In Podcasting, Your Success Is Not a Story.


PodMov Daily: Tuesday, April 12

Episode 623: Testing, One Two-sday

In Podcasting, Your Success Is Not a Story.

Acclaimed Washington Post journalist Taylor Lorenz has golden, painful advice for all of us: “Your success is not a story.” Recirculated yesterday, her 2020 post about pitches helps explain why so many podcasters struggle to get their narratives noticed – not just in the pitch arena, but across this crowded space.

Brands are built around stories, and podcasts need compelling brands. How you went from 0 to X downloads or how you built a million-dollar business may inspire you because you lived it. Unfortunately, it gives off spam-email vibes to networks, newsletters (hi!), potential partners, and most importantly, listeners.

One’s ‘success’ must have an important wider significance, Lorenz says. There’s a reason those paid pieces in Forbes never resonate: “It’s my job to tell compelling stories that inform and reshape how people view the world. Stories without a larger narrative don’t travel and they’re a waste of both of our time.”

Plagiarism is a ‘True Crime' in Podcasting

For the third time and counting, author Brendan Koerner’s work has been ripped off by a podcaster. The Wired contributing editor spent nine years researching an article that was turned into a show in January: “every key detail in the podcast comes directly from the story’s text, without any attribution.”

Plagiarism in true-crime podcasting is getting worse without real consequences, writes Beau Paul of We Got This Covered. (Crime Junkie creator Ashley Flowers has gotten away with it repeatedly.) What sets this case apart is that the podcaster reached out to Koerner, announcing plans to appropriate his work.

In a Twitter thread about the escalating situation, Koerner says it’s time for a frank discussion about what constitutes ‘fair use’ for podcasters. “The bottomless appetite for compelling yet cheap nonfiction content is becoming an epic bummer for those of us devoted to unearthing untold stories.”

The Ramsey Show: 1 Billion Downloads and Counting

Out of 2 million podcasts, only a handful have reached the 1 billion download mark. Last year, The Ramsey Show became the fourth ever to earn the title. For 29 years on the air, financial expert Dave Ramsey has helped dedicated listeners navigate money and life. 

Each week, his impactful advice is trusted by millions and counting. “We’re teachers at the core,” said Brian Mayfield, Executive VP of Ramsey Network. “We’ve never seen anything grow the way the podcast world has grown, so we see tremendous opportunity there to continue to increase our audience.” 

Since The Ramsey Show began 15 years ago, callers have paid off a calculated $500 million. Ready for practical answers to the questions that matter most? Listen and follow wherever you get your podcasts.

I don't want to believe. I want to know.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Money clip: “Podcast Budgeting” from Dustlight Productions is coming up on April 22. Founder and CEO Misha Euceph (Tell Them, I Am) will lead a practical workshop on building fair and standard budgets, including best practices and exercises with budgets submitted by attendees. $75 registration.
  • Get personal: “How to Write in Your Voice” from Radio Boot Camp is coming up April 23. Marielle Segarra (Marketplace) will lead an interactive workshop to help creators figure out what parts of themselves to share, and how to bring those qualities into their storytelling. $125 registration.
  • Hot ticket: The Stitcher Breakthrough Fellowship will accept applications until April 28. The 6-month paid role (July-December) is open to podcasters with 3+ years of experience. Under the LA-based Earwolf team, the fellow will learn audio engineering, Pro Tools, script editing, and more.
  • Mystery box: Apple Podcasts’ followers metric can give a sense of who’s really paying attention and why. Lindsay Harris Friel of The Podcast Host explains the value of dropoff points, geographic data, and unique listeners, a feature that comes in handy when one person plays an episode 34 times.

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