“Hey Jessica! You wanna make a podcast with me?”
Ok, the starting point for Season One of The Podcast Producers was pitched a tad more professionally than that. But that was the gist when I asked Jessica Rhodes if she would consider co-hosting a podcast series with me on the art and craft of podcasting.
She was open to the idea but had her conditions and - so did I. It can’t be an ongoing show, week after week. It had to be good for our respective businesses. And it had to be the best representation of our talents at the time.
From what Jessica tells me, I had her at “it can’t be and ongoing show…”.
So we got super excited, we made a plan, and we executed.
Though Jessica and I entered into the meta-podcasting field unsure of how this series would be received, we knew within days of recording interviews that we had struck gold. It seemed we were messaging each other daily after wrapping up another interview with texts like “OMG, killer content” or “This show is going to be amazing!”
Sure, I had no idea how I was going to take all 25 raw interviews and make them somehow work together. No, we didn’t know if anyone would even pay attention. Yet with any podcasting venture, sometimes it’s best just to hit record and figure things out as you go.
In the end, the editing worked out and little was left on the cutting room floor. Our peers and newfound audience were loving it. The first season was a smashing success by all standards. Heck, we even had a cool logo that I’ve been told resembles a men’s room door. This left us faced with the question; “OK, now what?”
Raw & Uncut - Waste not, want not.
We had enough interest in each individual guest interview that we decided to open up the raw recordings to the public. You can find the unedited interviews following the 10-part series in the same RSS feed. We figured rather than start a new feed and try to build an audience again, why not just deliver to the current subscribers? It’s practically a built-in audience.
This Raw & Uncut series has held our current listener base, and helped the show find new listeners by releasing regular content. Turns out, our second ‘make-it-up-as-you-go-along’ strategy worked just as well as the first one. All that remained was an answer to the listeners’ question; “When is Season 2 coming out?”
Let’s do it all over again - well, sort of.
Jessica and my paths crossed again earlier this year, at a podcast conference in Tampa. We knew we would be seeing each other and we both know what that meant. It was time to have a serious talk about Season 2. For a variety of reasons, I was kind of dreading it. My business is, well, busy. So is hers. I have other initiatives I embarked on this year, and so did she. Booking guests, interviewing over Skype, endless editing, web development, promotions, social media….it all just sounded like a big, fat chore this time around.
We fenced off a time to sneak off to the adjacent bar, sit down in a booth with our laptops and a couple glasses of wine, and talk about...our feelings. After some typical Jessica/Corey venting and joking about industry stuff, we lowered our heads, and our spirits, into a bleak Google spreadsheet. It was horrible. We both felt it and neither of us wanted to say it.
I don’t know who went first, but I’m sure glad someone did.
When we did season one it was fresh. It was fun, novel, and very different from our other projects. We learned, we laughed, and we shared it with the world. Then the novelty wore off. Jessica was raising another baby, I had once again moved to another city. We became different people, really. And we needed a show that reflects that.
“We need something that pops!”, I said. “Yes!!!”, Jessica agreed. It was time to move away from the dark, haunting NPR-esque production of season one into a more snappy and entertaining show format. “Let’s just interview awesome podcasters who love our show, and we love theirs”, Jessica said. I couldn’t have agreed more. It felt right. It felt really right.
With that, the entire mood shifted at our little booth in that airport hotel restaurant. It was like we weren't talking to each other for months and suddenly made up. There was a renewal and a drive to actually do this again, because it would be FUN.
You like us? Well, we like you too!
This season, Jessica and I are proud to be bringing you eight episodes of The Podcast Producers premiering April 5, 2016. We hand-picked guests that we think are talented, have been podcasting for over a year, bring value to the listeners, and are simply awesome people to talk to. They are:
- Liz Covart of Ben Franklin’s World
- Harry Duran of Podcast Junkies
- Katie and Chris Krimitsos of Biz Women Rock and Podfest
- Natalie Eckdahl of Biz Chix
- Glenn the Geek of Horse Radio Network
- Dave Jackson of School of Podcasting
- Jason and Karen of The Walking Dead ‘Cast
- Elsie and Jess of She Podcasts
Wait, who’s paying for this whole thing?
Yep, there was the small matter of cost. Producing, hosting, and promoting a podcast series isn’t free. In fact, to do it well can take some serious time and money. That said, Jessica and I reached out for a little help in the form of sponsorship. We sent out some feelers to those we thought would be a perfect fit for our show and our audience. Well, it didn’t take long for the good folks at Podcast Movement to buy ALL our ad slots!
We’re now proud to have Podcast Movement as the exclusive sponsor of Season 2 of The Podcast Producers. Jessica and I will be there July 6-8 in Chicago, and we hope to see you there! To see the full lineup, and to register, visit PodcastMovement.com, and use the code PRODUCERS to save $50 off the cost of registration.
A podcast network to boot?
To make matters more interesting, we are incredibly honored to have been invited on the Podcastica Podcast Network. With “A cornucopia of podcasty goodness”, this is an exclusive club of some of our favorite shows all bunched together for some...well, podcasty goodness. Sharing the platform with such popular shows as The Walking Dead ‘Cast, Game of Microphones, and Podcast Junkies, just to name a few, is simply awesome.
Where and when is this all happening?
You can find the original 10-part series at ThePodcastProducers.com. All the Raw & Uncut interviews are available by subscribing on iTunes, on Android, Stitcher, or Soundcloud. By subscribing you’ll automatically receive Season 2, immediately upon release!
If you can’t get enough of us in the meantime, feel free to creep us online. ;)