AskPat 291 Episode Transcript
Pat: What's up everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 291 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. As always, I'm here to help you by answering your online business questions, five days a week.
All right, now, let's get to today's question from Linda.
Linda: Hi Pat. My name's Linda, and I have a question about Skype. I want to start a podcast pretty soon, and I want to be able to call people to interview them, but I want to use Skype, but I'm hoping that my interviewee doesn't have to actually be signed up with Skype. If they don't have it, I don't want to ask them to go through the, what some might consider a headache of completing an application and signing up for it. If I sign up for the premium package, and call them directly anywhere in the United States, or wherever, I know you can pay extra to call anywhere. If they pick up the phone, will I be able to record? I do have Audacity . . . I’m sorry, I have Adobe Audition. And that's how I plan on recording the conversation. But anyway, is there any way to record from Skype without having my interviewee having to sign up for an account? Thanks a lot. Love your show. Hope to hear from you soon. Bye.
Pat: Hey, Linda. Thank you so much for your question, and congratulations to you on wanting to start a podcast. These are really smart questions to ask before you do so. Now Skype is an amazing solution for doing interviews, and that's how I do almost every single one of my interviews. And I say almost because sometimes the interviews are done in person, in which case I would use my Zoom h6n or Zoom h4n, or some sort of portable recording device if I'm on site somewhere, or if I'm at a conference, and I want to interview somebody, that's what I would use. But in terms of dialing in, and connecting with other people, Skype is definitely the way to go.
Now the preferred method to do an interview through Skype is from Skype ID, yours, to somebody else's Skype ID. That's preferred because people are going to be on a better audio platform through Skype, and VOIP, and things like that, that are going to make the quality of the sound better as opposed to talking to somebody on a cell phone, for example, or speaker phone. But that's not to say that's something you shouldn't do, because that's something I've done before myself.
The thing you have to know is, as long as your audio quality is going to be good—because you have the right equipment, and you set it up correctly—if the person on the other end has a lower quality sound, that's totally okay. We've heard this on the radio before, where you hear the DJs or the people who are hosting a show. They just sound amazing. And then people call in, they just sound like they're on the phone. We don't think anything of it, because we all know they're on a phone. If that's the same thing for you, that's totally fine too.
Now the base Skype package, which is free, is simply from Skype ID to Skype ID. You're going to have to pay a subscription to get access to dialing into other people's phones, for example. So there's different packages available. There's the unlimited US and Canada, which is one that I know runs for $2.99 a month. If you're doing even one or two interviews a month this way—and I hope you would do more, just to get more out of it—that's definitely worth the price. I mean, $2.99 to make unlimited calls to people in the US. I mean, when you think about how much we spend on our phone plans, that's just incredible.
So that's $2.99 for unlimited US and Canada, and that's outgoing calls, so you get to, instead of typing in people's Skype ID's, you get to type in the phone number. You know, one, dash, area code, dash, the rest of the numbers. If it's Canada, it's different, and then if you want to also dial other people, in different parts of the world. For example, I do a lot of interviews with people in Australia, and in Europe. There is an unlimited world package. Again, this is still outgoing calls; you dialing those people. That's $9.99 per month for that subscription.
Now there are ways for you to get your own number as well. But you're going to pay significantly more to have a number, like an actual phone number that, then people will know, and then can dial into. So you might not need that, and you'd save a lot of money by not having to do that. But there are the subscription models, and the prices differ, I mean, I'm looking at another page on . . . I was looking at my own account when giving you those earlier prices. Now I see unlimited US and Canada, still $2.99, but then unlimited world, $13.99 per month.
So the prices may change, and it might be different if you're overseas, in terms of what Skype will charge you. But if you go to Skype.com/rates, I believe that'll give you the page where you can find out, based on the country, or region that you're in, how much you need to pay. There's also a pay-as-you-go service too, and for US here at least, it says 2.3 cents per minute. So let's see, let's calculate this out. If you're doing a 30-minute interview times 2.3, that's going to be $0.69 cents for that 30-minute interview.
So maybe it's worth to do it through Skype credit, and pay as you go. I mean, the thing is, you'll have to buy Skype credit ahead of time, but over the long-haul, if you're doing a lot of interviews, it might just be worth doing $2.99. So I guess you could, I mean if you wanted to calculate it out, real easily, if you're doing 30-minute interviews, and you're getting charged 2.3 cents, and you're doing four of them, you're going to be spending just about the same amount that you would pay by paying $2.99 a month, and not having to worry about paying, and re-loading your Skype credit over time. Plus, the minimum to add Skype credit is $10. But anyway, that's how you would be able to do it, Linda. So hopefully that helps.
Now if you are on a Mac, again, just to reiterate for everybody out there the different kinds of software you can use to record. It's Call Recorder for Mac, by Ecamm Network, is the one that you want to use, if you're on a Mac. If you are on a PC, the one that most people use, I believe, is Pamela, it's called Pamela for Skype. And that's the one that you can use to record your Skype conversations as well. At least for the Call Recorder for Mac, by Ecamm Network. For Mac users I know that can also record video as well, in addition to the audio, which is really cool.
So, Linda, I hope that answers your question, and gives you and idea of how you can be able to dial-in to other people without having them have to. And I agree, it can be cumbersome if they don't have a Skype account, to have them install the application. There are a lot of new, cool tools coming out there for podcasters in terms of providing solutions for these interviews. But again, most of them will require people on the other end to do a few steps, which isn't always going to be good, and I feel like the phone number situation's always going to be available to us, and that's something that you can do through Skype with one of those subscription packages. So check it out, and again, over time as you do this, make sure that you continue to use that. You don't want to be locked in to $2.99 a month, and then find out a year after you, maybe slow down on the interviews, that you're still paying that. So make sure you're using it, and then if not, maybe switch to a pay-as-you-go model from there.
So, Linda, thank you so much for the question. I really appreciate it. An AskPat t-shirt will be headed your way for having your question featured here on the show.
For those of you listening, if you have a question you'd like potentially featured here on the show, all you have to do is head on over to AskPat.com. You can ask right there on that page.
All right, thank you so much. And as always, I want to end with a quote, and today's quote is from Denise Brennan-Nelson. She says, “Someday is not a day of the week.” I didn't say Sunday, I said, someday. Hey, when are you going to do that next thing? Someday. No. Because that's not a day of the week. Get it done. Cheers, take care, and I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat.