Podcasting is a fantastic way to increase audience and customer engagement, and your company can produce a podcast for little-to-no cost. What's important to remember, however, is that creating a podcast isn't necessarily as simple as sitting down in front of a microphone and talking. There are a variety of things that go into making a podcast successful, including:
1. Audio Quality
Ensuring that you provide a podcast that has good audio quality is very important, and as such, you'll want to ensure that you have the right equipment necessary prior to recording. Some essential tools include a condenser microphone if possible, a pop guard to prevent plosives and sibilants, reliable recording software, quality headphones to monitor recording, and a quiet space in which to record, preferably insulated in order to reduce reverb off of hard surfaces.
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While you can go out and spend a ton of money to create the perfect recording studio for your podcasts, you can also get quality audio by improvising. For example, instead of purchasing a pop guard, form one out of a wire coat hanger and a pair of pantyhose. Likewise, you can place pillows and couch cushions around the walls of your recording space in order to reduce reverberation.
2. Write a Script or Outline
Some podcasters do better when they have a script, but using one can take away from the personal feel of a podcast. If you're someone who can read from a script and make it sound natural, by all means, write one and use it; however, if you're like most podcasters, you'll want to be off-the-cuff in your delivery. With that said, it's a good idea to at least have an outline in front of you with topics that you would like to discuss, and you should also mark down time notes on this outline that give you a cue to move on to the next topic when appropriate in order to give your podcast some life.
3. Invite Guests
One of the most engaging things you can do in a podcast is to include invited guests to either speak or have a conversation with you and, if applicable, callers. For trade publishers, guests could include authors, editors, publication experts, or others in the industry who have a unique story to tell. The addition of guests in your podcast will help to make it unique and something that helps turn listeners into subscribers.
4. Make It Free When Possible
While some podcasters charge money for the privilege of listening to streaming or previous episodes, you'll likely gain more of a following if you produce free content, especially initially. If your podcast is untested and doesn't have a large following or any true notoriety, it will be difficult to convince people to pay for something they are unfamiliar with. If you find that your publication absolutely has to charge in order to produce a podcast, consider offering individual episodes at low prices instead of subscriptions so that you can see which episodes and topics sell the most and then synthesize those topics in the future.