The secret to a successful podcast

Podcasts are becoming more and more popular. They are another way for a person, company, or charity to get their message out. We are always looking to deepen our understanding and insight of them. So, as keen podcast listeners and creators, we were delighted to go along to Broadcast Revolution’s latest chat with Executive Producer, Jonathan Aspinwall, from the BBC.

A podcast’s unique medium

The discussion started on how podcasts were in a ‘unique’ position as a medium, different to the traditional broadcasts which take place on TV and radio. “The industry is shifting,” Jonathan explained, with the rise in podcast listeners particularly notable in the United States.

The audience of podcasts tends to be younger and male and those who do listen often commit while they’re walking the dog, cooking or doing another solitary activity. There is definitely more of an ‘intimate’ process when it comes to tuning into a podcast that perhaps TV and radio don’t share. 

Often with TV you’re sitting down with your breakfast or watching when you’ve finished work, but you may be in and out of the living room. Radio, for example, may be on while you’re driving or while you’re eating your dinner in the dining room. Podcasts, though, tend to be ‘leaned’ into and require commitment, which, perhaps, bitesize news programmes via other platforms can’t accommodate for.

Hooking people in with the podcast

Hooking people in is as important for podcasts as it is for TV and radio. If you fail to connect within the first two minutes, you might as well forget the rest of the broadcast.

But how do you keep people listening? And is there a duration which will keep people interested? Jonathan says celebrities can help when people decide to choose a podcast and stay with it. There is no specific duration, he says, but you shouldn’t go above 35 minutes, unless you already have a keen audience.

Keeping podcast listeners coming back

If you want to keep the listeners coming back, ultimately, you have to make sure the podcast is entertaining and offering something interesting. If you carve out a niche and podcast a topic which hasn’t been covered before (and you do it well), you could hit the jackpot. PRs could offer experts or fresh data as a way of providing something intriguing.

Liv, PR Exec, says: “I really enjoyed Tuesday’s event! Jonathan was fascinating to listen to and it was really interesting to hear all about the future of podcasts. 

“It was great to hear what we can do to get our clients noticed by the likes of the BBC, and I’ll be taking this information forward with me when pitching in the future.”

What’s the future of podcasts?

So, what could the future of podcasting be? Jonathan recommends getting involved with educational podcasts for children and young people. He thinks that’s likely to be the future of the industry.

Top tips for podcasts:

  1. Hook the listener within the first two minutes.
  2. Consider a celebrity or famous face – but if not make sure it’s interesting and says something new.
  3. Don’t go beyond 35 minutes – unless it’s necessary and you think it will still be interesting.
  4. There is no ‘perfect’ time for publishing your podcast – just make sure you keep uploads consistent across the series.
  5. Be prepared to spend some time thinking of a name and marketing the podcast.

If you need help with creating a podcast or want some help with an existing one, get in touch with the team at High-Rise Communications. 

Our trusted team can help you establish your podcast and get it out to the right people. We have podcast production experts waiting to help you.

To find out more about our podcast production services, click here.