dare to take risks
I have stopped being a Radio Producer. But Why? For more than 25 years I was a Radio Producer, making live talk radio shows, and years of experience taught me what to look for in an interview, how to edit and make the show sound like, well a radio show.
But, BOOM! along came Podcasting - it's like radio, but it isn't and it's taken me a few years to re-adjust my listening ears to adapt to this new medium.
OUT goes the radio rule that says you must edit out every mistake. A bit like a craft beer that has sediment in ....? Podcast listeners expect the product to be a little rough at the edges, but something different to those sterile mass-produced Beers that the big boys make.
OUT goes the rule that you have to find the quietest place. Recently the most enjoyable Podcasts to put together has been one, recorded in a massive tropical rainstorm, in the end we had to take ALL the processing off so you could hear the interview and enjoy the rain.
OUT goes the warm up bit before an interview. When you naturally talk to somebody you find out stuff you didn't know, sometimes you put your foot in it and ask the wrong question - but that's the Podcast difference, they are all about doing something differently.
So dare to take risks with your next Podcast.
Here is a quick list of stuff you should consider before making your own Podcast.
1. Take a look around, see what your listener might be interested in. Create a real profile of someone who might listen to your Podcast. (Their sex, age, interests, family life)
2. Stay away from hard sell sales pitch, show passion and enthusiasm for what you are producing.
3. Make sure you stay up-to-date with your subject - be forward thinking, rather than backward.
4. Make do and mend - written a book? Take some the information from the book - turn it into a Podcast.
5. Who are your competitors - who is already out there doing the same thing? Are they better? Or are they worse? What are their strengths and weaknesses - de-construct their podcast against your own.
6. Episodes - need to be frequent - if you are creating longer-form work - that will take at least 4 times more longer to produce than the actual recording. An hour of recording will take 4-5 hours to put together from writing to publishing.
7. Be comfortable in your shoes. Choose material you know about, maybe work or something you have a genuine interest in. Decide on a format and stick to it. Brand the format so it has distinctive imaging (sound) and look - visualisation.
8. Plan and script - but make sure you sound natural and not sound like you are reading a script or have turned into a talking version of Wikipedia.
9. Substantiate - give credit and include links to your Podcast.
10. Offer something unique, that adds value in terms of entertainment, information or both.
Finally enjoy what you do. The process of making a Podcast with its creative and technical challenges is one of great accomplishment - so embrace and enjoy.