The Importance of a Podcast Community


(By Larry Roberts) I was always fascinated by samurai as a child, and truth be told, I still am. I was especially drawn towards the way of the Ronin, or a samurai with no master. I enjoy the idea of being my own master, doing my own thing or as we call it today “creating my own content” and I enjoy the feedback received of a job well done.

Many podcasters appear to feel similarly. After all, we are auditory artists, brilliant conversationalists and masters of our niche. Who can create our art better than we can?

As the booking agent, the host, the editor, publisher and promoter for a podcast it can be overwhelming at times. We probably didn’t know what all we were signing up for when we picked up our USB mic and our free recording software and created the first episode of a podcast.

We quickly learned.

So, that leaves us asking, how do I go on vacation? What happens if I get sick? What if, for whatever reason, I can’t record for an extended period of time? Many shows may not survive with a delay or worse, a break in production?

As podcasters, we need to come to terms with the fact that we all need support from time to time. No matter how talented or how dedicated you may be, there will come a time that without learning how to leverage the power of and being a consistent contributor to the podcast community you may be stranded.

While I was well aware of the willingness of the community to help when it comes to advice or providing technical insight, until recently I had no idea exactly how much help the podcast community was willing to provide.

For example, Evo Terra of Podcast Pontifications took a two month break from his show. During that time, 8 guest hosts, each from other podcasts, recorded an episode for him while he enjoyed his time away.

As I write this article, I’m without my voice. With no motive, other than to help, several people stepped in and are hosting my show while I recover. Heather Vickery of the Brave Files, Eric Hunley of Unstructured and Tyson Franklin of Podiatry Legends have been instrumental in keeping my show focused and on the right path. Without them, it would have been very easy to see my podcast falling prey to podfade.

Being a podcaster is more than just publishing your RSS feed and cranking out episodes. It takes a lot of mental and emotional energy. Having someone, let alone an entire community of like-minded individuals, help if the need arises may be exactly what you need to continue reaching for and achieving your podcasting goals!

Larry Roberts is the Host of the Readily Random Podcast, and author of online podcasting course, “1+1 = Podcast”. He can be reached by e-mail at [email protected]