If you’re ready to get started with podcasting, but aren’t sure how to structure a program, you’re not alone. Millions of people figure that with this type of audio communication, you simply turn on the microphone and get to work. That’s not always how this works, and you’ll find that to be true within a few short attempts at creating a podcast today. If you’re struggling to figure out the basics, don’t panic, there are a few things that you can do to get going forward with this type of work today. The following will detail what you need to work with in order to structure a good showing today.

The Introduction

The first thing that you should consider is how you’re going to introduce your show. Will you go from dead air to just talking? Will you have an introduction with music? How about an explanation of what your show is, and what episode it may be? Think about the introduction like you would a television show or a radio program. Before the actual content, you will get a few seconds of information to tell you what you’re listening to, the date, or perhaps focus on the hosts or any number of elements overall. The introduction can be simple, or you could outsource it to someone that can make you one with music, and more. Think about this carefully, as it could very well become how you open the show every single time you upload a finished file.

Music Elements

Moving away from the introduction, consider a few elements of interest regarding music. Music is a big component of what you may want to do with a podcast. Whether you want to play your favorite artists, or feature a song in the introduction, you will run into problems with music because of licensing.

If you don’t have the license to play music, you cannot. You cannot just pick your favorite song and have it in your podcast without consent. Consider a few finer points to this, because this is a major aspect of podcasting today.

Licensing For Music

The first thing you will need to look into is licensing music. There are a lot of ways that you can do this, but it usually means contacting the record label or artist directly. In most instances, you will not get permission outright. You may have to pay a “per use” element. This could cost you a pretty penny. There are some independent artists that won’t care, and will say yes, and will even shout out your podcast. This is rare. However, you can’t go wrong with asking.

Royalty Free Options

"Royalty Free Music"The next option that you need to consider is that of royalty free music. This is one of the best things that you can invest in, because it costs you nothing. Royalty free solutions will not cost you anything, you don’t have to ask for permission, and often, you may not have to credit the source. This can be limited, however, as you’ll have to look into musical catalogs that may not fit what you want. This is free, but the quality isn’t always great.

Of course, you could always pay a musician or an artist to create your theme song, introduction, or feature their work. However, you will need to ask about budgeting constraints, and contracts.

The Outro

How will you end the podcast? Will you just cut to dead air? Will you have music? This is something that you need to consider before launching, as it’s going to determine how you leave your listeners. In most instances, an outro song can be played, or a farewell message can be recorded and added to every upload.

Length of Podcast

How long should your podcast be? At first, you may go long form, but over time, you may not have that much to talk about, which is tough to determine at first. Test the waters and start with an allotted time, and see how far you can go with talking. If you can go an hour or two with no breaks, then go for it. However, if you find that your listeners don’t like this, or you aren’t getting much traction cut it down a bit. Some podcasters put up 30 minutes of content and others go 3 hours and longer. It’s up to you how you want to frame your show.

Post Production

One last note, you should consider post production. Audio quality, troubleshooting, recording, and more will require a bit of work after the fact. With that in mind, you should pick a good audio editing software to help you with this, or hire someone to do the post production. Either way, you’ll need to make sure that your final file is optimized, and without errors.

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