Planning a podcast
First, check out the sections in Digital Storytelling about planning and scripting digital stories.
Even if you are planning on doing a long-form interview or speaking without a script for the majority of your podcast there may be sections of it that would benefit from being scripted, like your introduction to your guest, the intro to yourself/podcast, and any closing statements you may need to remember to make (like "tune in next week!" or "we post podcasts the 2nd Tuesday of every month on our website"). Plan and write these messages out beforehand so they are ready to go for your recording sessions.
If you are planning on having a guest on the show think about how you will make them comfortable. Would it be worth it to meet informally beforehand so you can talk about your show a little bit and what you are both hoping to get out of the recording session? Meeting beforehand can also help guests feel more relaxed and prepared to talk than just sitting them down in front of a microphone.
If you are going to be doing an interview, have your questions prepped and ready, but also be mindful of your guest and responsive to their answers. A quick fire interview through a list of questions can make it hard for a guest to feel listened to and can be boring for listeners as well.
Recording a podcast
We have a recording studio in Bartle library that students, faculty, and staff may use. You can sign up to use it through Binghamton Library's study room reservations or reach out to the digital scholarship team and we can reserve it for you.
Microphone: The recording studio has Blue SnoBall Microphones you may use
We also recommend the Blue Yeti microphone if you are looking for slightly better quality
You can also always record on your laptop(if it has a built in microphone) or your phone!
Try a couple short takes on any new equipment you have not used for recording before to test how well it dampens surrounding noise and also picks up your voice.
Quiet space: The other important piece of equipment you'll need is a quiet space. If you can find a mostly quiet space, take a few minutes to just record the room, no talking, and you'll be able to edit out any constant ambient noise later on.
It may seem silly, but sitting under blankets, in a closet full of clothes, or in an otherwise small space full of noise dampening things can help your voice and podcast sound clearer and cleaner.
Software: Your laptop or phone often have built in audio recorders that you can use and may even have some basic editing features. You may also choose to use specialty software. In the recording studio we have Audacity and REAPER available for you to use. You can learn more about those programs in the editing tab of this section
Editing a Podcast
Free to download and use Audacity is a robust program offering a lot of features. It may take some experimenting and trail and error to get the handle of editing, but in general the program is beginner friendly and easy to use.
OcenAudio is the most beginner friendly program in this list, but it also has the least amount of features. If you only have one audio file that you need to quickly edit OcenAudio might be a good option for you, but if you want to layer in any kind of sound (music, sound effects, a second speaker) one of the other programs would be best.
Reaper is a professional program that the libraries has bought a license for. It has a steep learning curve, but more features than Audacity. If you are more interested in editing music than podcasts Reaper might be a program you want to check out.
If you need help getting started on any of these programs reach out to the digital scholarship team for a consultation!
The Orb is Binghamton's public open repository that can house a variety of publications, projects and media. If you are interested in hosting your podcast on a publicly available site with built in SEO features that often appear on the front page of Google Searches contact ORB@binghamton.edu to learn more about setting up a project page for your podcast episodes
Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher are all sites where you can upload your podcast episodes so they are more discoverable. If you need help managing your podcast across platforms there are paid services like Buzzsprout that will automate some of those tasks.
If you have the time and interest creating your own website around you podcast can help give it more of a personalized identity and landing space for visitors to learn more about what the podcast is about and the host(meaning you!). A website is also a good place to host transcripts of episodes, additional resources listeners may be interested in, and maybe even a place for feedback. If you are curious about creating your own website reach out to the Digital Scholarship team, we'd be happy to help you get started!