A new focus

When I first got into podcasting, I quickly moved into community radio, and side-stepped into working with community interest companies and arts organisations. Over the years I’ve missed the spirit of social enterprise – creating a business that works for you and towards a better world.

Lately, I’ve been feeling a tap on my metaphorical shoulder. I get it when I edit podcast episodes and listen to the conversations people are having about the changes that need to happen, and who’s going to bring those changes.

Over the last few weeks those taps have felt like thumps, as if the universe is trying to get my attention is an unsubtle way as possible.

That thumping stopped when I thought about how I could use the resources I have, to help people who want to help others. I feel like I’m sleeping better, and I’ve never been more focused or energised.

Podcode has always been about teaching purposeful people how to podcast, and how to enjoy it. But now I’m focusing more (“niching down” as the kids say) on social entrepreneurs and change-makers.

If you have a fiction podcast, a true-crime podcast, an Office rewatch show or a lively debate about pizza toppings… I hope we can still be friends, but I’m no longer going to be focusing my attention on those sorts of shows.

I still enjoy and take great comfort in funny and entertaining shows that just exist for the sake of entertainment. This isn’t’ a judgement about which shows are “better” or more “worthy” than others. Not at all. I’m just setting out my stall and saying “if you have a social enterprise and you want to create impact with your voice, you’re in the right place”.

Unmute – my flagship group program – was the first of a few initiatives to put wood behind this particular arrow. But it’s an expensive program and a considerable commitment for all parties involved. So we’re going to hold off and look at starting the next cohort in the autumn.

It’s still vital that people who come to Podcode know the easiest and most effective way to start a podcast, so I’m working on a more accessible, scaled-down version of the Unmute program, which will come in a couple of flavours. More details on that next week.

I’ve also revised the free Podcast Designer, making the survey quicker to answer, and adding some audio guides to help you in the process. I’ve got further plans to improve that, too.

Podcode started off as a bit of marketing on-the-side, and is now the thing that gets me up in the morning and keeps me from going back to bed. I’m committed to making podcasting an accessible and nourishing form of communication for people on a mission, so I hope you’ll join me for some regular events over on Podcode+. I want to figure out some free and open events that anyone can attend, but also trying not to burn out… open to any ideas!