RoleyShow Episode 19: Barefoot Podcasting
What do you Podcast About? iPhone Troubles, Channel You, Barefoot Podcasting 101, debunking Impostor Syndrome.
The Big Ideas:
ON this episode of RoleyShow I want to talk to you about creating your first podcast. Maybe you heard my last show and got inspired to take some action. Like Julie and Dan here, who responded using the SpeakPipe Widget at RoleyShow .com…
First, in full disclosure, I have to say that Julie and Dan are truly great friends of mine that I’ve known for about 15 years, and I absolutely adore them. Second, I’ve been on Dan to start doing a podcast for years, because the man can write hilarious shit when he puts his mind to it. He’s been on the fence, and I hope that I can inspire him to bring that funny-along with something he knows about more than anyone else I know to the podcasting world. More about Dan and Julie and my thoughts for them in a second, first I want to open this up to the wider audience.
Here's the simplest question you will ever wrap your brain around for days on: What in the ever loving FUCK do I do a podcast about. Now, there are a million and one podcasting experts that will tell you that you have to find a niche. I resist this, even though if you find a niche that hasn’t been explored, you will find an audience. I have never been proponent of this because I come from a school of thought that podcast should be about one thing, the personality and sincerity of the guy doing the show. I could be the most knowledgeable dude in the world about a subject, but if you and I don’t make a connection on some level, than all I’m going to end up sounding like is an adult in a Peanuts cartoon to you, and I’m going to lose you as a listener because you’d rather watch flies fuck than listen to me.
So, what do you make a podcast about? Well, that’s a pretty simple answer. What’s the thing that gives you the greatest joy? What’s the thing that you eat, sleep and breathe every day? What’s that one thing subject that your friends wish you would shut the fuck up about, because “Oh shit, here he goes again…’
Whatever that is, I guarantee you that there are people who feel the same way you do. In the case of my friend Dan, there’s one thing that I know he is passionate about that I don’t hear a lot about, and that’s Japanese Pro Wrestling, which is a MUCH different animal than the WWE. I would encourage him to consider that as a possibility.
For Julie, I think one or two subjects might be useful. Julie could talk about what it’s like to have PKD, and the things she has to do to get through the day, and simply spread some awareness about the condition. Also, Julie and Dan are masters of some creative budgeting, and living frugally, which could be useful to others.
Unless you’re a person who literally has no life, and by that I mean no pulse, there is something that gives you joy. You don’t need to look up keywords to see if that niche is well covered (although if you’re one of those marketing fools that are in podcasting simply for the money, that’s what you’ll do), All you really need to do is follow your bliss on this one.
A warning on this: Don’t lie to yourself on this. If you say “Hey, I’m kind of an expert on a subject, but I don't feel strongly about it one way or the other, but that’s what I’m going to do a podcast on SIMPLY because it seems like no one is talking about it," Your audience is going to know it, and more importantly, YOU’RE GOING TO KNOW IT. Not only will that come through in your delivery eventually, but that’s the quickest way to pod fade. Pod fade is a show that goes away after a few episodes and never comes back. It’s got to be that one things that you cannot WAIT to get behind that mic every few days and Jackson Pollack the internet with what you got. I’m serious. Most podcasts don’t make it past episode 10 for this reason. If you get there, you’ll make it. If you get to episode 50? Hell, you got this down.
Pick something that you can talk about once a week for fucking ever. You got this.
So, in 2010, I wanted to take a Gateway Laptop that I owned, with Windows Vista on it, set it on fire, spear it with a harpoon, and eject the entire flaming mess off the nearest highway overpass. It was at that time that I looked at a Mac for the first time. I came home with that Mac. I have subsequently not had a computer problem in four years. I cannot begin to even explain to you the amount of stress that is taken away from you when the main technology you use every day does not cause that kind of anger. Jumping to Mac was one of the best decisions I ever made, and on that ALONE is worth the price of admission.
Since then, I have purchased 5 iPhones, and three iPod Touches, three iPads, and three Apple TVs, because I believe in the product. In four years, TWO of which that I actually worked in technical support for the company through a contractor, I have never, EVER had a problem that required help from Apple.
So, when I noticed after a software update on my iPhone 5c that the battery was experiencing a massive battery drain, I was somewhat concerned. I’m running iOS 7.1.2 on this device, and if I am using it normally I have to charge it three times a day. Restarted, Reset Network connections, Restore, Restore and set up as new phone, no joy. Shut off Background App refresh, shut of location settings, no joy. I even put the phone in Airplane Mode—which is supposed to shut off everything— no joy. The battery still drains at the rate of 10 points an hour, minimum. By comparison, my daughters iPhone 5c in Airplane Mode was still at 100 percent after two hours.
My phone, even in Airplane mode, activates something inside the device, the phone heats up, and it starts leaking battery. I made an appointment at the Apple Store to speak with a Genius. The first time, the gentleman I spoke to totally got what I was saying, but my battery was functioning normally. He suggested we start a paper trail on this device, and I was totally OK with that. Wiped the phone, set it up as new, turned off location settings, turned off background app refresh, and I only loaded the apps I NEED to have on a daily basis. So, instead of the four pages of apps I usually carry, I have maybe one and a half.
