Tactic #5: The Podcasting Method
The podcasting method is a great way to get the word out there about you and your product or service. Podcasts are sort of like radio broadcasts except that they are stored on the Internet and can be played whenever the listener chooses. This is a great way to get traffic to your website because you’re able to offer your podcast free-of-charge on websites like the Apple iTunes Store where you could potentially get thousands of downloads per podcast.
Why People Listen to Podcasts
There are many different reasons that people listen to podcasts. Some people just enjoy talk radio but they are on the Internet so they can have talk radio that is geared towards their specific field of interest. Some people listen to podcasts while they’re in their car driving. Some people enjoy listening to podcasts while they’re doing something else on the Internet such as a graphic designer working in Photoshop at the same time that he or she is listening.
People love the portability of podcasts. They can load them onto their smartphone or iPod and then take that podcast with them wherever they go. People also love the convenience of being able to stop or pause and then come back to that podcast later on. But most of all, people want to hear about things that interest them. If you are a comic book collector, you’d love to listen to a podcast on comic book collecting. If you are a woodworking enthusiast, a woodworking podcast would be your cup of tea.
How to Create a Podcast
If you’re going to create a podcast, there are a few things that you need in order to get traffic. That’s because only a high-quality podcast that is valuable and entertaining to the listeners is going to drive traffic to your website. If your podcast is unprofessional or boring they may listen for a few minutes but they will soon move on to something else and never visit your website.
So, the first thing that you’re going to need to create a podcast is some sort of entertaining content. This will mean that you need to research what you’re going to talk about and find something that can provide value to your listeners and then figure out a way to present it so that it is also entertaining. If you sit in front of your microphone and simply discuss the topic in a monotone, without any entertainment value at all, people are not going to listen to your podcasts.
Speaking of microphones, you need to have a great one for podcasting. Luckily, there are some out there that are extremely high quality for a very low price. The Audio-Technica brand makes good microphones for around $50-$75. Also, the Blue Yeti is almost a studio quality microphone for about $100.
You’ll need to do your research and decide on your particular professional microphone, but make sure that it is clear without any fuzziness or distortion.
You also need to figure out where you’re going to record your podcast. You want to record it somewhere where there is almost no noise. If you have a fan going – like your computer fan – or you have other noises such as kids running around, dogs barking or traffic this is going to make for a very low quality podcast. You need to make sure that you can do your podcast somewhere away from all the noise so that it sounds as professional as a radio broadcast.
You might think about getting a partner as well. This can actually be done over the Internet. Find someone who has the same microphone that you do and then each of you record your part of the podcast separately on the same recording software – Audacity is a good, free solution – while communicating with each other via Skype or another program that allows you to talk to each other instantly.
Then, one of you can receive the audio file from the other one line it up with the audio file that they have and then exported as one new audio file which will have both of your voices recorded with good microphones and it will seem like both of you were in the same studio recording at the same time.
You also might want to think about some theme music or what is known in the radio business as a liner or station ID, which you can often get free of charge on a site called RadioDaddy. If not you can always spend five bucks and get one from Fiverr, but that could come later if you like. This will give your podcast that polished feel that will make people want to listen again and again.
Hosting Your Podcast For Free
Once you’ve made your recordings, where do you store the audio files?
You can use paid services such as Libsyn which starts at $5.00 per month, but that is the paid route and would defeat the purpose of the zero-cost method.
Instead, you can use free storage services such as Google Drive to store your recordings. What you’ll be doing is create a new folder in your Google Drive dedicated to your podcast audio files.
This article by Digital Inspiration will guide you step-by-step: http://www.labnol.org/internet/host-podcasts-on-google-drive/28227/
Distributing Your Podcast
The last thing that you’re going to worry about is distributing your podcast. You’re going to need to post it somewhere where people can download or listen to it online or via their mobile device.
The best place to distribute your podcast is through the iTunes store. With millions of people on, you can grab your share of the podcasting audience.
The iTunes store is a very good source for listeners but it isn’t the only place out there. You can find all kinds of places online where you can post your podcast free-of-charge that will get traffic to your site because you have people listening to it.
The more places that you posted, the more traffic you will get. Some of these places include: Stitcher (http://stitcher.com), SoundCloud (http://soundcloud.com) and many more podcasting directories that may allow you to submit your podcast for free.