Podcasting Experiments

Podcasting Experiments is all about experimenting with your podcast. We explore ways you can implement and test different ideas to improve your podcast by looking at different strategies and ideas from other podcasters.
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Nov 17, 2020

Richard Haiduck is a former life sciences executive and mentor, and is the author of the book, Shifting Gears. In this episode, We will talk about how we can utilize podcasting to help grow our business as well as how you can be a great podcast host and guest. 

Go Where Your Audience Goes

It is important to hang out wherever your audience hangs out. That’s a great way to meet them and interact with them. For example, Richard is a part of several Facebook groups for retirees or baby boomers. There are about a dozen different groups focused on this demographic and focused on the topic of what you to do during retirement.

He is very active in those groups. Richard is also a guest blogger on websites that have about 200,000 subscribers. Using these opportunities, Richard’s content is broadly distributed. 

The Book Writing Process

Richard says that he interviewed about 75 retirees which gave him approximately 800 pages of transcript. He has a half a dozen interviews about someone who had a spiritual experience and  shared about it at a deep emotional level. There are others that are about physical conditioning. There was one individual who ran his 19th marathon and almost did it. And he almost collapsed over the finish line.

Others interviews focused on business, leadership and social impact. Others were about volunteering for organizations. Through the process, Richard was able to cover a lot of different stories and share a variety of perspectives. 

Promotion through Podcasting

Richard says that he views all promotion is good promotion. So the more different things he can do, the better. He doesn't want to be known as  just the Facebook guy or just the LinkedIn guy or just the podcast guy. Rather, he wants to have content available in multiple places simultaneously. It’s important to have a diverse content mix so people can find your content in a variety of ways. 

A friend of Richard’s told him to get involved in podcasting. She told him that you just show up, and you tell them what you want to tell them. They take care of everything. She recommended he try it out. So a few months before his book launched, Richard started sending out requests to various podcasters. He also used some organizations that provide leads such as Poddit.

The more podcasts you do, the more practice you get with storytelling. Podcasting is a learning experience. There is even more information included in this insightful episode about reaching your audience, writing a book and promoting a book. I highly recommend you listen to it. You can pick up Richard’s new book, Shifting Gears, here on Amazon.

Nov 3, 2020

Today’s episode of Podcasting Experiments features Case lane. Case is a speaker, entrepreneur and consultant. She also has a podcast called The Ready Entrepreneur and is  the author of the book Podcast Discoveries. We will talk about how we can utilize podcasting to help grow our business as well as how you can be a great podcast host and guest. 

Getting Started With Podcasting

Case decided to interview entrepreneurs and started out as a podcast host. Being a host allows you to have great conversations with other people, and, in many cases, they will tell you valuable insights you often would not normally hear. After a couple of years of hosting her own podcast, she decided to start being a guest on podcasts. She started promoting her book and as well as the services she provides. 

Hosting a Podcast

Case says she is at the very beginning of her entrepreneurship journey. So when she talks to entrepreneurs, that's where I want to focus. She often asks, “How did you get started?” because it often seems that most entrepreneurs go from poverty to making a million dollars overnight. So she tries to emphasize the beginning of the entrepreneurial process. 

Growing Your Business With A Podcast

The biggest thing Case does to grow her business is using content in as many ways as possible. She says it is really important to not just use the podcast episode as a one time thing. If you happen to be a blogger or you can write it, or you could even transcribe the podcast script and make it also an article. And then you could also do a video on YouTube, and you can just put the podcast up itself. A lot of people listen to podcasts on YouTube, so you could put it up there.  

Being a Guest On Podcasts

When you decide that you want to be a guest on a podcast, it's very important that you find an active show. Case searches podcast directories to find places where she thinks she will be a really good fit. After listening to the podcast, she finds the contact information for the podcast. Then she prepares a compelling email that clearly demonstrates the value she wants to give to the audience of the podcast. 

Prepare To Be a Great Podcast Guest

Case says that you want to have a good professional picture of yourself that you can send to shows for promotion. You also want to have a short bio. If you're going to be offering anything for the listeners, make sure you've got a link ready for a landing page or something where people can go. Many podcasts are also recording video and posting the podcast on YouTube, so it is important to make sure that you are camera ready. 

The two most important things with video are lighting and audio. And so if you have bad audio, people aren't going to want to listen to it. If the lighting is bad, they're not going to want to watch it.  

You can reach Case at her website and she also has a community you can join by scrolling to the bottom of the page and entering your email and clicking the “Join Us” button. 

Special thanks to Case for being a guest on Podcasting Experiments. 

Oct 27, 2020

Today’s episode of Podcast Experiments features Robbie Samuels. Robbie is a virtual event design consultant and executive producer. Robbie is best known for his ability to network. He is a speaker, author and even had his own TEDx talk on networking. 


Insights From Robbie’s Story

Robbie had been focused on networking for over a decade. And then come March 9, 2020. All of the things that Robbie was known for seemed to have no value in the world. Things such as having eye contact, shaking hands, business cards, and body language. Suddenly, these skills were not super relevant. On March 11, Robbie was trying to figure out how to show up and add value. The next day, he wrote an article 9 Ways To Network During A Pandemic. One of those ways was to do a virtual happy hour. Robbie decided he was going to do it the next day. He did the first one on March 13, which was the day the world hit pause. 

And he’s been hosting a virtual happy hour every week since. And from that he has launched an entirely new business. He has several new ways that he creates revenue, such as a four week certification program for people who are interested in getting better at Zoom. And he also helps events go online working with different organizations. He also still has a podcast. He has been doing a podcast for over four years, and is currently at over 200 episodes. 


Using A Podcast To Market A Business

Robbie’s business has always been served by the podcast, but it is not directly how he makes money. He says that he is the sponsor of his podcast. He has his process streamlined by having a clear intro and outro that he writes out. Every episode actually starts with that. And that's part of his marketing. 

Robbie also has a VA, to help with the production of the show, like getting it onto libsyn. Then he had his VA  start using Meet Edgar and getting it posted on social media. Then he hired someone to do my show notes too. 

His main focus is on lining up the guests and interviewing them. Robbie knows if he was in charge of all these other pieces, the podcast wouldn't happen. And he wants his show to come out every single Tuesday.  


Benefits of Podcasting

Robbie says that one of the best benefits of podcasting is the networking aspect with the guests. He says that he has had amazing people on my show who normally wouldn't take time to talk to him. Geography no longer matters. There is no commute at all when recording a podcast. He also says that he can then nurture those relationships so they are ongoing. 

The second amazing benefit is that you can share your content. When you have regular content that you are able to share with your network that's another really great benefit. Lastly, there's the fact that he gets business, from his podcast. 


A Final Word

Robbie would like to invite you to join him at the Virtual Happy Hour every Friday at 5 EST at You can find Robbie’s podcast On The Schmooze here. His website is

Special thanks to Robbie for sharing about his podcasting journey. I hope you learned as much from this interview as I did. Thanks for listening. 

Oct 20, 2020

Today’s episode of the Podcast Experiment features Emilie Aries. Emily is the CEO of Bossed Up, an author, a speaker, and also the host of the Bossed Up Podcast. We discuss pivoting during times of crisis, using a podcast as part of your marketing mix, having an advertiser on your podcast and also the unexpected opportunities that can come your way from podcasting. 


