You have an idea or a topic that you want to discuss and now you've decided to turn it into a podcast. Good idea! Now where do you start? Let me get you started on the right path to becoming a successful podcaster.
Start with a script or an outline of the topics and points that you'd like to cover. It doesn't have to be verbatim text that you plan to record, but there should be some main topics with some additional notes or ideas that will help you keep the conversation flowing. It may be good to emphasize a few points as a review, but try not to repeat yourself. There's nothing more boring than listening to someone talk about the same thing over and over without implementing new ideas as they go along. Keep it moving and keep the listeners interested in the topic.
OK, now you have your ideas written down and you're ready to record. But wait, you don't have a microphone. Not to worry, you probably have a smartphone, right? If so, you have a handy little recorded right in your pocket. Now the audio quality might not be stellar, but it is a place to start. You want to try and get the best recording quality that you can and most modern smartphones do a decent job of recording voices. I'd suggest that you find a quiet spot to cut down on the ambient noise and maybe use the headphone cord with the built in mic to keep your sound consistent. Plus, the earbuds will serve as your monitors.
So maybe you're not thrilled with the idea of recording on your phone. Not to worry, there are some options that will get you going and not break the bank.
If you're on a tight budget, but still want to get a decent setup for your podcasting, you're in luck. Behringer has a podcasting package ($99.99) that includes a mic, mic cable, mini mixer, headphones, tripod, and some accessories to get you everything you need to be the podcast star you're destined to become. This Podcast Studio will give you the ability to record your voice and also patch in some audio devices if you want to have music or sound effects added to your episodes. With this efficient setup, you'll be able to get a clean recording that will be professional and easy to control. There are not many packages out there that can compete with this one. The versatility of this setup will allow you to be creative, but also be mobile for those sessions where you want to hit the road.
Now if you're looking to be a little less complex with your setup and want to have something that is a little more plug-and-play, the BLUE YETI is a great option. This is a USB mic that allows you to just plug right into your computer and start recording. There is a headphone jack on the bottom of the mic that will allow you to monitor your recordings and also enjoy that sweet sultry voice of yours. This mic has a built in stand, so you're ready to go right out of the box. With all the controls right on the front of this mic, it's almost fool-proof. Now there is one bonus to this mic, it comes with the Presonus Studio One Artist software. This is excellent audio editing software that will take your production to a whole new level. Plus, you can use this software to compose your own music. You really strike gold with this mic if you're willing to put a little cash upfront. Now you'll need to purchase headphone or use your earbuds, but at $149.99, this package is well worth the investment.
The RODE PODCASTER is a really nice all-in-one USB package that gives you excellent quality for a reasonable price. ($229) This bad boy has a built in headphone amp that allows you to monitor your recording directly through the mic. The USB cable connects to your computer and viola! You are now ready to rock and roll with your podcast. You will need a mic stand for this smooth criminal, but not to fear, there are many great options.
In the world of podcast microphones, this one stands alone. The audio quality is quite nice and if you want that radio announcer sound for your voice, this is the mic for you.
Now that you're all buffed on where to start and how to get the audio recording going, it's time to start making your podcast. Be sure to use decent audio editing software and clean up your recordings. Trim off any coughs or dead air and keep the audio flowing. This will ensure that your audience keeps their focus on the content. It would also help to use some music that you have created in the segues and at the introduction of the podcast. Music can give you a more polished and professional sound, so try your hand at making some music.
Just as a footnote, be sure to give credit where it is due. If you research information, be sure to reference where you found the information and anyone that was involved with your podcast production. Karma is real and it will come around if you pay it forward.