Today I share with you some of the podcast episodes that stick in my mind. Then I look at them and ask “Why does that one stick and not the others?” By doing this I am hoping to pin point the characteristics of really good content.
The first one that popped in my head was from the Bitterest Pill from Dan Klass. The episode is called “Mass Murder” where Dan talks about what its like to have a family member murdered, and have their funeral be on the local news. On a happier note I also loved the episode where his two year old daughter pooped on the living room floor (I can't find that episode – would the people at WordPress please improve their search mechanism!).
Another episode that sticks out in my mind is when Carlos Mancia was on the WTF podcast with Marc Maron. Carlos has been accused by numerous people of stealing jokes. This is one of the worst things for a comedian. Carlos came on in episode 75 and said he didn't steel jokes and people came out of the woodwork to call him a liar. Carlos agreed to come on in episode 76 after Marc had spoken with these people. It took guts, and the whole thing just made you feel awkward.
So What Makes Good Content?
While your content doesn't have to include all of these, here are the things I've noticed that helps you build your audience.
1. It's real. In the case of Dan Klass, and Marc Maron these were real stories, real people, really awkward. It was real. Not Gene Simmons family Jewels “reality,” I mean REAL.
2. It was personal. When someone shares something personal, it creates an intimacy with the audience. In general you don't walk up to strangers and say “Hello, I'm depressed and I want to strangle my children.” We don't share those types of things. You do that type of sharing with friends and family. When you share yourself with people, it builds an intimacy as if you stood naked in front of someone. If you stood naked in front of someone you would really have to trust them to not laugh and go “Daw, isn't that the cutest little thing!” You are showing a trust. When you reveal part of yourself it can enhance the level of intimacy and trust you have with your audience. That leads to a stronger relati0nship with your audience.
3. It was useful. I had people state that some of the best episode were filled with useful information. When the episode was over, they could take that information and USE IT. It was going to make them faster, stronger, nicer, happier, save them time, money or both.
4. Stays on topic. Do not get this confused with “Short episode.” You can cover topic(s) for two hours and have a great show. The problem is when you start talking about topics that don't fit in with your podcast topic. For example, if I am talking about the best podcasting gear, and start talking about a woman who passed out at a bar behind my drummer that is going off topic. Don't get confused and say “But Dave that's personal, isn't that part of good content?” No. Your listener could care less about the drunk woman behind the drummer. If I were to say, I started out using a condenser microphone, and for years used a Sure SM58 that is personal. If I say, “We used a wireless Sure microphone at my church,” that is still on topic (microphones) and how you might use it for video podcasting. I once had an issue where my dog was really sick. Looking back it was personal, but it sure didn't belong in the podcast, or at least didn't belong at the beginning of the podcast (on the other hand, many people remember episodes about Dog deaths).
5. Spurs People Emotionally.
I have mentioned before that content that moves people will always work. If you think about your favorite movies or television shows, I think you will find they make you laugh, cry, get mad, think, inspire, feel uncomfortable, entertain, or educate. You you touch people emotionally, you touch them deeply.
6. Builds Community
One of the ways groups grow is by finding the needs of their audience and helping them their needs. Alcoholics anonymous helps people deal with their needs.
7. Like Minded Cheer Leading
When I listened to Dan's podcast, there was a part of me that was thinking, “You go Dan! Tell em!” A podcast will attract like minded people.
8. The Presentation
Its not always what you say, it's HOW you say it. Good podcasts are typically not read. They are conversational. They are delivered in a somewhat structured, organized fashion. I'm not sure “flight of ideas” is a good strategy.
Thanks to the contributors
Mike Russel from Music Radio Creative. Check out his podcast, and his youtube channel. Mike loved the episode of the social media examiner titled Creating Persuasive Videos: How to Move Viewers to Action with James Wedmore. James is the author of the book ” The YouTube Marketing Book.”
Scott Johnson of the Computer Tutor podcast remembers an episode of the podcast where the host discussed having to put his dog down. This sharing of a personal time created a connection with Scott and the host.
Tim from the Surfing Aliens podcast wants to relate to the person behind the microphone. When a person shares something personal that allows you to connect to that person on a more intimate level.
Tim Wilson from the Christ Centered Podcast liked the White Horse Inn podcast enjoyed where the hosts did a bit of journalism to provide information that you couldn't get anywhere. The information was amazing, and inspiring. The shock factor of it, really made him stand up and take notice.
Google Reader is Dead Reader Walking
Because Google Reader is going to go away July 1, 2013 I STRONGLY URGE YOU to NOT use Feedburner to create your iTunes Tags.
Podcasting History From the School of Podcasting
In 2006 we were talking about ID3 tags
In 2007 we talked about changing your feed in iTunes
In 2009 we were talking about Getting the audience before you start podcasting
In 2010 we were talking about More Way to Make Money with your podcast
In 2011 we were talking about Podcasting Live and Taking phone calls
In 2012 we talked about Getting Your Media Right and removing noise from a podcast.