Podcast Movement was epic! And the Breadfruit Media Team aka Breadfruit Media Collective share each of their experiences from the conference.
Podcast Movement 2019 did a few things for me. It reminded me that there is power and responsibility in being a storyteller, that patience is for people & narratives but technology moves quickly, and it was also a moment to step back and marvel at how communities form themselves in the midst of shared experiences.
Audio Fiction Lack Diversity
My debut to podcasting is as the co-creator/writer/producer of the audio drama Parade. So, I chose select sessions on the Fiction Track to attend between introductions by Kerry-Ann to folks in our community and dropping in on marketing sessions.
In The State of Audio Fiction, I walked away with a new layer of the reality of the lack of representation of people of color in scripted productions. The panel spoke about how white actors often portray black characters in audio dramas. We see other instances of this in film, with specific cultural representation. Shifting this imbalance only comes with more creators of color in these spaces. So, the weight of what it means to be helming a Jamaican show in the podcast world landed squarely on my shoulders. Beyond the story, beyond the technical production, is the opportunities more of us in the fiction podcast world will create for the hard working talent who portray our stories.
Other gems I collected from the Fiction Track is that even Lauren Shippen and her peers go through the same creator blues I’m experiencing now. Their anecdotes gave me permission to be a little softer and patient with myself in this production journey to the debut of Parade. The story matters, the cast matters, I matter, but most of all, great collaboration and the meshing of the parts is the key to success.
Podcast Movement had great representation for the folks in the industry that support hosts and productions with their ever changing tech solutions. I was wildly surprised at the variety of audio options, the leaps and bounds Zoom mics have taken since I first used one in 2011, and the possibilities that having a Shure MV88+ Video Kit opens up for someone like me who loves video for journalistic projects. I was also happy I could lean on Kerry-Ann to make the decisions about tech and hosting for my show based on her experience. It was really great to have her as a guide to the conference for Mikelah and I.
My Voice Matters
Which brings me to our fireside chat From Patois to Kreyol: The Power of Niche in Podcasting. This chat was a growing moment for me, a milestone that reminded me that my voice matters. The highlight though was what people who attended got from it. Being able to meet people after the chat and learn more about them. This is where I got to see that through the shared experience of trying to carve a space for ourselves in podcasting, through servicing our niches, everyone in the room was a part of an unofficial community. We’ll grow by being resilient, collaborative, and visible – within our small groups, then on the larger stage.
I was able to share my recap and conference strategy on this episode of the BuzzCast by BuzzSprout.
In addition my interview on Buzzcast, other highlights of Podcast Movement include:
- The Edison Research Keynote. I noted that Tom Webster kept using “show” instead of podcasts. The reason? Podcast is being redefined because people are listening to them differently. If it’s on YouTube only is it a podcast? It’s also interesting because we still use the word “podcast” although we no longer listen to them on iPods. Which brings me to an article I wrote about it’s time to consider renaming podcasts. And while we are not completely there yet it’s something to consider.
- Podcasters of Color are GROWING!!! When I attended PM17 there were not a lot of Podcasters of Color but in 2019 it is clear that there’s more in the space and it will continue to grow.
- Apple and Google still lead the way in podcast discoverability. Although how people listen differs by demographic and niche.
…stay ready so I don’t have to get ready.Mikelah
Going into Podcast Movement I really had no expectations beyond soaking in the atmosphere and meeting a few people. I came away inspired by what I learned, which affirmed that I’m on the right track. As a niche within a niche you could get lost in the sauce, but it was the small gems and networking opportunities that made Podcast Movements exceptional.
Coming back I only have a few things in my “to-do list” which are focused on growth. To date, I’ve been good at maintaining consistency, but to keep growing I’m planning to survey my listeners, look for alternative income opportunities and clarity around Breadfruit Media as a collective. Podcast Movements affirmed that I’m off to a good start my first year and it seems like there’s a lot more growth in store for podcasters of color, I just need to stay ready so I don’t have to get ready.
We are in the know so you can create the best podcast experience for you and your audience. Ready to get started?