Do you have something to say? Is there a topic that isn't being talked about that you think deserves more attention? Should you start a podcast?
The answer is yes.
But how the heck do you do it?
Well, as you'll see below, I don't have all of the answers. I have made a ton of mistakes since starting my show two years ago. And because of that trial and error, error, error cycle I've gone through... I do have some tips to offer that can help you hit the ground running.
So if the thought of starting a podcast has entered your brain, even for a second, you're probably going to get a kick out of this email I sent to someone who reached out to me with questions about starting a show of their own.
Email to a future podcaster:
"Yo [persons name]!
Hope things are well my man.
All good questions. Let's see if I can help.
1) You should definitely start small. Maybe even a recording with an assistant coach or personal friend. It doesn't have to be published. But, you have to find out if this is right for you. I learned quickly that this is not easy and it is not rewarding.
When it comes time to approach any guest, big or small, you want it to be quick and easy. Here is an example from a recent invitation I sent:
My name is John Pranjic. I host the 3four3 Podcast.
[Insert club/business/team name here] has a great story that more people need to hear. Which is why I am interested in having [persons name] on the show.
If [persons name] is interested in joining me for an episode, please reach out to me and we can discuss more details and schedule something.
Thank you for your time and good luck as you continue to build!"
2) Personally, I have enjoyed Soundcloud the best. For technical reasons, Gary and I have chosen not to use it, but if it were my choice, that's where I would still be. Once you've uploaded an episode to Soundcloud, it can then be distributed to iTunes or Stitcher or other podcasting hubs. This is done via the RSS feed. Basically, you'll have a home base where you upload and store your episodes and iTunes (or others) will just pull the information. You will never physically upload to iTunes or change anything there.
3) Pre-interviews can be done in a couple of different ways...
- When I first started doing this I would email the guest a TON of questions beforehand. This served two purposes: helped me prepare and helped them prepare. What I noticed is that no one gave a shit about the questions I emailed. So, I stopped doing that. I've now come up with a list of standard questions that I tend to ask in every interview and if a guest requests information prior to recording I will send that document to them. I now compile questions/topics/thoughts/links in Google Docs for each interview that help me prepare, but the guests never see that.
- Just before you start recording, or maybe in a phone call days or weeks leading up to the episode, you can have a short conversation and brief them about topics you'd like to touch on. One thing I always like to ask is, "Is anything is off-limits?" Most of my guests are bold, and they don't give a fuck, so it's no holds barred. I have had several guests request to stay away from certain topics, though. (I've noticed that I can dance around the topic... and if I get them close enough... they'll dive in)
4) Equipment is easy at first.
- Use your iPhone or smartphone to record a few short topics. Again, this is making sure you're cut out for it. No sense in investing in equipment if you're going to be selling it on Craigslist a few months later.
- Once you get to the next level, do a quick google search for USB microphones. I ended up with an Audio Technica ATR 2100.
- I record and edit in Garageband on my MacBook Pro.
- I conduct all of my interviews on Skype, and use a third party app called Call Recorder. That will automatically create a file that can be dropped in Garageband for editing.
I think that's enough to get you started. Learning and mistakes are part of the fun! I can't tell you all of the secrets :)"
Hopefully, this little bit of information helps you. If you have more questions, leave a comment below and I'll answer it where everyone else can see.