My purpose, proper right here, is that will help you to create a podcast within the shortest time attainable.
And I’m not simply speaking about any previous podcast. I imply a nice podcast. Your very best podcast!
As a result of that is the place so many individuals get caught out. It’s the place reveals go to die. The podcaster spends an excessive amount of time making each episode. A lot that it simply does not match into their week and even their life. By that time, it simply drains all of the enjoyable and worth out of all the present!
After all, it’s value noting that various kinds of reveals take completely different quantities of time to provide (go ask an audio drama producer how a lot time they spend on dialogue enhancing alone!). And typically, spending extra time in your present can enhance the standard, or what you get out of it. However, that’s provided that you spend that point on the proper stuff. And I consider it’s attainable to do these proper issues in far much less time than you suppose.
So that is what I’ll do on this article: present you the most effective of these “proper issues” and assist you to create the very best product within the least attainable time.
Who I Am and What You’ll Study
By means of a fast “who the heck’s this man?”: my identify is Colin Grey, and I’m a podcaster, author, trainer, and basic dogsbody at The Podcast Host. We create a community of our personal reveals and assist hundreds of others produce their very own via our content material.
Plus, we run a podcast maker software referred to as Alitu. The entire objective behind Alitu is to supply recording, enhancing, and publishing instruments that automate and simplify, making it far faster and simpler to create your present. And a variety of that relies on the “proper methods” that I’ll discuss right here.
Over the previous ten years, I’ve gone from becoming a podcast round a very completely different regular job (educating academics find out how to train — meta, huh?), to attempting to suit as many podcasts as attainable into my present job and designing instruments to assist others do it faster!
It was all about reducing out the cruft and determining what’s actually worthwhile in making a high-quality, profitable present. I’ll discuss all these insights right here, together with:
- Tips on how to plan content material within the minimal time, and in a approach that makes it straightforward to ship
- Tips on how to get essentially the most from every thing you do create
- Recording & enhancing tips to save lots of time
- Tips on how to discover and be taught the instruments that lower down on processing time
So, let’s get into it. Time to use a bit lightning to your podcast!
Why Seasons are Rocketfuel for You and your Viewers
Seasons-based podcasting is essentially the most underrated workflow hack within the business. And, even higher, it’s a large driver of listener success, loyalty, and viewers development, too.
How? Nicely, there are three causes.
You already know if you flip up at your desk for recording time and suppose: “Alrighty … podcast time. I’ve received an hour to get this child recorded! Soooo … what shall I discuss … ”
An hour later, you’re nonetheless solely midway via planning the episode. And even worse, you’re nonetheless looking at a clean display, attempting to consider an thought.
Nicely, right here’s a brand new tack: take an hour of your life and take into consideration your subsequent season as a substitute.
Take a query you typically get out of your listeners, or a subject you realize you wish to cowl, after which break it down. One of many largest errors we make as podcasters is attempting to suit an excessive amount of into an episode. We do it as a result of we care. We wish to give a variety of worth, however really, it’s shortchanging your listeners, typically lacking particulars, or giving them an excessive amount of to consider all of sudden. As an alternative, break that subject down into its part elements.
I did a season on podcast gear some time again. I may have simply lined it in a single episode however it’s higher to interrupt it down. One episode on microphones, one on mixers, one on recording software program, and one on enhancing software program.
Usually I can work this out in lower than ten minutes for a subject I do know properly. Possibly 20 to 30 if I must do a little bit of analysis. I’ll find yourself with a listing of perhaps six or seven episodes, typically as much as 15 or 20.
Then, I’ll take one other 20 minutes to place some meat on them bones, and do a set of 5 to 10 bullet factors inside every major subject, outlining what I’ll cowl.
By the top of the hour (or much less!) I’ve received a plan for a complete season’s value of content material, typically two or three months lengthy, perhaps extra.
So now, as a substitute of the standard, “Oh no! What do I discuss this week!”, subsequent time you open up that season plan, try the following episode’s script and hit file. Simple!
And sure, this may nonetheless work for interview reveals. Do the entire above, and solely THEN begin to consider company. This makes for much higher content material. As an alternative of simply selecting out random pseudo-famous folks in your area of interest, only for their identify, select primarily based on experience and information.
