My discovery of podcast
A while ago, I decided to explore the world of podcasts. I must admit that I did not join early this new form of media. Usually, for technology, I am a very early adopter. But somehow, podcasts did not interest me much for a long time. They often take too much time, and don’t fit well in my schedule. There are other forms of discovering information that are often just as good or even better.
It is my training for a half-marathon that got me interested in podcasts. After running 10k, it can get a bit boring to be alone with my own thought. This is what I like to describe as the loneliness of the long-distance runner.
My first podcast subscription
The podcast PM for the Masses, from Cesar Abeid, is the first podcast I listen to. It is still my preferred podcast, and I love to listen to every new episode.
I then discovered a few other podcasts, some related to project management, leadership and productivity, some to other topics. I even explore in more details some shows and listened to all their available episodes.
Today I would like to share a few of my thoughts and podcasting tips as a listener. After listening to so many episodes, I have a few thoughts about what I like and what I don’t like. Of course, these are just mine. Others may have different opinions. I would even suggest that a podcaster should survey its users to get a more complete perspective. But still, I would like to share my thoughts.
Here we go!
Podcasting tips from a listener
My ideal duration for an episode is about 30 to 40 minutes. Sometimes, a shorter episode of 20 minutes will still be interesting and provide rich information. Sometimes, 50 minutes will be OK. If the podcast is more than 50 minutes, most of the time, I would prefer to have two shorter episodes. And this should be good for the podcaster, with the same interview or subject, you can produce more than 1 episodes. Less work, more results!
I prefer a lot original and interesting content. People usually do a podcast on subject that they love. It shouldn’t be too hard to find some original content. The most boring thing to have a repeat of the same content with the same celebrity interview who says the same thing on every podcast he attends as a guest. Most of the time, we already heard the speech. Sometimes, we also listened to the other show. The same interview forces me to choose between the two shows. Which one should I keep and which one should I unsubscribe?
Bring your own voice, and bring unique content to your niche. If you invite someone who appears on numerous shows, find a new dimension. If the guest is doing a roadshow appearing on numerous platforms to promote something, we probably already heard him. Good for him that he is so proactive to promote his stuff. However, I am busy and do not find interesting to listen to the same story of Mr. X for the 5th time. (If you are the one doing the roadshow, it would be nice if you could make each interview unique in their own way).
Please create original content. Originality is what makes me curious and interested in new episodes.
Some podcasts are very interesting, and it is fun to go back and listen all the way up from episode one. A podcaster should be proud of that.
Yet, some podcasters only provide a limited feed in iTunes. It is strange and frustrating. I do not want to go to your website to listen to episode 1 to 50, and then iTunes for the newer episode. There is easy way to download episodes. There is no easy way to mark episodes as listened.
Sometimes, it is even worse. The older episodes are not even on the website. You should not be so harsh on yourself and delete the older episodes. Your podcast probably has a more mature production now. However, we are still interested, and won’t complaint about the novice production of your first episodes. Finally, if you don’t have them available because you changed direction, and no longer promote the original content, then you should have started a new show using a new name.
The podcast website should support well the podcast. Show notes are useful to complement the audio podcast with some additional information and links. I do not bother much trying to follow the so called easy link that podcaster try to create. It just takes one character wrong and it is a miss. And I listen to podcast almost only on the go. So I just go to the show notes. Don’t make them to complex, just enough to provide the relevant additional information.
Minimize intro and outro
Adding a good intro and outro to a show is nice. However, if you are not too careful, you can take a lot of time that are just fillers for regular listeners. I listened to 40 minutes show with easily 5 minutes of intro, outro and other fillers. They are nice, but minimizing them is appreciated.
In short, I would suggest to podcaster to design their show as if they were a very frequent listener of their show. Most podcasters are also listeners of other podcasts. As a user, what do they like in a podcast? In the long run, understanding your listeners and their perspective will always give an advantage to a podcast.
Share your thoughts
- Which podcast do you like?
- What tips would you give to a podcast
This may be useful information to podcasters
Michel Dion, PMP, CPA
Founder and Developer of Project-Aria
Discover my book:
Leadership Toolbox for Project Managers: Achieve Better Results in a Dynamic World