What we learned from hosting Podcasts
5 min read

What we learned from hosting Podcasts

What we learned from hosting Podcasts

According to Fast Company, more than 50 Billion podcast episodes have been downloaded or streamed from Apple! Truelist & Statisica published a study on top reasons why people listen and don’t listen to podcasts. Clearly, learning is the top answer, followed by Entertainment and staying up to date ( which loops back to learning).

Getting Started

There’s always the errr… starting trouble. (Now, by no means was I born a podcast host :). However, I do consider myself a person passionate about the Future of Work, by helping companies drive business outcomes with OKRs. If you combine that with the penchant to have a great conversation, voila, it sets a great ground for a podcast.) A simple update to LinkedIn was a start.

Founders are the best face of the company, at an early stage. If you have two or more co-founders, you could pick one who runs the podcasts. It also helps build muscle memory.

Picking the right Genre

We did some research on Top podcasters out there. This Week in Start-Ups (Jason Calacanis), Nathan Latka, SaaS interviews with CEOs, The Adrian Tan Show, and William Tincup Recruiting Daily are a few examples of awesome hosts.

Here’s what we found:

  1. Each catered to a specific target ‘listener’
  2. Each host has a unique style
  3. Each podcast has a specific outcome (for instance, Nathan Latka’s podcast data makes its way to Founderpath)
  4. Each picked guests and topics which would be useful to the audience
  5. They measure metrics that matter (for instance: the number of listeners, downloads, reviews, episode frequency, website traffic, lead attribution, and referrals).

Picking a name, targeted listeners and guests

We focused on SEO when it came to picking a name and called it the OKRs podcast show. Can it be better christened? – hell yeah!

Who were our target listeners?
This one aligned with our Buyer persona. We mostly make a sale to Founders/ CEOs of companies, who are looking to roll out OKRs to drive business outcomes. Our choice of topics had to hit the ‘Job to be done.’

To them, what really matters is not getting OKRs right, but ‘Hitting their growth numbers as a team.’ OKRs is a means to get there.

In short, the objective of the Fitbots OKRs podcast was to share new learnings, by hosting leading OKRs practitioners or peer Founder/CEOs who have learned from implementing OKRs.

Inviting our Guests

Our first pick was the MD of Twitter for South-east Asia. Twitter has been practicing OKRs for a while, and we figured that it would be a great learning for our listeners. We eventually went on to host OKRs coaches who have a ton to share with others, and Founders/Business leaders/ HR leaders who have implemented OKRs for their companies. Here are episodes you could check out:

Failing to prepare is preparing to fail

Being a show host, there’s no ‘winging it.’ Asking a guest for time requires preparation.

Here are some practical tips:

  1. Watch prior podcast episodes of the guest or any content which tells you more about her/ him. You will learn a ton about them.
  2. Pre circulate a list of questions
  3. Have a conversation, not a robotic Q&A
  4. Display emotions — fun, laughter, disbelief — we are human after all!
  5. I usually like having a rapid-fire round at the end of the podcast
  6. Set up a date/ time which is mutually convenient. Select a space that is noise-free for the recording
  7. Get a good audio quality setup. BTW full disclosure, we have not invested in fancy microphones. We use Zoom — it’s worked fine so far.
  8. Have a very good editor on your team; we have a fabulous person who runs the edits!
  9. Don’t run your podcasts for an hour, keep it to 20 -30 min at most.
  10. Amplify in both networks (of the guest and host)

Ok, what the heck are the outcomes?

We are still on step 1 but in the right direction. There’s no magic wand here, if you look at our lead analysis, we get some great engagement on podcasts (likes, comments, shares), and working towards building momentum.

Overall, I truly enjoy hosting these. You can catch our episodes online too.

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About the Author

Vidya Santhanam is the Co-Founder of Fitbots OKRs. Having coached 600+ teams, and conducted 1000+ check-in meetings, Vidya likes writing about Metrics, high performance, and leadership.


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