550- Barriers that face new podcasters

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we discuss an earlier post this year by with the theme of: “12 Podcast Barriers facing New Creators.”

Unfortunately, that theme is still prominent in the activities for podcasters — especially new podcasters and aspiring podcasters. And this post by author Jared Easley does try to address these situations.

In summary, these Barriers are listed as:

  • [Lacking] Self-confidence — “self-doubt can lead to procrastination”;
  • Who[m] to trust;
  • Getting Started;
  • Coming up with a name for my show;
  • Pressing RECORD;
  • Staying motivated;
  • Equipment;
  • Editing;
  • Marketing;
  • Guest hunting;
  • Engagement (i.e., “getting listeners to engage”);
  • Monetization

At the end of this post by Jared Easley, he asks the reader “So what has been holding you back?”

As a podcaster, perhaps you can use these as a checklist with which to review your own podcast shows and see if you appear to be weak in any one of these or some of these. And if so, you can then put a plan in place to strengthen them. And, of course, Jared has his experience as a podcaster from which to draw in order to try and assist the podcaster in getting over the barrier. And he does provide some detail for each of the barriers listed, with some of his suggestions.

I have known the author, Jared Easley, since his founding days in 2014 in the creation of Podcast Movement.

And I would suggest that these suggestions are eternal ones and evergreen ones for new and aspiring podcasters. Perhaps you may see if any of these barriers apply to yourself — or, as Jared asks at the end of the post, ask yourself what OTHER barriers may apply. And then you can put a plan in place to improve your skills in the areas that need work, so that they will no longer be a barrier to you at any time in your podcasting career.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and and Jared Easley and All rights reserved.


548- Resurging interest in Podcast Networks and membership sites

This is a repurposed episode of The Podcast Reporter, where the original podcast episode was published on 4May2020. The reason we submit this for repurposing is that the subject is very heated now in conversation and action in the podosphere, with the Chinese virus-crisis now simmering down in the US — and with people now interested in both podcast networks and membership sites.

Repurposed episode 407:

In this episode of, we focus on the question of whether to join or even start your own Podcast Network. This theme came to me from a couple of recent episodes from Evo Terra in his Podcast Pontifications show, as well as Daniel J Lewis in his show, The Audacity to Podcast.

If your passion for podcasting has grown such that you want to join or even create your own podcast network, perhaps you should listen to the questions asked by Evo Terra, as well as listen to the experiences (the good, the bad and the ugly) from Daniel J Lewis (who did shut down his own podcast network that he started years ago).

My own experiences with podcast networks

Now, I have had experiences with the thought of joining a podcast network. In 2006 and 2007, I dipped my toes into the waters of joining what looked like a growing podcast network at Podango (this was the podcast company that had acquired Gigavox, the firm that created the Levelator in 2006). I wanted to be a part of what was called a “podcast station” (which was the category or genres of podcasts) called the Business Station. I wanted to include my flagship podcast at the time, Struggling Entrepreneur. And the sharing, the community and the financial benefits all seemed like a great beginning. However, I did have second thoughts about letting someone else run my show and own my RSS feed and content. So I decided NOT to join and just kept being on my own. And, by the way, I do not regret that decision, as Podango later went out of business in another year or two.

Then, in 2007, the podcast network bug bit me again. This time, I wanted to start a podcast network which I had temporarily called the “Content Creator and podcaster network.” This was going to be basically a membership site with 4 founders — one for the technical side of podcasting; another for the financial side of startups and podcasting; another for the marketing side of podcasting and its promotion; and my contribution, the personal productivity side of creating content and podcasts.

For this membership site, we even had a meeting which I had called. And I used the prior method of getting buy-in and commitment and dialog used by Tim Bourquin when he had founded the Podcast and Portable Media Expo in 2005. That is, I invited everyone to join me personally (at my expense for travel, lodging and meals) for a couple of days in Austin, Texas, so that we could discuss all day the creation of this membership site which would then create the network shortly after launch. In fact, we even had an attorney, who was himself a podcaster, join us via Skype to get the details of the contract which he would create for all of us to agree and sign as a commitment. Well, that meeting gave me an indication of how much CONTROL and OWNERSHIP and FINANCIAL EXPECTATION that podcasters desired. As a result, I saw that this arrangement would not suit all the parties involved — what seemed like an exciting discussion and proposal went down in flames when “the devil is in the details.” So we never gave the green light to create the contract (with legal fees of $1300 in those days), and we disbanded the idea. And the survivors were only two of us who started another podcast based on Finance for Startups (which has since podfaded).

