It has been six months since Paul Nezandaonyi and I created our first PR Bants podcast, which explores current affairs through a PR lens.
The podcast is a natural extension of conversations that Paul and I have had over the years about current affairs, and the merits and flaws of various PR campaigns. Instead of just talking to each other, we decided to capture and share our thoughts through the medium of podcasting.
From the outset, we wanted the style and content to be informal, genuine and candid. We also wanted to enjoy the experience of recoding our conversations, otherwise what would be the point? If it was an effortless and enjoyable experience, we would be motivated to record on a regular basis and feel confident about sharing the content with an audience beyond friends and family.
In the early days our setup was basic and we recorded using Skype and Pamela Call Recorder, which records Skype audio and can also be used for Skype video. After a few incidents with gremlins on the line, we opted for an upgrade and started to record PR Bants in person.
Six months later, our setup is still relatively basic and recordings are captured via an iPad, voice app and microphone. The benefit of recording face-to-face is that Paul and I can see each other’s reactions as the conversation flows, which injects more spontaneity into our banter.
In the PR industry we spend a lot of time making sure that materials are checked, double-checked and have a glossy finish before releasing to an external audience. However, I must admit, with PR Bants there is something refreshing and liberating about sharing content that is not perfect, and celebrates this as a unique selling point.
Although the podcast is unscripted, Paul and I select topics and stories that are of interest in advance. We usually curate ideas via twitter using the hashtag #PRbants and encourage both listeners and followers to get involved by sharing their ideas with us.
Last month we recorded a trailer that can be heard at the start of each podcast, which adds a touch of professionalism without straying from our ethos.
In the past six months we have covered more than fifty topics including Donald Trump’s unconventional press conference, brand Beckham and the United Nations’ appointment of Wonder Woman as an ambassador. With a non-stop global news agenda and numerous PR campaigns to review, PR Bants will never run out of content.
It is interesting to see that podcasts are becoming more popular. Edison‘s American-based research findings show that one in five Americans listen to podcasts on a monthly basis. In 2013 this figure was one in ten. In the UK the latest Rajar figures show that 3.8 million adults listen to a podcast, and this figure is growing.
Putting statistics to one side, podcasts play a role in helping to democratise media. It is an accessible platform that enables people, regardless of background and status, to share their perspective and engage a global audience on their own terms.
You can listen to the PR Bants podcast here. Do let me know what you think.