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Radio And Podcasting Similarities

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(Randy Lane) There are many differences in the listening experience to radio shows and podcasts. Podcasts are more of a time investment, whereas, radio shows are typically listened to in short spurts. Podcasts are usually focused on a theme and radio shows generally cover multiple topics.

Despite these differences, these two audio mediums share many similarities. Let’s take a look:

PLANNING Talent often looks at podcasts as an opportunity to turn on the mic and start chatting and riffing. Like successful radio shows, great podcasts require thorough planning to create captivating content and sound spontaneous.

AUTHENTIC PERSONALITIES Listeners on radio shows and podcasts form a bond with personalities who share their viewpoints, quirks, flaws, and personal stories. The relationship with listeners is deepened by talents who are brave enough to be vulnerable.


Radio shows lose the most listeners when talent starts talking out of music or commercials. Non-P1 car listeners give you less than ten seconds before switching in drive times.

  • Start content segments with a grabber headline to maintain listenership.

Podcasts generallylose the most audience at the one-minute and five-minute mark. So, starting with a headline and getting into content quickly minus the chit-chat is crucial. Ramping up to a story will also lose listeners on both platforms.

  • Start stories with a hook headline without giving away the story.

PATTERN DISRUPTIONS Once you get the audience’s attention, the goal is to maintain it. Long periods of dialogue or monologue lose distracted and short attention span listeners. Disrupt the pattern by incorporating **audio **when referencing television series, movies, or celebrities.

Additional pattern breakers are:

  • Pausing for effect
  • Introducing a guest with a headline
  • Making a dramatic statement
  • Hitting a punchline
  • Issuing a challenge
  • Airing a phone call (of course easier on radio)

FORESHADOWING CONTENT The most successful television shows, movies, radio shows, and podcasts create mystery and intrigue by foreshadowing content. Radio’s time-spent-listening (TSL) depends on compelling teasing, and podcasts that effectively tease achieve a higher percentage of episode consumption.

HORIZONTAL TEASING On radio, TSL increases by the number of tune-ins or “listening occasions.” Specifically teasing major content on an upcoming show, or an event gives listeners a reason to come back.

  • Podcasts that end with a memorable tease for the next episode, have a much greater chance to get return listening.

INCLUSIVITY On both mediums, making listeners feel included in your stories and content will stretch TSL. Limit the use of “I” and liberally use inclusive words like “you,” “your,” “us,” and “we.” If you want to be a better communicator and you are not familiar with the You technique, email me at

C**ontact Randy Lane by e-mail at**

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