As an author, you can make readers laugh, cry, and touch their hearts with your words…so why not use your voice to do the same?
You can, and audio is so much more intimate, especially when you’re authentic and honest. Your listeners get a feel for who you are and what you’re like. You can bond and connect with them, which will make them care more about your books.
It’s like sitting down to coffee with them one-on-one. And now more than ever, many authors are doing it and it’s more than just audiobooks.
Podcasting can help you become more of an authority in your space. You can also create goodwill by offering free, valuable information, and your listeners can more easily be converted to customers because they will become like friends.
The great part about this type of podcast is you don’t have to spend as much time creating content. It’s already been done. You just need to take it and re-package using your own voice.
Audio and podcasts are the perfect media for connecting and learning, and they are the perfect media for these unprecedented times. This pandemic has increased the need to talk things out, soothe anxieties and many may find comfort in audiobooks and podcasts.
As people continue to stay at home and hunker down as the winter winds blow, spoken-word media will play a bigger part in our daily lives. More people want to consume it and more people want to be part of it.
“Mass media has been replaced by niche media”
Think about it, new authors such as Will Smith are traveling to large venues to talk about and read excerpts from their books, but not every author has that luxury, therefore, creating a podcast is the next best thing.
You will get to promote your book without leaving the comfort of your home or podcasting studio. This is yet another way to broaden your brand and expand your exposure online.
Also, if you’re an editor, a copywriter or a publishing agent, you can provide incredible content to educate writers on how to become successful authors.
Podcasting for Authors: Getting Started
Set a clear goal
The best thing you can do is set a clear, specific goal in the beginning. Think about your audience, who are your readers as they will become your listeners.
For example, your goal might be: I will curate and discuss popular fantasy content for young adult fantasy readers, and in doing so, grow an audience for my own fantasy books.
The more specific you can be, the better.
Find your listeners
Next, you need to find where those people currently hang out.
The easiest place to begin your search is online. When starting a new podcast, listen to similar podcasts that are successful.
When you find your potential audience, hang out where they hang out. It could be online communities, social media, forums or networking events, you need to become a member of those groups; learn who your audience is and be where there are.
Listen to your people
As you’re learning who your audience is and what they want or need, one thing to consider is how much free time your audience actually has. This will help you determine the frequency and length of your podcast episodes, how long will each chapter or episode be.
Perhaps your fans like long-form content and will listen for an hour or more, or would they prefer bite-sized pieces of information more frequently so creating 15-30 minute shows might work better. You can get great ideas from successful podcasts that are similar to yours, which is a great way to start.
Practice, Practice, Practice equals Progress
Will you just read directly from the book, or perhaps add some Q&A – create an outline – practice, practice, practice will equal progress.
You will need good audio/mic and room or studio location
You want to eliminate the echo because sound bounces off anything that is flat and/or shiny. Surfaces such as hardwood or tile floors, windows, walls, dressers, desks, and others which can make the audio sound bad.
You should be in a room that has carpet, drapes, art on the walls, and plenty of furniture. If that isn’t an option, you can lay down throw rugs, hang pictures or blankets on the wall and close the drapes or curtains.
If your mic is sitting on a smooth surface like a table or desk, you should spread a towel out under it or using a Boom Arm works great in situations like this.
If you’ve tried these things and you’re still getting an echo and/or changing your location isn’t an option, you can add some professional acoustic treatment like wall tiles or booth. Or you could also build a blanket fort, like we did as kids with blankets over chairs or a folding table – remember no one is actually going to SEE how ridiculous you look.
Experiment but do what works best for you, and don’t forget to turn off the air conditioner or heater while you’re recording!
You can also sign up for studio time at Blake’s Booth Podcasting Studio at H.O.M.E. For less than $50/hour you can record your book in a few sessions depending on the length of the book.