Insights From Emilie’s Story

Emilie started as a professional advocate for political campaigns and elections, where she became good at advocating for other people. However, one day realized how hard it is, especially as a woman, to advocate unapologetically on your own behalf. She started Bossed Up where her company has created coaching programs, leadership accelerators, in person training programs. She now works with companies who believe in gender equality to really help further develop their women leaders.

Pivoting During Crisis

The Bossed Up business model was based primarily on live events and workshops. So during 2020 they had to change their business model. All of Emilie’s in-person speaking contracts evaporated. All of the Bossed Up events we had planned for across the country went away and her company had to scrap everything.


Emilie realized that her company had to figure their own way out of these problems. She started to ask questions such as: “How can we offer these services online?” The answer to this question led to the creation of new online offerings. On the whole, Emilies says her business is actually going to be stronger because of Covid-19 forcing rapid innovation into the digital space. 

Using A Podcast To Market A Business

Emily was originally recruited by a very big podcasting network called HowStuffWorks. She was offered the position as host for a major podcast. Then the podcasting network was sold and she found herself out of a job. However, by that point, she already had fallen in love with the medium. 


At that time, podcasting really wasn't used for marketing. She decided to create her own podcast: Bossed Up. She thought it was an opportunity to be generous and to serve others well. For anyone who wanted more content or services, she would sell products and services to those individuals. 


Creating a Podcast For Marketing Purposes

Emilie views using podcasting as marketing as a compromise between her artistic desires and her business requirements. Emilie has a marketing director Kirby. Together they look at the calendar as it relates to their sales goals. When creating the new podcasts, Emilie and Kirby ask, “What kinds of episodes would attract that client? How can we create fun, interesting, informative and high value episodes that also happen to attract the client we're looking for?”


Once they come to a conclusion, then that's the topic that we hammer home for a couple of weeks. There are some exceptions. For example, something might happen in the news that calls for our attention, we kind of stop the presses and focus on those current topics. 

Finding Advertisers For Your Podcast 

Emilie works with an advertising agency, because she is not a full time podcaster. Her role is that of CEO. An advertising agency does the work for her. Emilie admits that she is not sure if it's worth the time. It takes time to research brands and to figure out if they're a great partner for the show. Then they have to read the copy that they send over and then record it, edit it, upload it, and insert it into the podcast. And for all of this work, Emilie says that the company does not make much money.

Finding Opportunities Through Podcasts

Emilie got her book deal, because her editor at Hachette is a huge podcast fan. So she's just one of those people who is constantly poaching podcasters, to become authors. And it was a very organic partnership.


If you have a great relationship with thousands of people who have tuned into your podcast, some of them are going to buy your book. Podcasting can lead to many great opportunities as you form relationships with the listeners. 


A Final Word

You can find Emilie’s Bossed Up podcast here. In addition, here’s a link to her book: Bossed Up

Thanks to Emilie for sharing about her podcasting journey. I hope you learned as much from this interview as I did. Thanks for listening.

Oct 13, 2020

Podcasting is a great way to both showcase your expertise and bring inspiring stories to your potential customers. Whether you have a brick-and-mortar business, sell digital products, or offer services to clients - you can use podcasting to help you reach your customers and grow your business. But it takes both planning and persistence because podcasting is a long-game, not a get-rich-quick scheme.


Today’s episode of the Podcast Experiment features Tammy Gooler-Loeb, host of the weekly podcast Work From The Inside Out. Tammy interviews individuals who have experienced a major career transition. But today’s show focus is all about starting a podcast. Tammy is a client of mine, and she shares what she has learned in creating near 100 podcasts. 


The Two Groups Of Podcasters

There are often two groups of podcasters. First is the group of people who dive into podcasting. It seems so simple to them. They just buy a microphone and start podcasting.


But there is another group of people who need more help. Some people are overwhelmed with the technology or recording audio. There are even occasions where some people start podcasting and then randomly stop creating new podcast episodes. 


But no matter where you are, you likely need some form of help with podcasting. The great news is it is really easy today to reach out to other podcasters. Through social media, such as Facebook Groups, you can ask questions and find information from many well-established podcasters.


And that’s what Tammy did. She did her research and was ready for the launch of her podcast.   

The Importance Of Having A Plan

Tammy knew that many people start a show and then stop podcasting. Early on, she made the decision that this would not happen to her. She got some great advice from other more seasoned podcasters and crafted a plan. She learned first hand that it is easy to learn the foundational information about podcasting before you dive in. 

How To Share The Podcast

Tammy shared that she uses social media such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter to get more listeners for her podcast. She outsources this task as well. Every time an episode goes up, there's artwork for each episode, and then she posts the podcast on her website. She has show notes that she writes, and she also sends out a weekly email. Tammy has a simple system in place that allows her to share her podcast with as many people as possible. 

A Surprising Benefit of Podcasting 

Tammy shared that she received some emails from listeners saying, “I like your writing, I love the way you tell the story. You're a great storyteller.” So she realized she is a writer, and she never thought of herself in that way. She decided to write a book based on the content and topics from the podcast. She has used the stories of guests on the show. The book will shine a light on her podcast as well as her coaching services. 

Taking Ownership And Booking Guests

At one point, Tammy realized that she never used the word podcast host on her LinkedIn profile. She decided to take ownership and added podcast host right there under her name on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is very keyword sensitive, so Tammy started receiving LinkedIn invitations to connect with people. This change led Tammy to create a system that changed how she booked podcast guests. For example, to be a guest on her show, she requests that a potential guest listen to a few episodes and leave a rating on Apple Podcasts. Then, she asks for the individual to send a pitch about what value he or she could bring to the podcast. 


Tammy also does a pre-interview for about thirty minutes before she records her podcast. The pre-interview is a time to go over questions and talking points to ensure that the interview goes smoothly. The pre-interview also helps develop a relationship with the guest. These systems help ensure that guests are engaged and provide a lot of value for the listeners. 

A Final Word

I hope you enjoyed this episode with Tammy as she shared many valuable insights about podcasting. Tammy demonstrated the power of having a simple systems in place to improve the listener experience and create a high-quality show. Thanks to Tammy for being on the Podcast Experiment.


You can get in touch with Tammy by visiting her website or listening to her podcast Work From The Inside Out. Her book will be out in the first few months of 2021. 

Oct 6, 2020

Today’s episode of the Podcast Experiment features Dave Jackson. He’s the host of the School of Podcasting podcast, a podcast consultant, coach, and speaker. You can connect with Dave Jackson on Twitter @davejackson or on his website


What Does It Mean To Profit From Your Podcast?


Most people think it's about money, but there is more than one way to profit from your podcast. Dave mentions that he spoke to someone recently who was super introverted when they started podcasting. And now this same person is doing their podcasts via Livestream. This person now has more confidence. While that's not a form of money, that’s an example of a way to profit from a podcast. You can also grow your network and  share your message with others. You can also helping other people through podcasting. For example, you could provide information that other people find useful, such as self-improvement, losing weight or getting out of debt. 

The Most Common Question About Podcasting

Dave says that the most common question he gets is “How do I get a sponsor?” He says because we are used to hearing ads on the radio, most people think getting a sponsor is a good idea for a podcast too. However, the payment for ads is very low such as $10 for 1000 downloads. In addition, having ads on a podcast can lead to a poor listener experience for what equates to just a few dollars of income. Instead, a better idea--and more profitable idea--to sell podcast listeners your own products such as coaching, a book, or some other product that the audience wants. 