What was obvious to me at that time, after some pre-investment expenses and time, was that podcasters were too much desirous of control and ownership of the direction. And this is only natural, since podcasting at that time was individually run, owned and managed by the solo podcaster. And these people were not used to SHARING any intellectual property or revenue with others, especially under contract.

So the notion of a podcast network or membership site was erased from my mind as a creator — and maybe one day I might join one already in session.

The 2 recent episodes about podcast networks

In a recent episode by Evo Terra in his show called Podcast Pontifications, the title of his script and audio episode was “Should you join or form a podcast network?”

In this audio episode, Evo asks the most important questions: (1) What is it that you want to get out of the network?; and (2) what is it that you will be willing to sacrifice to belong in it?

He not only goes over what his own backstory was in creating his own network back “in the day” of 2004 and following, but also how a loose confederation of podcasters can be just a social club rather than a really serious podcast network (and he describes what should be in a podcast network from his point of view).

So the benefits vs. the contributions is a matrix that you should put together to evaluate an existing podcast network that you may feel compelled to join. Also, if you wish to start one, you should examine deep in yourself what you really want to get out of managing this type of organization and see if you have the talent and skills to do so effectively, without having the passion of podcasting be lost due to frustrations because of your potential lack of skills.

And Evo relates what, in his opinion, is really needed for a good podcast network today.

Now, the other example with some lessons learned comes from Daniel J Lewis of The Audacity to Podcast show. He describes how he put together his network shortly after he joined podcasting in full force — and also the end of his network, along with the reasons why he ended it.

In his recent episode called “Why we retired our podcast network,” Daniel mentions that he had clear-cut goals when he created his podcast network: “My goal was to bring together like-minded podcasters with high-quality shows to grow together through synergy, community, support, cross-promotion, and sponsorship.”

However, what seemed to me to be more or less a society of like-minded individuals with different podcast shows from different genres and possibly some unrelated themes soon grew into a long list of participating shows in the network, like the following:

  • The Ramen Noodle
  • Are You Just Watching
  • The Audacity to Podcast
  • Beyond the To-Do List
  • The Productive Woman
  • Christian Meets World
  • The Sci-Phi Show
  • ONCE
  • Welcome to Level Seven
  • Under the Dome Radio
  • Resurrection Revealed
  • Podcasting Videos by The Audacity to Podcast
  • Inside the Podcasting Business
  • As you can see, this could appear to be a community of disjointed themes and topics, with possibly the intent to generate sponsorship, financial rewards from downloads and advertising, as well as cross-promotion. And Daniel then explains what things he did well in the network and what things that were done poorly:
  • Audience-relevant common theme
  • Cross-promotion
  • Cross-integration
  • Full and consistent community
  • and you can listen to his audio podcast episode to get the details. Then he states why he retired the network, including the ability for him to focus on fewer things, as well as giving each podcaster more room to expand.

So Daniel’s experiences deliver some lessons learned about starting a podcast network, and I would suggest that you take these into account if you get the passion to go beyond your own podcast shows and want to start your own network.

Considerations for the podcaster about Podcast Network

As a podcaster, what passion can be driving you toward wanting to start a great podcast network? Will you have the time? Will the additional workload and timetables and schedules and management of the network be something you will embrace, as well as have time for? Will you have the necessary skills to manage your network? Will you have the right temperment for being in the network? And will the podcasts in the network be the right ones, or will they be a hodge-podge collection of your favorite podcasters and additional genres and other topics that might not relate well to some audiences? Will the network be governed by contract or by word-of-mouth agreements?

So, whatever your decision may be concerning podcast networks may be (i.e., either joining one or starting one of your own), we hope that these two audio episodes can give you enough food for thought to know what to expect both from the contribution side and the giving side to the network.

So we hope that your podcast show will be successful, whether it be a part of a podcast network or not.

Thank you for your attention

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and Daniel J Lewis of and Evo Terra of and All rights reserved.


BONUS – 2021- Steps and time to create a podcast episode

In this BONUS EPISODE of The Podcast Reporter, we deliver an audio copy of some content that I sent to Dave Jackson (the podcaster for the School of Podcasting) to answer his “question of the month” for November, 2021. The question was: how much time does it take for you to create a podcast episode — from idea stage until you click PUBLISH and have your episode go live. By the way, Dave is the Author of the book titled “Profit from your Podcast.”

