Like most internal initiatives at Zooma, The Onlinification Pod started as an experiment. Founded on curiosity about what it takes to run a weekly podcast. Now two years later, it's time to reflect on the lessons learned.
At the beginning of 2020, we had carefully planned the first recording. We'd bought the equipment and hung curtains on the walls in a conference room, and we were just about to press the record button - but then, the pandemic started.
But suddenly, social distancing became a must, and all Zoomers started working from home. So we had to quickly change our plans and coordinate everything remotely from our very first episode.
Lesson 1: How to record remotely
The first episodes were recorded directly over Zoom, with both voice and video in the same file. Soon, we realised that poor internet connections risked the quality of the podcast. An unstable connection meant sudden disturbances in the recorded voice and video files, which resulted in a podcast that wasn't very pleasant to listen to. Then we discovered that Zoom had a feature to record separate audio tracks for each participant. This gave us more flexibility in the editing stage, but the audio quality still suffered if one of the participants' internet connections dropped out.
Podcasting with Zoom or Zencastr?
Soon after the launch of the podcast, I came across Zencastr. It's an all-in-one podcast platform with excellent audio quality. We tried it, and we loved it. With the user-friendly interface, you can save a lot of time on all your podcast needs, such as; recording, editing, and distributing. The main advantage is that during a recording session, the audio and video files are recorded locally, on the participants' computers, and then uploaded to Zencastr once the recording is over. This means you don't need to worry about interference or dropouts if someone has an unstable internet connection.
Zoom is great for meetings, but unlike Zencastr, it's not built specifically for podcasters. When it comes to audio quality and the recording experience, Zencastr is excellent. I can warmly recommend it to anyone who does remote recordings.
If you aim to publish one episode per week, record a bunch of them before you launch the pod.
Lesson 2: How to keep continuity
When I attended Inbound in Boston 2019, I got a good tip from a podcaster. If you aim to publish one episode per week, record a bunch of them before you launch the pod. Thus, we recorded the first ten episodes before launching The Onlinficiation Pod. It gave us plenty of time to plan for the next ten episodes while we grew the number of listeners.
Now and then, I schedule a four-hour recording day where I invite four guests to record four separate episodes. This is called batch recording and it's a fantastic time-saving technique for anyone who runs a weekly show.
Lesson 3: Where to edit your podcast
We have tried several tools for editing podcasts over the years, and we are still experimenting with new ones. However, we still haven't found any better than the powerful audio workstation, Adobe Audition. The downside is that there is a learning curve, but once you pass, you can create, mix, edit and restore all types of audio content.
Lesson 4: How to get more listeners for your podcast
We got listeners from the start, with many subscribers to our knowledge content. Since then, we've detected other hacks to increase the number of listeners.
Invite external guests
Every time we have an external guest, the number of listeners increases. It's an efficient way to reach an audience beyond your existing network. The external guests often promote the episode on their channels. Hopefully, new listeners will find other relevant episodes and, in no time, subscribe to your podcast.
Post audiograms on social media
An audiogram is an extract from the podcast. We usually edit a 1-minute teaser with voice, video, and subtitles. The number of listeners grows when posting an audiogram on LinkedIn and social media.
Don't wait until you have the perfect host, equipment, or studio.
Do you want to get started with your podcast?
If I could only share one piece of advice, it would be to start now and improve over time. Don't wait until you have the perfect host, equipment, or studio. Your potential and existing customers are ready to listen and consume the hidden knowledge within your organisation.
To make it easier for you, we have designed a Get started package, where we help you to plan, record, edit and distribute your first 10 podcast episodes. Click the button to learn more about the offering, and schedule a meeting with me.