Best practices

Podcasting like a pro! (Part 1)

OK, so you’ve decided you’d like to create a podcast series. What next?

Once you’ve set up your blogging platform (I’m partial to WordPress which has great plugins for podcasts!), you’re ready to start creating content…

Let’s assume you are creating a podcast series for an organization – since a podcast series would logically be part of your company’s marketing strategy you must know exactly what you want to achieve by it. Your goal will be a deciding factor in driving the kind of content you will create.

Once you have a strategy in place it’s time to decide on a theme for your series and create a list of possible topics around that theme, and potential participants. It helps to nurture relationships with your participants, whether they be clients, partners, community influencers or industry leaders. I cannot emphasize enough how important your participant list is – your guest should be able to shed some light on the topic of your interview so look for people with the appropriate background. The process of communicating with your interviewees, agreeing on a topic, recording, editing and publishing can take some time, so do take that into consideration when you plan your publishing dates.

When contacting potential participants you should always have a suggested podcast topic in mind – take a look at that person’s blog or website, latest publishing etc. Gather ideas and suggest a topic or two that is ‘current’ for your participant. Often people will be more willing to participate if it ties in with their work or is top of mind for them.

Once a topic has been confirmed, do a little background work (look at blogs or recommended reading material) and create 4 or 5 relevant questions that ‘tell a story’. Always run those by your participant first and be flexible about it. If you’re really stuck or don’t have enough of a background on the topic you could ask your participant to suggest questions for the podcast, afterall you’re not expected to be an expert on the topic! Once your questions have been finalized and approved by your guest then it’s time to book a recording session. I suggest GoToMeeting for recording but I’m sure there are dozens of other great tools (including free tools) that can produce quality recordings.

So to sum up, follow these 4 simple steps to produce a great podcast series:

  1. Decide on podcast series theme and some topics around that theme
  2. Carefully select podcast participants based on your list of topics
  3. Contact your participant and agree on a shortlist of podcast questions
  4. Book a recording date/time and make sure both you and the interviewee have the right software/hardware

Next week I will post part 2 of ‘Podcasting like a pro’ – in that post I will cover how to record, edit and publish your podcast for a professional result!

Until then!

UPDATE: Did you know we now have our own podcast channel sharing short and useful podcasts on various topics on elearning?

You can check it out here:

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