So you want to put on a podcast but you have no idea how to do it or even where to start? Afraid it might cost a lot to get started? Well, I will show you how to make a podcast for next to nothing. You might already have everything you need.
What You Need To Get Started…
- a computer
- a microphone
- recording/editing software
- a site to host it on
- something interesting/entertaining to talk about
Yep, that’s it. Let’s get started.
Most of us already have a computer. In fact, you are probably reading this article on a computer right now and don’t even know it. Okay, you probably do know it. (That’s my lame attempt at humor. There will probably be a few more sprinkled in here throughout the rest of the article. See if you can find them all.) Anyway, back to computers, I have a basic $400 PC from Walmart. Nothing special. It worked fine for my podcast, The Moped Jones Drunken Podcast, which ran from March 2013 through October 2013.
If you are one of the chosen few that are lucky enough to have a Mac, you most likely have a microphone already built in. Two birds, one stone. What we would do is record (and edit) the podcast on my girlfriend’s ancient Mac, then upload it to my much newer/faster PC.
If you don’t have a Mac you will need to purchase a microphone. How much you spend on a microphone is dependent on how great you want it to sound. If you are just having fun then I wouldn’t spend more than $25 on a mic. If this is something you plan to take seriously then here are some pricier options for you. When you are starting out, I would recommend something inexpensive. As your podcast starts to grow you can always upgrade.
You will need software to record and edit your podcast. Lucky for you there is a free software called Audacity that does both. We used it for our podcast and I had no complaints whatsoever. It’s easy to use, and did I mention free? Oh, I did? This is a fantastic tool for new podcasters. I do recommend familiarizing yourself with the controls before diving in and recording your podcast.
Podcast is done, where do you post it? If you have a website I would just upload it and host it from there. However, if you don’t have a website, there are many podcasting hosting sites available. Here are four pretty solid ones.
- The Podcast Host
- Podcast Revolution
These do cost money, which is why I recommend hosting them from your website if you already have one. I mean, you’re already paying for it. So why not get some use out of it?
Try to have a co-host, or even make it a threesome. The more people you have the less “dead air” there is. But having too many people can cause people talking over each other and get annoying quickly. I would say 2-3 people are ideal. Also pick people you have chemistry with. The Moped Jones Drunken Podcast was done with my best pal Evan and my girlfriend Kate. Kate was a great addition because she kept Evan and I from getting too ridiculous. She was the Robin to our Howard Stern. She had a nice way of reigning us back in before we got too offensive.
Make sure you put out regular content. One of the things that hurt us was just as we were starting to grow we were no longer able to put one out every week due to personal lives getting in the way. Evan got a new job and moved about an hour away + he was working a lot of hours. Then we tried every other week and couldn’t make that work either. Then we tried for once a month, but sadly it just wasn’t working out. Then we ended up just going on hiatus. This really hurt our numbers. So make sure you put content out regularly. If you say you are going to put out a podcast every Wednesday night, then you need to put out a podcast every Wednesday night. People sometimes plan their night around you. Don’t disappoint them. Meet your self imposed deadlines.
Lastly, make sure you talk about something interesting. Try to do it in an informative or entertaining way. Humor is always king, but you don’t always need to be hilarious. Being informative and interesting is just as good.
Find your niche and go for it!