Do people really want to make a “successful” podcast?

white and pink flowers beside a canister
white and pink flowers beside a canister
Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

I’m going to start writing a few thoughts as part of my research.

The question that comes to mind today is whether people really want to make a “successful” show?

So much of the hype around podcasting is about the “dream” of podcast success.

When you study the content online, it has little to do with the reality of producing podcasts. You don’t see too much about editing, organising and analysising data.

When you first start podcasting, the natural reaction is to focus on the dream of getting big audiences and connecting with amazing guests. It’s totally understandable, I did it.

If you do a Google search you’ll also find that’s what everyone else is thinking about. There are hundreds of “light reading” articles about podcast success.

Remember search engines don’t deliver the answer, they deliver the answer that people are searching for. That’s very different.

If they spend 5 minutes reading a fluffy dream-like article and bounce off a more detailed one after a few seconds because it all sounds too hard, then search engines will consider the fluffy article as the one to show.

It’s no surprise really as most of the people who write this “light” stuff either want to sell you a course or want to grab your attention for other SEO purposes.

What concerns me is that the hype has created this alternative reality that just doesn’t exist.

You see this not just in podcasting but in business too.

People want what they want, even if it fundamentally doesn’t work.

When I’m researching normally, you wouldn’t believe how hard it can be to find good quality podcast content on Google! It’s like crawling through a pile of fluff to find the diamond.

But here’s another thought.

If we give people what they want, will we in fact be selling them something that fundamentally does not work as it’s missing all the detail that makes the difference?

What concerns me is that the hype has created this alternative reality that just doesn’t exist.

You see this not just in podcasting but in business too. People want what they want, even if it fundamentally doesn’t work.

I’m currently studying tech start-up methodology to look for patterns which could be used in podcasting. Start up methodology is heavily focused on execution (doing the stuff that makes it work) not the “fun stuff”.

When you look at major podcasters you can see them doing this too. They study the data, they analyse the figures, they change the format based on hard data and that takes effort.

And having a plan, just like tech startups, grounded in reality means they fighting chance of success.

If a start-up went into a meeting with a venture capitalist and said “I’ve heard this business type is cool, I don’t much about it but people get loads of money from it, can you give me a million dollars”, they’ll be laughed out of the room because the VCs know this person will fail.

If however, they go into a room with a plan and are clearly prepared to do the work to make that happen, then the VC may well give them the money as they stand a chance of success.

Podcasting may not be a start up but there are certainly parallels.

The dream of podcasting is about interviews and great guests. The reality is one that takes more work.

If people focus on the reality they face a chance of success.

If they focus on the dream, they are likely to fail like so many others….. but not until they have wasted vast amounts of time and effort in the process of achieving failure.

So do people want success, or do they want to buy into a dream for a bit and then move onto the next thing?

Am I wrong? Feel free to comment. I’m interested what you think.

close

I KNOW TIME IS SHORT.

Would you prefer to get everything in the shows in a VERY SHORT "bullet point" sized email? Yes?

Just let me know where to send it.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Published by RicksWP

Former YouTuber, former news editor, a former journalist, former political social media content creator, now an engineer of happiness at Automattic.

Leave a Reply