A Pro-Democracy Coalition for American Podcasts


PodMov Daily: Wednesday, January 12

Episode 567: Your Midweek Update

A Pro-Democracy Coalition for American Podcasts

An engagement project coordinated by Jody Avirgan (30 for 30, FiveThirtyEight) is gaining steam. On Twitter, he says the initiative encourages podcasters “to share messages about voter access, finance, gerrymandering, and in general try to keep the temperature up about [the] state of our democracy.”

We have a unique platform at a critical moment, Avirgan told Hot Pod’s Ashley Carman. On board are Radiotopia, Headgum, Pushkin Industries, LWC Studios, The Sporkful, TrueHoop, Hrishikesh Hirway, Avery Trufelman, Dan Le Batard, and many others. The coalition was started by RepresentUs, a nonprofit, nonpartisan group.

The idea is for American podcasters to boost conversation on these urgent issues through announcements, social channels, and unsold ad inventory, all on a volunteer basis. Ahead of next month’s formal rollout, hosts, networks, and platforms of any size are welcome to participate by filling out and sharing this form.

The Power of Unusual, Very ‘You’ Podcast Merch

If you offer merch or are thinking about adding it, listen to Were You Raised By Wolves? creator Nick Leighton. Bryan Barletta of Sounds Profitable spoke with Leighton about the hit etiquette show’s unique products and partnerships. High-end stationery through a 150+ year old company has been a major hit.

“We’d definitely recommend figuring out what sort of merchandise is very ‘you,’” Leighton says. “Whatever it is, it should feel like a natural extension of your show.” For a wine podcast, he recommends a carpet cleaning kit “for those difficult pinot noir stains.” For parenting, a mini battery-powered vacuum for Cheerio dust.

When you venture beyond t-shirts, it’s “crucial” to work with partners who are aligned with your show’s goals. WYRBW and the stationery company have cross-promoted one another with strong results. Leighton says to start here: “What’s the main thing you want your listeners to take away from every one of your episodes?”

The Dr. John Delony Show: Because Mental Health Matters

Now more than ever, the world feels like it is spinning out of control. Millions of people are struggling with their mental health, marriage, parenting, and family relationships. The Dr. John Delony Show, a podcast from the Ramsey Network, answers life’s messy questions. 

Host and Ramsey Personality Dr. John Delony, a leading voice on mental health, relationships, and wellness, takes a practical approach to tough topics we all face. Dr. Delony’s caller-driven conversations help listeners work through anxiety, depression and disconnection with new tools and plenty of humor.

Ready to take charge of your mental health? It’s time to cut through the chaos and start building a more confident future. Send in your questions and join the conversation three times a week. Listen and follow wherever you get your podcasts.

Listening looks easy, but it’s not simple. Every head is a world.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Trophy case: The Podcast Hall of Fame is back, to be held in Los Angeles alongside Evolutions on March 25. This week’s PM update has more on the partnership with Libsyn, the ceremony, and upcoming 2022 Hall of Fame nominees. The free event will be open to the public and streamed live.
  • Collect call: Podcasters have a huge number of hosting companies to choose from, writes Taylor Kalsey of Podchaser. To help, they’ve compiled a list of 48 of them (and their pricing) to help creators see what’s out there. For more detail on 13 major hosts, check out The Podcast Host’s deep dive.
  • Inside out: Spotify is closing its first podcast studio, reports Ashley Carman of Hot Pod. All of the 10 to 15 employees worked on podcasts before the major acquisitions (Gimlet, Parcast, and The Ringer). They’ve been laid off or reassigned, leaving Spotify without a namesake internal team.
  • Study session: Social science podcasters can apply for grants of between $5,000 and $50,000 from The Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley. They’re seeking proposals for stories related to “intellectual humility,” or the ability to recognize when we’re wrong. The deadline is March 31.

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