Now you can increase the effectiveness of your email newsletters and marketing campaigns by adding sound, music, and even your own voice to them. Audio adds another dimension to your messages and sets them apart from other emails in your recipients’ inboxes.
It’s easy to create a podcast file and link to it from your email marketing. A podcast is simply an audio file saved in MP3 format which is played or delivered on demand when someone clicks on its link. Saving your audio in MP3 format compresses it so it takes up much less disc space. You link to it from your email just as you would normally link to an image or webpage.
To find out how you can create and link to a podcast, continue reading this article.
To Create a Podcast, you will need:
- A microphone
- Software to record an audio file
- Software to save your file as an MP3 file
To listen to your Podcast, recipients will need:
- Software that plays MP3 files (such as Windows Media Player, Apple QuickTime, or iTunes)
To create and publish your own podcast, just follow these simple steps:
- Record your message with a microphone and audio recording software. If you don’t have software that allows you to create a file in MP3 format, you can find and download some inexpensive or free ones on the web. We used Audacity.
- Save your audio file in WAV format and edit it – if you like. You will need software that allows you to save your file in WAV and then MP3 format. Again, there are free ones available on the Internet. We downloaded and used LAME.
- When you are finished editing, save your file in MP3 format, and publish it on your website. Or, ask your tech support or webmaster to do this for you.
- Create your email newsletter or message as you would normally. One of the easiest ways to do this is by using an Email List Management Service like MailChimp.
- Create a link name that you will ask recipients to click on. For example, you could use Listen to our Podcast.
- Link to your MP3 file. Do this as you would normally link from your email to any image or webpage. When someone reads your email and clicks on that link, your podcast will start to play immediately – if they have software that allows them to listen to MP3 files. Most computers come preloaded with Windows Media Player, Apple QuickTime, or iTunes.
- Finish editing and save your email. Most email marketers create an html version as well as a text-based version.
- Send a test version to yourself. Click on your podcast’s hyperlink to make sure it launches properly.
- That’s it, you are ready to send your message!