Michelle Sullivan Communications

Podcamp Toronto : Corporate podcasting best practices

Donna Papacosta is leading this roundtable discussion on corporate podcasting. The session has attracted some 20-odd participants, may of which come from the non-profit or community sectors.

Some key points raised during the discussion :

  • A podcast seems to be an easier sell than a blog – companies relate podcasts to radio shows and so grasp the value much more easily.
  • It seems easier to sell podcasts as a turnkey solution, rather than expecting corporations to get into editing and other complex technical aspects of podcasting.
  • It’s important to get to the fundamental emotional impact of a story. ‘There has to be some skin in the game’.
  • You have to be willing to ask people to restart their interview or do it over until the essential message comes through. The second interview is usually tighter, but sometimes the first off the cuff version is better.
  • Use the first questions to warm up the interview subject. The stuff in the middle can often be the best content.
  • The problem with interviewing people who have never been interviewed before, is that they don’t have sound bites. You have to plan on a lot of postproduction in those cases.
  • Don’t sell the subscription value of podcasts. People don’t understand it. The basic concept of ‘radio on the internet’ works best.
  • Doing a limited series podcast is a good way to dip your toe into the space before you’re totally convinced.
  • Without scripting your interviews, be sure you spend a few minutes going over what is going to be covered. Getting a few key messages down helps structure the podcast and makes editing easier.
  • ROI and metrics : it’s possible to measure your downloads, but perhaps more difficult to predict the impact ahead of time. Print, for example, has distribution statistics. It’s important to convince clients of the value of quality, rather than quantity.
  • It’s important to use common language and use examples (ex : GM and Diggnation)
  • Metrics can revolve around the discussion generated on the Internet. How many bloggers wrote about a podcast? What does Technorati have to say about the splash made in the marketplace?
  • Icerocket.com + Google search = good search engine for blogs
  • Return on Attention = a good way of selling social media

Endorsements in the Social Media age

In today’s blog, Donna Papacosta has publicly endorsed Tod Maffin, sharing information about his newest presentation, Recruiting in the Facebook Generation, with her readers. She describes him as a futurist, (…) brilliant and (…) funny as hell.

The immediacy of blog publication makes the already supportive environment of the social media community so easy.

So, I’ve decided to keep the cycle going.

Yesterday, I sat in on Donna’s podcasting Webinar. Fantastic introduction to the world of podcasting by a highly respected mover-and-shaker. Donna’s podcasts and blog are always full of interesting tips and tricks, most notably her checklist for podcasters, a must-read for anyone thinking about dipping a toe in the podcasting pool.

Donna, who is based in Southern Ontario, offers customized workshops to communicators and companies interested in exploring the social media landscape.

A very classy lady.

Blog post of the Day : Donna Papacosta

I first met Donna Papacosta last June, at PAB2007 in Kingston. I was struggling with my Internet connection and she came over to offer her help. I looked up gratefully, thinking I was miraculously about to get back online, but instead received even more valuable advice about podcasting basics.

Today, Donna has posted a great checklist for beginning podcasters in her blog, Trafcom News.

Definitely worthy of a chapter in the ever-growing collection of tips and tricks I’m calling my Podcaster’s Bible.