Right now finding a job, or getting ahead is harder for the young professional than it has ever been. Employers only want to hire workers with direct experience in a position, advancement opportunities have slimmed and finding new ways to show off your skills to employers is more important than ever. If you're ready to show your stuff there are a lot of things you could do, volunteer for a new project or get more training, but most of those things require having a job already or a serious commitment of time and money. What can you do if you're short on money and employment. For some of you a podcast is a real option.
Why a Podcast?
A podcast gives you a way to keep your name out there, even when you are not practicing in your field. It gives you a chance to explore topics that your day to day job may not allow you to and show off your expertise. A good podcast, as long as it is in an area relevant to your work, can be a great way to let employers get to know you. Think of it as part of your marketing package. A part that other job seekers may not have, and that gives you an advantage.
I'm going to spare you the eye-glazing details about your many podcast creation options, and just show you the fastest and least expensive way to create your podcast with the following steps.
- Create a topic that is relevant to your job (or desired job) that is focused enough to be coherent, but broad enough to last over time. We will talk more about this one later on.
- Make a Blogger Blog. They're free and if you have any Google accounts already you won't event have to sign up. Just click on the "Create a blog" link on the home page and fill out the simple form.
- Create your first episode. If you have a Mac you already have all of the software that you need to do this in Garage Band. If you have a PC then you can download software like Audacity to get the job done. If you didn't save your file as an Mp3 you are going to have to convert it. This can be done in iTunes.
- Attach your podcast to a blog post. Do not use this blog for anything else but podcasts. Once your first file is attached should grab the RSS feed for the site. The easiest way to find this is to visit the blogs homepage and click on the RSS icon. Then take the URL of the site you are brought to.
- Now you can submit that URL to podcast aggregation services. It is best to wait until you have a few episodes before you submit to iTunes, their vetting service is pretty stringent.
A word on music. If you want songs for breaks, or for your theme you should do a Google on the term "Podsafe Audio" or "Public domain music", since using songs off the radio (or your favorite tunes) is a law suit waiting to happen. Yes, NPR does it on the This American Life podcast, but they have the budget to pay for the songs and the lawyers to claim fair use.
What Do I Talk About?
If you're having trouble finding a balance between focus and broadness in your topic than have no fear. You have two options. The first is to get onto iTunes and look at existing podcasts to see how they define their focus. The most popular podcasts have this down to a fine art. The second choice is to sit down with a pen and paper. If you can come up with at least a years worth of posts, without going off track you might have something. If you can show that list to someone else and they correctly guess what the podcast would be about then the focus is just right.
Post by Katie Gatto