Audio Production

Common mistakes in Audio

Here are a few common mistakes to avoid.

Straying from your plan

Getting lost and creating something very different from what you planned can be a common problem in creating audio because there are many factors that are not always under your control. For example, an interviewee may not be saying exactly what you expect them to say, or they may be less articulate than you hoped, or background sound may have been a problem.

Not going with your gut instinct

Go with your gut: if it sounded good to you first time then it will sound good to your listener. It’s a common mistake to ignore these feelings when you feel you need to include more content or topics. But if it does not sound right you should not use it. If you need to, use narration rather than trying to stretch or mix up sounds that do not work. ‘If in doubt, leave it out’ is an old saying in radio broadcasting that every new producer is taught.

Producing earnest but boring content

A common mistake is to make earnest, dull audio pieces, especially if the issue in focus is particularly serious. Just because the topic is serious does not mean the audio piece needs to be dull. Use music, sound
effects, and actuality (background sound) to spice it up. Un-attributed clips of comments by people on the street – called “vox-pops” – are popular in broadcasting and can give any piece colour and diversity.