Podcasting is a brand new unsaturated marketing channel based on audio communication at the will of the listener.
What is podcasting?
Podcasting is basically audio over the Internet where people subscribe to listen to content that they deem useful. The best part is that you don’t have to be on a computer to listen to a podcast. It has gone mobile. Listen to it on your iPod. You can listen to what you want, when you want, where you want. And very important: Podcast listenership is doubling and tripling over the months.
Why is it effective?
- It’s an additional communication tool for your business.
- It increases your visibility in target markets.
- Audio communication medium is more powerful than text. This translates into potential results for your business.
- Increased internet visibility from the search engines from RSS, blog & podcasting directories.
- You add an improved level of perceived trust & expertise from your target market. Increased perception of your product, service, brand or value in customers minds
- Increased mind share from your target audience. People listen to podcasts while doing other tasks online. They can also take you messaging with them on their portable media player such as an iPod.
Requirements for a podcast
- A Microphone
An audio recording software. These softwares can be can be downloaded free. Download the software and install it on your desktop for easy access e.g http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
- Podcast Manager & Hosting e.g. http://www.podstrike.com
- A computer
- A webcam/camcorder (if deciding on a video podcast)
How does it work? The steps
- Determine the nature of your podcast. What will the content for podcast be? If you cannot speak extempore write down the script. All successful podcasts have a script behind them.
- Record the audio for your podcast You can download the software at the link for windows. http://audacity.sourceforge.net/. Garageband has software that comes with a Mac version.
- Tag it, give it ID information (Artist, Album) and give it an album cover.
- Save the audio file (in MP3 or iPod format) on your computer. Keep the filenames simple.
- Create your RSS podcast feed. The feed must meet all industry standards for a valid 2.0 feed with enclosures. Try using a complete solution and free service such as Podblaze or Podomatic (see the external links below). If you are zapped about it all create a blog on http://www.blogger.com. The blog should have the same title as that of your podcast. Don’t make any posts just yet.
- Now you need to put your RSS podcast feed on the Internet. The best way to do it is to go to http://www.feedburner.com and type in the URL of your blog and click "I am a podcaster!". In the next screen, configure the elements for your podcast. These are the elements that directly relate to the podcast. .
- Go to OurMedia.org and sign-up there (this may take a while). Then go to your files, and upload your MP3 file.
- Make a post on your blog/website – the title of the post will be the title of that episode of the podcast, and the content will end up as the "Shownotes" or "Description". At the end of the post, put a link directly to your media file.
- Wait a little. In a few minutes, feedburner should add this to your feed, and now you have an episode! You can submit it to iTunes or a number of other podcast directories to get it known. You may want to wait, however, until you have some experience, so that your podcast will be compared as a fifth episode to another’s first.
- Ping the appropriate podcast directories when a new show is updated.
- Put the appropriate subscription buttons on your website so people can subscribe to the RSS podcast feed.
- Witty, racy script
- Good Audio quality
- Proper format, check for iTunes validity
- Use social bookmarking tools like del.icio.us
- A podcast works well if it has a companion blog. If you are just podcasting
- The bandwidth consumption can be astronomical. Make sure your podcast is hosted with a reliable server that can handle huge bandwidth spikes. Most cheap hosting services will not work for this.
Tools for Podcasting
- http://www.podstrike.com – PodStrike! Podcast Manager and Podcast Hosting (FREE Account Available).
- http://www.podblaze.com – You can do the entire process for podcast creation & RSS feed creation (even for iTunes) at a web based service. Also has high traffic Podcast Directory
- http://blog.podblaze.com – Step by step instructions for recording and everything else required at these 6 podcast specific blogs.
- http://www.podblaze.com/podcasting-business-whitepaper.php – 20 Page Podcasting White Paper Explains All About Podcasting.
- http://www.podcastspot.com – complete podcast hosting service with unmetered bandwidth, unlimited storage, automatic media conversion, and much more!
- http://audacity.sourceforge.net/ – Audacity recording software for podcasting. Free and open source.
- http://www.Garageband.com for Macs
- http://www.podcastalley.com – Podcast directory.
- http://www.freshpodcasts.com – Podcast ping service.
- AP on Yahoo "Podcasting Easy for Everyone" Story by the Associated Press.
- http://www.feedvalidator.org – Verify that your RSS podcast feed is valid.
- http://www.teenpodcasters.com – A great example of a network, start or join a network such as this.
- http://del.icio.us – A social bookmarking tool with the ability to host podcast feeds.
- http://www.technorati.com – A tagging service that provides additional vibility
- http://blog.leveragedpromotion.com/public/blog/98977 – RSS, Syndication & Podcasting News & Tips Blog.
- http://www.podcastingnews.com Keep up to date on the latest news from the podcasting world.
- http://www.podcastalley.com Podcast Directory
- http://www.pingomatic.com This pinging service allows you to ping multiple directories all at 1 time. This is not specific to podcasting and is more focused on blogging. It is a great service that is easy to use.