Are you looking to add professional impact to
your website and newsletter for almost little or no cost. How
about introducing an audio ezine or other informative audio
stream to your web site
With the amount of email and documentation that
is being passed around, people are becoming overwhelmed with the
information overload. I know of a number of people who because
of their hectic multi-tasking schedules find it difficult to
make the time to sit back and read the books, magazines and
articles that keep piling up. Instead they pop in an audio book
(CD or tape) while they are working, driving, or exercising and
“listen” to their books. This is an ideal way to maximize
productivity and learning in a short period of time.
What can you do with streaming audio?
Record tips and tricks relevant to your field
Record your entire ezine or portions of it in
streaming audio format
Record interviews with other business owners,
subject matter experts, and/or customers
Make announcements about new products,
services or specials
Record a speech or talk that you have given
Start your own “radio station” or web cast.
Post your audio on various MP3 audio sites
just like you would with articles.
Streaming audio is another effective
communication method to share your knowledge in an interactive
way. You are reaching out across the world and adding warmth and
a trusted voice to your loyal visitors and readers. You are only
limited by your imagination because you probably already have
the tools on hand to create some great audio.
If you haven’t thought about this because you
think that it might cost you too much time or money, let me give
you an idea of how easy it is.
What do you need?
2. Audio Recording Software
3. Sound Card
That’s it! It's rather easy to do and won’t
require too much of your time or require a fancy recording
studio. Your computer, an inexpensive microphone and audio
software that lets you record, edit and mix puts you in full
command of your own home recording studio.
There are quite a number of free to inexpensive
audio shareware tools that you can download. For example,
MP3 Audio Mixer is a great tool that helps you record and
mix your audio. So, if you want to add a music intro or do
fading between segments, MP3 Audio Mixer makes it a snap. You
can add background music, intro and outro music or just about
any other sounds you think would add impact to your streaming
Another good tool you might consider is
Super MP3 Recorder which lets you record through your
microphone, record an existing streaming audio file from the
Internet or even music from your CD player or MP3 player.
With your software of choice and a decent
microphone (in my experience a simple $10 microphone has been
more than effective for voice recordings), you plug it directly
into your sound card, hit the record button on your audio
software and start recording.
After you have finished recording, a rather
large file known as a wave (.wav) file will be written to your
hard drive. Wave files take up about 10 megabytes for each
minute of your recording and your next step will be to convert
this file into an MP3 audio file. This process known as encoding
(MP3 converting) will compress your wave file at a 10 to 1
compression ratio into an MP3 audio file. This compression is
what makes MP3s such a big hit and so easy to distribute. So, as
you see, each minute of audio will now only consume 1 megabyte
of hard drive space. In the case of voice recordings, you
probably won't need the same high quality output as a music MP3
thus reducing your file size even more.
Whatever software you decide to use, most
software developers include very detailed, step-by-step
instructions on how to create very professional audio sound
files. For example, take a look at MP3 Audio Mixer’s
on-line help for a detailed walkthrough of the recording
process. Super MP3 Recorder also offers a step-by-step recording
tutorial that will have you up and running in a matter of
After finishing your recording, creating an
audio stream using an .m3u file is easy. An .m3u is a play list
file that points to a specific MP3 audio file on your server.
First, you simply upload your finished MP3 audio file to your
server. Next you create a simple text file (using NotePad)
saving it with the file extension .m3u. All you need to do is
add one line of text to this file, which will be the pointer to
the mp3 file you just uploaded to your server.
1) Marketing-Minute.mp3 is your newly
recording Internet marketing tip that you uploaded to your
server. The file is saved on your server to a directory called
2) The .m3u file you just created, which you
will name Marketing_Minute.m3u, will have one line that points
3) Create a regular link like you would for
another web address (URL) i.e. [a
here to listen to today’s Marketing Minute
When a user clicks on this link, their MP3
player should open and your newly created audio file should
start streaming through their speakers.
Very easy for both you and your listeners and a
great way to promote your business and share your knowledge.
Pretty easy! Once you start learning how to
record using the software of your choice, it only gets easier.
What I have described covers MP3s, you may also consider using
Real Audio, Shout Cast or Windows Audio Files (WMAs) as your
audio file format. The process is very similar, however because
of popularity and compability, MP3 has become the audio
For a very good audio primer, visit
Deliver Your Media and check out our descriptions of the
formats that are currently in use.