The Most Profitable Step For All Podcasters

One thing Dave recommends is for everyone is to start an email list. No matter what you’re doing, at some point you want to have people to take action by clicking on something. Email invites people to take action. A podcast is just audio, so email is a great way to engage even further with your audience. 


Dave built a portion of his email list using lead magnets. His approach was going to Google Analytics and finding the most popular pages on his website. In exchange for an email address, he offered a printable PDF that would be useful to the website visitor. So if you’re just starting out, this is a great way to start building your email list for you too.  

The Number One Way To Market A Podcast

According to Jacobs Media, 70% of people that find a podcast find it through word of mouth. So if you can get on other podcasts as a guest or things like that or have other people on your show those are good ideas. Build your network one person at a time. Have a link to your your podcast when you send out email to your email list. And don’t forget to have links to your podcast on your website. Don’t rely on Apple podcast search or Spotify search. 

Figure Out Where Your Listeners Are

It’s important to find where your listeners are. For example, Dave went to a LinkedIn event at a library, because the people attending were trying to grow their network. He knew he could help because a great way to grow your network is through podcasting. Dave   also goes to events for authors that are trying to grow their listeners or their readers. So figure out who your audience is, and then go where they are. Make friends with those people. Then, at a later point, you can tell them about your podcast. 

A Final Word

If you’re looking to profit from your podcast, Dave recently wrote a book titled Profit From Your Podcast. I personally have been a member of the School of Podcasting (affiliate link) for almost seven years. I really love the community there. 


Special thanks to Dave for being on the podcast. 

Sep 28, 2020

We're are getting ready to launch Season 7, where we will be covering everything about how to use podcasting as a marketing tool. Whether that is as a podcast host with your own podcast or going on other podcasts as a guest, this season will provide all the answers you need!

If you'd like to get specific or individual help with your podcast, simply contact me and I'd love to see how I can help!

Jan 22, 2020

I'm sharing a special announcement that I'm going to be experimenting with some other podcasts. I plan to come back and share my results here, but I can't guarantee a specific time.


If you are looking for some help with your podcast(s), reach out to me personally at or go to

Nov 13, 2019

Barrett Soop, together with his wife Leandra Soop, runs Be Seen Company which is a video and podcast production company. Hoping to improve his marketing skills, he ventured into podcasting. Now, Barrett is able to give people the opportunity to share their own stories through his podcast, Made In Monrovia. Aside from podcasting, Barrett also spends his time creating content for social media platforms and websites.


In this episode, Barrett shares great tips and insights for anyone who wants to start a local podcast. One of which is “In a local podcast, you need to have a view that really isn’t about you, it’s  about your community as a whole and bringing it together.” Tune in for more!


Episode Spotlights:

  • Branching Out: Barrett’s Journey to Podcasting
  • Business Evolution: From Using Simple Tech to Upgrading and Producing Podcasts
  • If You Could Go Back In Time, What Would You Do Differently?
  • Advice for Starting A Local Podcast
  • Equipment for Starters: Go Big or Start Small?
  • Biggest Struggle with Local Podcasting?
  • How to Grow A Local Podcast
  • Advertisements and Sponsorship on Local Podcasting
  • Raw Conversations vs. Using A Script


Resources Mentioned In This Episode:

Oct 29, 2019

Mark Bologna is the host of Beyond Bourbon Street, a local podcast about New Orleans. He actually talks regularly with Chris Hollifield from the I Am Salt Lake podcast, and they help each other to continue to grow in their podcasts.

Today, we’ll hear:

  • The best advice for someone starting a local podcast.
  • The biggest struggle Mark has had on his podcasting journey.
  • How to go about getting ads and sponsors for the podcast.
  • And how you can grow a local podcast.

Mark starts by telling you how he first started with podcasting.


Key Milestones of the Episode:

  •  (01:20): Getting to know how our guest started his podcast
  •  (04:02): Vital equipment for starting a podcast
  •  (06:14): The best advice for someone starting a local podcast
  •  (10:07): The biggest podcasting challenges our guest has had
  •  (12:18): How can you grow a local podcast?
  •  (16:08): Getting ads and sponsorship for a podcast
  • (24:33): How do you know if you are ready to start a new podcast?


Key Quotes from the Episode:

  • “Good doesn’t necessarily mean expensive.”
  • “Any location in the country and the world is really interesting when you dig into it.”
  • “People tend to compare numbers in ways that aren’t helpful.”
  • “Don’t say my podcast is for everyone who wants to visit, say a city. That’s not a demographic.”
  • “No matter what you think, you will learn by doing, and the feedback you’ll get as you build up listeners will help influence you.”


Resources Mentioned:

Oct 15, 2019

Looking for local podcasting tips? Great! Sit back, relax and listen to this episode with Chris Hollifield.

Chris Holifield is the host and producer of the I am Salt Lake podcast. Self taught in the podcasting world, he believes everyone should have an opportunity to share their story. Even though he was born and raised in California, he will always call Utah home. He lives in Salt Lake City with his wife, Krissie, and their daughter Lucy.

In this episode, Chris shares some great tips for people who want to start a local podcast and most importantly, how to grow it. One notable advice he gives is to spend money on hiring a coach. Why? Tune in to learn more!


Episode Spotlights:

  • Being Self Taught: Chris’s Journey to Podcasting (0:28)
  • If You Could Go Back In Time, What Would You Do Differently? (4:10)
  • Tips and Advice for Starting a Local Podcast (5:30)
  • Recommended Equipment for Local Podcasting (8:30)
  • Overcoming Obstacles (10:20)
  • How to Grow Your Audience? (14:30)
  • Advertisements on Local Podcasting (19:50)


Resources Mentioned In This Episode:

Aug 1, 2019

I'm preparing for Season 6 of Podcasting Experiments!

The topic I plan to cover is Geographic Podcasting. This would be like any local (city/county), state, region (i.e. Rocky Mountains), etc. that focuses on a particular geographic region.

I plan to bring people on that can share their experience of why and how they podcast locally. I'm going to compile the tips and advice to help you if you plan to start a local podcast of some sort.

If you have any feedback, questions, or suggestions, please email me at 

Jul 16, 2019

If you need help with your podcast, check out Podcast Guy Media. I can help you launch your podcast or ongoing editing services (actually, I can help with just about anything with your podcast).


April Ockerman began podcasting about 9 months ago. She had spent about a year doing research into how to start her podcast.

While she worked through figuring out her budget for podcasting, deciding what pieces of podcasting equipment to get, which software to use for recording and editing, April also had to face her fears of getting started by realizing that she can really impact people through her podcast.

Some lessons she learned as she got started:

  • Do you research - find out what makes a good audience, what length your audience likes
  • Ask people to listen to the podcast
  • Be open to receive feedback
  • Set the time aside (it takes her about 3 hours to do two 15 minute episodes)
  • Just go for it!

How April has promoted her podcast:

  • Created a facebook group
  • Put the podcast on her website
  • Share it on social media
  • Article in the local newspaper

She recommends that everyone look into working with their local newspaper to get a story done on their podcast or podcast topic. 

Her biggest pain point is monetizing her podcast. One great resource that helped her was a couple episodes of the School of Podcasting with Glenn the Geek from the Horse Radio Network.


Resources and Links:

Jun 20, 2019

Have you struggled to find the niche for your podcast?

Today's guest is Brain Kane from the The Real Brian Show, former host of ProfitCast and ArrowSquad. When he started The Real Brian Show, he struggled with the whole "niche" issue and, as a result, struggled with how to define his podcast to others.

