Stephanie Arakelian joins Todd and Rob from the Impact Theory Podcast and YouTube channel. She is a podcast marketing and audience development specialist with the team. We discuss what it takes to have a successful Podcast and YouTube channel in the first of-its-kind interview we have done here at the New Media Show.
The episode opens with Todd and Rob welcoming Stephanie to the show. They note that it is rare for a brand to find significant success on both YouTube and podcasting, so they are interested in hearing about Impact Theory’s approach. They also discuss the Descript acquisition of Squadcast.
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Descript – Squadcast Acquisition
Todd sees the acquisition as a strategic move for Descript. It will allow creators to record, edit, and distribute podcasts to platforms like Blubrry all within one platform. Rob notes that Descript has been focused on getting more content creators into their platform. Buying Squadcast expands its capabilities for recording and distributing podcasts. Todd thinks it puts companies trying to build standalone podcast platforms like Riverside.fm at a disadvantage. The merged Descript-Squadcast offering provides an integrated end-to-end solution.
They discuss how the acquisition could impact other podcast creation tools like Zencastr if more platforms consolidate features. Overall, Todd sees it as a brilliant move to streamline podcast production and distribution in one place. Rob agrees it completes the workflow for Descript.
Building a Successful YouTube Channel and Podcast
Stephanie shares that Impact Theory started on YouTube, building a massive audience there. The podcast launched about six months later. She explains that they intentionally keep the YouTube and podcast content separate, with different episode titles, formatting, release cadence, etc., tailored for each platform. This allows them to optimize growth based on unique algorithms and audience behaviors.
The hosts dive into various factors that influence success on YouTube versus podcasts. They discuss the importance of timely topics, thumbnail images, and brevity for YouTube. Podcasts allow for longer-form content. Stephanie notes that their podcast episodes are typically 1-1.5 hours long compared to 2-3 hours on YouTube.
The Difference in Platform Engagement
The group explores the differences in community building and engagement between the platforms. Stephanie notes that YouTube lends itself to more impersonal comments, while podcasting develops deeper intimacy between host and listener. She stresses making audio listeners feel valued, not just an afterthought.
Monetization and advertising also vary greatly. YouTube relies more on high volume at lower CPMs, while podcasting commands higher ad rates. Stephanie discusses how they price-integrated deals across both platforms accordingly.
Threats of de-platforming arise, with Todd noting some conservative podcasters he knows being banned from YouTube. The hosts agree creators must diversify and control their distribution for long-term viability.
As the platforms continue evolving, Stephanie emphasizes being ready to adapt and tweak strategies constantly. She believes agility is key to riding out the ongoing changes in media consumption. Even hosting this podcast discussion on YouTube and audio is an experiment in optimization.
Tricks to Analyze Your Podcast Data
Other topics covered include using AI tools like Claude, ChatGPT, and Code Interpreter for things like show notes, content summaries, and data analysis. Todd shares how he used Code Interpreter to analyze millions of rows of voting data for the Podcast Awards.
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