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Podcasting & Radio

Working with Sponsors for your Podcast [Video Series]

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If you’re a podcaster, one of the ways you can make money with your content is by working with sponsors. Yet, if you simply wait for the sponsors to come to you, you might be waiting a long time! In this three-part video series, we’ll cover what sponsors are looking for, how to evaluate and work with sponsors, and how to set your prices and treat your podcast like a business.

Part One: The Three Things Every Sponsor Wants (and where to find them) – Straight from the Mouth of a Sponsor! with Mark Fuccio

[youtube]http://youtu.be/J6y7dcjd46g[/youtube]

Part Two: Evaluating Sponsors: The Courtship and Marriage with David Sparks

[youtube]http://youtu.be/F-96L7BKcEY[/youtube]

Part Three: Treating Your Podcast Like a Business and Setting Your Sponsorship Prices with Lou Mongello

[youtube]http://youtu.be/LQNiX01zFXw[/youtube]

If you love this video series, you can find even more information about working with sponsors for your podcast (or blog) by picking up our FREE 130-page ebook, The Ultimate Guide to Blog and Podcast Sponsorship.

23 Brilliant Bloggers Talk About Podcasting Gear

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Brilliant Bloggers is a bi-weekly series here at NMX where we look at the best posts from around the web all surrounding a specific topic. Every other week, we’ll feature a brilliant blogger, along with a huge list of more resources where you can learn about the topic. You can see more Brilliant Blogger posts or learn how to submit your link for an upcoming edition here.

This Week’s Topic: Podcasting Gear

I guess this week’s edition should be called “Brilliant Podcasters” instead of bloggers.

When it comes to just about anything in life, you’re only as good as your tools. Podcasting is no exception to the rule. If you use high-quality equipment, you’re going to have a better final product. Previously, we compiled a list of Brilliant Bloggers talking about starting a podcast, but today, we’re focusing on the specific gear you can buy to produce the best podcasts.

Podcasters, I hope you’ll also leave your advice in the comments!

Brilliant Blogger of the Week

daniel m clark The Best Podcasting Equipment by Daniel M. Clark

Today’s Brilliant Blogger is probably a familiar name to you if you’ve spent any time reading the NMX blog. Daniel is a regular contributor here, and when it comes to podcasting advice, he really knows his stuff. If you want a simple, great list of equipment to use for your podcast, his site is the place to find it! He goes over everything from hardware and software to WordPress plugins for podcasters on this list.

I also encourage you to check out all of Daniel’s contributions here on the NMX blog if you want to learn more about producing better podcasts. Definitely take a moment to follow him on Twitter at @qaqn after reading all of his great advice.

Even More Brilliant Advice:

  1. Adventures in Podcasting Equipment by Frei Casull (@freicasull)
  2. Best $200 Podcasting Condenser Mics by Matt McGlynn (@recordinghacks)
  3. Choosing the Right Equipment for Your Budget by David Doucette (@residedavid)
  4. Don’t Forget about Shotguns as Podcasting Microphones by Brian Schwartz (@bschwartz)
  5. How I Produce My Podcast by Trent Dyrsmid (@TrentDyrsmid)
  6. How to Start a Podcast – The Gear and Software Needed to Produce Your Own Podcast by Ray Ortega (@podcasthelper)
  7. How to Start a Successful Podcast on a $50 Budget by Jonathan Taylor (@BIBPodcast)
  8. Microphone And Mixer Suggestions For Podcasting And Low-Power Radio by Michael W. Dean (@FreedomFeens)
  9. Microphone Reviews for Podcasting and Video Marketing by Colette Mason (@colettemason)
  10. My Podcasting Gear and the Ms. Ileane Speaks Podcast is Now on iTunes by Ileane Smith (@Ileane)
  11. My Podcasting Gear, Setup, and Process – Lean Blog Podcast by Mark Graban (@MarkGraban)
  12. My Podcasting Equipment by Dan Blank (@DanBlank)
  13. Podcast 101: Session 1: The Basic Gear by Matt Cohen (@cameltoad)
  14. Podcast Equipment by Cliff Ravenscraft (@gspn)
  15. Podcasting Equipment by Ben Curry (@BadDice_Podcast)
  16. Podcasting Equipment: Does size really matter? – Part 1 and Part 2 by Dan Lyons
  17. Podcast Equipment Jim Uses by Jim Harold (@ParanormalPdcst)
  18. Quite Possibly the Best Starter Microphone For Podcasters by David Jackson (@learntopodcast)
  19. Solid Option for Portable Podcasting: iRig Mic and iRig Recorder for iOS by Tris Hussey (@trishussey)
  20. Starting A Podcast: The Best Recording Equipment & Platforms You Should Use by James Bruce (@w0lfiesmith)
  21. The Top Five Most Affordable Podcasting Microphones by Briley Kenney (@BrileyK)
  22. What is the Best USB Microphone for Podcasting? by Jon Buscall (@jonbuscall)

