5 Steps To Turn Your Content Into Podcasts
With podcasts being so competitive, you never want to just straight up take a post and turn it into an audio recording. How you engage with a listening audience is vastly different from how you engage with a reading one, or even a video one.
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The way that content creation (and how we share it) has evolved in the past ten or so years is simply stunning. If you had told me back in the early days of the web what it would become, I would think you’d have stolen it from a sci-fi show. But here we are.
In a time when you can actually make a living running blogs, YouTube channels and social media profiles, media has become a little overwhelming. Competition is fierce, and establishing an audience is back breaking work.
But for those who have carved out a little place in the blogosphere for themselves, it is time to start considering other forms of online content to diversify your income sources.
Podcasts: The Must Have Media Of The Now
Of all media types available on the web, I would argue that podcasts are the most relevant. Growing in popularity, you know how massively popular shows that are taking on a life of their own.
Just look at the widely beloved Welcome To Nightvale, for example. Or, the recently ended second season of the investigative journalism podcast Serial. There is no doubt that podcasts have gained incredible influence since they began appearing online.
It is possible to begin making their own based on the content you already have. In fact, it is one of the easiest ways to make your blog to more for you (or video, or graphic, or whatever it is you have at your disposal).
A couple of rules of thumb to follow before we get started on the steps themselves:
- Podcasts that last tell stories. If you go into recording thinking of yourself as a storyteller, regardless of the format of your original content, you will see better results.
- Podcast listening is growing by leaps and bounds, so your audience is ready. In fact, podcast listening grew 23% between 2015 and 2016 alone. So you should approach this as a equivalent to mainstream or traditional media, not an outlier.
- Podcast categories are important to watch out for. Some categories, such as News/Politics or Religious, are very saturated and will be more difficult to break into. Choose your niche wisely.
Now, onto the steps!
Step 1 – Brainstorm
All of your content may be of the highest quality and a perfect gem. But that doesn’t mean it will be ripe for podcast conversion. Likewise, some of your strongest posts could be terrible for audio, while some of your weaker ones may thrive through a new medium.
You have to begin by filtering through your content to decide what is going to be worthy of converting into an audio script. Or you may want to just take general topics that you have covered and write something completely new to fit it.
With podcasts being so competitive, you never want to just straight up take a post and turn it into an audio recording. How you engage with a listening audience is vastly different from how you engage with a reading one, or even a video one. That is why tools like Podcastomatic, which oversimplifies the process, tend to flop.
So make sure you understand what content will convert well.
Tip: A great way to get your podcast noticed is to answer popular niche questions in the episodes, or series of episodes. Use SERPstat to identify those popular questions:
- Come up with the podcast topic and identify some core terms that describe the topic
- Type in that core term into SERPstat
- Navigate to “Search Suggestions”
- From there, click “Only questions”
Here you go! The whole list of interesting topics to dedicate your podcast episodes to:
Step 2 – Script
Once you know what you want to write about, it is time to get writing that script! If you are going into full storyteller mode (such as you would find in a podcast like The Black Tapes or Limetown), then you can write everything verbatim in the same way you would any other media script.
If you are working with a non-fiction or non-linear podcast (such as How Did This Get Made) you will have more room for winging it. But you will still want to have a general idea of the schedule, breaking it down into pieces, allocating a certain amount of time to each section. You will also want a list of points to bring up over the course of the podcast.
There are no special tools that you need for this. I personally use Google Drive since it is free, and makes it easy to collaborate, edit and share.
Step 3 – Record
What you use to record with is going to depend on your needs, but there are some tools that tend to be suggested more than others for a reason.
The first is for video podcasts and that is Blab. I would highly recommend it because it is simple to use, high quality, and has a ton of features that make it ideal for casual videocasting in particular. Including live streaming that will later be uploaded as a video on your channel.
For audio podcasting I and many others use Audacity. That can be combined with a tool like Garage Band for editing. These tools are relatively user friendly with just a bit of a learning curve.
Step 4 – Promote
Obviously, you have some kind of platform for promotion already in place, be that a blog, YouTube channel or other website. So take advantage of it, and be sure to crosspost on your social media accounts.
If you know of anyone else who would be willing to promote you, take advantage as well. People who have guest posted on your blog, for example.
For reaching influencers, try Viral Content Buzz. It allows you to exchange social media shares with influencers already established in the sphere, and it is free.
Step 5 – Re-package
You are already repackaging content to make more content. Podcasts can follow the same logic. These can spark series, other elaborations on the topic, interviews… there is plenty you can do.
Think of it as an endless cycle, and a very beneficial one.
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