Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Become a Pro-Life Podcaster in Just 1 Hour

Whether you are a pastor with a pro-life sermon, a pregnancy counselor with an encouraging case study, or a mom with a life-affirming story, share your message in a podcast. Let your voice be heard via website, MP3 download, iTunes, and more!

The process is easier than you think. If you are reading this blog, then you probably have all the hardware you need. As for software, a few free downloads will complete your “capital investment” in podcasting.

What Is a Podcast?

A podcast is an electronic subscription service for MP3 audio files. People with iPods, iTunes devices, or even standard web browsers can subscribe to your podcast with a single click. The “play list” in their listening device will automatically be updated whenever you add a new MP3 file to your “ipod broadcast”—or “podcast,” for short.

The great thing is, you don’t even have to have an iPod yourself. All you need is a blog or website from which to broadcast your MP3 audio files to other people, who do use iPods.

3 Steps to Becoming a Podcaster

1. Record. Download Audacity Sound Editor (free, open-source software). Follow this tutorial to get started; consult the online manual for additional assistance. Once you are satisfied with the results, select File / Export and save as an MP3 file.

2. Package. Download GIMP Graphics Editor (free, open-source software) and MP3 Tag (also free). Use GIMP to create a 300x300 pixel logo graphic for your podcast (online tutorial). The graphic will appear onscreen when people listen to your audio recording, so I designed a promo graphic that includes my website URL:

 When you have finished making your graphic, select File / Export and save to JPEG format. Then use MP3 Tag to assign that JPEG image to your MP3 file.

3. Post. To post the MP3 file where subscribers can find it, follow the directions specific to your particular blog or website configuration: Blogger, WordPress, Joomla, etc.

Write, Recycle, and Record

Write conversationally, the same way you speak to a friend. Engage your audience in friendship, and draw them into your message.

Perhaps you already are doing this in other venues. Does your pro-life organization have a newsletter or website? Did you prepare a bulletin insert for your church recently? If so, you are ready to recycle your writing. Simply read your prior work aloud. If it doesn’t read well, then make a few simple edits to smooth out the flow.

Once your “script” is ready, follow the three steps listed above to record, package, and post your podcast.

Spread the Word

Let your Facebook friends, LinkedIn connections, and Twitter contacts know that they can listen to your pro-life message via MP3. You also are welcome to post a link in a comment to this blog.

Meanwhile, here is one of my own: The Coercive Reality behind Pro-Choice Rhetoric.

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