Listen to his podcasting journey:

[02:00] As a kid, Brian wanted to be a morning DJ, but when he began with radio, interest in radio was fading, and it didn't pay well. He tried figuring out podcasting in 2013, and discovered Cliff Ravenscraft's Podcasting A to Z which made it easy. Joshua first found Brian when Dave Jackson and Daniel J. Lewis separately mentioning ProfitCast. Joshua and Joshua connected regarding sponsorship possibilities.
[04:30] How (or why) did Brian start podcasting? His first show was "Backstage Pass" (interviewing hip-hop artists) and then "TV Talk" (hosting podcasts about TV shows paying $80-90/hour). Brian took another course in 2014, researching how to grow an audience. Everyone charged for "the secret" and Brian interviewed people who had succeeded monetizing their podcast.
[07:20] ProfitCast lasted 110 episodes and 2 years. None of Brian's peers were making the amount of money they wanted with their shows. Ironically, a published author and public speaker Brian listened to was not interesting. After 50 episodes, the guests were dispensing the same recycled advice. He was not seeing a massive impact and felt something was missing.
[11:20] The successful people Brian was interviewing were not sharing everything, either on purpose or didn't know -- they were lucky. Podcasting can be like network marketing: if you're good at it and get in at the right time, you can be successful. They're extroverted AND good at selling. They claim anyone can be successful at podcasting (or network marketing) -- which isn't entirely true. Some people will never be "that good" at podcasting.
[13:00] The people at the top have a very unique combination of skills: charisma, extroversion, entertainment, sales, and marketing. If you don't have that unique combination, you must get creative and succeed with your own skillset. However, don't try to emulate the greats like John Lee Dumas and Cliff Ravenscraft. Observed what worked for them and apply it within your own personality.
[14:50] By 2016, podcasting was noisy compared to 2008, and Brian felt there was nothing new to say on ProfitCast. Since then, he's learned a few new things he could share. He's currently learning about achieving celebrity status, which can succeed in acquiring loyal listeners. Once you create a course or run advertising, you'll get the money.
[16:30] Many podcasters feel they've said everything there is to say but feel the pressure to keep going. Brian announced the ending and explained the timeline of that final wrap-up. Some podcasters get frustrated/discouraged and either put out junk or they pod-fade.
[18:45] If Brian ever restarted ProfitCast, he wouldn't be as nice with guests. He'd push for the answer he was looking for. Also, Brian isn't a niche person. For some reason, podcasting has become about niches. In any other form of media (i.e. Shark Tank), they hate niches. Brian is a Type 7 (Enthusiast) enneagram with a multitude of interests/talents and gets bored doing the same thing for too long. He usually won't finish a book because it doesn't keep his attention.
[21:30] After ProfitCast, Brian decided he was done talking about podcasting. He also can't talk about one single TV show anymore. Variety in your life is okay.
Three years into the Real Brian Show, it's been very tied to him as a person. He began the show wanting to talk about more but overthought it every step of the way. Just starting the radio station at the high school, morale went up. He's made people smile and helped them have a better life. People told him it needed more, but that led to further complicatations.
[25:50] The Real Brian Show was created to talk about a variety of things, and help people have a happier day. The side aspect was "Unleashing the Superhero" to embrace who you really are and be continually better. They also embraced the idea of nerding out on your passions without apology.
His big mistake was listening to too much advice and adjusting based on what others thought he should do. Brian has been bringing things back to his basic core elements plus his beliefs for the show: have a better day, and smile.
[29:20] Adults get married, find a life of responsibilities, and they stop having fun. It's time to get balance in life. Also, follow your own journey. For example, Instagram may work well for others, but not you. Instagram may also work for you at a different point in time.
[31:10] Brian is intentionally trying to break the mold. He observes what others are doing, what's working, but is his own trailblazer. He's not a teacher and wants to create a show that is valuable.
[32:30] Podcasters are taught to "get the numbers up" into tens of thousands of listeners to get advertising. However, he has loyal listeners -- his friends he made because of the show. Just because people say you should niche (or teach) doesn't make that you should. Define what success looks like for you -- it's NOT always money or thousands of listeners. Are you influencing people and creating friendships? Do your words make an impact and change lives? You don't hear that message enough.

If you found this podcast useful or interesting, please share it with a friend.

The Real Brian Show: (The Voice of the Nerdy Eclectic)
Daniel J. Lewis, The Audacity to Podcast:

May 14, 2019

In this episode, we speak with Eric Hunley, the host of the Unstructured Podcast. He starts out by discussing the inspiration behind his podcast and the reasoning for his unique podcasting approach. Eric explains why he often brings in other people to assist him with interviewing guests and how he does not realize he is learning during each show. Then, Eric explains why he hates show notes and how he does not have time for everything because of his full-time job.

Eric Hunley is forging his path in interview style podcasts as the host of the Unstructured Podcast. Not surprisingly, it is a formula that is now being followed by many other podcasters. Eric has created over 100 interview style podcasts in less than nine months, with a gambit of podcast guests sourced from all corners of the globe. New podcasters and seasoned professionals often seek out his knowledge and have begun following his unstructured direction.


Eric started out by being an expert listener. He listened to some expert podcasters like Joe Rogan and Adam Carolla but ended up getting bored. It took Eric over ten years to start a podcast by the time he decided he would begin one because he could not decide what topic would keep him interested. His idea was to create an idea pub; the requirement for guests were people who are really cool or who do something really cool. Eric goes against all the rules of podcasting and does not niche down.

Initially, when Eric started out the show, it was all about his guests. He came to learn over time that it is not all about the guests, it is all about the audience. Eric can better serve the audience by bringing in experts. For instance, he brought in a third level black belt and invited his friend who is also a UFC fan to help with the interview. Another guest Eric had on the show is a medical intuitive, someone who is told by a spirit how to heal a patient. Being a skeptic, Eric brought in someone who grew up with alternative medicine and another person who is a hypnotist. Between all of these people, the conversation was informative and open-minded.

In a recent interview, Eric talked with Super Joe Pardo, a well-known podcaster who charges his guests to be on the show. Also, he interviewed Christopher Lochhead, another podcaster who is against the idea of guests being charged. Eric facilitated a discussion about whether or not podcasters should be charging their guests or not.

Eric is always learning and is not very disciplined on the takeaways from his show. He has not taken an active role in studying the content from his show, but he does learn material from his guests. The best interviews are when you can connect with the other person and make it feel more like a conversation rather than a formal interview.





Dec 4, 2018

Drew Ackerman joins us on the podcast today to talk about his podcast, Sleep with Me.

We explore several areas:

  • Diving into a niche that wasn't really being served
  • Creatively and purposely rambling
  • Facing imposter syndrome
  • And more...

Check out his podcast here:

Oct 22, 2018

Jonathan Messinger is the creator of the kids podcast Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian.  When his son became interested in audiobooks, he went looking for podcasts for kids. When he couldn’t find anything, he decided to create his own. He writes and performs all episodes of the podcast, with his 9year old son Griffin serving as editor.