Search round for weblog posts masking the matters you’ve in your plan. Discover folks with fascinating angles on these matters, after which invite them on the present. You’ll create much better, rather more targeted content material in consequence.
With a season plan, you may actually simply reap the benefits of one other big timesaver: batch recording.
Matthew is my co-host on our “find out how to podcast” present, Podcraft. It’s a seasons-based present, and we’ve lengthy recorded it in batches. We co-host the podcast, so we are able to plan a season collectively, after which we’ll file two to a few episodes at a time.
I do know individuals who can do 4 episodes in a single sitting, however we at all times discover we hit a wall round three. Nonetheless, which means we solely have to rearrange recording time each two or three weeks, moderately than each single week.
Enhancing will be batched, too. As anybody who has to do a variety of job switching is aware of, doing a couple of of all of them collectively takes far much less time than three separate enhancing classes.
Listener-Powered Content material
Each podcaster is aware of they need to be getting their listeners extra concerned with their present. It drives engagement, loyalty, and large listener development. However, it’s a giant time suck … monitoring emails, social media, and voicemails each single week will be draining.
Seasons put one thing model new in your toolbox: a break!
On the finish of the season, you say: “Okay, thanks for listening! We’ll be again in 6 weeks, on August 1st. Throughout that point, although, right here’s what I need you to do. We’re going to cowl podcast gear on the following season. Inform me, what gear are you utilizing proper now? What gear have you ever tried that was garbage? What are your largest struggles or questions with gear that I can reply? Ship me a tweet,or an e mail, or (better of all) depart a voicemail at ..”
Then you definitely take a well-earned break!
In direction of the top of the break, you may batch-process all of this. Take a day to gather all of it collectively, collate the tweets and the emails, and course of the audio recordings so it’s all prepared for the brand new season. That is a lot simpler and extra environment friendly than doing little drips and drabs each few days.
Even higher, this may energy the planning we talked about above. The questions will direct your episodes, and you’ll plan forward, together with all of the related questions in the proper episode. In that approach, you embody and contain your listeners within the present and drive an enormous quantity of worth and loyalty. Plus, you create higher content material as a result of it’s primarily based on the ideas of actual folks.
Fly Solo (At Least a Little)
This one makes folks a bit nervous, at the very least for people who usually fly with a visitor! Recording alone is among the largest time-saving strikes you may make, notably in the event you’re an everyday interviewee on different reveals.
If you happen to’ve by no means tried it, think about a world the place you don’t should coordinate calendars to discover a time that fits everybody. Think about planning the episode your self, realizing that you just don’t should immediate your co-host or suppose of some backup questions in case that interview goes awry. Think about having one hundred pc management over what’s stated (since you’re doing the saying!), so there are not any tangents, no fluff and no … enhancing? Think about simply deciding to file, off the cuff, and 20 minutes later, you’ve an episode within the bag.
All of that’s attainable with solo recording, plus the additional advantage of showcasing your personal information and expertise for a change, moderately than your visitor (I’m speaking about interview reveals particularly).
If you happen to haven’t tried it, take one episode a month and fly solo. See how a lot time it saves you and the way your listeners would possibly like to listen to what you suppose, for a change.
The Minimal Efficient Enhancing Course of
Okay, we’ve deliberate it out and we’ve recorded an episode. Now comes essentially the most harmful of potential time-eaters: enhancing.
I nonetheless come throughout so many individuals who spend 2x or 3x the size of their present in enhancing. For instance, taking two or three hours to edit a one-hour recording. I even meet individuals who spend 5x to 10x the size of their present in manufacturing! It’s simply unsustainable.
A part of that’s dialogue enhancing, listening via the entire thing to search out and eradicate their errors. Painful! We’ll deal with that within the subsequent tactic.
The opposite half is audio engineering; particularly audio cleanup, including music or adverts, layering tracks, and exporting the entire thing.
So, how can we make it straightforward? By including constraints. You are able to do a lot much less by making use of the proper mindset to your enhancing. I’ve received two processes right here so that you can attempt.
MEE (Minimal Efficient Enhancing)
That is excellent for early-stage podcasters. I typically suggest following this on your first 10 to twenty episodes, at a minimal. There’s a lot you’re studying throughout these first months, and enhancing actually is low on the influence record. There’s a lot extra worth in working in your presentation and content material design expertise. (Actually, you would lengthen this mindset to any podcaster at any stage.)
