How to Use Podcasting to Personalize Your Blog

Not sure if you know it or not, but I'm a pretty big fan of Dean Shareski, a Canadian #edtech guru who has changed my own thinking about teaching and learning over the past few years. 

Recently, Dean blogged about the power of a person's actual voice

He wrote:

I think about the way a person's voice builds connection and relationship is unique and important. It's amazing how, if I've heard someone's voice in person or online, I read their stuff in that voice.

Makes sense, doesn't it? 

I know that when I'm reading text-based blog entries, I almost always make up imaginary inflections for the authors — and I LOVE meeting people in person to see if their real voices align nicely with my imagination. 

In today's day and age, y'all, incorporating audio and video into your blog is ridiculously easy.

Whether you decide to roll hardcore and use YouTube's Video Recorder or keep things simple and whip up content with your cell phone, there is NO REASON that your readers should have to wonder what you sound like in real life. 

To personalize the Radical, I've decided to use Spreaker — a free service complete with an Android Mobile App — to start my own semi-regular podcast called A Minute for Change focused on the #edreform and #schoolchange questions that are spinning my intellectual wheels. 

Here's the first episode — which is built around a conversation that I had with Steve Goldberg and wrestles with the notion that schools just aren't doing enough to measure the skills that parents really care about:

 

 

Now let's be honest: The audio quality on my Spreaker recording isn't fantastic.  While I was experimenting with different podcasting apps, I found SEVERAL voice recorders that produce a far better final product — particularly Tape-a-Talk

But Spreaker does a TON of other things REALLY well. 

Most importantly, I can post new episodes to my Spreaker page on the web as soon as I'm done recording them on my cell phone.  That eliminates all kinds of second and third steps that I'd be unlikely to take if I were using other services.

Spreaker also automatically generates embeddable text for each episode that I post.  That makes it really easy for me to put players like the one above in my blog. 

That made Spreaker the most "all inclusive" service that I explored.

I'm certain that some of y'all won't bother to listen to the podcast episodes that I share.  Listening takes more time than skim reading, right? 

For those of you who crave the human connection that text struggles to convey, however, here's to hoping you'll get a kick out of my podcasting adventures!

And get ready:  There are DEFINITELY video episodes on my agenda!

#mybeautymaydistractyou

7 thoughts on “How to Use Podcasting to Personalize Your Blog

  1. Anonymous

    Thanks to this guru who opened my mind to be creative in just one simple way. I’m just grateful that I’ve read your post.

  2. Bill Ferriter

    Hey Bo,
    Im with you about getting flak for using video in my blog before. What some readers have told me is that they never even bother to click on the video clips that I embed simply because you cant skim your way through a video. That means that it takes longer to consume ideas when youre watching a video than when youre reading text.
    But Deans ideas on the personalization that comes from seeing and hearing people in person is legit too, isnt it? I know that I think of your voice and mannerisms when Im reading your blog — but thats only because Ive had the chance to meet you in person. Podcasted pieces and video clips give readers who havent met you a chance to get to know you a bit better.
    I think Im planning on whipping up 2-3 podcasted bits per month. That way my blog has personality, but Im not overwhelming readers with a content type that they cant consume as quickly as theyd like.
    Anyway — hope the holidays were awesome for you!
    Bill

  3. Bo Adams

    Bill, I love the podcast. I use a lot of video in my blog, some of which I create myself. Recently, though, my use of video has been questioned, and it’s knocked me off center for awhile. So, with inspiration from This American Life on NPR and your post here, I am committing to doing some podcasting. I am excited to learn. I may try Garage Band as my first experiment. I do think voice is a critical component to communicating ideas, and I loved hearing yours in your words here – written and spoken. Thanks, buddy. Bo

  4. Bill Ferriter

    Thanks for stopping by, Dean — and thanks a ton for the nudge towards incorporating more visual and audio content into my blog. I like your argument that personalization matters — especially in digital spaces where there are fewer opportunities for personal connections.
    Rock right on,
    Bill

  5. Nancy

    I just checked out Spreaker, and if you enroll for the free plan you need to keep in mind that you only have 1 hour of space in their Media Library — could be an issue down the road.

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