So, I responded with a five-minute audio section, which is played right after the intro content of this episode. Now you can see what it takes in steps and in time to create a “micro-cast” that is 10 minutes or shorter in length of time, as well as an interview episode, or an episode with a co-host.

I hope that you gain some value to understand what is required to create a podcast episode — both a short-form episode and then a 40-minute episode. If you are doing “double-enders,” then this episode may help you understand the steps it takes to create and release an episode.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and and Dave Jackson of All rights reserved.


546- Podcasting publishing where no motivation may exist

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we discuss an article that came out earlier in 2021 from that seems to pontificate the themes of recording a podcast episode for your show when you have no motivation or when the excitement of the ideal for your podcast show is losing its strength to what the article says is the reality of “the grey monotony of the daily grind.”

Now, this article expands on the ideas of motivation vs. accomplishments and the state of mind in forcing yourself as a podcaster to publish an episode for your show, especially when reality of work and effort will try to combat your enthusiasm that had you initially visualize and launch your show. And here are the topics covered in this article:

  • Discipline trumps motivation — “Discipline is what gives structure and direction to our lives” by locking in your schedule and your systems;
  • Find the right physical space;
  • Find the right head space — “a happy you is a happy podcaster, and a happy podcaster is a motivated one”;
  • Treat yourself (especially with self-rewards for completing certain tasks in your workflow — especially for finally posting and publishing an episode);
  • Remind yourself of WHY — with a physical tip for you to see a reminder of your initial goals for launching the podcast;

And David Hutchinson, the author, delivers his own conclusion for the text of the article.

So, you yourself as a podcaster have to see what your motivation was when you started the podcast to remind yourself, and then you can see the VALUE to you and your audience. By monitoring your FEEDBACK and your RESULTS of “subscriptions” and “follows” and other stats, you can then be vicarious in accepting the reasons positively for continuing to put out your content in giving value to your audience — that is, of NOT letting them down by podfading or delaying an episode. Remember that delay of an episode in a situation where your audience expects consistency of some sort is the first step in the formula to LOSING your audience bit by bit — and this loss is what could be causing your neagativity in podcasting and making it more difficult to find the energy, strength, enthusiasm, positivity, excitement and passion to continue podcasting.

We hope that you can find THE WHY that will fuel your WHAT and your HOW to continue to post your episodes when your motivation may be challenged by the various reasons of reality vs. passion.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and and All rights reserved.


592- Best practices in podcasting

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we review some ideas and suggestions from Ben Krueger of that deal with suggested BEST PRACTICES for podcasting. This theme was discussed in a post from Ben Krueger in his site titled “Podcast Best Practices for 2021.”

Ben Krueger

As you may remember, I have known Ben since 2014, when we both were at an exhibit table at the very first Podcast Movement conference in Dallas. In my opinion, Ben is a professional podcaster who has delivered lots of good suggestions, especially for the aspiring and new podcasters. And he has posted many documents for free from his site that do add value.

In this post, he reviews some suggested BEST PRACTICES for the podcaster that may add value to the podcasting effort. It is highly recommended that you, as a podcaster, should list some best practices used by other podcasters of note. Then you can look at them and see if you can integrate some of them that may work well for your own podcast shows. Perhaps some of these can help your show to stand out as “value-driven content.” Remember, as Ben mentions, there really is no magic formula for everyone.

Here is a summary of the introduction by Ben about best practices and his discussion: Podcast best practices inevitably change from one year to the next. As the streaming landscape begins to mature, it’s never been more important to follow podcast best practices and deploy a range of strategies to attract engaged audio listeners. While the consumption of audio content is increasing, listeners only have so much time in a day to engage with podcasts.”

  • Provide your audience with as much value as possible;
  • Create a memorable podcast name and optimize titles: “Establishing a clear value proposition begins with a memorable podcast name.”
  • Strike a balance between creativity and authenticity;
  • Involve your target audience in the conception of the podcast, including the podcast name(s): “Launching a podcast without consulting your target audience is a poor strategy.”
  • Utilize Welcome and send-off phrases to build audience trust to help establish a sense of familiarity;
  • Consistency in how you open and close your episodes adds structure to your content;
  • Take note of how hosts in other podcasts within your niche open and close each episode;
  • Cross-sell other podcast episodes and related content;
  • Consistently schedule and publish new podcast episodes to have your listeners include your episodes as part of their routine;
  • Communicate your publishing schedule to your listeners;
  • Engage in marketing and promotion efforts: “…you cannot rely on organic discovery on these platforms to build an audience.”
  • What is recommended is  leveraging social media marketing to create awareness around your new podcast episodes.

