So far in our “traffic” series, we’ve discussed using blogs to get traffic to your squeeze page, and getting traffic to your blog. We also covered article distribution. This time, I’d like to touch on podcasting, another great way to get traffic and be list building. What is podcasting? It’s a recorded message that can be done whenever you feel like creating a podcast or regularly, as in the form of a radio show. If you hate to write, podcasting is definitely an alternative to writing articles and blogging.
First get yourself a great headset to use with your computer. Be sure that it’s comfortable and that the sound it transfers is clear. Most of them will probably be acceptable, and it’s all up to you how much you want to spend. Got to Amazon.com or eBay and plug in “headset” and you’ll find a variety to choose from. Of course, if you’d like to shop the traditional way, any store that carries electronics should have them MP3 Youtube.
Your next step is to look into recording software. There are too many variations to go into here, but the good news is that some of it is free to try, while other programs are just plain free. Study your options and find the interface that works best for you because some programs are more user-friendly than others. Some will also allow you to edit your file, while some will only record. You’ll probably need to edit your soundtrack at times, so be sure to consider this. Usually, small mistakes don’t matter and can even add to the spontaneity of the recording. That’s great because it makes people feel more as though they’re listening to you live. Just don’t allow glaring errors to stand or you’ll look unprofessional.
Not having a clear plan of action when recording will not make your recording popular, either. Write a simple outline for yourself, or create a mindmap. Just give yourself some path to follow or you’ll be rambling information that may not gel. Don’t make your outline too narrow or detailed or it will inhibit your creativity. Just give yourself a general direction to follow. But you can always edit the content later on.
You may also need to edit for length. You really don’t want a podcast to be too long. We Internet folks have rather short attention spans. A podcast shouldn’t be more than about half an hour, but the closer you can take it to 15 minutes is probably better. It just depends on how great the information you have is and how long it will hold a listener’s attention. If you have someone incredible that you’re interviewing, you can probably get away with more than half an hour. Keep your podcasts between about 5 minutes and 30 minutes and you’ll do fine.
After everything is recorded and edited, you’ll need to turn your file into an .mp3 if it isn’t already in that format. Again, you can find file converters online. Go to one of the software download sites like Tucows.com or plug .mp3 converter into Google and see what you find. You need an .mp3 format for Apple iPods because that’s the platform they run on, hence the name for your broadcast—podcast.
Once your file is an .mp3, you’re ready to upload to Google Base, Sweetwater, and iTunes, but there are lots of places that accept podcast files. They’re kind of like Ezine Articles for articles or YouTube for videos. The main issue for podcasters is having a place to store the large files that podcasts generate. If you want to host and store your own podcasts, then you’ll need a hosting account with plenty of capacity. Otherwise, find a site that houses the podcast files for you. Once that’s all settled, don’t forget to upload the podcasts to your blog, too.
Podcasts can also have RSS feeds and you can set one up at FeedBurner, just as you might for your blog. The main issue with feeds for podcasts is having the right ID3 tags, which are just like META tags, but for podcasts rather than web pages. ID3 tags include keywords pertaining to your topic, and you should research them just as you would keywords for your website or for articles, your blog, or videos.
This quick primer is really only scratching the surface when it comes to podcasting, but it’s a great traffic source that you shouldn’t overlook for your squeeze page and it will increase your opt-ins. Take some time to decide what you might like to podcast about, and then, have fun!