  • How Jonathan got into podcasting (01:37)
  • Why Jonathan decided to make a podcast rather than a book (02:53)
  • How the sound design of the show has developed (05:19)
  • Jonathan’s process for creating the podcast (07:25)
  • The challenge of getting the word out about the show (08:48)
  • Why Jonathan started doing live shows and what his format is (09:54)
  • Jonathan’s involvement in the Gen-z Network (14:13)
  • Some of Jonathan’s podcasting failures (19:22)


The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian


Twitter: @finncaspian


Instagram: @finncaspian


Podcast Engineering School – Episode 33


GEN-Z Media



Best Robot Ever (All the GEN-Z podcasts)


The Unexplained Dissapearance of Mars Patel



Jan 17, 2018

Amanda’s podcasting journey


Amanda has just reached her 2nd podcast anniversary for her current show, Great Beer Adventure. However, it was nearly 3 years ago that she started looking at podcasting. She was a teacher, feeling depressed with a very long commute. Her husband recommended listening to Serial, and then one day said to her, ‘You could do this. You could make a podcast.’ Amanda says she never does anything by half so she dived full on into the deep end.


She always teaches herself how to do things before showing others that she’s working on it, so Amanda actually had a starter podcast that she published called Dear Diary. It was her talking into a microphone, learning the process of editing and uploading, but she has long since deleted it. Somebody told her early on that ‘your first podcast will die’ so the purpose of that first podcast was really just to be a practice and to kill it off once she knew what she was doing.


Wanting to go after something she felt passionate about, once she was comfortable, Amanda started Great Beer Adventure in 2015. These days, she is no longer teaching and spends her days doing podcast- and beer-related things fulltime. The podcast itself isn’t a full-time job but Amanda also does social media for a malt company, is putting together an event for beer geeks, and is helping Jessica Kupfermann with a program. Without the podcast none of that would be possible and she’s glad she’s been able to make up her own job.


Podcasting in the wild


First and foremost, Amanda makes a point to go where her people are. She calls it ‘podcasting in the wild’. The show is about people’s stories and their passions around craft beer and she’s talked to everybody in the industry, from malstsers, hops farmers, brewers and the people that clean the tap lines. She wants them to feel the most comfortable so they’ll tell her their innermost fears and joys—if she can make somebody cry, she gets excited—so she has recorded in hops fields, warehouses, breweries, tap rooms and bars. The only thing that ever gets recorded not out in the wild is the intro and outros, and occasionally a special episode via Skype.


Amanda has two set ups of equipment for this type of podcasting. If she’s recording an interview, she’ll set up her ZoomH6 with either ATR2100 or ATR2005 microphones on barrels or tabletops. Alternatively, at events, she uses a leather harness with a mic and Zoom H2N so she can do vox pop (she said popvoxing…but I think it’s supposed to be voxpop?) clips with various people at the event. The feedback from listeners is that they like this because the mics pic up both the voices and the ambiance sounds. Listeners feel like they’re at the event. Plus, in recording on location, the guests feel more comfortable so Amanda finds she is able to get past the PR jargot pretty quickly. It’s been a wonderful way to get to know people.


Despite the name of the show, the guests don’t necessarily talk about the beer that much. Amanda is also clear that the show isn’t about reviewing the beer or talking about the flavors. It’s about the stories behind the beer and the passion people bring to this industry. She’s working on having some different segments and including different voices, including working with correspondents to bring in breweries from all around the world.


The evolution of the show notes


Amanda has done a bunch of different things with the show notes. She says she has done what you’re supposed to do, what she wanted to do and then threw all of that into the fan and let I come out the otherside. Now she gives the raw audio to her editor and instead of just recapping the show, he makes the show notes into more of a story. The blog post that accompanies each episode includes his reaction to the episode. It’s a little deeper than the traditional bullet points or paragraphs people are used to.


Amanda’s goals for the show


Amanda has two main goals for the show. Firstly, she has an insatiable curiosity and wants to know how everything works, so she’s loved being able to do that. Secondly, her goal is to help people learn all that goes into their craft beer, and help new people find and learn to love craft beer. If you like coffee or wine or spirits, there are different beers out there for you.


To do all the recording on location, there is obviously a lot of travel involved. Amanda’s first step was to ‘take Maine by storm’ and at this point she feels she has done that. There are over 90 breweries in the state and although she hasn’t featured all of them, she’s covered a lot.


Engage with your audience where they are


The next step is to take on the world, which means more travel outside of Maine. Whenever she goes to events she will visit breweries and bring her microphone. Recently Amanda went to MAPCON (Mid Atlantic Podcast Conference) in Philly and on the way she visited breweries in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Similarly, she’s done some day trips to New Hampshire and also recorded in Orlando on a trip to PodFest.


Amanda also utilizes correspondents from around the world so that she can share the stories of craft beer from places she can’t travel herself. She encourages people to talk to their local brewers and the people in the tap rooms, to get to know them and submit a 7 – 10 minute piece of audio. 


That’s also her advice to other podcasters: find ways to engage with your audience where they are physically located. Think about how you can actually get out there and get out of your own comfort zone!


Find out more from Amanda:


You can follow Amanda on Instagram @greatbeeradventure or find out more on the website,


Jun 12, 2017

Today’s guest is Doc Kennedy from the Filmaker’s Focus podcast. He is one of the guests who contributed to the Season 4 series on Narrative Podcasting, and he’s on the show today to share some updated information. Along with being a podcaster, Doc is also a film maker, and working towards being an actor and a stand-up comedian. Being a film maker, he brought a different perspective on narrative podcasting than many of the other guests, and was able to bring in a lot of parallels from video and acting. Today, we will revisit this.

In the time since Doc was last on the podcast, there have been ever-increasing changes and improvements to technology. For example, cell phone cameras have gone from little grainy pictures to 4K. It’s insane how much things have changed even just in the last couple of years. Because of this, Doc’s perspective has changed somewhat too, and he feels some of the advice he gave last time is now outdated.  

Getting started

Doc’s advice is to start with the basics. Some people are producing videos online that look good but sound terrible. If you can’t get the video to at least match the audio, he says don’t make it. Sound and lighting is the thing that separates you from or makes you an amateur. If you have to choose from the two, take the sound, because you can look at a picture and think ‘it’s ok’ but if the sound is bad it’s unlistenable. The majority of things today will have half-decent video because most cameras these days are so good that you can work around shoddy lighting. If you’re going to hire out for anything, hire an audio guy. That’s how important it is. If you see a video that looks good but sounds horrible, you will turn it off. It’s that simple. Make sure you’re getting quality audio and do what you can for solid lighting.

Doc says if you can afford it, hire somebody that has the proper gear and knows what they’re doing. It’s one thing to have a mic but it’s another thing to know how to record. There’s a huge difference between recording audio for a film versus recording a podcast episode. In the podcast, usually you’re in a contained environment. In a narrative setting, the elements might be a little out there so you need to be aware of the little sounds that you’re hearing the background. At least reach out to someone in your area who has the gear and let them guide you on what to get and what’s available in your area.

Doc hesitates to list specific brands of quality gear because things are changing so quickly. However, he suggests looking at getting a basic shot-gun mic, and doing your research.  There are some amazing tutorial videos on YouTube that provide great videos of comparisons between two microphones, which can be really helpful. You want the professional level, but make sure you do your homework.

The importance of pre-production

Doc is really big on pre-production. He says podcasts are often rushed but in film making they don’t do rushed projects, everything is planned out. He likes having a solid game plan in place, making sure everyone has the right gear and there are the right people to operate that gear, and that the production is as great sounding as it looks.

