campaign? The answers you come up to with these questions will help you determine whether it's time to invest in podcasting software.

If you're trying to cater to a market that wants high end podcasts, want to make money from podcasting, or are trying to keep up with other podcasts that have high production values, you'll want to make sure you put out the best product you can. Podcasting software can assist you with this.

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