Did I miss your post or a post by someone you know about podcasting gear? Unintentional! Help me out by leaving a comment below with the link.

Next Brilliant Blogger Topic: Media Kits

I’d love to include a link to your post in our next installment– and if you head to the Brilliant Bloggers Schedule, you can see even more upcoming posts. We all have something to learn from one another, so please don’t be shy! Head to the schedule today to learn how to submit your post so I won’t miss it.

Three Steps To The Art Of The Tease

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Photo Credit: Tiom

When you want your listeners to stick around and listen to what you have to say, you need to give them a compelling reason.Your listener needs to anticipate what is to come later in the show. You need to excite them. You need to tease them.

Anticipation is a key feature to storytelling. Your story should build just like a good plot builds in a movie. You need to make your audience anticipate the content that is on the way.

Your story is similar to a vacation you are planning to take. The fantastic anticipation for the trip is almost as pleasurable as the trip itself. You can’t wait for it to arrive. You want your listener to feel the same way about your story.

When your listener can’t wait for the story to arrive, you have created some great content with a powerful tease. Your listeners will get more enjoyment from your show when they get the tease payoff more often. The pleasure of the “oh wow” factor will be increased. The joy of anticipation will keep your audience coming back for more.

There are three steps to creating an effective tease.

1. Intrigue me.

When you promote content that is coming up later in the show, you must give your audience an intriguing reason to stick around. It isn’t enough to simply say, “A great story about this weekend is coming up.” Few will stick around for the payoff. The tease lacks stickiness. It doesn’t hook the listener.

A creative tease produces anticipation. Instead, use something like, “You’re never gonna believe what I found in the attic this past weekend. My world is about to take a wild turn.” With that statement, your imagination begins to work.

What could it be? A wasp nest? An antique? A structural problem with the house? Imagination is the magic of a creative tease. Stir the imagination of your audience to truly engage them with your content.

When possible, intrigue by incorporating the listeners world. “This weekend, I discovered a way to save $100 a month on my grocery bill by changing one thing in the way we shop. I’ll tell you how you can do it too.” It answers “what’s in it for me” for your listener.

2. Give them 80%.

To create an effective tease, give your listener 80% of the story while leaving out the most important 20%. It is similar to giving the setup for a joke without providing the punchline. Lead your listener right up to the line, but make them wait to step over.

The key to an effective tease is to withhold the most important 20%. Let’s use our previous example of the attic weekend. I could say, “You’re not gonna believe it, but I found a $25,000 antique painting in the attic this weekend. I’ll tell you what’s on it coming up.”

This is a perfect example of withholding the wrong 20%. Who cares who is on it. If it’s worth $25,000, it could be a painting of the sky. It wouldn’t matter to me. I’d only be asking where I could sell it.

Twenty-five thousand dollars is the most exciting piece of information in the entire story. That is the piece that I need to withhold to create some excitement. To properly tease, I need to say, “In the attic this weekend, I found an antique painting of Napoleon. You’re never gonna believe how much it is worth.” You are more likely to stick around to see if I can retire on my winnings when I set it up in this fashion.

3. Make it impossible to search online.

You want your listener to keep listening for the payoff to your set up. If I can simply search on Google for the answer to your tease, there is no reason to keep listening. I can just look it up and be done with it.

You need to get creative to make your tease unsearchable.

