by Christian Duque
There was a time in the mid-2000s when podcasts were the talk of the town. You had Pro Bodybuilding Weekly that started it all, but you also have other podcasts like No Bull Radio by Muscular Development. Podcasts offered their listeners a variety of content, from competition reporting and disabilities to interesting interviews and commentaries on sports history and current trends.
When the format started, the production value was of great importance, and many of the shows had very structured programs that listeners could look forward to every week. One of the coolest aspects of podcasts then and now was the fact that they were completely free and usually accessible without the need to download complicated software. For the most part, people listened every week while driving, doing cardio, or even preparing meals. Unfortunately, as the old song says, the video killed the podcast star. More and more people flocked to YouTube and the podcast format was less and less preferred by large websites. When advertisers were no longer interested in working with audio-only programs, the really good guys just stopped producing content.
With the advent of Spotify, renewed interest in podcasts was noted. iTunes and SoundCloud have also added far more effective hosting platforms for people who want to listen every week. In addition, many states have passed laws that prohibit drivers from using their cell phones while driving. This has also led many to choose podcasts again because they are all audio and can be listened to on their radios. In addition, athletes have never particularly enjoyed watching videos while lifting and especially not while doing cardio. Many people would rather look at their heart rate, calorie consumption and / or speed / intensity. A podcast can be listened to on the phone or other device that can be attached to a wristband, stored in a pocket, or listened to using wireless headphones.
Podcasts are also the preferred format for countless office workers. Based on my experience in the media, I've also encountered countless employees in our industry who listen to between 5 and 10 podcasts a week during their working days. This provides a fantastic audience for many of the programs that publish new content and creates a very favorable atmosphere for companies where advertising can be placed.
The most important factor for companies is the return on investment (ROI). If a great podcast deserves the loyal audience of a fan base, then this program counts with their undivided attention. If the hosts are effective in pitching a product even from a distance, this company will see a direct benefit from working with this program. In addition to return on investment, it is very important for both the company that pays for the ad and the program that benefits from it that there is a way to measure revenue as a result of the ad. This also determines what the program charges for advertising and what the company is willing to pay for.
Creativity is the top priority. For example, if a podcast in our industry is based on nutrition but only talks about how to prepare meals, or only about good protein sources every week, it will get old – and it will quickly get old.
One of the best litmus tests of all is whether you as a listener would listen to a full program and / or prepare for future episodes. Thanks to many of the platforms mentioned, podcast producers have access to valuable analytical information. If the listeners can't keep an entire episode, there's probably something wrong with the program. There is also statistical information that hosts can use to find out how long each program should last, how often they should post episodes, and even which days and times are best. Although it appears that there is a world full of resources to ensure success, many podcasts don't make it past six episodes. This is the real test for a new program. Six shows.
When you start your fitness podcast for the first time, you should speak to yourself for at least the first half-dozen guesses. I cannot stress this enough. A lot of people just don't have the resources to handle this. Assuming you develop a loyal fan base and audience, chances are that few, if any, will ever return to these first six episodes. It's really pretty aggravating for most to grapple with the fact that they are literally speaking for six shows with content and that no one, ever or ever, will ever really listen. This is especially true for new podcasters – especially because in the first episode you make all your mistakes and are really interested in your new craft.
To be honest, if you are serious about becoming a star, you have to have a lot of humility long before you can ever have great self-worth. The key is to imagine how to climb an almost insurmountable mountain. Whenever you get a fan, positive review, or award, treat him as if you just won a bodybuilding show. The more lovable and humble you are, paired with diligence and imagination, the more likely you are to have a hit podcast.
With countless people now having to stay at home, mostly due to the coronavirus and quarantines in their state governments, many are considering going on the air and putting out their own podcasts. The equipment required is actually quite inexpensive and easy to use. and really the hardest part of it all would be to find a name for the program, logo, and working social media to get the word out. The technical side of things is actually quite doable.
As an author in the bodybuilding industry, I will listen to at least a dozen different podcasts every week. I do it because it gives me different perspectives and keeps me up to date on all events in sport. Some of my favorite programs also offer a video option, although they're mostly podcasts.
IFBB Pro Nick Trigil has a fantastic program, as does IFBB Pro Fouad Abiad and IFBB Pro Ryan Baptiste. A growing number of professional athletes have gone on the air in recent years. They bring a new perspective as people who have actually lived the lives of competitors but are now taking on the role of journalists. Fans appreciate as many different views as possible as this creates more depth in the comments.
To make things even more interesting, new social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok have already had undeniable success with older video sharing platforms like YouTube. As monetization guidelines become stricter and popular YouTube developers publish content more sporadically than two or three years ago, the demand for podcasts appears to be all the greater.
Do you see a renaissance for podcasts in these very uncertain times with closed gyms, many people forced to work from home, and a general lack of social activities?
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