Some people say a podcast is just a few dudes chatting in the basement. They’re wrong. If you want to grow your following and have a professional-sounding show, you need to invest in audio gear, learn editing techniques, and find ways to improve your audio constantly.
Here we’re going to give you a few easy-to-follow tips to help you achieve that. Podcasting is a lot of fun, and if you follow these steps, anyone can sound like a pro.
1. Get an Intro and an Outro
You should hire someone to record an intro and an outro to your show. An intro sets the mood for your show and gives it a professional edge. Use it to greet your listeners, introduce the hosts, and provide them with a taste of what’s to come.
Your outro is where you thank your sponsors and call for feedback. This gives your listeners an easy way to interact with you and lets them know how to support you professionally.
Both your intro and outro should be short and to the point. People have short attention spans, so if you don’t grab them in the first 5 seconds, they’ll click off before you even finish.
2. Record in Quiet Area of your Home
Many people make the mistake of recording in a noisy, busy area. This will give you background noise that sounds amateurish. The best place to record is in a quiet area. A basement or a spare room works best. You can also record in your car if you can park in a quiet place and the windows are rolled up.
However, the best places to record are soundproof rooms. The best ones are closed-door workplaces like a studio or an office. If you have access to one of those, then all the better.
Set Up the Room for Absorption and Diffusion
You want to set up the room in a way that dampens the noise. If you have soundproofing foam, lay it on the walls and ceiling. You can also use egg crate foam or other materials to absorb the sound if you don’t have any of that. This will ensure that you get a crisp, clean sound when recording.
If you want to kill two birds with one stone, get some acoustic fabric panels and hang them on the walls in your studio. The fabric panels are soundproof and also spread the sound out evenly.
3. Quote Reputable Sources
No one likes a show that has a shallow or misinformed opinion. If you want to sound professional, quote reputable sources and give your listeners the facts. You can use Wikipedia as a great place to find information. You can also get ideas from major news outlets and organizations like the CDC, AHA, etc.
Don’t just copy and paste verbatim from Wikipedia. Instead, make sure to paraphrase and use your own words. Quoting sources is a great way to give yourself credibility in your listeners’ eyes.
The purpose of the quotes is to support your claim. If you provide a good source, your listeners will be more likely to trust you and accept what you say. It’s all about building trust with your listeners. You can’t do that without providing reputable sources.
4. Adjust Your Tone
You should always try to sound professional. If you want to sound like a journalist, use a neutral tone of voice. If you want to sound conversational, use an informal tone. If you’re interviewing someone, use a formal tone. If you’re reading over a script, it’s good to go back and forth between informal and formal.
You don’t want to sound like you’re delivering your script from memory. Your listeners need to feel like they’re having a conversation with you. This is one of the reasons why many people get into podcasting. They want to meet new people and learn about new things. Having a standard, neutral tone will help you do that.
The tone you use is also a considerable part of your show’s flow. If you’re talking about technology and you’re using an informal tone, it might lead your listeners to believe that you think technology is a joke. This will annoy them, and they’ll tune out.
Warm-up your Voice
It’s also essential to warm up your voice before recording. Do vocal exercises like humming or singing a song to find your “forehead voice.” This is the best tone for podcasting. You don’t want to sound too high, and you don’t want to sound too low.
What you’re trying to do is find your “me” sound. This is the tone that you use when speaking to someone in a conversational way. It’s only a neutral tone because it’s not too high or too low.
This is something you should do before recording every episode. If you do it before every recording, you’ll find that it comes more naturally to you. It’s also important to drink plenty of water and clear your throat before recording. That way, your voice will be clear, and you’ll have fewer mistakes in the edit.
5. Experiment Indirect Microphone
This is a technique that you can use to enhance the sound of your voice. If you’re not yet pro at audio editing or just want to improve the sound quality of your podcast, then you should experiment with indirect microphone placement.
The purpose of this technique is to lessen the echo in your voice. Unfortunately, the echo will make your voice sound hollow and distant, which is not an excellent way to start a podcast. It also makes your voice sound shaky and stilted.
You use this technique by moving the microphone away from your mouth. Instead, move it to a point behind you that’s about 30 inches from your mouth. This is something you can do on either side of the mic stand.
6. Input Levels Make Sure Set at Right Levels
You should always ensure your input levels are set at the right levels. You don’t want to have too much gain, and you don’t want to have too little gain. This will make your audio too loud or too quiet.
When recording, try to keep the gain at a 6 to 12 dB range. That way, you won’t have an over-leveled or an under-leveled audio file. You should also not have loud noises in your recording. This includes things like heavy breathing, coughing, and other noises.
If you have heavy breathing in your recording, it’s not the end of the world. But there are ways to get rid of all those noises. You can use editing tools to cut out all those noises and make your voice sound clear.
7. Record High-Resolution Audio Files
Most people think that audio quality doesn’t matter for a podcast. But if you want to sound professional, you need to record in high-resolution audio files. This is important because this will increase the clarity of your voice.
This will also make your voice sound better. This will give you more room to work with once you start editing. You can go back and do volume modification, bring out the highs and lows of your voice, etc. This will make your voice sound better if you record in high resolution.
High-resolution audio means that you should record at a minimum of 16 bit or 24 bit. This will increase the quality of your audio file. The way you determine whether you’re recording in high resolution is by looking at your audio editing software. It should tell you what resolution you’re recording in.
8. Get a Better sounding Mic
If you’re serious about podcasting, then you need to upgrade your equipment. You need to get a proper mic and not just use your laptop’s built-in mic. You can also get a good condenser microphone for your computer.
The best way to get a good sound is to use an XLR microphone. An XLR mic is a standard for recording a podcast in a professional setting. That’s because it has better quality, more gain and you can use it with various external microphones. It’s also suitable for podcast recording because you can use it with different software applications.
You should also get a pop filter. This will help reduce the background noise in your recording. A pop filter is a mesh screen or fabric placed over the mic. This will help minimize popping. You should avoid touching the mic when you’re recording, and you should also adjust the mic stand, so it’s not too close to your mouth.
Podcasting is a great way to promote your business, educate the public, and get the word out about a product. You must make sure you’re doing it right; otherwise, it’s not going to work.
You need to get the right equipment, the right microphone, and learn how to use it. You also have to make sure that your recording environment is conducive to podcasting. You need to understand how your microphone works so you can produce quality podcasts that will keep your listeners coming back for more.