I have been podcasting since April of 2007, and I wanted to share my version of how to start a podcast. For purposes of this article, let’s say you’d like to start a pretty basic podcast. To start off, you’ll need access to a few items and services.
- You own Web site or podcast hosting
- A headset, or headphones and a microphone
- Topics of discussion
For beginners, a cheap headset will do, and you can one get for as little as about $10.00 USD (like the Cyber Acoustics Stereo Headset/Microphone). This was my second mic, and my first headset. If you want much better quality (and spend more money), you can buy podcasting kits that include a pro-grade microphone, a mixer, and some type of computer audio interface.
For recording software, you can’t go wrong with free (as in speech) Audacity. Audacity is an open-source audio recording/editing program. I used Audacity for numerous episodes of Apple Universe, and occasionally I’ll find a use for the program. (Editor’s note: For much more advanced recording and mixing than Audacity handles, try Kristal Audio Engine, a free program similar in functionality to Adobe Audition.)
Once you record and edit your podcast’s episodes, you need to get them out to the world. For publishing your podcast, you can use web space you currently have access to, or take advantage of one of the numerous free podcasting services. I started out with, and still use, MypodCast.com, a free podcast host. Their service provides you give you a home page, hosting for unlimited episodes, and an RSS feed for listeners to subscribe to. The only catch (which isn’t even so bad) is that MyPodcast will insert or append a short ad spot (somewhere around 30 seconds) at the beginning or end of each episode you publish.
Perhaps the most critical element of your podcast is the topic you discuss. With my podcast, I started out thinking I would talk about Apple news, which I still am. However, now Apple Universe is covering Apple rumors and events, and many people have been interviewed on my podcast. I stayed with one topic, but expanded the idea. If you have a topic, there is no limit on how wide you can extend it.
Podcasting is quite possibly the hottest media of today, and I hope this article convinces you to join the revolution.Head out and pick up your first microphone, and sign up on MyPodcast.com and start podcasting! There is no limit to where podcasting can take you.