No Joy. I made a second appointment at the bar, and was intent on getting an explanation or getting a new phone. The second lady I spoke to was…let’s just say she was nowhere near as receptive to my concerns as the first guy I spoke to. She was unmovable. Phone is working normally, thank you for calling, software doesn’t affect hardware, nothing is wrong, have a good day.
So, here I am sitting with a phone I’ve got to charge at least twice a day if I don’t USE it.
Look, guys, here’s the deal: You know that it’s a bug with 7.1.2. I know that it’s a bug in 7.1.2. If you google it, most of the world knows that it’s a bug with 7.1.2. Here’s what I suspect: The software is trying to activate the Location Services even if you’ve switched it off. OK, how about now? OK, how about NOW, ok, how about NOW? Penny? Penny? Bueller?
I can’t prove this, clearly, so take this as anecdotal, please. Something weird. I’ve never used Passbook. Why is location services trying to get used there? I’ve never even opened that app. ever. Now, I turn that off, and it doesn’t help, but I find that odd.
So, here's the big question. I started hearing rumors yesterday that iOS 8 Beta 6 and 7.1.3 would be released at the same time. The original report said it would be Monday, but that did not come to pass. Are we even going to see a 7.1.3? Or are we just going to 8 in September when the new iPhone comes out? I hope not. I have a real problem installing the first iteration of a new version of software, it seems to me that there will be new bugs to deal with there. I'm more looking forward to a 7.1.3 I can install while I wait to see what problems arise with 8. My days of being an early adopter are over, it's way too much heartburn.
At this point, I just want something that works. Do you have 7.1.2 installed on your iPhone? What's your experience? Tweet me, FB me, hit me up on the Speakpipe app and leave me a voice mail, Im interested to know what your problems are, and if they're similar to mine.
Let's start with the obvious: The saying "If you build it, they will come," is a line from a work of fiction, and should be treated as such. To wit, the only idiot that believes that line to be true is the character Kevin Costner played. No one else should even consider it.
They do not come if you build it. No one has their radar out waiting for you to build anything, ever. Back in the early days of podcasting, it MIGHT have been possible, but consider this: THAT WAS 10 YEARS AGO, that easy spot got taken by a smarter guy than us, and that smarter guy may not even be working it anymore, but since his content has been there forever, yeah, ok, they came to him. But NOT you. We're late to the party, and the easy eyeballs and ears are long gone.
So, unlike the first idiot, you and I need to work at it. How are you and I going to be different from person A back in 2005? We're going to be different. We're going to be compelling. We're going to realize that our podcast isn't a podcast. We're going to realize that it's a platform. It's part of Channel You, and really, there has to be more than just a Podcast on Channel You if you want to be successful. We're talking social media, we're talking a blog, we're possibly talking about products that you've made, though it doesn't have to be all of those things.
What should you do? Well, what are you comfy with. I'm more and more comfy with posting silly videos of me doing karaoke than you might be. I like beach wallpaper with funky quotes. I also like long walks on those beaches with the wind in my ha...er...that might have been too much...
Channel You is not 100 percent you, though. It's about getting your content out, yes, but it's also about sharing content. It's about sharing that passion, not just from you, but from others, to as many people in your tribe as possible. It's about creating that tribe, and communicating with that tribe through this great new Channel that you have. Channel You.
Build it, build your content, build trust within the community that shares your interest, THEN mention that they could come...if they want to. Maybe then, they will. We'll talk about laying the foundations for Channel You in a later episode. This is important stuff that we need to get to soon, but not yet. We've got miles to sow before you reap.
Shoeless Podcasting part 1. Tools of the Trade.
So, you know what you’re going to podcast about? That’s awesome. So, you’re looking at the Pentium II PC you have with Windows 98 on it…
I’m kidding, of course. I did recently take a call from a gentleman that still rocked a Windows 98 box though. Not hooked to the internet, had some apps on it that he never wanted to update because they ‘just work’. Hey, man, live how you gotta live.
My point is, you do NOT need a lot of money in order to start podcasting. In this segment, I’m going to give you the bare bones, I gotta have this in order to get something laid down, period.
First, you need a good quality mic. Here’s what I recommend on the low end, the Logitech ClearChat Comfort/USB Headset H390 (Black) (My Amazon Affiliate Link)
It’s a great, USB microphone with some noise canceling chops in there that will give you some clarity in your voice and reduce the background noise. Like a bird that you inherited through marriage, for instance…
No, Im not bitter…
Seriously, that retails for between 25 and thirty bucks, and it’s a great mic if you can lay your hands on it.
