“If only someone would give me a chance, I know I would do great.”
I hear this all the time from folks who want to be sports talk show hosts. They’re all the next Dan Patrick, Colin Cowherd or Jim Rome. All they need is for some sports radio PD somewhere to give them a chance.
Instead of complaining about it, do something about it. Create for yourself the opportunity you seek to put your money where your mouth is. Podcast. It’s a great, easy and inexpensive way to hone your skills and demonstrate why you are sports talk radio’s next big star.
Have a narrow focus
Choose a subject about which you are passionate and then create a niche within that subject. There are thousands of podcasts about the NBA. It will be nearly impossible to stand out above the noise. Instead, focus on a narrow segment of the NBA. For example, players from the state of Pennsylvania or from the Colonial Athletic Association.
Don’t be lazy
Put the same effort into your podcast as you would if you were broadcasting on ESPN Radio. Have a pre-produced show open, use branding and teasing, use actualities, develop topics, etc. Always give your best because you never know who is listening.
Content is king
If you are producing creative, entertaining and unique content, word will spread and people will find you.
Keep it short
It’s easier to create 15 minutes of great sports programming than an hour’s worth. It’s also a good length for your sportscasting demo.
Use a good mic
Nobody will stick around to hear your great content if the audio quality is crap. The Plantronics headset mic and the Blue Yetti with USB connection are both good. Rode Podcaster make good mics as well.
Go into the closet
If you’re recording at home, record inside your wardrobe closet. All of your hanging shirts and slacks make for great sound absorption. It’s your new home studio.
Your audience doesn’t want to always here just you. Occasionally feature guests on your podcast. Use Skype to record the calls. PowerGrammo can improve the audio quality of your Skype call. Pamela is a service that offers free Skype call recording.
Choose a good host service
Shout Engine is an easy to use podcast hosting provider. Libsyn is another and is very affordable. Podomatic is also worth checking out.
Create a new podcast at least once a week. If you are hit and miss with your publishing, folks won’t take you seriously.
Use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and other social media options to tell the world about the great content you are creating. Let everyone know each time you publish a new episode. Put it on your personal website or STAA Talent Page. Also be active in the communities you are discussing. If your podcast is about Colonial Athletic Association players in the NBA, contribute in CAA forums and post the link to your podcast in your automatic signature.
Don’t expect to make money
Even the biggest celebrities make very little money by podcasting. Do it because you want to polish your broadcasting skills, create some demo material and build your personal brand.
Now go create some great content!