« List Week: 3 "Podcast" Word Alternatives | Main | Podcast Expo Round Ups »

Oct 1
A Microphone Does Not a Consultant Make
Donna Papacosta has recently written about podcast consultants and how to gauge them. As we all know, one of the great joys of my life is the maintenance of my Snake Oil category in which I list so-called podcast gurus that, after some cursory investigation, turn out to have little or no actual podcast experience.

Donna goes one step further and suggests that even if a potential consultant does podcast, that's probably not enough.

...I believe a podcast consultant should have experience in business and particularly in business communications. Owning a nice microphone and a copy of Audacity does not make you a podcast consultant.

In general, I think that Donna is right, but the skills that a podcast consultant needs to be effective in any given situation depends largely on what the client needs. As Donna herself points out, sometimes a client has all their ducks in a row and just needs a little technical help to plug the microphone in the right way and upload the file. In those cases, it's probably not worth the money to pay a B Comm consultant.

In most cases, though, clients will likely need more and Donna's advice is sound.

I chuckled a little bit when I read this part:

Almost two decades ago, I remember being on contract at an organization when “desktop publishing” consultants started to appear. They all owned a copy of a newfangled piece of software called PageMaker and they all described themselves as desktop publishing gurus.

I didn't live through this during the desktop publishing craze, but I did live through it during the "everyone can make web pages" phase. When MS Frontpage, Allaire's Homesite, and Macromedia's Dreamweaver hit the stands, everyone thought they could just make their own websites and ditch the expensive web designers they had on staff or retainer.

Well, web designers and developers are still here and that's because their skill goes far outside of the technical bits of shoving content together into a web site. Those organizations that decided they could make their own websites ended up with tragically bad looking and under-functional sites.

The same is true of your podcast consultant. Do some internal self-exploration first to determine where your expertise level is at and determine what, exactly, you need out of a consultant. Then hire the right person.

7 Comments/Trackbacks

Very good points. Thanks for the trackback and for sharing your wisdom. Yes, if you just need someone to show you how to use Audacity -- easy. More often, people need help planning and producing their shows so as to prevent podfading. But that's fodder for another post, eh?

Your average radio producer has much more "podcasting" experience almost any podcasting consultant.

Hey Erik,

You'll have to provide more detail if you want buy-in from me on this one. At the moment, I'm flat out disagreeing with you.

Most radio producers certainly have a lot of audio and show planning experience, but that doesn't necessarily translate into podcasting experience.

There are two broad areas in which a podcast consultant can help. The technical and the managerial.

From a management standpoint, Donna recommends ensuring that your podcast consultant has some business experience and specifically business communications experience. A radio producer may have some business communications experience, but if so it's not by virtue of his or her trade. That type of stuff is left to the marketing and legal departments of the radio station.

From a technical standpoint, I wouldn't bet my farm that a radio producer knows about RSS feeds. I'm not sure he or she would understand the practicalities of file compression to the point where it is used in podcasting. Certainly many people don't which is why we see $500 "podcasting" microphones on the market sold by people who don't know that podcasters are going to lossy compress all that $500 goodness out of their show before it goes to air. Does a radio producer know how to make chapters for iPod use? Does he or show know how to operate iTunes or manage their stats? Perhaps - but again, it isn't by virtue of his or her trade.

Can you expand on where, exactly, you think a radio producer would bring more experience to the podcasting space than a podcaster?

You're obsessing over the mechanics.

The things holding back podcasting are not the mechanics of RSS and choosing the wrong codecs.

What's holding back podcasting is bad content, insufficent feedback mechanisms and lack of editing.

Care to answer my question, Erik?

Radio producers shape the content of radio programs, they focus programs, they tell hosts when the host is being boring.

ooOOook. I give up.

Comments/Trackbacks are closed for maintenance.

« List Week: 3 "Podcast" Word Alternatives | Main | Podcast Expo Round Ups »


Related Resources

Advertise Here

sponsored ads


What's this?

Prefer Email?
Subscribe below-

Current News


Bookmark this Page
Write for us
About us
Network Map

Support This Blog



Know More Media - Internet / Ecommerce / Online Business

know more media network

View Network Map

Network Feed List (OPML)

  • Business
  • AManWalksIntoAnOffice
  • AnalyzeThisBusiness
  • BIZZspotlight
  • Business Overview
  • CoreCharacter
  • ItsBadBusiness
  • KnowMoreMedia
  • PRNewsBank
  • SistersInBiz
  • Workerette

we support unitus

Unitus - Global Microfinance Accelerator



Influencer: The Power to Change Anything

BizPodcasting is a member of the Know More Media network of business related blogs.

Here are some current headlines from some of our business publications:


  • Smish: The App for Managing Your PC Apps
  • Online Alarm Clock With Rooster Crowing Sound
  • How to Beat Monday Blues: Just Psyche Yourself + 1 Dark Tip


  • Webinar: Maximizing Your Success to Get a Job in the Industry
  • Call Center Philippines: Effects of the US Crisis
  • Foreign Executives Advise Us to Change our Culture





  • Exciting New Site for Brain Based Leadership
  • Are You Old and Tired?
  • Obama’s Top 10 Business Brain Tactics