Let’s say I have a story about Joe Celebrity getting drunk at High Profile Bar in Las Vegas over the weekend where he got arrested for assault. I could say, “Another movie star got arrested this weekend after he got in a fight with a customer at High Profile Bar in Las Vegas. I’ll tell you who it is coming up.”

Celebrity name is part of the correct 20% I’m withholding. However, I can look this story up on Google in a heartbeat. If I search “Arrest High Profile Bar Las Vegas” the chances are good that I will find the story in the first few search results. The tease isn’t effective. It is too easy to search.

To make the tease more powerful, make it impossible to search. “Another bar fight over the weekend landed another celebrity in jail. The story is coming up.” This tease makes it much more difficult to search. If you entered “celebrity bar fight weekend” in Google, 70 million results show up. It will be much easier to wait for my payoff than to begin searching 70 million Google entries.

The three steps to powerful teases will help you begin to engage your audience on the way to building powerful relationships. Use the three steps to entice people to listen to the episode. Then, use them again during the introduction of the show to get listeners to enjoy the entire recording.

You’ve worked hard to create your content. A lot of effort has been exerted on your part while writing and recording your show. Make your content intriguing by using these three steps to intrigue your audience.

When you use the art of the tease, your listeners will spend more time with your show. The increased frequency of the tease payoffs will help your audience enjoy your content more. When your show is more entertaining, it becomes more engaging. When you truly engage your audience with your content, you can begin building powerful relationships. That’s where trust and influence with your listener begins.

Um… Er… Ah… 7 Speech Tips for Podcasters

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So, um, you know, there’s something that tends to worry new podcasters and even sometimes fluster experienced talkers. It has to do with, you know, effective speech and uh, verbal crutches. There are, ah, um, a lot of ways that a podcaster… okay, I can’t keep this up. Even typing “um” is driving me crazy.

Here’s the thing. You speak the way you speak. When you’re podcasting, you have a choice: you can speak in your own natural way, or you can try to alter your speech—if necessary—to remove verbal crutches and filler words. Heck, maybe your natural way of speaking makes you sound like Brian Williams or Katie Couric.

Brian Williams

Hasn’t said “um” since 1981. Image source

If your voice isn’t silky smooth and free of verbal hiccups, maybe a few things I’ve learned will be helpful. Oh, I’m not perfect. I still drop an “ah” on my listeners or a “you know” here and there. Still though, I’m ah, you know, a lot better than I used to be. Try on these seven tips for eliminating verbal fillers. To get started, you need to have a baseline—a measure of your speech patterns. That means you need to…

#1. Really Pay Attention

Although you can certainly go back and listen to past recordings you’ve made and pick apart your speech patterns, nothing beats paying attention to what you’re saying as you’re saying it. This is tricky because it requires you to do three things simultaneously: talk, think in the moment, and think about what you’re going to say next. The goal with Really Paying Attention isn’t so much to change your speech patterns but to recognize your speech patterns. Change comes later, when you decide perhaps to…

#2. Slow Down

The best advice I ever got for eliminating filler words from your speech is to sloooooooow dowwwwwwwn. Filler words can creep in when your mouth and brain aren’t moving at the same speed. In my experience it happens because my mouth can’t keep up with my brain. As I’m speaking, I’m sometimes on the next train of thought before my mouth has finished getting off the first. For others, it might be the opposite: you finish speaking your thought before you line up exactly what you want to say next, so you fill that gap between thoughts with an “um.”

Slowing down your speech when your brain races ahead can force you to slow your thinking down-which is not as bad as it sounds. You’ll trip over fewer words, use fewer fillers, and sound generally more coherent. Slowing down your speech when you’re having trouble figuring out what to say next can help you make that transition without needing filler. You’re buying yourself a little bit of time to get where you need to go.

#3. Learn to Love Silence

You know what’s better than saying “um”? Nothing. Literally, nothing—silence. Try it. Press record, and start talking. Make a concerted effort to simply stop talking instead of saying “um” or “uh.” This exercise doesn’t have to happen while you’re recording a show, but give it a shot under the same circumstances.

