Things you learn launching without a base.
I mean, I’ve got friends. I’ve got family, but… well, have you listened to the Podcast? It’s a hard sell to Grandma.
Launching a Podcast without a base is an exercise in discipline. You don’t get the little boosts to your esteem that you receive from positive reviews. You don’t get the power ups from twitter fans messaging you out of the blue. There’s just you and the long, long road ahead.
A while ago, I wrote about the feeling of speaking to no one, and how the THING, the product, has to be the end point. The Podcast has to be the goal, because if you’re trying to justify this whole thing based on some imaginary end point (fans, money, a seat at the table of Podcasting Power) you’ll fail.
With some space, and some time, we have had some listens. We’ve got something like 57 through our site. But it’s still not popular enough to tip our iTunes analytics on. But still, 57 listens. That’s presumably 7 after I’ve finished hitting the refresh button to juice the stats.
So what have we learnt? Hopefully the below is helpful.
1. PodCasters are helpful- to a point.
The first thing we did was start following everyone we could on Twitter, mostly those who have an interest in Podcasting. The downside? Everyone’s got a podcast. There’s more Podcasts than time. Way more. And no-one has more podcasts and less time than podcast producers.
We follow hundreds of Podcasts, most of them follow us back. But do these professional to professional follows turn in to actual listens and fans? No way. We follow them to listen to our podcast, they follow us so we listen to theirs.
So be wary. A big Twitter following doesn’t necessarily convert into podcast listens, though it definitely can’t hurt. And the connections we have made are all super helpful in other ways. They’re supportive, they retweet like crazy. To their fans. Who all make podcasts.
2. Podcasting is niche.
Look, I’m assuming if you’re reading this you’re pretty into podcasts. That makes sense. You’re reading this, and we must have said the word about 500 times. But have you tried talking to your mum about it?
Podcasting as a concept is very popular- in some places. Outside of those places it’s still a bit of an oddity. It’s something for other people, most of the time, it’s something people have heard of, but it’s not much more than that.
The majority of people in your life do not want a new podcast to listen to, because most people do not need any podcasts to listen to.
3. Don’t judge yourself by others standards.
We launched at the same time as this podcast:
They just hit 100 views. Their Twitter is filled with happy, engaged fans, and, annoyingly, their content is super good. Creepy, soothing, everything you could want from a True Crime Podcast.
It makes sense that they’re succeeding, likewise, I’m not blind to the reasons we might not be. Our Pod sits outside of the most successful genres. Our production (YES I’M GOING TO KEEP GOING ON ABOUT IT) is not the best. Our content is wide-ranging and not always as easy to follow as it should be.
Still, even while being self-aware enough to recognise this, I’m not emotionally aware enough to TURN OFF THE DAMN FEELS. Of course it still smarts a little bit to realise we’re not top of the class. As I mentioned in my other post (read here) it’s humbling to know that the reason you’re not succeeding is because you’re not good enough.
But that’s the breaking down, after that, you can build yourself up. You know what? We got 57 listens this week. We did that, on our own and with our own two hands. That feels pretty good.
To listen to our latest episodes, click here.
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