Monday, October 18, 2010

Podcasting for Authors

By Yvonne Perry

When I started Writers in the Sky Podcast in October 2006, many people had never heard the word “podcast.” So, whenever I told someone that I was doing a podcast I got a blank stare or total silence and had to explain. A podcast is a series of recorded shows (interviews, demonstrations, workshops) that are uploaded as digital files to an online site and released episodically. Podcasts can be video- or audio-based shows offered as links or in a player on a blog, YouTube, iTunes, or other online podcast directories where people go to find music, movies, videos, or audio books. Podcasts can be downloaded and played on an MP3 player, iPod, or computer; but unlike music files, most podcasts are free to download and listen to.

I remember when authors were practically considered celebrities and getting in touch with them directly was nearly impossible. You had to go through the publisher. Nowadays, authors are plenteous and accessible. The drawback is that authors are also expected to do their own promotion regardless of how their book is published, but some do not know how to promote a book. After all, they are writers, not marketers.

I started WITS podcast as a way for authors to promote their books that our team members had edited. During our 30-minute show, we ask the authors to talk about the content or story of their book and then share his or her publishing experience and a few marketing tips. People started emailing me to say how much they appreciated the book promotion aspect of the podcast. Within the first month of going live with our podcast, I had so many authors booked to be on the show that our podcast was filled for nearly six months in advance.

Taking our promotion effort a step further, I wanted to fill the need authors have for someone to guide them with online promotion. So, we started offering book marketing as an added-value service and expanded the team to include a book marketing and podcast coordinator. The podcast interview comes as a perk when an author purchases a media release, article, press kit, book review, social marketing campaign, or virtual book tour (see or the interview may be purchased as a stand-alone for $50. Vonnie is now offering video author interviews to those who have Skype and a Web cam.

Listening to Writers in the Sky Podcast on a computer is easy. Just go to our blog at On the right sidebar there is a link to RSS feed for the podcast. You will find every show we have done since 2006 in that list.

If you are interested in hosting your own podcast with an easy-to-use cost-effective service, see
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