We are delighted to share some words of wisdom on how to make a podcast from BlogElevated attendee and volunteer Kirsten Oliphant! This is the first in a series about bloggers and podcasting, and how you can start a podcast for your blog. Today’s post is about deciding if creating a podcast is the right choice for you and your blog. Enjoy!
Podcasts have been around for eleven years. That seems like an eternity in the internet world and may be longer than many of us have been blogging! (For more on how they started, read The History of Podcasting
3 Reasons You SHOULD Start a Podcast
1. There are 30 million blogs and 250,000 podcasts. I like those odds! (Source
2. You can connect and spread value in a fresh way.
3. It is relatively easy to do and very easy for audiences to connect.
3 Reasons You Should NOT Start a Podcast
1. You don’t have time.
2. You don’t have money for startup.
3. You don’t like the sound of your voice or talking to yourself or people.
Before you take the leap, you need to count the cost and evaluate whether a podcast is the right fit for you at this time. On the plus side, podcasting is a relatively uncrowded field. Yes, there are a TON of podcasts. But not compared to the number of blogs! It can also be a great addition to your blog by providing a new format to connect with your audience. Podcasts are mobile in a way that blogs and vlogs are not. You can listen while driving in the car, cooking dinner, doing tasks around the house, or working out.
The thing that really pushed me into podcasting was this tidbit of information: starting next year, 50% of cars built will have wifi. This means that people will be able to listen to podcasts without the addition of a device. They will simply be able to push a button and listen to a podcast. That accessibility will have a huge impact on the number of podcast listeners.
On the flip side, podcasting may require learning a new skill set. You need the time to get past the learning curve and also to record, edit, write show notes, and publish a podcast. Now that I’m in a groove, it takes me about 3 or MORE hours per podcast to record an interview, edit that interview, write the show notes, and do all the technical things to publish each episode. You can learn all the skills fairly easily and quickly (I did it in two weeks
), but recording and editing each episode requires time.
As far as money, you will need to have the money for media hosting ($5-15 a month), equipment (upwards of $50), and blog hosting if you don’t already have it ($5 and up a month). If you don’t like talking to other people or talking to yourself out loud, this may not be for you. You know yourself best! If you aren’t sure, try recording yourself using the free tools on your computer or using a free sound editing program such as Audacity.
The four questions you need to ask yourself:
Do I have time?
Do I have money?
Do I have the ability?
Do I have a reason?
This last question is vital. Just because something is a great idea doesn’t make it a great idea for YOU. Will your current audience find value in a podcast from you? Do you have people to interview or ideas to talk about? Are there already great podcasts in your field? If so, what are they doing and how will you be unique?
- Answer the four questions above. Think about why you want to start a podcast and then ask if you have the time, money, ability, and reason.
- Do some research. Listen to podcasts in and outside of your field. What do you like/not like and where do you feel like your podcast would fit in or stand out?
Kirsten Oliphant is a writer and blogger living in Houston, Texas. When not wrangling her four children, she writes about the passion and practice of writing at Create If Writing
and things of family, faith, food, and the like at Kirsten Oliphant
. You can find her on @kikimojo
and listen to her podcast, Create If Writing
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