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GarageBand Tips

By | June 15, 2007

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This week’s episode was recorded entirely in Garage Band and is in a new format (m4a)

Hi everybody, Ken Walker here and I’ve got a great show for you this week. Most of you know that I’m a die-hard Audition user and I’ve been using it for years, but this week, for the first time ever, I’m recording the entire process in Apple’s Garage Band and at the end of the show, I’m gonna tell you what I think of it. For the marketers in my audience, I’ve got some new statistics for podcast listeners, as well as a tip on promoting your podcast. All that and more, in this week’s episode of The Podcasting Blog.

Podcasting News

Internet Marketing is definitely big today, and podcasting is no different. If your company is looking for a way to branch out and really link up with your clients, podcasting is the tool, or at least one of the tools, that you should implement if you haven’t already. I was reading the news the other day and came across a study conducted by The Diffusion Group that said 11% of adult broadband users, that’s highspeed internet or fast internet for you hillbillies, and that breaks down to 12 million U.S. consumers, listen to a podcast at least once every month.

They even predicted that by 2012 that number would be around 24% which is something like 38 ½ million people.

Now here’s what they say is stifling the growth factor. One thing is that podcasting is still looked at as too complex for low-tech people, meaning, they’re afraid of it. They think they couldn’t do it or that they don’t have what they need in order to be able to take advantage of podcasts. That means that they don’t find out about a big majority of what’s out there and that the quality of a lot of podcasts is at least as good as what they can hear on the radio, except that it can be a lot more focused and of podcasts are way better than radio for lots of other reasons.

It’d like to see the age groups that were surveyed for that cause I think that’ll say a lot about what’s going on, but in any case, what needs to be done here is a wave of advertising on how easy it is to listen to podcasts, and I should probably even do a tutorial on using iTunes like maybe even downloading and installing iTunes, and finding podcasts to listen to. Just to show how easy it is. The whole feed aggregator thing sounds scary to most people I think because they’re like, “I’ve got to learn a new program” or something, but iTunes is totally simple.

Of those 11% more than half of them listened to their podcasts on a portable player, meaning they downloaded it first, and then listened to it later. And less than half listened on their PCs. I listen to podcast on both, so I don’t how that type of answer would score.

It also looks like the people that listen on portable devices listen to more podcasts per month, but the PC listeners aren’t too far behind.

And you know what I like about surveys like this? At some point they’ll have a bit of information that is actually very helpful, and this one is no exception. On the average, if someone is actually subscribed to a podcast, they are more than likely signed up for at least 3 other podcasts, and 70 percent of the listeners use iTunes to listen to their subscribed podcasts. There again I underscore that iTunes is king of podcasts. Get your podcast listed in iTunes and make sure you’re using those iTunes tags in your RSS feeds.

Now again, I’d like some more info on the group surveyed and things like ‘how many users listen to podcasts every week’ or ‘what types of jobs people have who listen to podcasts’, I’d really like to know that.

Either way you look at it though, podcasting is here to stay, it’s not just a fad.

Apple’s Garage Band

I tell you what, you know what is totally annoying to me? I listen to lots of podcasts and some of them are good, most of ‘em are bad, I don’t know why I keep listening except for the fact that with the bad ones, there isn’t a lot of choice on content, at least that I’ve found, but you know what really gets me, when people do a pretty decent podcast, and they put out like 5 or 6 episodes, and then they stop! I mean what gives?

I see lots of that out there too, somebody starts a podcast, then, I dunno, they get tired of the work or something happens and they just pull out! So please, podcast responsibly and put out an episode every week, or at least twice a month.

That’s just one of the things that gets me going, another one is people that have good content, and they have TERRIBLE audio quality. I mean, good gear is not all that expensive and I mean some of the podcasts I listen to, the content is so good, and you know they’re making money either on their podcast or on what they do, so why not spend a little on equipment and take the time to learn how to make a great sounding show. I mean, they don’t do noise reduction, they don’t edit anything out, nothing, it’s like live radio except that they don’t have a nice quiet studio with on-air personalities. I dunno, two of my pet peeves in podcasting I guess.