Next, you need a program to record your voice. If you have a Mac, then you have GarageBand already built in, and it’s just fine. That’s what I use. Before I jumped this ship and went to a Mac, I used Audacity,
Audacity is free and open source, and is pretty much the go to for recording. In fact, I still use it in post production to tweak a few things because I find it easier to do there after I’ve exported my file from GarageBand. Since then, I’ve found a great new post production service that does all the work I took 45 minutes to do after recording, and this does it in five minutes. It’s called Auphonic, and it’s great. But, it costs some money if you go over two hours. If you only plan on doing less than two hours a month though, it’s free, and I highly recommend it to make sure your levels are even, and your podcasts comports to some pretty standard things. no hums or noise in the back ground that would set your listeners’ teeth on edge, for example. Or, the aforementioned parrot.
If you choose not to use a service like Auphonic, you still want to make sure your levels are even. There’s a great free program called the Levelator
It stopped being supported at the end of 2012, but it still does the job. So, for example, if you and another person do a show together, and your mic is really loud, and the other person can barely be heard at all, you export the file out of Audacity as a WAV file, drag it into Levelator, and it evens the levels out. My friend Loon and I have a running joke about me Levellating a file, which is not actually a word and something he reminded me of until I started referring to it as “That thing what ain’t a word.” Being an English Major, I believe he thought discretion was the bettor part of valor, lest I mangle more of the English language on purpose.
So, you’ve recorded a podcast, you’ve produced it, and you have a little piece of awesome hanging out there on your hard drive. Where no one can get to it. Now what? We need a place to PUT it so people can hear the precious, right?
wordpress.com gives you a little bit of space, about 3 GB on their default plan, and that’s enough to get you going. You can opt to buy more space there when you hit the upper limit, but Im hoping that you’ll find that having a CDN behind you will be the way to go. I recommend Libsyn.
It’s what I use, and I have never had an issue with them in the four years I’ve been with them. Their classic 50mb storage plan which renews monthly costs 5 bucks a month. 15 dollars will get you 250mb a month, plus you get stat reporting on that 15 dollar plan, whereas the 5 dollar plan you can opt for stats for two dollars more. In my opinion, I would go with Libsyn’s 15 dollar plan if you can swing it. We’ll talk more in detail about Content delivery networks in a later episode, but suffice it to say for now that it’s not important when you start, but it’s going to be if you grow.
Now you’ve got the post up. Now you have to tell people about it. That’s where social media comes in, but I’m gonna save that for later.
That’s the bare bones, I don't even have a pair of shoes, much less a shoestring, shoeless budget equipment guide to podcasting. Yes, It’s going to cost a little. But you wont break your back.
I started with a headset mic, a 486 PC, a free studio program, and a GeoCities Website back in the late nineties. This is near as I can get you to how I started. My point is, I did it for about the same price point, and if I lost it all tomorrow, this guide is exactly what I would get back to. Start here.
What in the ever loving hell is ‘impostor syndrome’?
Apparently this is a thing, but I’ve never heard of it until a few months ago. It’s thinking you don’t have the expertise to talk about something, because ‘other people can do it way better then I could’.
That may be true, but I do not want you to think that because someone else could do it better, that you shouldn’t try. You are a unique individual with a unique voice that some other guy doesn’t have. You have experience that other guy doesn’t have . You have the ability to make connections with people in a way the other guy can’t. There is no reason you can’t.
So get that word can’t out of your vocabulary. You can, you should, and if you feel that strongly about something, you MUST. We NEED you. You’re an important part of this rock we’re floating on, whether you think you are or not. I spent a long time thinking I had absolutely no purpose in life other than being a bad example. However, here’s what I found out: I have a pretty damn good life, good friends, I’m riddled with quirks and flaws, and I know just enough about a lot of things to be absolutely dangerous. Sure other people know a lot more than I do about a few things, and that’s fine. No one else has my voice, no one else has my perspective, and no one else has my life. I own this. You own what you have. We NEED you. Share it with us, and don’t pay any attention to that small voice in your head that says you can’t. Of course you can. Sunday Night I got up in front of a room full of people and made an ass out of myself for no other reason than it was FUN. A few years ago, I would have never even considered it. Turns out, I *love* karaoke. Sure, I can sing a little, but my steering wheel was my only audience for years. My wonderful friend Meri persuaded me to come out one night and do it once, and hey, what do you know, I love it. Sunday night, was a big night for me, because there was no mic stand, so I had nothing to hide behind. So I decided to cut loose. What was the worst that could happen? So l Iook like a gangly ass white man rapping a Prince song. So WHAT?
My wife was awesome and shot video of this to me. I cold have imported to my hard drive and deleted it. I chose to post it to my Facebook, because despite the fact that from my neck up I’m a rhythmic ball of fire, but from the neck down I dance like a head trauma victim, an amazing thing has happened in my life. I don’t care about someone else’s negativity, or how they could do it better. This was me, and every time I do something like that, the stick in my ass gets extricated just a little bit more. That’s not an epileptic fit you’re watching on that stage in that video, that’s a celebration.
It’s amazing how well you can do when you decide to not give a shit about how bad you might be.
So screw THAT noise. I gave you my noise instead, and it was awesome.
Now I want to hear yours. Step up.