As a digital nerd, I had the time of my life trying to figure out how I was going to make this podcast happen without spending a ton of money on it.
First up, I didn’t want to have to schlep around heavy equipment, because recording a podcast show was only one of many things I do as an on-the-go entrepreneur. I try to keep my baggage light, and filled with only the essentials. The most important items to make that list are an iPad, an iPhone and the light version of the MacBook. Some quick internet reading told me that I basically need a good mic, a decent pop filter, a recorder and a mixer. For the digital recorder, I had the best possible amateur devices – the iPad and the iPhone. Pop filters are brilliant and cheap. I had picked one up on Amazon that had a clip a while back. This I could fix it in front of the mic anywhere to filter out the pops and hisses. I visited the local Apple store to find a good mic accessory for my iPad/iPhone. Something that had a low footprint, but packed a punch. I settled on the Shure Motiv MV88 Digital Stereo Condenser Mic because it was nice and small, and with the lightning connector I didn’t need any additional cables or accessories to connect it to my iOS devices. What I didn’t realize before buying it was that it came with its own pop-filter and a very handy case. I love this little device so much, I ended buying a second to record video too! But more on that some other time.
The last remaining item on my shopping list was a mixer. iOS comes with its own mixer called the GarageBand. It was a bit too complex for my podcasting needs. I researched this a little bit more, and the podcasting oracles claimed that the Ferrite app on iOS was the next best thing since sliced bread. I agree! It has a relatively simple interface and connects with apps like Google Drive. You can create multiple tracks. So for instance, you can set an intro and outro for the season, and then add it into every episode without having to re-record it every time. It gives you some mixing options to level out any issues with sound quality as you record the different pieces. It also allows you to trim and split, so you can edit out any problem areas in the middle of your audio clip as needed. I found the learning curve to be very manageable with Ferrite. But I wasn’t completely happy with recording directly in there. Initially, I’d use the voice memos app to record the audio. But it doesn’t allow great control. And as I got more familiar with the process of recording a show, I wanted to be able to control quality going in, to reduce the editorial burden later on. At this time I realized that I had completely missed the main attraction of the Shure mic – it came with its own recording app! The ShurePlus Motiv app lets you control any mic gain issues going in, so you can set things up to sound right before you start recording.
As any content amateur knows, the more channels you distribute your content across the better your metrics. I chose to invest in an annual subscription to SoundCloud. And being an app designer, I already had a business iTunes account to which I was able to send the SoundCloud feed. Stitcher is on my wish-list, but the process is very similar to SoundCloud, so that shouldn’t take long to set up.
If you really want to get your voice “heard” on the internet – pun intended – its best to accompany your show with something your audience can read. Especially if every episode is in the neighborhood of 30 minutes in length. I chose to publish show notes on Medium, the most popular blogging platform in current times. I love the simple interface, and given I’ve been an amateur blogger for over a decade now, the learning curve was very flat.
Hope this gives you the confidence to start recording your own show. I’d be happy to answer any questions or walk you through my process. Write to me at email@example.com. I’d love to hear from you.
Starting Trouble is a podcast show about women entrepreneurs, professionals and leaders. It came about as a response to the limited narrative about women that has become the staple of popular media, thanks in part to the campaign rhetoric of the last election season.