Well, it has been three months since I (Tim) launched the Self-Sufficient Life podcast. I’ve released 16 episodes, one each week, since mid-September, and I’ve used two formats for the show. The different formats are:
Format A) Episodes where I narrate stories of others who are embracing self-sufficient lifestyles. An example of this format is any of the first 12 episodes of Self-Sufficient Life. Here’s an example from episode 3:
Format B) Episodes where my wife, Liz, and I share insights into our self-sufficient lifestyle and describe why, how and what we’re doing. Here’s an example from episode 16 about moving to a new homestead.
Personally, I prefer Format A and find it more interesting. That makes sense, I suppose, because why would I want to hear the story of the life I’m living, which is really what Format B is about.
Then again, Format B is MUCH easier and faster for me to create, as it takes me an average of 2-3 days to complete Format A, which is styled similar to the wildly popular, This American Life show. Also, in Format B I get to sit with my darling wife and have a conversation, whereas I have to create Format A by myself. So, in those aspects, I guess I prefer Format B.
Regardless of my preference, the podcast has been pretty well received. As of this writing it’s ranked #3 in the hobbies category of iTunes, even though the podcast never hit the “new and noteworthy” section of iTunes.
Self-Sufficient Life has also received 54 itunes reviews, 50 of which are 5-Star.
For those of you who have taken the time to leave a review, please know that I am grateful, and I use your comments as guidance on the show’s direction. If you haven’t left a review, please click here to open iTunes and leave one…I’d really appreciate it.
But, back to the two different show formats and my preference for one or the other. You see…
…it’s not about what I want…it’s about what you, the audience, wants. And the only way to be sure I know what you want is to ask.
So I did.
Yesterday I sent out a survey to my email list inviting them to complete a short survey. It was only a few questions, and I needed audience response to help me to bring the most helpful and entertaining content to them.
So far I have received just over 100 responses, and rising. Here are the results from each question, and words of wisdom I can offer you based on each result.
This is an interesting case study for any modern homesteader trying to reach a new audience. Over the years I’ve created a pretty decent opt-in list of over 20,000. These are mainly people who followed our farm life or read some of the many books that I have written.
But…check out the results. 43% of the people who completed the survey had never heard of me three months ago. That suggests that podcasts can be a great way to expand and reach a new audience, if you can launch a quality show. This is great news for farmers and other modern homesteaders who are trying to create self-sufficient income streams.
My Conclusions: I expected iTunes to be the number one response, and it was by a hefty margin. But what may be surprising to many is that the runner up is people listening directly on this website. That’s not a surprise to me, and it’s why I invested in an inline podcast player for this website before I launched the podcast.
My Conclusions: This was the big question, and the answer will have a big impact on how I proceed. If you had told me you clearly wanted one format over the other, I would have moved in that direction.
And you did give me a clear answer…and that answer is that you don’t have a preference.
So I had to look beyond that, and the runner up is that you prefer Format B over Format A. Well, at least many of you do. Three of you don’t like either format :-(, but after looking at the individual results, I understand. Those were from folks who indicated they like hard-core prepping podcasts, and my show clearly isn’t that.
I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. Liz and I got a lot of pushback years ago when we stopped podcasting, and I know how wonderful she is on the show.
For me, these results mean that you’ll be hearing more of our story…probably a 50/50 split, if I can manage it, between formats A&B.
For other current and future podcasters, the conclusion is to survey your audience and make sure you’re meeting their needs.
My Conclusions: 77% say it’s the right length, so…it’s the right length. As for me, I say it’s the right length too, but I don’t seek to make it exactly an hour. That’s just about what they are. I’ll try to always keep them tight, as personally I hate podcasts with a lot of blabbing and wasted space. I suspect you do too.
Question 5: What other podcasts do you listen to?
|The Survival Podcast||16|
|Chris Martsenson (Peak Prosperity Featured Voices)||5|
|Farmer to farmer||3|
|The Beginning Farmer||3|
|Chicken Thistle Farm||2|
|Growing farms podcast||2|
|Hagmann & Hagmann||2|
|Orvis fly fishing||2|
|Radio Free Redoubt||2|
|Stuff you missed in history||2|
|40 Acres & A Fool|
|Accelerate with Andy Paul|
|Al Mohler – The Daily Briefing|
|All About Android|
|All NPR podcasts|
|Armed squirrels project|
|Chris Kressor Revolution Health Radio|
|Common Sense Show|
|Dan Carlin’s Hardcore history|
|Dollar Vigilante/ Anarchast|
|Down range radio|
|Farm to Table|
|Forward Observer Podcast|
|Getting teenager out of trouble|
|Goats instead of cows|
|How I Built This|
|Joe Rogan Experience (sometimes)|
|Let’s Talk Bitcoin|
|living on earth|
|Low watt living|
|Marathon training academy|
|Modern Homestead Podcast|
|Mountain Woman Radio -Tammy Trayer|
|Off The Grid Radio|
|Pioneering Today with Melissa K Norris|
|Practically Tactical Podcast (sometimes)|
|prepared homestead podcast|
|Radical personal finance|
|Robb Wolf The Paleo Solution|
|ron paul liberty report|
|SSHomestead w/ J-max and the Queen|
|That’s the way I heard it mike rowe|
|The Agroinnovations Podcast|
|The changing earth podcast|
|The Dave Ramsey Show/Overcast|
|The Farm Report|
|The hunting dog podcast|
|The Naked Scientists|
|The Permaculture Podcast|
|The prepared homestead Shawn and Monica mitzel|
|The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd|
|The Side Hustle Show|
|The survivalist prepper podcast|
|The Tim Ferris Show|
|The Woodworking Podcast|
|This american life|
|This Catholic Life|
|This Week in Tech|
|tom woods show|
|Truth For Life – Alistar Begg|
|TSP Jack Spirko|
|Urban Farm, Greg Peterson|
|X22 Spotlight / SGT Report and other Financial|
|You bet your garden|