What sort of podcast will you make?
Once you have chosen your subject matter for your podcast, so that you have something that you will want to carry on with and not pod fade, you have to think about whether you will stick with audio or will you do video. Nothing stopping you from doing a combination of a few different types of podcast. Such as audio, video, screencasting, interviews or just being silly and recording it. For instance, there a number of excellent comedy podcasts, such as 'Ask a Ninja' and 'French Maid TV'.
This is the easiest way to make a podcast. You have the one person talking into a microphone about whatever subject you could care to mention. Then you have extensions to that where you might have a number of people contributing to a round table type of discussion. There is a Mac podcaster that has gone even further still with recording the podcast live and broadcasting it through uStream. She also has a chat room for the live viewers to congregate in, during the live show. Not easy for one person to take care of, the podcaster does need to have helpers to manage the chat room.
The problem with the round table podcast is that often you get more than one talking at the same time, not so good for the listener. There is one podcast by a well known podcaster and he is always interrupting the other speakers by making inane comments over the top of them. Very annoying to listen to something like that. That podcast does go out live and I have been informed that there is editing that takes place before it goes out as a downloadable podcast in the RSS feed. Perhaps some of the mayhem is taken out with the editing. I hope so.
You can record an interview over Skype with one or more persons. It is possible to separate the recording into two separate tracks when you record with an application like WireTap Pro. That way you can edit each track individually. Very good for editing out extraneous noises and making the audio as clear as possible. You can also do audio or video interviews where you do a news style interview, with a microphone in your hand that you put under the chin of your interviewee.
Editing your Podcast
If you have time to do fine tuning of your podcast, a sort of post processing, then do it, so that the final result is as good as it can be. There are some people that say ummm and errr a lot when they are talking and it can be a very good idea to edit out the worst of it. You can also edit out things like coughing and fluffing of the script. I have found AmadeusPro to be a super application to do that, much better than with garageband.
You can do a talking head style of podcast, this is where you sit in front of your computer with a web camera and talk about whatever you want to talk about. Not the most exciting style of podcast, but can be successful. Like the young girl from the North East of England that built up a huge following by doing make up tips. So she wasn't just talking to her viewers, but actually doing something that other young girls could watch and follow.
You have the 'how to' type of podcast in which you show your audience how to do something. A bit like that Geordie make up girl, but you might have to have a roving camera, that can show a number of different angles, and will probably have to be edited down to make more sense to the viewers. With close ups to really show off some of the detail.
Vlogging and Audio Blogging
A Vlog is a video blog. People like iJustine have mastered this type of podcasting on YouTube and she has many thousands watch every podcast that she makes. She might go out specifically to make a video. Of herself dancing in an Apple store or in the street, or she might just film herself walking down the street talking about what she is doing. Totally un self-conscious and doing things in public that would most likely embarrass the hell out of, any normal person. She is one of the most prolific podcasters out there.
Equipment for Podcasting
The equipment that you will use depends on what sort of podcast you make. There will be specialist microphones best for certain tasks. For example you might want to buy a shot gun microphone with a boom pole for video work. The talking head podcast will be OK with a web camera if you have decent lighting of the subject. For the video podcasts there is a huge range of cameras from the under â‚¬100 flip cameras to the near broadcast quality that you could easily spend a couple of grand on.
Podcasting Basics for more information.