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What Does It Take to Start a Podcast — Dealing With the Technical Side of Things

BridTV Podcasting

Last time, we covered the things you should do before you start recording a podcast as a first-timer. However, settling on a theme for your show, picking a compelling name, and choosing the best format for your podcast is just scratching the surface. There are many more things to do before you’re ready to air your first episode! So today, we’ll be guiding you through the remaining steps toward launching a successful podcast! Here’s what else you’ll need to do:

Now let’s get straight to the matter at hand.

1. Get the Necessary Podcasting Equipment

It’s a well-known fact that every business endeavor requires some investment. And when it comes to podcasting, that initial fee entails getting all the tech needed to get started. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A microphone
  • Headphones (situational)
  • A pop filter (not mandatory, but invaluable for all professionals)
  • A camera (if you’re planning to do a video podcast)
  • Microphone suspension boom (not required, but makes your life easier)

After taking a look at this list, you’re probably thinking: “So all I really need is a microphone, right?” Well, that is true, but having all or most of these is incredibly helpful! And we’ll illustrate why once we get to each of these entries. 

Microphone

Now, unless you think to record a podcast on an imaginary or (god forbid) your computer’s integrated microphone, you will first need to buy one. After all, considering starting a podcast without a quality mic would be like trying to open a bakery without an oven. 

However, when shopping for one, you must make sure it’s a high-quality product, and there’s a good reason for that! Your audience might be able to disregard some issues with your show, but there is one they would never be able to — poor audio quality. After all, people will come to your show to listen to you speak. And if they can barely make out a word you’re saying, how do you expect them to stay?

Overall, don’t be frugal when choosing a microphone for your show — that’s the last product you want to be cutting costs on. And if you need help with selecting the best mic for a podcast, you’ll find plenty of product reviews online that can be a solid starting point!

Tip: Consider getting a USB microphone since they are much easier to maneuver around due to their lack of cables. 

Headphones

Headphones particularly come in handy if you decide to go with a co-hosted podcast format. They will help you hear your co-host better and will serve as noise-cancellation devices. Aside from that, if you ever decide to hold interviews on your show, you might need an excellent pair of headphones if you can’t meet the interviewee in-person. In such cases, you will likely have to talk to them over voice-chat programs like Skype.

So, as you can see, a pair of headphones can come a long way when podcasting.

Pop Filter

This item should not come as a surprise. After all, who likes those annoying explosive sounds of p’s and b’s? That’s right — no one. And irritating your audience is the last thing you want, right? 

Good. 

And don’t worry; you’ll be happy to hear that pop filters are pretty cheap, so definitely get one.

Camera

You will only need this device if you’re planning to make a video podcast, but it’s nonetheless worth mentioning. After all, getting your show on video sharing platforms like YouTube or creating your website and uploading there is something you should consider. That way, you would increase your reach and draw more people to your show.

So if you were to do that, you wouldn’t want yourself looking like a blurred, pixelated mess, would you? Well, neither would your audience.

So for the sake of both your and your viewers’ sanity, buy an HD camera, such as Logitech C922x or Logitech BRIO 4K. These should be fine choices to get you started.

Microphone Suspension Boom

Unless you want to work those arm muscles (you’re more likely to get cramps though), get yourself one of these bad boys. Not only is having a microphone boom a huge quality of life improvement for almost negligible cost, but it will also help prevent any accidents (such as your mic moving too close or too far in the middle of the show). That will drastically enhance your sound quality, which is what you should be striving for!

2. Find Suitable Recording and Editing Software

Unlike with gear, you shouldn’t feel bad for cutting costs on editing and recording software. After all, you have to do that somewhere, right?

Now, when it comes to the choices you have, there are many. Here are some solid ones to consider:

Audacity (PC/Mac)

This audio-editing application is entirely free and can meet the needs of most beginners. It has plenty of free tutorials online.

Adobe Audition (PC/Mac) 

Adobe Audition is one of the best premium audio-editing software choices out there. Many audio professionals all around the world use it (not just podcasters), and it offers many different features. This application might prove to offer much more than an average podcaster needs in terms of functionality, so it might not be worth it for the non-professionals out there. This software comes with a $20.99/month subscription fee.

GarageBand (iOS/Mac)

This app, unfortunately, is not available for Android and Windows users, but it is also an excellent free audio-editing software. Some claim that this one has a more user-friendly interface than audacity, so if you’re a Mac user, you should try both of these out and see which one suits you better.

Alitu (Web-based) 

Unlike the other entries on this list, Alitu is a web-based audio-editing app, but it does come at $28/month. However, you have the option of taking a 7-day free trial. So give it a shot and see if you deem it worth the cost!

All in all, your choice of editing software will depend on your budget and needs. You can always pick one of the free options first and change to a premium one as you gain experience and your audience grows. Alternatively, if you want to invest in premium quality, Adobe Audition or Alitu would probably be the best choice for you. But in the end, all of these programs fulfill the same role — the primary differences are in the number of features and interfaces. So you can’t go wrong regardless of what you pick!

