By Chris Price
Starting a Podcast
A Podcast is a radio show transmitted over the internet. Anyone can produce a podcast with an internet connection and some inexpensive audio equipment. Podcast shows can be on any topic or theme from Gardening, Travel, Cooking and Baking, Entertainment (talking about T.V. shows and Movies), to News and Sports. People host and produce a podcast as a way to share their passion for the subject-line the podcast is about. For example Rick Steves hosts podcasts on travelling through Europe and the hidden secrets most tourists will miss on their own travels . He hosts the podcast to share his experience with other travellers.
There are many talk shows on FM/AM Radio but most people don’t have an opportunity to host a radio talk show. Radio show hosts and producers have to deal with sponsors, commercials, station managers, government and corporate regulations. Podcasts don’t have as many rules and regulations and anyone can start a podcasts. They don’t need to be a formal broadcaster or have permission from a broadcasting corporation (CBC Radio). The cost of starting a podcast is much less than the cost of studio time at a radio station because you can buy basic recording equipment, microphones and computer software starting around a hundred dollars.
Before starting a podcast you have to choose a theme and category for the podcast talk show, such as News, Sports, Entertainment, Comedy, Health, Music, Business and Politics. “Social Pros Podcasts” hosted by Jay Baer and Adam Brown is an example of a well known Social Media podcasts. The show talks to guests that are working for different companies and they discuss their different social media strategies and ideas that they have used in social media. “Social Media Marketing” hosted by Michael Stelzner is a weekly podcast that also interviews social media experts and successful business people to help listeners learn new strategies to deal with social media marketing. “Well since you asked” is another podcasts that focuses on business and where listeners can learn how to become entrepreneurs and how to start a business.
To be successful, podcasters need to make their podcast interesting, informative and entertaining. If the podcasts is based locally, it needs to receive recognition within the community (town, City)? Podcasters need to decide how many people (and the demographic of people) listening to the podcasts makes it successful by setting goals or targets for attracting new listeners. If the podcast has a topic with wide appeal, a high target of perhaps a thousand new listeners or downloads per episode may be an indicator of success. If the topic has niche appeal, then perhaps more modest goals should be set. Podcasters need to measure their “listener count” at the podcasts networks website to verify that their goals are being achieved. If goals are not being met, podcaster need to either set more modest goals or change the format of the podcast to attract a different demographic of new listeners.
Podcasts make it easy for listeners to hear from talented people or leaders in industry, to share their experiences and give advice. It provides a platform for information that we might not read or hear about anywhere else.