How Do You Prepare for a Podcast Guesting?

There are two phases of preparation I cover before we begin recording for a podcast guesting:

  1. Context and format preparation
  2. Availability and setup

The first step involves gathering enough data for the show: audience, duration, format (audio vs. video), style, etc. We proceed with discussing topics that would be a good fit and the right narrative which would benefit the listeners.

I try to listen to at least two episodes ahead of time. This allows me to feel the vibe and the style of the interviewer. Most interviews are scheduled weeks ahead of time, but occasionally, an interviewer books a time a couple of days after, and I ask my assistant to do some research on my behalf.

The second bit about preparing for a podcast guesting revolves around timing and audio setup.

Since I live in Europe, scheduling is usually late in the evening or whenever I’m traveling. This determines the type of setup I have access to — ideally, my office room with the proper Rode VideoMic pro and a decent webcam with adequate lights and a white background wall.

At home, I’d use a Rode Smartlav+ for recording. You can check here most of the gear that I use.

While traveling, I may need to use a portable headset with a mic, and since the audio quality won’t be great, I try to at least record in my hotel room or somewhere quiet (a co-working space or so).

Additionally, it’s important to ensure that there are no distractions that will creep in while recording a podcast. That isn’t trivial at the office since people may jump in for an emergency, and while recording on my phone, the cell or wifi may misbehave or a phone call may interrupt the connectivity. I try to limit distractions ahead of time but bloopers happen occasionally.

Should You Use A Content Delivery Network?

A Content Delivery Network (CDN) lets you host your static assets across hundreds or even thousands of nodes around the world.

The benefits?

  • Serving content will be faster as visitors receive moderately “local” assets and many of them may be cached already.
  • Lower server load on your end (reduced bandwidth and better concurrency support).
  • Additional features – most CDNs also incorporate web application firewalls, DDoS protection tools or other goodies that facilitate both performance and security.

Some vendors are more expensive than others. So it’s mostly an ROI conversation.

But if you pick Cloudflare (or another freemium vendor) or simply can afford it freely, a content delivery network is totally worth it.

Should Social Media Platforms Fact Check News Posts?

Social media platforms need a proper reporting mechanism for fake news sites.

Some like Facebook do that, however, that’s often misleading, and relying too much on automation is making things worse.

Others, like Twitter, don’t really incorporate that (aside from banning accounts).

Facebook is easy to fake because it only takes a handful of reports on a post to blacklist domains.

Apparently, certain areas of a domain can be blocked, too. For instance, my blog has been quoted in various authority sites (and used as a resource in several universities). But, posts in my Sales category are banned on the platform.

(We occasionally dispute and Facebook unblocks them for a couple of weeks until this happens again.)

Proper validation isn’t trivial for 2 reasons:

  1. It takes an army of people going through reports all day long
  2. “Fake news” is subjective and hard to prove

Viral sites frequently invent fake sensations for celebrities only to generate extra traffic (and ad clicks).

Proving that someone hasn’t cheated on their wife or hasn’t yelled at a supermarket is pretty hard, which is why proving or dissing a story is questionable.

Also, while this may work for “authority domains”, it’s easy to work around this requirement with a network of hundreds of domains posting fake stories.

Think of press release blasts that hit a vast number of aggregators sharing the same story.

And don’t even get me started on politics. Socialists reporting articles on capitalism doesn’t have to do anything with fake or real, but a purely subjective and emotional take on a platform.

The Best Content Management System for Photographers

content management system for photographers

All Content Management Systems out there support media uploads, galleries, content production (About/Contact pages or blog posts or other story pages including your work).

For starters, when searching for the best content management system (CMS) for photographers, you can really launch your portfolio with any of them. From a visual standpoint, do some research upfront and make sure the available templates resonate with your style.

WordPress has many thousands of themes to pick from. Hosted site builders offer a more limited set of themes (Wix says 500+) since they aren’t open source and don’t attract tens of thousands of designers around the globe building themes for a living or a portfolio.

Moreover, this subset is fragmented into dozens of categories: small business sites, eCommerce, portfolio, personal branding, real estate, product portfolios, etc. (photography is probably one of them or others can be adapted accordingly).

Also, going for a hosted platform may pose limitations if your business flourishes and you grow a larger photography studio, invest in marketing automation tools, run a portfolio with stock photos (under a subscription-based platform) or need other forms or business and revenue-generating features that aren’t available yet by the commercial providers.

Aside from that, whatever you pick. I’ve noticed that popular apps like GuruShots have partnered with vendors like Wix to attract beginner photographers and WordPress has been a known player running 34% of the Internet already.

Steps To Choosing A Topic For Public Speaking At Your School

topic for public speaking

Figure out the specific topic that you would like to cover. Could be:

  • The value of being loved and supported by your family.
  • Maintaining a healthy relationship with your parents.
  • Family values transferred to school and other extra-curriculum activities.
  • An inspiring story from your childhood that shaped you into a young, reasonable, modest and honorable human being.

Pick a topic that you’re really passionate about.

Find out who will attend the event, for example:

  • Your teachers
  • Parents
  • Your classmates

Ideally, the speech should touch everyone, but that’s not always possible. Depending on your topic, figure out who is your “target group” and what is the message you are trying to convey.

Start with a relevant story. Spend a few minutes walking your audience through a journey you’ve had. Explain the context, the beginning of the story, the culmination and the lessons learned.

Turn that to an inspirational or an educational story. You should either teach them a lesson, or emotionally charge them with a vibe that resembles your feeling and stance on the topic.

In any case, just be genuine and truly invested in your idea. That emotion will inevitably touch everyone in the room. Write down your core topic and 2–3 supporting stories or conclusions. Come up with a relevant story at first and a wise conclusion at the end. It will be worth it.

The Purpose Of “Story Telling”

A Product Or A Service Without A Story Is Just A List Of Features

Nobody needs features. People need solutions to problems in their specific industry.

Storytelling allows for putting those features to work by defining practical scenarios. Each business is unique in a way – there’s a company mission and business goals. There’s the company culture. There’s a backstory to starting the business. And an ideal subset of problems that are uniquely solved by a solution.

Building a startup or a small business falls into one of the following two categories:

  1. A completely new, unique, extravagant solution that’s one of a kind.
  2. A competitor of an existing service provider or a shop selling a similar product.

The first case is rare – there are plenty of businesses out there innovating in all popular niches.

You Need To Create A Brand New Category

Still, if you happen to invent something that doesn’t exist, you need to create a brand new category. Since there’s no practical market need that people are aware of, a story would put a problem into perspective and relate to your prospects.

It could be a set of scenarios that prospects face on a regular basis and your solution can help with them. Or a personal story leading to the inception of the product where prospects can identify (themselves) with it.

What Makes You Different

If you are entering a saturated market, the question is: what makes you different?

There are tons of supermarkets, design agencies, dentist offices. Yet, each one of them profiles in something unique or has some vibe attuned to the energy of their ideal audience.

Businesses operate in different manners and follow various processes. Some focus on quality, others – on price. Some are friendlier while others are conservative and to the point.

Each market has value for a specific audience.

In order to build the bond between your business and your market, you need a story that serves as the bridge between you and your customers.

That’s where storytelling comes into play.