What Is A Podcast?

A podcast is a digital audio or video file which are produced usually in a themed series. You can download the file from your website to a computer or media player. It is recorded and distributed across the Internet as a downloadable MP3 file. The term podcast is a combination of pod(Portable on Demand)and broadcast. It is often referred to as online radio and is used by many people to host their own radio show. This is called being a podcaster and you can be the star of your own program. Podcasting is delivered through an RSS(Really Simple Syndication)and it allows you to create audio programming which can be accessed on demand. People all over the world are creating their own podcasts and all you need is an Internet connection and some inexpensive audio equipment. The cost of producing a podcast is so low that everyday people can do it. You do not have to be work for a traditional radio station in order to host one. It is also convenient because you can create one in the comfort of your own home. If you use these 7 tips, they will help you become a podcaster:

Ask Yourself Why You Want To Be A Podcaster

Do you want to become a podcaster because you want to be famous? Are you doing it to become rich? Are you doing because you want to share something worthwhile with the world? The answers to these type of questions will go a long way in determining the success or failure of your podcast. You will be more likely to succeed if you are podcasting about something you are passionate about. Your listeners will hear the passion in your voice and will be more likely to tune in. For example, if you believe in helping people that are less fortunate, you might use your program to promote charitable organizations in your city. Or, you may be a sports fan and you might want to tell your listeners something about your favorite sports team. Be specific about what you want your podcast to be about. Create a podcast for the right reasons.

Choose Your Podcast Content

You may want to brainstorm some topics that interest you and narrow your list down to one or two. After you choose a topic, you should come up with an outline. For example, if you are podcasting about a musical band, your outline may include their tour dates, scheduled interviews, CD release dates, and so on. Or maybe you are knowledgeable about technology and want to share your expertise with your listeners. You could educate them on the latest gadgets and how they work. Take your time in choosing your content because this will be the foundation of your podcasts.

Buy Quality Equipment

You can use a desktop computer or PC with an Internet connection to create a podcast. The one advantage of using a mobile PC is that you can podcast from any location and some of them will allow you to record your podcast. If you want quality sound from for your podcast, you should invest in an external condenser microphone that plugs into your computer. It will also allows you to monitor your recording levels as you speak. If you are going to have guests on your program, you should purchase more than one microphone.

If money is a problem for you, then you can use some basic computer microphones with a webcam. However, if you can afford it, you should buy a USB microphone with an XLR connector.  Many professional broadcasters use these, so you will be in great company. No matter what type of headphones you purchase, make sure that they offer good sound and that you can hear your voice and any potential guests clearly. If you use substandard microphones, then you are basically wasting your time and your listeners will eventually tune into another podcast. If you are going to be doing live podcasts, then you should purchase and install an audio mixing application and maybe an analog mixer. These applications can record your voice as a sound file and create sound layers and sound bites on a timeline. Wavosaur and Audacity are good applications and are free. IPodcast Producer is an outstanding software and is very podcast-friendly. You can use it to record and edit your podcasts and it is somewhat expensive, but the cost is more than worth it. If you do not have quality podcasting equipment, then you should delay creating your podcasts. It is better for you to wait than to produce a substandard program.

Begin Your Podcast

According to one technology expert, the ideal time for a podcast is about 20 minutes. You should practice and time your outline so that it reflects this time. Make sure that you are relaxed and focused on what you want to share with your audience. Introduce yourself and your guest if you have one and give your URL. Visualizing yourself giving a great podcast with cheering fans can help you. If you are nervous, just imagine yourself talking with family and friends about some good times. View yourself as having a good conversation with your viewers. Stay focused on your top and try not to stray off it too much. If you have a guest speaker, make sure that he or she has enough time to share their information or knowledge with your listeners. This is your guest and you should treat them with respect at all times. If you promoting a business, you should start a mailing list so that your listeners will have a reason to sign up. At the end of your podcast, thank your audience for supporting your podcast. This is common courtesy and it shows that you appreciate your fans.

Upload Your Podcast

After you are finished with your podcast, you will want to upload it. Internet Archive is an outstanding source for storing your audio files and it is free. There are other webspace storage sites for podcasts, and you should research the Internet to find out which one is best for you. Be sure that you create an RSS XML feed because you want your listeners to be able to subscribe to your podcasts. It will also help you build a loyal following of fans. FeedBurner is the best service for this feed because it allows you to create, edit, and publish your own feeds. It provides everything you need to give your listeners a great subscription feed.

Promote Your Podcast

You have now created your podcast and congratulations! Now you have to promote it and attract more listeners. There are many things that you can do to promote your program. Ask your family and friends to tell people about it. Create an ad in your newspaper. Social media is an excellent source for promoting your podcasts. You should use Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube to tell people about your cast. These sites also allow you to receive feedback from your audience. Their comments will tell you what they like and what they do not. Be grateful for constructive criticism, because this will tell you how you can improve your programs. You should also consider creating a fan page on one of these sites. Whenever you get a chance, promote your work.

Maintain Quality Podcasting

Always maintain high standards when you are creating your podcasts. Try and give your listeners a quality program at all times. Never take your viewers for granted because if you do this, you will eventually lose them. If want longevity in podcasting, you must always respect your fans and consistently give them what they want. Remember, there are podcasters all over the world, and they do not have to listen to yours. Look at being a podcaster as being an honor and treat it as such. Make your audience want to be loyal to you. Listen to other podcasters and try to learn things from them. Find ways in which you can improve your programming and always keep an open mind. Never believe that you know everything because this is foolish. Search for trends, both good and bad, in podcasting. Try and stay ahead of your competitors and never be afraid to try something new. This will serve you well in your podcasting career.

Podcasting can be a fun and rewarding career. If you have a desire to share your knowledge or expertise with the world, then this could be the profession for you. Choose specific content that you want to talk about and make sure that you purchase the best equipment that you can afford. Upload your podcast and make sure that you create an RSS XML feed for your listeners that want to subscribe to your podcast. Promote your program as much as you can and always try and produce quality podcasts.

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