(By Dan Franks) When I was asked a few months ago to contribute to this new Podcast Business Journal concept, it excited me for a number of reasons:
- I feel there is a lack of consistent, unbiased journalism in the podcast industry.
- I meet so many great podcasters, and people involved in the podcast industry, on a daily basis whose stories go untold.
- This column would give me the opportunity to bring #1 and #2 together in a way that I don’t think has been done before.
The truth is, while there are a number of newsletters and writers doing a great job talking about podcasting from various angles, what there is less of is actual reporting from inside the trenches. From those of us who live and breathe podcasting. From those of us who face the same struggles and share in the same successes.
So what I intend to do with this column is not only tell the stories of those people, but let them tell the stories themselves.
This gets me pretty excited, for the same reason that podcasting in general gets and keeps me excited, and that’s the diversity of those who podcast. Podcasting is an industry with no gatekeepers; no one to tell you what you can and can’t do. Because of that, we hear from people who otherwise would not be “right” for traditional radio, and hear stories and messages that might otherwise never be told.
Let’s be honest, what radio program director in their right mind would give airtime to a floundering graphic designer and hobbyist writer who likes to tell folklore stories in his spare time?
Probably none. Yet that’s exactly what Aaron Mahnke was when he started the podcast Lore. By the way, Lore has been listened to over 160 million times over its first 100 episodes, has been adapted into a TV series and book series, and is still gaining momentum. Yet Aaron has in the past been, and continues to be, one of the most giving teachers in the podcast community.
Which brings me full circle to this column and what it will be about going forward: the community.