Merely lower enhancing down to 2 issues, and two issues solely:
Trim means trimming the beginning and the top solely. Often which means reducing out the silence and the paper rustling after you hit file and earlier than you begin talking. Then, do the identical for the top.
Normalize means leveling out the quantity of your present. That is the one and solely “audio engineering” job that’s important. It means your present gained’t be too quiet, and the quantity of the completely different audio system needs to be comparatively even so that you don’t have your listeners reaching for his or her quantity management each time the speaker modifications.
Most enhancing instruments have normalization options included, akin to Audacity.
Discover that this doesn’t embody dialogue enhancing in any respect. So, you may’t lower out errors! That’s a constraint that has a couple of advantages:
- You’ll be able to’t use enhancing as a crutch, so that you be taught to enhance the way in which you communicate, quick! Study to drop the ums and ahs whereas you communicate, not afterward.
- You keep away from this time-warp rabbit gap altogether as a result of even a bit “Oh I’ll simply take away that one factor” can flip into an hour of enhancing.
- You sound extra human. “Oh, sorry, that’s not what I meant! <snort> Let me say that once more.” That is sincere. Open. Relatable. Individuals establish with you extra carefully.
As an alternative, file with a “dwell broadcast” mindset. Fake you’re dwell on air, the present has to go on. There’s an opportunity you’ve carried out that very factor — Fb, YouTube, Instagram — and survived! So take it into your podcasting, and reap the time-saving advantages. even when simply on your first few episodes.
Later in your podcasting profession, you would possibly determine you do wish to add a bit extra polish. Whether or not that’s episode 20 or 200, right here’s the 2nd stage: MEE-V2.
- Click on Edit
- Noise Discount
- Restrict and Normalize
- Add Music
- Overlap and Fades
That polish comes primarily within the type of music: including your personal audio branding, and placing in some pro-sounding overlaps and fades.
MEE-V2 additionally contains an additional couple of audio engineering steps. A arduous restrict helps to enhance your audio leveling, and noise discount is a giant assist for many of us who’re recording in bog-standard rooms moderately than recording studios.
We’re not delving into a variety of the audio engineering that you just’ll discover across the podcasting net, akin to EQ, compression, de-essing, or plosive removing. These are helpful of their place, positive, polish on your audio — however they’re non-essential.
Lastly, you’ll discover the point out of a click on edit. Sure, I hear you breathe a sigh of reduction: now you may take away a couple of errors out of your audio. However solely the large ones that actually can’t keep in! We nonetheless wish to keep that live-recording mindset to remain human, and we’ll use a click-edit course of that slashes the time required to finish. You’ll see that within the subsequent tactic.
Earlier than we transfer on, I’ll point out one other risk right here. You’ll be able to automate an entire lot of MEE-2 and add much more polish utilizing the proper instruments.
I got here up with MEE years in the past in an try to assist our readers defeat the monster that’s enhancing. However, even then, it was nonetheless a job that dragged reveals underneath.
So, we constructed our personal software, Alitu, to automate MEE-2, after which so as to add an entire lot extra polish and help on prime.
For instance, inside Alitu you may file a solo episode, or use our name recorder to herald a visitor. That recording is then routinely cleaned up — noise discount, limiting, normalization, EQ, de-essing, plosive removing, the entire 9 yards. Then it’s popped into the episode builder, which provides your music, overlaps and fades routinely. You’ll be able to add in any intros or outros required there, too, or any adverts or inserts for the episode.
All that’s left is to make use of Alitu’s audio editor to go looking out your clicks with 2x pace management (extra on this under), spotlight the edits, after which hit publish. You’ll be able to even publish to Alitu’s in-built internet hosting in the event you don’t have internet hosting arrange but, so it’s multi function place.
Alitu presents a week-long free trial to check out the platform earlier than buying.
Click on Enhancing
Now, to click on enhancing!
It’s a traditional, however at all times value together with because it’s a revelation to anybody who hasn’t heard it. It tackles the dreaded job of combing via a podcast episode, minute by minute, to trace down these errors that you realize should be eliminated.
As an alternative, with click on enhancing, I’d usually edit our 30-minute common Podcraft episode in lower than 5 minutes. Right here’s the way it works:
Once I make a mistake in my present, I create a visible marker within the waveform by clicking my tongue thrice. You may as well clap, or snap your fingers. All of them work. The purpose is to create one thing that’s very easy to see on the waveform if you get into your enhancing package deal.