The more planning you do up front the easier it is on the back end. In Doc’s freelance work, planning also helps when managing the client. If you do the preproduction there is a blueprint set up of what the client can expect so if they come back and say they aren’t happy or it isn’t what they expected, you can refer back to the pre-production blueprint. A lot of times people don’t understand what it takes to make a video or what that video may look like in the end. In that kind of client situation, ask if they’ve seen a video or movie that they want their video to look like. That makes it comfortable for client and creator and gives time to clarify whether the creator can actually create what the client is asking for or whether they need to refer on. Doc says pre-production meetings can drag out though, so he recommends doing pre-production for your meeting on pre-production!

Applying the screen-writing approach to podcast planning

Doc suggests writing out the podcast planning as a screenplay because having the blueprint is really vital. His opinion is that if we don’t know where we’re going, we’re going to get there and where we end up isn’t going to be good. If you aren’t good at writing and don’t feel comfortable about it, find someone who is. Make sure that you get something written out so everyone on your team knows where you’re going, even if the team is just you.

If you’re doing something with multiple characters, you can start visualizing what that character should be. Pre-production isn’t the most fun part, and for Doc he doesn’t enjoy the post-work editing either. He finds the best part is actually filming the piece. However, it’s important to appreciate the pre-production process because it makes everything else seamless.

Do the best with the equipment you have

Doc advises not to get too caught up in the newest, upgraded technology. In terms of cameras, 4K is really popular right now and it’s growing. If you have a DSLR, don’t be ashamed that it isn’t 4K. Use it. There’s a feature film on Netflix right now that was shot entirely with an iPhone! But this iPhone film had solid audio. If you’re doing things correctly and you’re giving a picture that’s worthy of the audio, you’re fine. Don’t worry about what the newest, greatest thing is, don’t be in a rush to upgrade it, just do the best with what you’ve got.

Contact Doc

Doc is keen to answer questions from listeners. He didn’t go to school for video production, he learned it all from mentors. The mentors meant a lot to him so the least he can do is help others in the same way, which is why he does his podcast.

Find Doc at or follow him @filmakersfocus on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. And if you’d like to, you can follow Doc’s comedy @dockcomedy on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

May 29, 2017

Today’s guest is Jessica Rhodes from The Podcast Producers.

Reasons to do narrative style

  • Jessica explains that putting on a narrative podcast is going to make you a thought leader in that industry. It brings you a lot of credibility because of the amount of work that goes into it, the production and high quality of the style of podcasts. It makes you come across as a lot more serious about what you’re doing. Interview style podcasts are great but when you put out a narrative show, you are putting out a quality of show that is so much higher than the majority of shows out there so it really does set you apart from the crowd.
  • There is a lot of work both in preparation and post production. There are so many podcasts now. People want to podcast because they want to make money and be famous and they want the easiest way to do it. Well, the reality is if you want to be super famous or successful or make a lot of money, you have to put in the hard work. There is no fast path to a lot of success. A narrative style podcast is a lot of work but you will get a lot of recognition and exposure with a really quality show.

Planning and Preparation for a Series

  • You need to know and have a good understanding of who your audience and target listener is. You also need to know what the story arc is. The difference between a narrative and another type of podcast show is that there’s a story arc; there’s a beginning, a middle and an end.
  • When preparing for their show, Jessica and Corey were thinking about the fact that they were talking to podcasters. What are the questions that podcasters have? What do podcasters think and talk a lot about? They brain dumped all the different topics that came to mind and then on a Google spreadsheet moved them around in a different order and thought strategically about what the right order would be and how that story would be told.
  • Jessica’s advice is to think about who your target listener is and what the goal of the show is. What is the story that you’re trying to tell?

The interviews

  • When you’re thinking about what types of interviews to have on, remember that your guests ARE the show. When you have a narrative based podcast featuring a lot of different guests, you need to be ok with not being the front and center spotlight. The creators are the puppeteers, asking the right questions to allow the guests to tell the story. Jessica was strategic about having guests on from a variety of different categories of podcast, different experience levels, some well known and some not super successful.
  • A good podcast in Jessica’s opinion is not one with just a big name, but one with good content, good production quality, good sound quality and a host who really, really digs their show. She would advise against hosting a narrative show and only trying to get the big names. A narrative show is beautiful because it’s bringing voices to so many different people that you don’t hear on every other podcast.

Tips for having a good interview

  • The difference in doing a narrative style podcast is that the interviews are not meant to be heard just raw and uncut, so it’s not just this flowing conversation. It feels a little choppy because it will get cut and pasted into different episodes.
  • The best tip Jessica ever heard and the best advice that she can give is actually a tip from Mark Maron at Podcast Movement: listen. When you’re interviewing, really listen and let your guest do as much of the talking as possible, especially in a narrative based podcast.
  • Corey also taught her this: the best part of the interview, the best stuff, is going to come after at least 15 minutes. So if you can, have your interviews go for a minimum of 30 minutes. Sometimes you can only get guests for 30 minutes but if you can have someone on with you for an hour, the stuff that comes after that 15-20 minute mark is going to be the best. You’re just breaking the ice after those first few minutes.

The editing process

  • It’s important to have a team. Doing a narrative-based podcast by yourself is going to be a really big challenge. It’s not impossible but Corey and Jessica each brought very different skill-sets to the table, which allowed them to have a really good show. She highly recommends that if you want to do a narrative-based podcast to really make sure you have the right partners to help you do it really well. Jessica has a nice voice on the microphone, can interview well and knows how to get guests. So she was the main booker for the show and obviously contributed along with Corey to the ideas. She thinks more like a marketer and an entrepreneur than Corey does. He is the artist, he is the editor, he is the producer and the one that listens to all the interviews and takes the pieces and puts them together.
  • Having a partner and knowing what your skillsets are helps, but also get as much content as you can. They brainstormed what the story would be but what they realised is they ended up talking to the guests about a lot more than what they booked them to talk about. So they ended up being able to use their interviews in a lot more of the episodes than first thought. You don’t want to pre-edit, you want to just talk to the guests and try to get as much great information. A lot will get left on the cutting room floor, but you want to get as much great audio as possible so you have plenty to work with.

Strategic Elements of the Stories and Transitions

  • In the narrative-based podcast, you want to have a variety of feels to the show. For Podcast Producers they had three different kinds of audio: interviews, solo segments and conversations between Cory and Jessica. And there was also music. A person’s voice when they do a solo show is different to when they interview, and again to when they have a conversation. It sounds so different. In a narrative based-podcast, one of the things you can do to hook listeners, is to have those different kinds of vocals.
  • The music is HUGE as well. They actually contracted a musician to write the music for the show. The high quality of the music is a big part of creating the high quality show. You can find musicians to compose a song for you. The production quality and the sound, high quality music, will really set you apart.


  • Getting sponsorship comes back to that high quality content and production, and the launch. They didn’t do that much around marketing but Jessica thinks because all of their energy was into the production of the show, it marketed itself. She thinks the mistake a lot of podcasters make is they go into podcasting thinking about sponsors and have dollar signs in their eyes. But if you think about the story and the listeners, and focus on the quality of the show, then you can definitely attract sponsors.
  • In the iTunes show there is a part about podcasting and it has other shows in there like Podcast Answerman. She emailed iTunes and said that they should feature her show in that category. It took a couple of months but now their podcast is listed in the ‘How to Podcast’ section of iTunes because they had a very clear target market, a highly produced show and they went for it, they made it happen.

