Podcasting, as defined by Wikipedia,
A podcast is a type of digital media consisting of an episodic series of audio radio, video, PDF, or ePubfiles subscribed to and downloaded through web syndication or streamed online to a computer or mobile device. The word is a neologism derived from “broadcast” and “pod” from the success of the iPod, as podcasts are often listened to on portable media players.
I’ve been podcasting for years, the easy way, through Blog Talk Radio, although in the beginning I used a digital recorder. Like the definition above, podcasting is an audio, or video, file that’s deliverable over the internet. You download a podcast to your mp3 player or to a player like iTunes. Go over to iTunes and tap Podcasts in the navigation and start to find, and listen to podcasts of your favorite topics.
So why do I podcast?
I love “being the media” and interviewing different people. I’m naturally curious, so I’m always full of questions. When I do a “talking head” show, sharing information about topics I’m passionate about, it lends to my credibility and expertise. It’s similar to speaking in front of an audience. You are the perceived expert and who doesn’t want to do business with an expert. It’s also fun!
How can you get started?
It depends how comfortable you are with technology. I’m going to go down the road of not being comfortable with technology and doing it the easy way. Go to Blog Talk Radio and sign up as a host. The free account will let you air one show a day, for 30 minutes. The only time during that day that you can’t schedule a show is between 3pm PT and 8pm PT, as those are prime time hours on the east coast. There are other levels of participation, but starting out with the free account until you get your feet wet is the best choice, in my humble opinion!
You need to give some thought to your show’s structure. I typically use a Word document for each episode. I have a “canned” introduction to the show and a canned closing. Those two pieces never change from week to week. I fill in the middle with either bullet points that I’ll be sharing, or and introduction and questions if I have a guest.
You’ll also want to create an audio intro and outro. Think of the intro and outro as book ends to your audio show. Podcasts travel in the form of mp3s and can be shared easily. If you put the intro and outro into your podcast, it will always be branded to you and your business or cause.
Blog Talk Radio will archive your shows, but I support my shows with WordPress blogs and a Facebook page. After a few episodes, you’ll want to submit your podcast to iTunes. Who knows, you could be the next Pat Flynn!