Be careful not to overdo it. I recorded a show shortly after trying this technique out, and later realized I had a 20 second pause in the recording. I was slowing down, I was using silence rather than fillers…and wow, was it bad. I had gaps in there you could drive the Batmobile through. Pausing for a breath, pausing for a moment, that’s fine. If your pauses go on for longer than it would take to say “um,” then you have a whole new thing to worry about-kinda like if you took up drinking to help you quit doing drugs.

Stare at this for 20 seconds and tell me it doesn’t feel like an eternity.

#4. Have Confidence in What You’re Saying

If you have no confidence in what goes into your mouth, you shouldn’t stick it in there. Same with what comes out. If you’re lacking confidence in what you’re saying, it might be better left unsaid. Sometimes though, we like to “think out loud” and come up with theories, concepts or ideas on the fly…while sitting behind a live microphone and device that records every noise we make. This is not necessarily a bad thing—a lot of really great material has been born of improv. The trick is to realize that even improv takes practice. With practice comes comes confidence. With confidence comes the elimination of the dreaded filler words.

#5. Talk With Your Hands

You don’t need to start conducting an invisible orchestra, but gesticulating while you’re speaking can be a great help. According to studies that I made up for this article, talking with your hands can help you cut down on filler words by up to 37.67%. Gesturing while you’re talking invests you in what you’re talking about. Have you ever spoken with someone who talks with their hands? Do they ever seem like they’re unconfident about what they’re saying? Gesturing invests you in your subject which makes you more confident which improves your speech.

Talking with your hands

Pictured: someone not saying “um” Image source

#6. Embrace the Fillers

Wait, what? No, don’t embrace the fillers that we’re trying to eliminate, but embrace a method of using them for good instead of evil. This might be a hard one to explain in print, but here goes. Voice modulation and inflection can help tell a story, and using interesting inflections—even on filler—can be entertaining or can help drive a point. This is something I’ve noticed a few comedians do when telling certain types of jokes. The premise gets set up, then there’s a protracted “ahhhhhhh” with a hint of a chuckle in it, then BAM, punchline.

There can be a lot of personality in an “um” or ” you know,” but only if you really pay attention to how you’re using the fillers.

#7. No, Really, Embrace the Fillers

Having said all of this about eliminating these kinds of verbal crutches, it’s important to note that they’re not all bad. When I was first getting started, I spent hours editing out all the fillers—some podcasters still do. It’s not necessary. Yes, some speakers are worse than others. If you have an “um” in every sentence you speak, if you begin every thought with “ah,” that’s pretty bad. But these fillers are natural to all of us, and we’re pretty good at filtering them out in our everyday conversations. When we’re listening to people with authority, we expect less filler. Broadcasters and podcasters fall under that category.

Daniel M. Clark

The face of authority. Move over, Brian Williams.

Take stock of your verbal fillers and be honest with yourself: do you use these crutches infrequently enough to let them slide, or do you need to work on them?

Featured Image Credit

Five Questions with C.C. Chapman – Interview with Cliff Ravenscraft – BlogWorld TV

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C.C. Chapman will be at BlogWorld & New Media Expo signing his book, Content Rules.

Today, C.C. Chapman is our featured “Five Questions with” guest in the latest episode of BlogWorld TV. We’ll find out what C.C. is looking forward to at BlogWorld & New Media Expo New York (he’ll be signing his book, Content Rules, there!) and his plans to visit Book Expo America (BEA), which is co-located with BlogWorld.

Cliff Ravenscraft

Cliff Ravenscraft talks about putting together the Podcasting Track at BlogWorld & New Media Expo

In this installment of BlogWorld TV, Jeffrey also talks with Cliff Ravenscraft about his involvement in BlogWorld & New Media Expo, his revamp of the podcasting track, and the new podcast he is producing for BlogWorld, called The Podcast Report. Finally, we’ll hear from Rick Calvert (CEO, BlogWorld & New Media Expo) and Scott Monty (Head of Social Media for Ford). All within this BlogWorld TV episode.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=klVWdjFcY0A[/youtube]

 

 

21 Brilliant Bloggers Talk About Starting a Podcast

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Brilliant Bloggers is a weekly series here at BlogWorld where we look at the best posts from around the web all surrounding a specific topic. Every week, we’ll feature three of the most brilliant bloggers out there, along with a huge list of more resources where you can learn about the topic. You can see more Brilliant Blogger posts or learn how to submit your link for an upcoming edition here.