You’re talking. You make a mistake or journey over your tongue, or must cough. So, you cease. You pause for a couple of seconds. Click on. Click on. Click on. You pause for one more few seconds. Then you definitely begin talking once more.
That is very seen on the waveform, as proven highlighted in purple.
Which means, if you get to enhancing, you simply get right down to an affordable zoom stage and scan the waveform, in search of these indicators.
Then you definitely spotlight the top of the sentence earlier than the error, proper via to the purpose earlier than you restart, and delete. Mistake eradicated!
Professional Tip: You’ll be able to fairly simply get within the behavior of remembering the beginning of the sentence earlier than you made your mistake, after which restarting with the identical first few phrases. Because of this after I discover a mistake in enhancing, I take heed to the re-start first, after which return a bit and discover the identical few phrases earlier than the error. I do know that’s the place I’ve to start out the edit. That saves one other few seconds, each time!
Take Management of Errant Interviewees
Let’s end up with a tactic that not solely comes underneath the class of “time saver,” each in recording and enhancing, but additionally bleeds into “improved content material.” It’s the easy idea of taking possession of your present, and your content material.
The factor is, interview reveals are nice when carried out properly. However, they’re typically not carried out properly. That may result in sub-par content material, positive, however even worse, it results in an entire lot of additional time in your course of.
It takes extra time to file as a result of the visitor goes off on tangents. Or they don’t keep on level and fail to reply questions. That every one means extra time enhancing, attempting to chop the fluff, and elevating the standard.
As an alternative, take management, and provides some pointers earlier than you begin. Listed here are a couple of of the issues I would say:
- I’d like to share a couple of bits of steerage. I do know my viewers rather well, and I’ve realized that these can assist you come throughout in the very best approach with them.
- We prefer to preserve this present actually conversational. So, attempt to preserve solutions quick and sharp, lower than a minute, two at most.
- Don’t fear, we’ll get into element, however I’ll ask concerning the elements I do know my viewers loves.
- All the time be at liberty to ask me questions again, so we’re each concerned, and it flows properly.
- I will interrupt you infrequently. Not as a result of your content material’s dangerous, however as a result of I do know what my viewers desires and I’ll preserve us monitoring with that.
Hold emphasizing that that is of their finest pursuits. This makes them look good! You already know your viewers, and if the visitor desires to make an awesome impression, then you may assist them try this. However, provided that they work with you, and allow you to information the dialog (#3).
That primarily means shorter solutions (#2), and being ready to be interrupted (#5 — and that is a lot simpler if you point out it earlier than you begin).
I’ve additionally discovered that #4 is a very fascinating hack, for 2 causes. First, conversations are significantly better when it’s two methods. And second, asking questions simply places folks into conversation-mode moderately than monologue-mode. (It additionally helps keep away from the 5-minute solo tangents which might be the bane of any interviewer’s life!)
How Will You Lower Your Manufacturing Time?
To me, there are two huge concepts to this.
First, easy routines and purposeful instruments. Which means:
- Hold your weekly routine as easy and as common as attainable.
- Use seasons to simplify your planning.
- Go solo to simplify the logistics.
- File as in the event you’re dwell and commit to essentially easy enhancing.
Make it your purpose to search out these routines that repeat with the intention to match all the workflow simply into your week.
Secondly, it means utilizing instruments with actual objective. As podcasters, we will be responsible of including in on-trend instruments or ways that take up extra time, moderately than put it aside. As an alternative, choose fewer, higher instruments, and go deep with them.
The press trick is a software, use it to save lots of hours in enhancing. Alitu is a software that works nice alongside it, and provides extra options to annihilate the time spent enhancing and engineering. In the event that they don’t give you the results you want, although, there are dozens of decisions. Discover only a few that suit you, personally, and go deep.
Above all, use these ways to hone your private routine, discover the strategies that give you the results you want, and supply up all that additional time to the content material itself. Use it to speak to your listeners. What do they like? What do they not like? Discover out what they actually need from you. That’s what makes the large distinction. Not an additional go of compression, or a jot of noise discount. As an alternative, get easy, get tooled up, after which you may actually begin thriving as a podcaster.