You have a loved one who is looking to join the wave of podcast producers? Or is your podcaster like me — who has been hiding in his basement, podcasting since only 5,000 were in existence? No matter their experience, I’ve compiled a list of gift ideas for podcasters in your life.
Podcast equipment as a gift (Checklist included)
Everyone LOVES their toys. And regardless of your podcaster’s level of experience, trust me when I tell you they’re eyeballing an upgrade to their gear.
For a comprehensive list of good, better and best podcast equipment, check out my podcast checklist.
Podcaster gift idea: Mics
To podcast, you HAVE to have a mic — if not two or three or more. You can find a number of entry-level mics on Amazon. But. Before you do that, consider rescuing a Shure SM58 off of eBay. These microphones have been the choice of musicians for decades. This mic will last for decades and can survive being driven over by a truck.
Now. Experts on here will want to start a dynamic vs. condenser mic debate. To choose the right mic for your loved one, it needs to fit their situation.
And speaking of intermediate and experts, the choice of radio broadcasters is the Shure SM7B.
Need a budget choice somewhere in between the two, consider the Rode Procaster.
Rode Procaster Broadcast Dynamic Vocal Microphone
Podcaster gift idea: Interface
The other item a podcaster generally purchases early on is an audio interface. This allows them to listen while they interview and helps regulate the audio level of mics independently. I host at least one show where I’m much louder than my co-host. These help. Start with a Focusrite Scarlett.
Zoom H6 Six-Track Portable Recorder
Podcaster gift idea: Headphones
Oh boy. So many choices here. First. Look for neutral headphones. Search: “avoid leakage audio headphones.” Someone sees the first two words of that browser search history and they’ll stop snooping.
Seriously, there’s a pair I like that you can get for under $50. Check out the Audio-Technica ATH-M20x.
Give the gift of podcast hosting
Whew. We survived the equipment list. An item that’s become increasingly important to podcasters: Their podcast hosting provider.
In the olden days, you could simply throw your MP3s on a web server. Now, Spotify won’t touch you with a 10-foot pole if your audio files aren’t on a legitimate podcast host.
And, quite simply, I would select a hosting provider that allows your loved one to get his or her show on Spotify. Why? They’re making a near billion dollar bet on podcasting.
One on the list is Blubrry. That’s what I use (use that link and get a free month). They offer several plan options, provide a nice plugin for WordPress (many websites are built on WordPress) that’s been around for about a decade, and release new features all of the time, including transcription and production services.
Podcaster gift idea: Producer/Studio time
Speaking of production services …. A great gift for any podcaster — no matter their experience — is the gift of production and/or studio time. You’re either helping them get their show off of the ground or giving them back the gift of time.
Or better yet … look local. Many co-working spaces and studios will offer the space and equipment to record and someone to help with the process.
In Kansas City, a co-working space like Office Evolution in Overland Park has a studio that they rent hourly. And dedicated podcast studios are popping up in cool places like the Iron District and Barrel of the Bottoms.
Podcaster gift idea: Podcast learning and community
Want to give an unconventional podcasting gift? Look at the gift of knowledge and community.
The holidays is the season to gift a book. That could include a book on podcasting.
Better yet. Perhaps give a gift where you could benefit, as well: A podcast boondoggle! There are several podcast conferences popping up all over the world. A conference can be a great thing to attend — no matter the person’s skill level.
If you’re new, they can speed up the learning curve. Even if you’re established, they can help with growing your audience or better monetizing a show.
The most notable of the conferences is Podcast Movement. Now with two conferences in 2020!
But there are so many more. See a recap from Radio Public on a slate of conferences they and Podfund recently attended.
Even if it’s a hotel or airfare gift card earmarked for your podcaster, they’ll thank you.
Help them promote their podcast
Most podcasters give up either for one of two reasons: 1.) time to record, edit, etc. and 2.) the belief no one is listening.
Help the latter by gifting your podcaster a little promotion that they might never splurge on themselves.
That could take the form of stickers or other promotional merch from a place like Sticker Mule. Also, nothing says “take pride in your podcast” like gifting a custom T-shirt featuring their logo. Places like Custom Ink and Teespring are good options for creating that tee.
You give ‘em one of these items and you’ll likely get sanctuary from the constant pestering of telling people about their show.
About the author
Brent Bowen runs Sparkcade Marketing. He’s a veteran podcast host and producer, having launched and run both media and company-branded shows. Equally adept in industries from entertainment to highly regulated verticals, Sparkcade puts the “fun” in sales funnel and knows how to weave a compelling story for even the most daunting assignment. // sparkcade.com // firstname.lastname@example.org