This Week’s Topic: Starting a Podcast

Every week, BlogWorld’s fantastic podcast track leader, Cliff Ravenscraft, presents The Podcast Report right here on the BlogWorld blog. He covers tons of different podcasting topics, but today I wanted to do something a little different and give everyone a comprehensive list of links where you can find information about starting a podcast, even if you’ve never done this before. Lots of bloggers can benefit from having a podcast, but it can be daunting to get started. These brilliant bloggers (most of them podcasters themselves) have some great advice to help you join the podcasting ranks.

(I recommend you start with this podcasting beginner’s guide right here on the BlogWorld blog from Daniel Clark!)

Brilliant Blogger of the Week:

Learn How to Podcast by Cliff Ravenscraft

Cliff is a no-brainer as our brilliant blogger of the week. He might be a podcaster first and foremost, but he’s a force to be reckoned with in all forms of content creation, from podcasting to video creation to blogging. On his “learn how to podcast” page, you’ll find an AMAZING seven-part video series, wrapped up with an 8th Q&A video. This series teaches you absolutely everything you need to know about gettings started as a podcaster, even if you have no experience. His videos cover equipment, setting up and RSS feed, and more. You seriously can’t find a better all-in-one guide to getting started than Cliff’s resource, and his entire Podcast Answer Man site is something you’ll want to check out to learn more about podcasting. You can also follow Cliff on Twitter at @GSPN.

Even More Brilliant Advice:

Ewan Spence has also written some wonderful podcasting tips right here on the BlogWorld blog!

Did I miss your post or a post by someone you know about starting a podcast? Unintentional! Help me out by leaving a comment below with the link.

Next Week’s Topic: Storytelling

I’d love to include a link to your post next week – and if you head to the Brilliant Bloggers Schedule, you can see even more upcoming posts. We all have something to learn from one another, so please don’t be shy! Head to the schedule today to learn how to submit your post so I won’t miss it.

Tamara Walker Talks Podcasting for Parent Bloggers

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Session: Podcasting for Parent Bloggers
Speaker: Tamara Walker

As I prepare to head off to BlogWorld LA in a few days, I’m looking forward to the whole experience of attending and speaking at my first BlogWorld & New Media Expo! After having wanted to attend in the past but not being able to, I jumped at the chance to go when I was asked to be a speaker on the Type A Parent Track this year at BlogWorld LA. I’m sure it will be a time of intense learning, lots of networking, and crazy fun!

In my session, I will be sharing tips with other parent bloggers on how to get started in the exciting world of internet radio and podcasting. Podcasting and internet radio are incredibly powerful tools to further your blog’s reach and value and can increase your monetization opportunities.

In this session, we’ll discuss how to start a podcast, where to broadcast, how to develop a theme and topics, get regular guests and how to market your podcast to build an audience. I promise to pack as much valuable information and helpful tips into our short hour together and will do my best to answer everyone’s questions!

Here’s a little video I made about the Podcasting for Parent Bloggers session and BlogWorld LA:

My co-speaker for this session was Maria Bailey of MomTalkRadio.com and I was thrilled to be sharing the session with her when we were asked to speak together. Unfortunately, Maria has had a scheduling conflict arise and will be unable to attend BlogWorld LA after all (We will miss you, Maria!!!). My presentation will be incorporating some of her research and contributions into the session so you will still get the benefit of some of Maria’s podcasting expertise.

I’m so excited to be attending BlogWorld LA and hope to meet all of you! Come to my session and let’s talk! If you miss my session, find me in the hallway and say Hi! See you there!

Watch more videos and see why other speakers are attending BlogWorld LA. See all Speakers here.

Learn more about BlogWorld LA and register Here!

A Beginner’s Guide to Podcasting Basics

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You have never produced a podcast. You may have heard or seen an episode or two, but you’re not a regular consumer of podcasts. Those are the two assumptions that this article is going to make, dear reader. This is the absolute, rock bottom “hey, I heard about this thing called podcasting” beginner’s guide to podcasting basics. If you’ve heard the term and are curious about its meaning, you’re in the right place!

