• V.P Colombo

5 steps to create your first podcast

Everyone around me constantly raves about podcasts. They listen to them in their car – I don’t drive –, at the gym – I take dance classes – so I had never heard one until I started a unit about social media at Deakin University.

There’s no lecture for this unit, just our unit chair delivering a podcast about our weekly topic, a Youtube video usually on technical aspects, as well as a zoom session with fellow students and a lovely tutor. Surprisingly or not, our last assignment was to create a five-minute podcast. Here’s how:

1. Find a topic:

I chose to talk about online activism, as I’ve been part of a few hashtag campaigns; I signed a few online petitions, but mostly as I’ve been active online about marriage equality because my dear neighbours, in love for fifty years, weren’t allowed to marry. I used my experience to illustrate a broader understanding of what online activism is.

2. Find a source to legitimate your opinion:

It could be interviewing someone in the field or quoting a specialist. I chose to quote a sentence which gave a definition of online activism – from a chapter on digital activism that I researched on Deakin online library – not only to illustrate my argument but also to challenge it.

3. Create your podcast:

- Write a draft or an outline of what you want to say – but if like me English is not your first language, plan your podcast word for word.

- Upload and/or test your recording application. It could be your phone’s inbuilt recorder or an application you find online. I chose Audacity as it was recommended by our unit chair and tutors – and it’s free.

- I used some music to begin and close my podcast – because it’s what you do to make it more appealing – you know, like a generic. I’ve been very careful using only Creative Commons licensed music – you don’t want to be sued for copyright infringement, do you? They’re easy to find on Soundcloud. I’ve downloaded many and it took me a few hours to decide which one I liked the most, I loved Elexive’s energy.

- Find a title for your podcast which gives the gist of your topic, like How I became an activist without leaving my couch. I nailed this title :P

- Once it’s done, export your podcast to a MP3 file.

4. Create your podcast channel:

It’s pretty straightforward. You go to Soundcloud and create an account.

At first, I named mine V.P Colombo, to be coherent with all my social media accounts, but thinking about it: who would listen to my podcast just on my name – which is not famous yet? So, I decided to be creative and to find a name which would more or less encapsulate what/who I am. I’m originally French, I’m a writer, and I’m short: Little French Writing Hood it is.

Like on any social media account you want to have a profile picture. There’s nothing putting me off more than picture-less accounts, they’re so impersonal. I stayed coherent and used my go to photo; but I also used a cover picture because I like that.

5. Upload your podcast…

…and it’s done. Just click on the upload button, write the title, in the description add the references you used – including music –, add some hashtags and you’re good to go.

What I learnt:

- Five minutes is very short. I intended to interview Peter, but that wasn’t realistic in the time frame I had. I decided to tell the story and quote them instead.

- A podcast should sound like a conversation, but with my strong accent, I chose to read slowly and emphasise every word so my audience would understand me.

- It’s time consuming and nerve wrecking at times. I recorded and deleted the same sentences dozens of times to get them intelligible.

- Plan, plan, plan!

Now it’s your turn :)

References Miku, B, Vega, D 2014, Digital Activism: A Contemporary Overview, Revista de Stiinte Politice, Issue 44, pp 103-112

Music: Elexive Valley Santa released by Argofox

Photo by: Untamed by Clémence

About Peter & Bon

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