Voice Over Education Blog

October 2014

Podcasting: PART TWO 17 Podcast Programming Pointers

NOTE: This is the second post in a two-part article.Click here to read part one.

Last week, we talked about how the podcasting field has grown and changed. We said that we like the idea of thinking of a podcast as “plain, clear talk.”

This week, we’ll present some tips to help reach that goal, so that your podcast content will be plain and clear to listeners, as clear as its audio quality should be.

First things first ... “Content is King.” That’s been said forever about websites. It’s should also be your first concern in podcasting. So what’s the most important thing in podcasting content?

1. Have a goal.
On any sort of project, a clear objective makes it easier to be productive. It’s especially important in podcasting. Unlike some projects, on a podcast you could just open your mouth and start talking. About anything. But unless you’re a fabulous raconteur, you it’s too easy to wander verbally all over the place. You’ll appeal to no particular audience, and probably won’t communicate your point very efficiently. That is, if you have a point. So rule number one is, have a point.

2. Be unique.
If you can’t be unique, at least be special. In short, give your listeners a reason for listening. If they’re heard it before, why hear it again? (Our apologies if you’ve heard this before.)

3. Be meaningful.
Meaningful to your listeners, that is. If your goal is to discuss the life of an obscure Namib Desert beetle, it may be specific and unique, but how many people care? How do you know if it’s relevant? Easy – identify the benefits it provides to others. You’ll soon be marketing your podcast, and in marketing, “customer benefit” is what it’s all about. If the subject is beneficial to people, it will almost automatically be interesting ... if you also follow the rest of these principles.

The Changing World of Podcasting PART 1

NOTE: This is the first post in a two-part article. Stay tuned next week for part two!

Is there a podcast in your future? As a listener, almost surely. As voice talent, not necessarily -- but it’s increasingly likely, one way or another.

A podcast is a “radio-like” program distributed via RSS feed syndication. Listeners download the program as an .MP3 audio file or a video file. (The audience sizes of audio and video are roughly 50/50.) The RSS feed is a “push” technology – listeners are alerted when a new episode is available.

You can set yourself up as a podcaster in an hour or two. There are innumerable books on how to do it, and the to-do list is rather long, so we won’t get into that in this article. What we want to document here is how podcasting has evolved. And then how you, yourself, might grow into it for fun and profit.

Podcasting’s growth over the past decade has been exponential. In early 2013, 32-million people listened to at least one podcast per month. Last year, Apple’s iTunes app generated more than a billion podcast subscriptions (Edison Research).

While the audience was once dominated by males, Forbes magazine recently predicted major growth in female listenership.

Last year, finally more people listened on mobile devices than did on computer. It used to be hassle to get the file onto your mobile device, but the hassle factor has been reduced by the prevalence of smart phones and tablets, and the emergence of apps and new podcast sources.

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