If that description fits you and you have any questions after reading this guide, please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments. If you’re a podcasting pro, feel free to jump in with answers or post some tips of your own! Alright then, let’s begin at the beginning. What’s a podcast?

A podcast is a web-based series of audio or video content. Episodes are released chronologically and may be seen or heard in a podcatcher* or on a website. Think of it like web-based television or radio: if your favorite radio show were web-based, it would be a podcast. One advantage that web-based podcasts have over their TV or radio counterparts is the ability to archive. Podcasts are typically archived for weeks, sometimes months, sometimes years. Another advantage is the episode show notes**. The internet is great at blending mediums – text, audio and video.

Podcasts can be produced very inexpensively by anyone with a computer and a microphone.

They are as varied as they are plentiful. Many audio podcasts are live off-the-cuff talk shows; many others are scripted and sound a lot like an audiobook. Stand-up comedians and at least one prominent movie director have made a splash releasing live sets. Video podcasts abound on topics ranging from technology to news to family and raising kids – and much, much more.

* Podcatcher: You are, statistically, probably familiar with iTunes. That’s a podcatcher. Any program or application that facilitates the downloading of episodes (either through a directory or by manually providing an RSS feed) can be called a podcatcher. There are dozens to choose from on every platform.

** Show notes: Podcasters often write a few paragraphs of text and/or provide a list of links about what was talked about on the episode. These show notes look rather like a blog post, and in fact, for podcasters that work with WordPress (or similar), that’s exactly what they are.

History

Serialized audio has been available online almost for as long as there has been a line to be on. Video would come later as storage and bandwidth costs dropped. The roots go back to the 1980’s, but what we think of as modern podcasting really came about in the early 1990’s with things like Internet Talk Radio, and in the early 2000’s with Rob & Dana Greenlee’s WebTalk Radio. In the early 2000’s, enclosures were developed for RSS that allowed for easy distribution of episodes.

The term podcast was coined in 2004, and despite efforts to go with a different word (webcast, netcast), that’s the one that stuck. Apple added support for podcasts in iTunes 4.9 in 2005, and that was the kick that really sent podcasting on the trajectory that it finds itself on today.

A Few Suggestions: As the Audience

  • Shows live and die by the feedback that you leave in the various directories – especially iTunes. If you’ve got about 90 seconds, that’s all it takes to leave a star rating and a short comment.
  • Most podcasts are available in iTunes, but that’s not the only place to find great shows. A Google search for “podcast directory” will yield a long list of places to check out.
  • If a podcaster lists contact information, he or she would like you to contact them. Reach out, say hello, offer comments or opinions about the show.
  • Name a topic and I’ll bet there’s someone out there doing a podcast about it. Look around, spend some time in the directories and you’re likely to find even the most esoteric subject. If you can’t find a show about a topic you’re really interested in… do it yourself!

Thinking about making the transition from listener to producer? I’ve got you covered.

A Few Suggestions: As a Podcaster

  • You’re nothing without your audience. Take the time, make the effort to get feedback from them.
  • It’s not hard, technologically, to look or sound like a pro. Judicious use of music or graphics, checking audio levels, making sure your lighting and camera angles are correct… these things are worth doing right.
  • I just told your audience to contact you with comments and opinions. Be nice 😉

Are We Still Podcasters?

Author:

I was speaking with Daniel J. Lewis from The Audacity to Podcast recently about what we do as podcasters. Daniel—not me, the other one—has been doing his shows on UStream. Daniel—me, not the other one—tried that but found that Mixlr was the better solution for live shows right now. Other podcasters have been utilizing UStream and Mixlr, as well as other streaming tools, for years. This begs the question‚

Are we still podcasters?

If we’re going by the generally accepted definition of a podcaster, maybe not. According to Wikipedia, a podcast is a “non-streamed webcast“. Episodes are pre-recorded and made available for download to a listener’s device, to be listened to offline. They may also be played on-demand on a podcaster’s website or in iTunes, but the key element here is that the episodes must be pre-recorded. That’s what makes a podcast a podcast.

If we’re doing live shows which we then make available as podcasts later on, what are we doing? You wouldn’t say that a morning radio host who makes his shows available on his website is podcasting. He’s broadcasting and making recordings of those broadcasts available as podcasts. Are we not doing the same?

