Since the advent of the iPod, podcasts have slowly been gaining momentum. They are a great educational tool while being fun and entertaining at the same time. There are almost 2000 new titles added every week, with almost 54000 podcasts out there, ranging from knitting to wrestling, reviewing bad movies to true crime comedy, and anything and everything in between. In this article, Hobbyist World takes a look into the world of podcasts and how they're made.
Listening to podcasts
Listening to audio programmes, or podcasts, is simple if you have access to the internet. You just need to find a podcast platform or app that suits you and then sample some of the many thousands of podcasts made around the world.
The simplest way to listen to podcasts is on a web browser like Chrome, Safari or Microsoft Edge. You can do this from a computer or from the web browser on your phone.
If you have an iPhone you can use the Apple podcasts app to listen to podcasts.
The Podcasts app should already be downloaded on your phone so search your apps for ‘Podcasts’. If it’s not, go to the app store and download it. If you have an Android phone you can use the Google podcasts app. You can also use pod-catchers like Podcast Addict or Castbox, or you can listen to the podcast of your choice on Spotify.
Creating a Podcast
There may be several topics out there, but you can create one of your own in 6 easy steps:
Step 1: Choose a Niche for Your Podcast
Just like with blogging, you need to find a niche for your podcast to fill. Something people desire to learn about that doesn’t exist.
Unlike blogging, where you can try to present a unique perspective as a beginner to a topic, most people motivated enough to seek out a podcast want expert advice.
The alternative is to have connections to many experts that you can interview on a podcast, but few people have these. Be warned that it’s tough to get good guests if you don’t already know them, as people ask them for things all the time.
Step 2: Choose a Name, Theme Music, and Design
There’s a lot of work that needs to be done before you start recording.
Doing the tasks in this section can have a huge effect on your success.
If your title sucks, no one will give you a chance.
Don’t try to be too clever, just pick a descriptive name that you think will sound appealing to your audience.
Your cover art might be the most important part of getting the attention of browsers.
Take some time to analyse the top podcasts in your category and see what trends they follow.
The theme music is the first thing that listeners associate with your show, and they hear it every episode, so make it good!
Step 3: Pick Your Podcast Hosting Provider
If you don’t pick a reliable, good quality host, listeners might have trouble downloading or streaming your podcast episodes. This is a good way to lose listeners.
Podcast hosting services are built on media servers that are designed to store large media files (your episodes) and support the high bandwidth needed for listeners to download or stream episodes.
Step 4: Record Your Podcast
You can finally start creating your podcast episodes.
Step 5: Editing Your Podcast Episodes
Editing audio is a lot like editing video, but simpler.
Still, all audio editing software has a learning curve, and you’ll need to commit time to learn how to use it.
If you want to avoid this, you can use a post-production service like Auphonic. They will take care of volume normalisation, hum reduction, and other editing tasks for a reasonably low price.
Step 6: After you publish your podcast, how do you promote it?
To publish your episode, upload it to your host provider. This is just a simple file upload, and your host should give you instructions when you sign up.
If you’re overwhelmed, just start at step 1 and take it one step at a time.