Note: If you decide to shoot video podcasts, you will also need to get yourself a video editing software. You can find some quality options here, or, if you’re looking for a free version, here are some suggestions.

3. Take Care of Post-Production

Now that you’re all set with the gear and software you’ll need, it’s time to give you a few pointers regarding the post-production process.

First and foremost, let’s be real — your first capture is going to be bad. And that’s OK! That’s why this magical thing called editing exists. It is where you can take all of that filler, weak, or repetitive content and flush it down the toilet where it belongs.

Don’t let yourself get discouraged by a fluke or two… or a couple of dozen. Podcasting, just like most things in life, is a skill that you have to hone. So your first few editing sessions might seem like hell, but soon enough, you’ll get much better at both podcasting and editing your work! After all, you know what they say — repetition is the mother of learning, so just be persistent.

But what if you mess up at the midpoint of the show? How do I fix that? Again, no big deal — edit it out; don’t start all over. And last but not least, after you wrap up your first editing session, don’t forget to give yourself a pat on the back. We know it’s hard; you deserve it.

Now, we’re not here just to give you a motivational speech; it’s time for some concrete advice. Here are a few things that should be a part of your editing process and that you should pay special attention to:

Intro and Outro

Now, you can begin and end your episodes with a simple greeting or catchphrase, and there are some podcasts out there that don’t even do that but get straight to the conversation. But where’s the fun in that?

We’re not saying that just for the theatrics of it but because having professional intros and outros makes your show look more… well, professional. If your goal is to make podcasting your full-time job, doing this will reflect well on your reputation and will signal your audience that you are dedicated to what you’re doing.

On top of that, having a unique and catchy intro and outro are more likely to stick in your viewers’ or listeners’ minds than anything you say on air. They can, in a way, become synonymous with your brand!

Podcast Artwork

Having a unique, eye-catching artwork associated with your show’s name is something you should not disregard as irrelevant. After all, vision is our most dominant sense, so people are more likely to recall visual stimuli to all others.

Brands use logos for that very reason! And in the case of podcasts, your artwork is your logo. So make it represent your show as best as possible.

However, if you decide to make video podcasts, you will need thumbnails for each of your episodes instead. These will increase the clickthrough rate for your videos by a large margin. Now, that does require a bit of extra work, but in the end, you’ll see the results in increased viewership quite quickly.

Theme Song

When was the last time you saw a TV or online show without a theme song? That’s right — your podcast will need one too. 

Do you remember the opening theme of the show you loved as a kid? You probably do. Well, that is precisely why your podcast should have one as well. By picking a catchy theme song, it’ll be easy for you to stand out from the crowd.

However, you must be wary of copyright! So if you’re looking for an easy way to find some music for your podcast, here are a few sites we suggest you check out:

Do keep in mind that, especially when settling for free music, you could end up taking a song somebody else is already using. The only way to work around that would be to do thorough research and make sure no competitors are using the track you opted for or merely paying someone to compose a new, unique track for your show. The latter option, though, would entail some extra costs.

4. Get Your Podcast on the Right Channels

This last step means that you should get your show out there! “But how can I do that?” you may wonder. It’s quite straightforward — find a directory or a podcast host and upload your show to it. Or, as we’d advise you, do so on as many outlets as you can! 

But first, you will need someone to host your podcast. That is something you’ll have to pay for, but it’s an essential investment. Here are our three suggestions for best hosts on the market currently:

After you’ve settled for one, you can proceed to look for outlets that can help you get your podcast to an audience! Here are a few ideas:

Getting Your Video Podcast Out There

As you might imagine, if you opt for shooting a video podcast, this process will be a bit different. Namely, instead of searching for a podcast hosting site, you’ll be looking for a video hosting platform. Now, depending on what kind of approach you want to take, some hosts will be more suitable for you than others.

For example, if you’re looking to get your podcast on a video sharing platform, your best bet by far would be YouTube. This platform has a massive potential audience for your content because it has over two billion users. That will be the easiest way to grow your viewership out there.

However, YouTube’s video monetization policy is a bit strict, so you might find some trouble putting ads on your videos. If that is a valid concern for you, starting a website and uploading your podcast there would likely be a better solution.

If you settle for that option, you will need to find an affordable video host that offers an easy embedding option. Our recommendations for six best free video hosting services will come in handy if you’re on a tight budget, so feel free to check them out. These kinds of free packages will likely prove sufficient at first. But once you get a substantial audience to your website, you’ll probably have to switch to a premium plan.

But if you wish to kill two birds with one stone, we at Brid.TV can not only provide you with a premium video hosting platform but also an easy video monetization solution at affordable prices. So feel free to give us a call with any questions or if you want us to help you get started.

You’re Finally Ready!

It has been a long journey, but now you’re ready to set off on your podcasting adventure at last! All that’s left to do is to go to social media and promote your new show.

So get yourself out there, and best of luck to you!

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