How to create a podcast

People are really into podcasts nowadays and podcasting has emerged as a new creative medium for conveying information. I listen to a lot of podcasts and have always wanted to have my own podcast. Creating a podcast sounds like a huge thing but it isn’t really. Its like an other idea/initiative and can be easily implemented. In this article I want to help others create their own podcasts just like I did it. I had a lot of ideas, a podcast about Vegan food place all over the world, a podcast about gender issues, race issues and so many other things. It was really hard to decide on something until I thought about a problem/challenge which I’m currently facing. I’ve been trying very hard to get into Product Management. Its been a struggle since almost all product jobs require some kind of product experience and just like the chicken and egg problem, you are never going to have experience unless you start somewhere.

So, I finally decided to make a podcast out of my problem. I named the podcast “How to get Into Product Management” . As with everything in product management, it s important to pick a small actionable piece of an idea, build the product/service, get feedback and continuously iterate on it. I used the same MVP(Minimum Viable Product) philosophy in creating a podcast. Lets go over the steps of creating a podcast

  1. Create content.
  2. Choose a tool
  3. Publish

Step 1 is to create content. What do you want to talk about? Try to narrow down your universe changing idea to a small actionable piece which is realistic and doable. In my case, I wanted to talk about how Engineers can transition into product management by leveraging their technical skills. To create content, I reached out to about 100 product managers in the Austin area, pitched my idea and waited for a reply. Just 3 product managers agreed to talk to me. This was great but also disappointing. Not everyone cares about your earth shattering , universe changing idea. I swallowed all the sadness like a ‘baus’ and got to the next step. I reached out to a friend who has a podcast with hundreds of followers and asked her to give me all the ‘deets’. There were many paid tools, recording devices and hosting platforms. I wanted something which was completely free. This again is important because, you want to spend as little as possible while testing your idea. Once you have a product which people love a.k.a Product Market Fit, you can then pour in money into improving quality.

1) Creating Content: How to record?

Call Recorder for Skype: If you want to record content at your place or have a noise free place you can get to, then you can just use Skype along with an application called Call Recorder. Here is the link to the software . This is as simple as it gets. Install the extension with Skype, and then record.Try out the free version and see if you like it. You now have content.

TapeACall: Another option is to use an app to record phone conversations. You have to be upfront with your callers and tell them about recording the conversation. Stay out of any legal trouble. I used the TapeACall app to record phone conversations. Again, the app has a free and a paid version. Try out the free version first. Link to the app on the Appstore.

2) Choose a Tool: Mixing Audio?

When you record your podcast you talk about a lot of things, some unrelated to your final product. Also, there might be noise which you want to remove from your podcast. You need a tool where you can mix multiple tracks, add music to your podcast, remove noise , add bass, increase volume and do a bunch of other things. Again, there are many tools. I’ve tried just 2.

Audacity: Audacity if an open source audio software available both for mac and windows. Here is the link. Install Audacity on your machine and import your sound files and then create a final product you like. There are many tutorials on how to use Audacity and if you spend a couple hours on the tool, it should all make sense.

GarageBand: GarageBand is a native app and is available on all macs. Its a great tool and I personally liked the UI of Garage Band more than Audacity. If you have a windows machine, Audacity works just fine. Use Garage band to mix tracks and create one final version you want to publish.

3) Publish: Where to publish?

You can publish your podcast both on I tunes accessible through the podcast app on ios or on other apps like Stitcher. To publish your content, you need to first upload it somewhere on the internet. There are many places you can host your content. I used Soundcloud since I already had a Soundcloud account and it was free to use. You are limited by the amount of content you can publish but it should not be an issue if you are just starting out and want to test the idea. I uploaded 3 episodes, each 30 minutes long and I m allowed to upload another 100 minutes worth of content. You can upload your content to Soundcloud and then add label art to your podcast. I tunes only allows label art of a certain size, so please make sure you check that before you try to post it on I tunes. Once you have your files uploaded on SoundCloud, get the RSS link for your track/playlist and then post it to I tunes. Check out the Sound Clouds creator guide for more information on how to podcast.

You are now in the final step in making your podcast a reality. Once you have the RSS link for your content from Soundcloud, go to the I tunes Podcast Connect website and upload your RSS link. I tunes will first validate the link and then once you submit the podcast, it should be live in a few hours.

Now, your podcast is live on the internet. Tell the world about it on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and then ask listeners for feedback. Try to improve on audio quality and once you have content that rocks, you can iterate on your idea and make it a professional podcast. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments section. Happy to help!!!!. Also here is a link to my podcast. Take a listen here.