Well, this week, as I mentioned in the intro, I’m recording this whole show in Apple’s Garage Band. Not at all because I don’t like Audition any more, but because some of the features listed in Garage Band look pretty inviting and I’m willing to spread my wings and try it out. I still don’t think it’s a full blown audio app, but for podcasting it might be nifty. I’m also considering getting a copy of Pro-Tools to try some audio recording in that, but I’m so old-school and once I’ve learned an app, I really hate having to learn another one, but the thing is, to be fair, you have to give the app some time and allow for your learning curve.

Some of the features that caught my eye in Garage Band is the ability to do enhanced podcasts which means you can put artwork in your podcast like a slideshow, you can put clickable links in there, you can put chapter markers so your listeners can skip to certain segments, and its got that auto-ducking feature that I’m actually tickled about. You know all those level changes you hear where the music is loud and then I start talking and the music gets quiet? Well, at present I do all of that manually and its pretty lame to be honest. In Garage Band you can set a track up so that it will cause other tracks to ‘duck’ which means they’ll automatically drop their volume to make your voice track more audible. It’s pretty neat. I wouldn’t change platforms just for that though, so we’ll see how the rest of it goes.

It’s got all your regular audio editing features and effects, PLUS, and this is pretty neat, it comes with lots of podcast safe music beds as well as some sound effects. So again, I’m gonna record and edit this entire podcast in Garage Band this week, then I’ll mix it down and upload it.

Quick Tips

This week’s Quick Tips is real simple. Check all the fine print with your hosting company. Lemme relate a story from one of my many personal experiences online. I’ve got lots of domains and honestly I use a few different hosting companies, One of the first domains I setup years ago was with GoDaddy, back when I didn’t know any better, and since it always worked and was fairly cheap, I left it there. I wasn’t doing a whole lot with the site, and I mostly used it for temporary storage of client files. Well, last month I got charged a few extra dollars, like $50 I think, for being over my storage limit of 5 Gigs and I was pretty shocked. I actually thought it must have been bandwidth and I assumed it was due to some recent activity that was going on on my site. Well, no big deal. The next month though, I got charged $180 for ‘overage’ and that was starting to get into my pocket a little deep so I decided to call them up and see what gives.

As it turns out, the overage was for storage and they said I was at 7.2Gig and my account was 5 Gig. Once I found that out I was a little put out because another hosting company I use simply stops your transfers when you max out, which I assumed GoDaddy would to. I mean, if you’re paying for 5 Gig, I figured they’d a lot that to you since it’s real easy to do. Instead though, they let you go over, and just charge you extra. A lot extra. In fact, I could have paid for TWO WHOLE YEARS of hosting over at Host Monster for what GoDaddy charged me for one month. And they give me way more space and way more bandwidth than GoDaddy. I use them for another one of my domains, but now, I’ll be using them for two of my domains. I didn’t want to hassle with the transfer from GoDaddy, but that irks me.

I won’t even talk about going to my FTP site and trying to find 7.2Gigs of data…after all, that’s how much they say I’m using. OK, so I will talk about it. After voicing my opinion on their policy, and mentioning I was going to take my business elsewhere, the rep said “OK” and I hung up. I called back again hoping that I could talk with someone that had made it all the way through high school and actually cared whether they worked or not the next day. When I asked him where I could go to see my usage, thinking that in the GoDaddy Control Panel they would have some time of stats so I could be careful not to go over my limit, he said he’d have to escalate that request to higher level tech support and they’d get back with me. Huh? You mean I can’t even see for myself how much storage space I’m taking up? Nope.

So later on, I get an email from tech support that says basically, we checked your stats and you’re using 7.2Gigs. Thanks.

Not the response I was looking. So, while you will hear lots of GoDaddy ads on other podcasts, you won’t hear one here. But, you will hear this…


See You Next Week

Well, once again we have come to the end of another fun and enlightening episode of The Podcasting Blog. I’m Ken Walker, thanks for listening, if you wanna drop me an email, podcasting@seocompany.ca is my address, I respond to all email personally, except for spam which I just delete. As always, you can also post a comment on the blog. Until next week, happy podcasting.

Topics: Audio Recording Software, Garage Band, Podcasting Software, Reviews | No Comments »


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