What’s the Big Deal About Podcasts?

Podcasts have already been around for 15 years. Originally music-based and named after the medium they were intended to be played on (iPod + broadcast = podcast), speech-led podcasts have hit the mainstream with more people listening than ever before, with a reported 4.7 million adults downloading in the UK every month.

Why are podcasts so popular?

Since the epic success of This American Life’s ‘Serial’ in 2015, and their hugely popular ‘S-Town’ earlier this year, podcasts have become a highly regarded broadcast communication. Listen at the water-cooler and you’ll find S-Town or Finding Richard Simmons a ubiquitous conversation topic. You can find a quality podcast on just about every topic: technology, science, literature, finance, the arts, child rearing, orchid growing, bee keeping, cheese rolling… the list is endless. Savvy brands are creating podcasts as rich content and in every genre: comedy, documentary, crime drama… you get the picture.

Except there is no picture. So why are we (a video production company) so into podcasts?

The secret to a brilliant podcast

As well as video, we have been creating podcasts for our clients for a year or so now. No matter how effective video is there are occasions when you are on the move and watching a video just isn’t practical. Weekly podcast listeners spend an average of 5 hours and 7 minutes per week listening to podcasts. We’re multitaskers: we can drive and catch up on the latest TED talks, we can walk the dog and laugh along to a comedy show or we can do manual labour whilst listening to wrestling match commentary. A good story is a good story, whether it’s told through text, video or in this case audio.

So if you’ve never listened to a podcast, where to start?  Itunes has a podcast chart, the leading contenders are sports shows, comedy shows and even a happiness podcast.  Another good place to search for podcast treasure is The British Podcast Awards, here is a list of their 2018 winners

Our recommendations

A ‘top five favourite podcast’ list is as personal as your selection of Desert Island Discs (which is incidentally an excellent podcast!), however, some podcasts are unmissable no matter who you are. A favourite at TellyJuice is RadioLab created and hosted by Jad Abumrad. We not only appreciate the powerful storytelling but also the production values of this fantastic podcast. Jad is a composer and the layers of detail on this podcast are admirable. He says:

“Telling stories is a deeply musical act, no matter what: its pitches, contours of sound, its rhythms.”

Producing podcasts isn’t just about recording sound and adding a few music tracks. That’s the video equivalent of filming a corporate video on your iPhone. Top end podcasting lies in the quality of recording, the orchestration of sound and, most importantly, the storytelling itself. Here’s a clip of Jad Abumrad talking about RadioLab:

How to make podcasts for your brand

TellyJuice creates a regular Fjord Fika podcast for Accenture Digital. Here is an episode which features Skipper Warson interviewing filmmaker, photographer, writer and naturalist Carey Russell on human rights and environmental literacy.

If you would like help in making a quality podcast, please contact us.