Unpacking the Modern Podcast Landscape #579

In this episode, Todd and Rob explore various topics related to the current situation and the future of podcasting. The episode starts with the hosts acknowledging the different livestream times. It then quickly moves into a discussion sparked by Rob’s recent event in New Jersey, where the interest in starting new podcasts was a hot topic.

They discuss the motivations driving new podcasters and how the broader media landscape has changed. Yet, despite the evolution in production and distribution, they agree that the core principles of podcasting have remained the same. The conversation shifts to the challenge of growing a podcast audience in a crowded content space and the importance of building community through mission-driven content creation.

Todd highlights the need for podcasters to have clear goals, suggesting the goal should drive the format and content of the show. They discuss the advantage of having a pre-existing community to build from, but Todd also stresses that podcasting starts hard and there’s no shortcut to success. Rob and Todd emphasize the need to create great content for the audience and interact with them authentically.

The discussion transitions to the role of AI in podcasting, with Todd sharing insights on new tools that help with production and distribution. They address the trend where big media companies over-invest in production costs without a proportional return on investment, leading to canceled podcasts and restructuring.

During the live chat, hosts respond to live comments from the audience, affirming their earlier points on content creation being hard work and the role of AI in leveling the playing field.

Todd then demonstrates new features on their website players, such as chapter files and transcriptions added for better engagement and accessibility, though they encounter a glitch during the demonstration. They stress the importance of easily accessible engagement tools for podcast audiences and how new media apps promise better listener interaction compared to legacy podcast apps.

Rob discusses the Independent Podcast Awards, their significance, and an ongoing issue in categorizing what makes a podcast truly ‘independent.’

The hosts touch upon podcasts being available on third-party messaging apps in regions like Saudi Arabia and North Africa, acknowledging that while it’s an exciting development, such platforms might not be optimal for podcast consumption. They also briefly discuss the challenges of integrating podcasting into familiar platforms like WhatsApp and Telegram.

Throughout the show, Todd and Rob field comments from the live audience, reflecting on the live feedback’s energizing effect on their discussion – underscoring the very point the episode seeks to make about the deep connection between podcasters and their communities.

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