Podcasting in 2021

What is a Podcast?

A podcast is a spoken word show, that can be a single episode or part of a larger series, that you can download and listen to in your own time.

Podcasts are similar to radio programmes, but unlike traditional radio, the podcast programme is available to download or stream through the medium of the internet.

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What is the format of a Podcast?

The wonderful and liberating thing about Podcasts is that they do not follow a set format, length or style.

Yes, you should use an intro, for example, intro music and perhaps a voice-over on the intro to introduce yourself and the topic of your podcast, however, once you have set the stage, what you discuss, how you discuss it and for how long is completely up to you. This is your show and you are the host.

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Where did Podcasts come from?

It is believed that the first Podcast was born in October 2003, Matt Schichter launched his weekly chat show The BackStage Pass. According to a wiki page source, this is commonly believed to be the first podcast to be published online.

From there, with the launch of iTunes 4.9 by Apple in 2005, the distribution of audio-only spoken words file started to grow with many traditional radio stations and news sites starting to place recordings of their shows on their own websites and making the audio files available through these new and growing streaming platforms. 

You can see how the term “Podcast” was born, as it is a combination of the words iPod and Broadcast.

Of course, as the internet grew in the early 2000s and microphone and computer equipment became more affordable to the average consumer, exponential growth in individuals producing Podcasts occurred. 

Suddenly, any individual with a microphone, recording device and access to the internet could record a “radio show like” program in their niche or chosen topic, put in online and have it listened to by millions.

With this sore in demand, it became very clear that podcasting was a very efficient way to communicate with the public.

Like-minded people would be attracted to podcasts on their chosen topic, companies started creating podcasts to promote their brand image and news, comedians started using podcasts to get their voices heard, major news and radio show networks started making their traditional radio broadcasts available in podcast forms so individuals could download and listen to their shows in their own time. The list and use of the Podcast format is endless.

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Why should I start a Podcast?

A podcast, just like a blog, short film or other content type is a powerful tool to promote your message or brand. 

By starting a podcast you can reach your audience and speak directly to them. If your podcast is good, entertaining or informative, this audience should return to listen and grow into regular listeners. 

The key advantage of a podcast is that it allows you to build authority in your industry. Your audience can literally hear your voice and decide for themselves if you are authentic and know your subject or just “winging it”. 

The big advantage of a Podcast is that it is relatively cheap to get started in and can reach a massive audience. You do not need access to an expensive radio station or a broadcast licence.

To get started in podcasting you need:

1 – An Idea

2 – Basic Recording Equipment

If you are reading this on your PC or phone, then you already have this.

3 – An ability to form your ideas into a way that you can talk about and communicate to the public.

The popularity of Podcasts is still soaring and it is a medium that is not going away. If it is a content type that attracts you, then go for it and start one. 

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Can I start a podcast with just an iPhone or an Android phone?

Yes. Your smartphone will have an inbuilt microphone and using a basic recording app you can record your first podcast.

If you feel podcasts are the way forward for you and you want to do this more professionally consider upgrading your kit to a standalone microphone and consider your recording environment to get the best audio quality. 

Using just an iPhone or Phone is great for a start as it typically means that you can start recording today and start finding your voice. 

You can then post your podcast for free to podcast sites to start testing your audience. A great place to start is Soundcloud.  

Here is how you submit your podcast to Soundcloud. Details on Podcasting advice is fifth on their creator guide. 

Where can I find music for Podcast?

Using royalty-free music is a great option to get good music for your podcast. Here are the top best sources of free music for Podcasts.

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Louise Byrne Music

Good for Free Podcast Music Because:

✔️ Free music with attribution.

✔️ All free music is of high quality and offered in MP3 and WAV format.

✔️ A full commercial licence is issued with an invoice to prove you can use the music legally.

✔️ Tracks can be trimmed to fit your Podcast length, including intros and outros.

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Bensound

Good for Free Podcast Music Because:

✔️ Free music with attribution.

✔️ Good selection and variety of tracks.

✔️ Easy to navigate website with instant music downloads.

Where can I find a voice over for a Podcast?

Getting someone else with a professional voice to create a voice-over and introduce your podcast can really make your podcast sound professional.

The best place to find professional voice over actors who can provide you with a custom intro and high-quality audio file is on fiver.com

For less than $20 you can find a voice-over actor you like and get your custom introduction. 

Disclaimer: This blog is intended as a guide only for educational and informational purposes. It is not legal advice. The content contained in this article is not legal advice or a legal opinion on any specific matter or matters.

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