Repurposing the interview content that didn’t make it

  • Podcast Producers is a show for podcasters, so the audience will respect and value that unedited aspect. Also showing the unedited interviews is a lesson in and of itself. Also Jessica and Corey wanted a way to create buzz. She was pregnant and he is very busy, so they knew they weren’t going to be able to come back and produce another season for a while, and it was a way to fill that space.
  • They chose to not build an email list together. So on the you can find Jessica’s bio and a link to her website, and a link to Corey’s bio and his website. They wanted a way to keep people engaged in between seasons so they wanted to keep having episodes come out so people stayed in touch.
  • This was about getting content out, it isn’t a list builder, it isn’t a way to make money, it was about making Jessica and Corey authority figures. They were both behind the scenes people in podcasting, working really hard in their businesses but not internet celebrities. They wanted to show that they knew a lot about podcasting. Jessica did not want this to be a business podcast where it just sounds like everyone’s pitching what they do. She says maybe if they had talked more about their businesses they would have seen more people visit their websites. But the original goal was to produce a high quality show and create amazing value for podcasters. When you do that, you will attract people. Quality leads will seek you out.


  • Jessica recommends people use Podfly Productions, Interview Connections or Josh Rivers’ services.
  • She also highly recommends honing your communication skills on the mic. You just have to do a lot of podcasting and do a lot of interviews and listen to yourself after the fact to hear how you sound and to improve.
  • Listen to people like Terry Gross from Fresh Air and Mark Maron host of WTF, or other high quality podcasts. Listen to them as a way to learn how to be a better host and a better interviewer.
  • Also check out Jessica’s WebTV show Interview Connections.TV which is a weekly show with tips for podcasters because that will be helpful too.
May 22, 2017

Today’s guest is Geoff Woods from the podcast The Mentee.

There is a change of direction in the podcasting world, ever since Serial, where narrative podcasting has become more popular. We are still at the very beginning of the bell curve of podcasting’s popularity because we’re still in the realm of the early adopter. Many people still don’t know what podcasting is.

There is going to be an increasing need for podcasts because it will become more popular and the professionals are realizing it. There are narrative journalists who did that as their profession who are bringing that talent and skill set to the podcasting world. With that, you’re starting to see podcasts coming out with incredibly high production quality and budgets for production as well. You don’t have to do that to compete moving forward, but recognize that the quality is going through the roof and if you want to stand out you have to do things differently.

Geoff’s approach

  • Geoff started recording the conversations with the incredible, high-level people he was spending time with as a way to document his journey from employee to entrepreneur. He got feedback from the listener that what they really wanted wasn’t necessarily just an interview but that they wanted to hear private conversations that were genuine, that actually led to results in his life.
  • His podcast is a mixture of the conversations he was having, interspersed with his own narration about it. As he documented his journey over the last year, there were times where he felt compelled to share his thoughts and document his journey and carrying a recorder everywhere enabled him to do that. He says he has only used perhaps 5% of those little moments in the podcast but it aids in the rawness and authenticity of his podcast. It shows the true emotion, including fear, that he’s going through but also when the lightbulb comes on in his head too.

 Advice for narrative podcasters

  • Recognize that you need to document every interaction not only for your own retention but also in case there is a snippet of gold that you can use for the podcast. Also of course ask for permission to use what snippets you choose in the podcast. You have to document it and form some system of marking the date you talked to them, what you talked about and moments of gold.
  • When you start a podcast or a blog, when you do anything that puts you in the position of being a reporter, you end up doing something that creates an immense amount of value for yourself. This is why Geoff started his podcast. Not only to add value to other people (which was his number 1 goal) but also to give a way to add value that was unique, and get in front of the people he wouldn’t have had access to otherwise.
  • If you were to walk up to those people and ask to pick their brain, the chances are the answer will be no. However, when you put yourself in the position of reporter, all of a sudden you are giving value to them because you have a platform and are giving them exposure. Everyone wants exposure. It feeds the ego. Regardless of how big their podcast is, this is true. Some people will ask you how big your podcast is and how big your reach is, and that’s ok, but most people will just want the exposure.
  • Take Damon John from Shark Tank for example. The odds of getting him to have coffee with me, he’d likely say no. Geoff recognizes that if he wanted to get in touch with those kinds of people, he needed to step his game up even more. Using a brand like behind his name gives him even better access to those kinds of high-level people. Therefore, he set out with the aim of becoming a contributing writer for for the specific reason of being able to network.
  • When he found out that Damon John was coming out with a book, he recognized the opportunity, as a reporter for a major publication, to offer exposure to him for his book. It was an immediate yes, and he got to have the conversation with Damon that he wanted to have, turn it into a podcast episode and turn it into an article for which not only added tremendous value to him in promoting his book, but also adding tremendous value to Geoff from a credibility and traffic standpoint. It was a true win-win.
  • Geoff is always asking the question ‘How can I add value? How can I help you?’ He knows if somebody is coming out with a book then they will be looking for press, so it’s a no-brainer.

Hooks in the podcast to entice listeners

  • Geoff also realizes that recording private conversations with some really influential people can be taken out of context. So what he’s started to do is narrate at the beginning of each episode to provide the context and frame the conversation. It shows people the goal, the mission and the stage of the journey that he’s on so that they can understand why the conversation is worth listening to. Then he adds a take-away so the listeners can easily find out what they can apply in their own life, and also a call to action.
  • It’s a concept of opening loops and closing loops. At the beginning you can say something that sets up the topic. E.g. ‘the 5 things that are holding you back from quitting your day job’. This gives the listener a headline and something that grabs you attention and makes you want the answer. Then, however, they don’t get the answer straight away. They have to stick around to listen to the end of the episode so they will get the answer.
  • Then, throughout the episode, before you give them the answer to that question, before you close that loop, open another one. You can add something like ‘before we finish this episode I just want to let you know that next episode we will feature a conversation with xyz and the secrets he shared about abc.’ Then close the original loop so that the listener does get that sense of closure.
  • The basic formula: Open loop 1, open loop 2, close loop 1.
  • Then in the following episode you address the fact of that open loop 2, but also open loop 3 before you close loop 2. It’s putting a chain together so that listeners are drawn on and on. This idea comes from Ryan Dice at Digital Marketer. This is something, a very specific thing, that Geoff thinks about when he’s planning his podcasts now. He asks himself ‘how can I tie these episodes together?’ so that strategically he can keep people engaged.
May 12, 2016

Today's guests:

Bryan Orr
Corey Coates
Doc Kennedy
Jessica Abel
Dave Jackson
Erik K. Johnson
Rye Taylor
Daniel J. Lewis
Elsie Escobar
Geoff Woods

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” This is a quote from Benjamin Franklin. It applies to many areas of life, and it applies to creating a narrative podcast as well.

My name is Joshua Rivers, and I’m helping to guide you through this journey into narrative podcasting. So, we’ve learned what a narrative is and whether you should even try this. We’ve also climbed the mountain to get the 30,000 foot view of the narrative process.

Today we will be looking at creating a plan, and it’s best to start with the end so you know where you’re going. I asked Bryan Orr about this…

Bryan Orr: You waste more time…

As we speak to the others, we’ll see this thought of having a plan and knowing where you are going. It really does help a lot when piecing together the story arc.

Bryan Orr says that are basically two types of stories…

Bryan Orr: Some are content centric…

Bryan Orr: Writing intensive…

Bryan Orr: So when you start off with the timeline…

Corey Coates and Jessica Rhodes created what Bryan is calling a content centric podcast series with the first season of The Podcast Producers (which they are now in the middle of the second season).