We’ve fought against the perception of the word “podcast” for years. People who aren’t familiar with podcasting sometimes think that an iPod is required. They sometimes believe that podcasts aren’t meant for them because they have not, historially, been mainstream or widely adopted. Many simply don’t know what a podcast is and are turned off by the word because it’s unfamiliar. We all know what radio is. We all know what television is. Those words make sense to everyone. “Podcast” doesn’t share that luxury.

I’ve started a little experiment. I’ve been telling people that I’m an internet broadcaster. It’s a mouthful, but people get it. When they ask me what kind of show I do, I’m able to tell them and they’re able to understand because they make a connection between radio broadcasts and internet broadcasts.

What we do is not “online radio” despite what a major internet broadcasting service bills itself as. Radio is a descrete technology that has as much to do with the internet as it does with television—nothing at all.

I also dislike the terms “webcast” and “netcast“. Like “podcast”, those words are not used by the average person on the street. While they do make sense, “broadcast” is a word that nobody needs to actively recall a definition for. We don’t say radiocast or televisioncast when talking about those mediums. Broadcasters work in radio and televsion. There’s no reason broadcasters can’t work online.

  • “I’m a radio broadcaster. I’m a radio talk show host.”
  • “I’m a television broadcaster. I’m a television talk show host.”
  • “I’m an internet broadcaster. I’m an internet talk show host.”

Makes sense to me. What do you think? Are you protective of the word “podcast” or “podcaster”? Do you think you would make a change?

The Lost Podcasting Episodes

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It’s June 26th as I write this, and last night I recorded an episode of Be a Better Podcaster, my series about podcasting. It was a good episode. I fielded a question about gathering listener statistics and talked about simultaneously broadcasting the show on Ustream. It was about 20 minutes long and an episode that I considered a success.

You’ll never hear it.

Why, you ask? Well, here’s the thing. I was broadcasting to Ustream for only the second time ever. The first time, which you can hear in a recent episode of Yet Another Weight Loss Show, was successful. With only a minor glitch, easily ironed out, I figured I was all set for doing the next show. I thought for sure that the Ustream bit was in the bag. It wasn’t.

I had planned on doing the show earlier in the evening last night, but I kept putting it off because I got busy doing other things—mostly revolving around getting my webcam to work in widescreen like it’s supposed to—and it was 2am before I started the broadcast. Strike one. I was tired.

I had planned on scripting the show beforehand. Now, I never fully script anything, but I like to have an outline of bullet points ready. I didn’t. Strike two.

My To-Do list has had “create a checklist” on it for months. Create a checklist for show production. Create a checklist for post-production. Create a checklist for what needs to happen before pushing the Broadcast button in Ustream Producer. Care to guess what I didn’t do before last night? Yeah, strike three, and I’m outta here.

I did push the Broadcast button, I did do the show, and I did think it was a good one… until I listened to the playback later. In this show, I use a music bed—a series of songs that play quietly under my voice. There are benefits to this that I’ll cover in a future article, but the important thing here is that the music bed was playing just fine through my headphones and was recorded to the podcast just fine.

When I played it back later, the music bed was missing. The problem is that the output I was hearing in my headphones was not the output that was being sent back to the computer for Ustream Broadcaster to use. The output to the computer had all the elements of my audio except the music bed.

Sounds like it’s not a big deal, right? Tons of shows don’t use a music bed—most of mine don’t. Unfortunately, I mentioned it a few times in the show. During more than a couple of segments, I sounded like a raving lunatic who was hearing strange music in his head, and while I won’t say that’s never happened (thanks, J?§germeister!) I can say that it wasn’t happening last night.

I think there are two takeaways from this. First, of course, I needed to plan better. I’ll remember this experience and plan things out better in the future. The second takeaway is the lesson that sometimes you do things that just don’t work out and you have to live with it. I have three episodes between my various shows that have had to be completely scrapped; this is just the latest example. The first time it happened, I was devastated. The second time, annoyed. This time? Still annoyed, but I’ve accepted that this is going to happen every now and then. Hopefully it’ll be extremely rare. But I’ll always have the lost episodes to look back on and lament.

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