So, you’d like to take a try at podcasting, but not really sure where to start? Have I got a book for you. It’s called Podcast Solutions. The Complete Guide to Podcasting by Michael W. Geoghegan and Dan Klass, with a Foreword by Adam Curry, a recognised leader of the podcasting movement.
Published by FriendsOfed and costing $24.99 I found this book easy to read and follow. There are a few podcasting books on the market today, with more coming in everyday it seems. The authors of this one, however, really have their act together. Michael Geoghegan produces the Reel Reviews Radio podcast as well as Grape Radio. He also has produced podcasts for Disney and taught the very first Podcasting 101 class. Dan hosts two podcasts, New 80s Music and The Bitterest Pill, so they do have a lot of experience between them.
The first chapter of the book devotes itself to a brief history of podcasting, followed by finding and listening to podcasts and finally to the meat of the book. The How-To’s.
It delves, deeply I may add, into Podcasting tools. The mics, mixers, headphones and every piece of hardware and cabling one might need. From simple setups to thousands of dollars worth, it’s all here. But before they even go into the tools needed, they ask a simple direct question of “Who are you and why should we listen?” This chapter focuses in on Planning your podcast, and may be one of the more important chapters in the book! From why you want to do a show to formatting, structuring, using music, (legally,) and show length. I think that this is very important in an age where people are touting the benefits of podcasting and everyone can do one, but not asking if you really have a plan or concept.
Of course, everything else is included in the book, and in great detail. Recording, Putting it All Together, Preparing your File, Serving it up. I want to stop here for a second on this chapter. Serving it up helps with everything from registering your own domain to creating the podcast website, to choosing whether it’s a blog or HTML. It explains how to enclose and create the XML file to using a different platforms such as Blogger, FeedBurner LibSyn and WordPress. The real boring, but extremely important stuff for the success of any podcast, past those that you post with your .mac account. (Which really couldn’t be easier.)
The final chapters are devoted to getting your podcast heard. Using iPodder.org to iTunes and promoting everything in-between. Finally ending with the Holy Grail of the industry, Making Money.
The book also contains a CD that includes dozens of software applications from podcatchers to editing software.
So, I can highly recommend this to anyone that is thinking of creating their own podcast, but doesn’t quite know where to start, or just wants to make their current podcast better. Part of the authors summary can sum it up the best when they say that the book covers “audio production, voice-over techniques, advertising and marketing, media relations, and news writing.â€¦Podcasting has changed the way content is delivered, Let’s keep pushing forward to see exactly what that can mean for everyone.”
Published: 22nd August 2005
Many thanks to Wayne for this review.