Corey Coates: I think it always starts with the story arc…

I love the idea of breaking the ideas down into chapters. I see this in a couple ways. First of all, when creating a series, each episode can be viewed as a chapter of the story. Secondly, if you’re looking at a single episode, there will be several sections, or you could say chapters.

Try to logically lay things out so that similar things are grouped together and flow from one part to the next. In episodes 7 and 8 of this series, we’ll dive into more ideas of doing this while still enticing the listener to keep listening and how to flow from one to the next.

Jessica Rhodes: You need to know and have a good understanding of who your audience is…

We probably should have started here. Who is your listener? Who are you targeting?

Jessica Rhodes: …and also what story arc is…

Doc Kennedy: Everything scripted…

Doc Kennedy works in the film making industry as well as in the world of podcasting.

Doc Kennedy: I would set it up like…

One aspect of the podcast that needs to be thought about is the voices. We’ll get into actually picking and finding the right people in the next episode, but during the planning stage, you need to really consider how multiple voices can create a third dimension for the audio.

Doc Kennedy: If I could, I would definitely have multiple people…

Dave Jackson from the School of Podcasting also agrees that writing things down to help jog the inspirational juices and to organize your thoughts.

Dave Jackson: For me, I wrote it down…

Dave Jackson: …and there was this whole skit

Rye Taylor: If you’re going to do a narrative…

This is Rye Taylor.

Rye Taylor: Once you take that step…

Rye Taylor: It’s hard to describe this…

Erik K. Johnson: So I think your first step…

This is Erik K. Johnson, Podcast Talent Coach.

Erik K. Johnson: I think the most difficult part…

Rye Taylor: You’ve got to decide…

Learning to focus the story on one main person is an effective way to bring perspective. It also gives you a boundary and direction or how to tell the story.

Rye Taylor: Once you get that…

Most of what we’ve talked about looks at telling stories that have either already happened or that we create. What about approaching something that is either currently happening or is still in the future. Daniel J. Lewis brings his perspective.

Daniel J.

Apr 29, 2016


If you haven’t listened to the first episode of this series, go back and listen to that first. We covered what a narrative podcast is and whether you should or shouldn’t pursue this format of podcasting.

Assuming now that you’ve considered those, we’ll cover an overview of the process of creating a narrative podcast in this episode. We won’t go into a lot of detail, as we will delve into the different parts in future episodes; but you’ll be able to see the big picture.

This episode is going to be a little different than the rest. There are only going to be three guests with us – Jessica Rhodes, Erik K. Johnson, and Jessica Abel. The majority of the episode will be my voice. The rest of the episodes will be featuring more of the guests and less of me.

In addition to the overview or roadmap, I’ll be sharing a couple other things here that are key to making the process easier or better – or hopefully both.

From Interview Connections, Jessica Rhodes is the host of the Rhodes to Success podcast and the co-host of The Podcast Producers along with Corey Coates. She realized the importance of having a team.

I haven’t followed this advice yet, as I’m working on this series alone, other than the contributions from those I was able to interview. I am, however, talking with someone about helping form some of the later episodes. This should help make it easier and have a better product in the end. I’ll definitely report on this later.

Erik K. Johnson talks about crafting stories on his podcast, Podcast Talent Coach.

Erik shares 4 main parts of a narrative.

These four parts help to structure what you probably already knew in the back of your mind. For a more in-depth process for our purposes, though, I want to share the extensive process that Roman Mars shared in his presentation at Podcast Movement 2015. He is the host of 99 Percent Invisible, which is a narrative or journalistic style podcast with high production value.

Roman Mars has a team that he works with, and it take them several weeks to put together one episode of the podcast. I’m not completely positive, but I believe that they work on multiple stories at a time, overlapping them. I say this because they do release weekly episodes.

I know that this is a generalization, but I would venture to say that the average podcaster has a very simple process or workflow.


As a general rule, I believe that most podcasters are in a rush to release the episodes because they are trying to keep to a schedule or because they’ve already blown their schedule. This is mostly due to a little thing called life. This is completely understandable since the vast majority of podcasters are doing this on the side of their jobs and families. In the rush, though, the process is simplified and the easiest path is usually taken.

Roman Mars, though, shared his process, and the process is probably similar in other high production podcasts and organizations that produce audio like this. Here’s a quick rundown of this workflow:

Research enough to pitch idea to group
Research more
Conduct pre-interviews
Adjust story concept
Pick interview subjects
Write first draft of script
Second draft
Third draft
Full cuts
“Read to tape” as group
Group edits
Fourth draft
Rough mix
Listen to the rough as a group
Another group edit
Rough sound design
Listen as a group
Fix sound design
Pass off your final master
Final mix
Send out
Get notes
Fix based on notes
Review again
Green light

Are you overwhelmed at this list?

Apr 13, 2016

In this episode of the Creative Studio, we are launching into the 4th season (or semester) of the podcast. We will be delving into the world of narrative podcasting. This will include similar higher-level production as well, such as documentary and journalistic styles. A lot of the principles will also apply to any podcast and the way approach the development of them.

In this first episode, we will give an overview of what a narrative podcast is, if you should consider this style for yourself or not, and a little bit about narrative podcasting in general.

You'll also get introduced to the eleven guests that will show up throughout the season. You will hear from multiple guests as we focus on a particular part of the process in each episode. Here are the eleven guests:

Bryan Orr
Corey Coates
Jessica Rhodes
Daniel J. Lewis
Dave Jackson
Elsie Escobar
Doc Kennedy
Geoff Woods
Jessica Abel
Erik K. Johnson
Rye Taylor

As we go through this season, each episode will focus on one aspect of the narrative process:

Episode 1: Beginning with Narrative Podcasting (pssst...this is where you are now)
Episode 2: Roadmap for Narrative Podcasting
Episode 3: Planning Your Narrative Podcast
Episode 4: Preparing Your Narrative Podcast
Episode 5: Recording Your Narrative Podcast
Episode 6: Editing Your Narrative Podcast
Episode 7: Enticing Your Listener with a Narrative Podcast
Episode 8: Flowing From One Part of the Narrative to the Next
Episode 9: Picking Up the Pieces Left on the Cutting Room Floor
Episode 10: Learning and Resources for Narrative Podcasting

In the next episode, we will cover the overall process of creating a narrative. This will be a quick overview of the above steps, giving you a better idea of what to expect. You'll also learn some additional tips to help with keeping things in order and on track.
Confession: I am learning these things as we go through this. I am not an expert in this field...yet.
Confession 2: One suggestion that will come up involves having a partner or a team. Other than the contributions from the guests, I did all of this myself. The lesson - follow the advice, not my example in this!
If you have any questions, comments, or other feedback, please join in the conversation! You can add a comment below or contact me. While I've conducted the interviews already and have generally slated what will be in each episode to come, nothing is finalized. I am leaving room to add your thoughts to the show.

The post 4.1: Beginning with Narrative Podcasting appeared first on Creative Studio Academy.

Jun 26, 2015

This is a bonus episode for our series on how to podcast.

Brad Clayton from the Entrepreneur Uncovered podcast comes on to share some of the struggles that he's had over the past couple months getting started with his first podcast.


The post Beginner podcaster shares his struggles (3-14) appeared first on Creative Studio Academy.

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