Valerie Geller is a broadcasting consultant and author of four books including the recently published Beyond Powerful Radio. An expert in her field, she creates models and gives excellent guidance to broadcasters using the radio medium. We recently spoke to the lovely Valerie about podcasting, and she gave some great pointers for new podcasters. We’ll be sharing them through the new few days, and you can start reading the first batch of advice below:
Niche podcasting: Podcasting is great in the narrowcasting market. Narrowcasting you say? Yes, instead of broadcasting, narrowcasting allows for shows about specialized interests. Podcasting allows you to be much more focused on specific topics and themes, and gain listeners that are looking for just that.
Be a storyteller: Speak visually and paint pictures in order to tell the story. Take into consideration how the information you want to spread will affect the listener, and how you would tell this to a friend.
Engage the audience: Tell the truth and never be boring. Ask yourself: how would you interest someone in something they weren’t interested in before? It’s all about communicating on a human level. Being passionate will pull at anyone’s heartstrings, whether or not you have a “golden voice,” so make sure you’re actually interested in what you’re talking about. You don’t necessarily need to be a natural-born talent as long as you apply a technique and model to your programming.
Should you keep opinions to yourself? That depends on the kind of podcast it is. Generally, when it comes to news journalism, it’s best to be objective, but let listeners have an idea of what you think about it, so as not to come off as an actor or parrot. Entertainment journalism, however, calls for opinionated hosts and it helps make a good story.
Listen Simple as that. It is just as important to tell a story as it is to keep your ears open to your fans, participants, and guests you interview.
Don’t make it all about “ME” It’s a trap a lot of podcasters fall for. Take the focus off off “me,” the host, and switch it to “you,” the listener. Speak to one individual and propose ideas by stating “have you ever…”. It’s not “we have a ticket contest coming up,” it’s “you can win these tickets to this awesome concert.”
For more information check out Valerie’s book Beyond Powerful Radio, and stay tuned for more tips throughout the week!