Ben then sums up his post with the emphasis on delivering value to your audience: “Every best practice related to producing a podcast ultimately stems back to value creation.”

Thus, we hope that you can consume this post and see if any (or all) of these suggestions may help you to increase the value of your podcast show and to engage great listeners so that your podcast show can be a success and deliver the great value to your audience.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and Ben Krueger and All rights reserved.


545- Securing your Podcasting niche

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we discuss the theme advocated in episode 176 of the Podcasting Business School  with Adam Schaeuble earlier this year. The topic was how to “niche-down” the theme of your podcast show, so that your show can be accelerated for growth, engagement and attractiveness to listeners in the podosphere and be on the road to success, instead of going downhill.

In this mentioned episode, Adam describes four key symptoms that can indicate that you need to “niche-down” your podcast (which signifies that you are perhaps covering too wide an area and not getting the customer or listener engagement that you want). And these four symptoms are:

  • Lack of audience engagement or feedback from your listeners;
  • It has been difficult to monetize (because perhaps your offers are not attractive enough or just plain boring);
  • Stalled growth in subscriptions (or “follows”) and downloads, etc.;
  • Perhaps you are losing interest — either in topics or drudgery of creating another episode, etc. (it is too much of slavery for you).

Now, many podcasters see a “lull” or dip in performance of engagement with audience listeners, as well as with the statistics of their episodes. This does not mean all the time that the show is going downhill. It could be for a variety of reasons:

  • the Season has wrapped and the audience will be waiting for the beginning of the next season;
  • the virus crisis has changed their interest levels to other topics, and perhaps your podcast topic was more along the lines of entertainment in a pre-pandemic world where the topics were of a different nature or not as serious as a crisis;
  • more competition from other podcasters along the same topic and themes have taken away a lot of listeners (now that there a millions of podcasts out there, and the number is growing daily); or
  • with the lock-downs gradually retreating us back into the world of mobility and being “out,” the stay-at-home crowd that may have followed your show will now be on the move and perhaps the listener base has cut down on the listening of podcasts; or
  • Big and important announcements have been made and publicized by Apple and other vendors that relate to the podosphere and products, etc., for podcasting — and they have stolen the thunder and grabbed the momentary attention of your listeners;
  • and other reasons.

And, usually, the “dip” would soon recover back to the “normal” trend of growth and stability for your podcast show over time.

Well, this time, Adam deals with the elements that are too broad for topics or your show to deal with. He has several people whom he recorded and included in his episode number 176 of his show that deal with experiences — and these can serve as proof points and case studies.

For this podcaster, I have seen dips come and go. In some cases, I did a study to examine the causes of the dip for one or more of my podcast shows. And after this type of review, one result that I implemented was to PODFADE the show or shows which I felt had run their course and were no longer relevant to my audience in the podosphere.

In other cases, I saw which episodes could be REUSED or REPURPOSED in other active podcast shows (nearly all of the selected episodes could be repurposed with some editing and updating). And for the shows targeted for podfading, I quickly put into place the creation of another episode alerting the audience of the podfade for that show — it is just common courtesy to the listeners, and many of them resulted in going to my other shows or new shows that I had launched (their feedback told me so).

But for yourself, you have to decide what the causes of the “dip” are, and then you have to decide if this is a seasonal or temporary setback, or whether it is permanent — and then take the appropriate action for your show.

As Adam mentions in his episode, the symptoms tell the ugly truth about the current state of your show. You have to determine to accept the truth and status, and then you have to decide on which path to take to alleviate this dip — and one key way is what Adam mentions, which is to “niche-down” your show. So you may want to see if your own show should be “niched-down” to alter the downhill path and get your show back on an upward direction. And perhaps this will get you back on the road to success. And that means that you constantly have to monitor your show to see if these symptoms will tell you perhaps that you need to consider the tasks needed to “niche-down” your show.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and Podcasting Business School and All rights reserved.