SIBF 2020 social media workshop teaches podcast creation basics

Sharjah, November 8, 2020

As podcast listenership goes through the roof in the UAE, starting your own podcast whether to promote your business or just to connect with this growing audience, is a no-brainer, according to Narmeen Naser, host of The Dubai Jiggy Show.

At a social media session titled ‘How to Start Your Podcast’, held yesterday (Saturday) on the ‘Sharjah Reads’ virtual platform as part of the Sharjah International Book Fair 2020, Narmeen shared a basic guide to follow in order to start a podcast.

“First, come up with a concept for your podcast which should include a topic, name, format and target length for each episode,” she said. “Choose the category that best suits your theme from the many that are available – from the arts, to motivational topics, and comedy, among many others.”

The next step is choosing frequency. “You can do a daily, weekly or monthly podcast,” said Narmeen. “But the main thing is to be consistent. If you miss schedules, you will lose listeners, so choose one that you can keep up with.”

Explaining the different formats in which podcasts can be created, including long format interviews, solo commentaries, panel discussions, fictional or non-fictional storytelling or summaries such as book reviews, Narmeen noted, “The 20- to 30-minute podcasts are the ones that are most popular,” adding that creators do not require any special software to make them. “Just find a hosting service, download their app and you are ready to start recording using your mobile phone,” she added.

Narmeen advised new podcasters to start with free hosting services such as Anchor, “which allows you to set up an account and upload your podcast within half an hour.”

“You have to design your podcast cover art and write a description to brand it. Don’t skimp on the description – include as many relevant keywords as possible,” she further explained.

For editing the content, the expert recommended free software options like Audacity, which is a viable alternative to paid, premium audio editing software.

Recording an intro and outro for the podcast is equally important, she said. “Having both for each episode of your podcast adds flair and personality. Usually, they are short voiceovers with intro music played in the background while the podcast title, episode number, the host, and the hook or tagline of the podcast are being introduced.”

“Finally, after uploading the podcast, advertise it through a newsletter on social media, and tag interested people and friends to grow your listenership,” Naser concluded.

Organised by Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), SIBF 2020 concludes on November 14. Being held under the theme, ‘The World Reads from Sharjah’, the 39th edition has adopted a fully digital format to host its cultural and social media programme of 64 unique events, which are being streamed on SBA’s virtual platform over the 11 days of the fair. Register for upcoming discussions at sharjahreads.com.  

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