5 essential roles of a podcast producer
Most new podcasters are simply looking for a way to have their voice heard by the world and have no experience being a podcast producer.
They usually feel others would benefit from a certain message. Maybe they have a personal story about wellness or a radical life change that they want the world to hear. Maybe they have professionals or people in their network who are working through industry changes that they would like to talk through as a resource for others in the industry. These are all valid ideas for new podcasts.
Most of these concepts are very simple and easy to execute with little headache by just getting a few microphones, a few pointers on recording high quality tracks and finding some simple intro and outro bumpers. These few basic elements will help you have a cohesive, well crafted podcast.
But some podcasters want more, and faster. Producing can be an overwhelming thought for podcasters, especially for those just getting into podcasting for the first time. A podcast concept like this usually requires a lot of planning and preparation ahead of time. It requires someone to have an overall vision of the goal of the podcast and know the steps it will take to get the objective completed.
5 Key areas of focus for a podcast producer
The more complex the overall concept of the podcast, the more a producer will need to do. For simple, straightforward podcasts, the podcast host usually takes on a lot of the responsibility of the producer, at least in the administrative areas. If there are additional elements that require support, a producer will be brought on to support the overall goal in some way, shape or form. If the podcast concept is very complex it may require a team of people to work together to fulfill the roles usually associated with a producer. Who the producer is and what the producer does will be tailored to the overall vision and complexity of each podcast.
1. Creative vision
The podcast producer will help develop and maintain the creative vision of the podcast. They will help map out the story that’s being told, what needs to be done to tell that story, and who will help to tell the story. They will identify what things need to come into the overall gameplan. They will help make sure that the rails are being laid down through the overall vision-casting, but will also help to make sure that the train is keeping its course and going where it needs to go through execution. Now sometimes that game plan will develop and adapt as things unfold (especially if it’s an investigative-style podcast), but they will make sure that the overall concept is being maintained from start to finish.
2. Oversee the podcast production
Getting a podcast produced from start to finish can be a lot of work, especially if it’s a more complex concept. The podcast producer is someone who has enough vision and knowhow of what needs to happen that they are able to oversee the entire process from start to finish and either deliver the results needed themselves or work with someone else who can. They make sure that all the elements come together in a smooth, cohesive way.
3. Coordinate guest interviews
Another responsibility that often falls to the podcast producer is coordinating the interviews for the guests or people being interviewed for the podcast. Now, this is more complex than simply making phone calls, sending emails and keeping the calendar. Remember, the producer is tasked with making sure the overall vision of the podcast is coming together. So as they are planning and preparing the interview elements of the podcast, they will also need to identify each person’s role, how they fit into the overall picture and then develop interview questions or talking points based off of this. The producer will be the one who guides the host or interviewer on making sure the content is effective and worthwhile.
4. Podcast editing and post-production
After the vision is cast, the interviews are scheduled and completed, the podcast needs to be prepared for the world to hear. That process involves editing, mixing and mastering the content recorded into cohesive episodes. This will likely involve a lot of elements like narration, incorporating news clips, music transitions and other elements to help tell the story. The producer’s role will be to either execute this process themselves, if they have an editing or engineering background, or work with the production team to make sure the vision is being carried out.
5. Podcast manager
Another main responsibility of the producer is to manage the podcast on an ongoing process. They will make adjustments to the overall process as needed, whether that involves finding new personnel to carry out the elements needed for the podcast, or looking for ways to better the podcast. The producer usually will also be the one who is keeping track of the analytics of the podcast’s performance to see how it’s being received by the audience. They make suggestions or pivot points during this phase to make sure the podcast is succeeding the way it should.
Do you need a podcast producer?
Some of these roles may be taken on by the host, divided between a team or sourced out to a dedicated podcast producer. The question of whether or not you will need to bring on a producer will inevitably come down to whether or not you feel up to the task of doing it yourself. If you feel excited about taking these tasks on, you will likely be able to do it, or at least get the ball rolling.
If you have a concept or vision but feel terrified at the thought of seeing the plan through, finding and working with a producer may be a great benefit for you and your podcast. If you do look for someone else to bring on though, make sure you have an open conversation about your strengths, your weaknesses and where you need help carrying out the vision. Make sure you identify what everyone’s role will be so you can work together for the common good.
Where can I find a podcast producer?
Podcasts are a great way of getting your message and your story out to the world. If it’s a task you feel unable to do yourself, partnering with a podcast producer is a great way of seeing your show through to completion.
A producer can help develop the vision for the podcast and help find the best way to tell the story through its episodes. They can also help ensure the overall production process of the podcast is completed efficiently while overseeing the interview and preparation process. They can oversee the post-production process as the episodes come together and make sure the podcast is performing as planned. They are an invaluable part of the process and help make sure the podcast succeeds instead of flopping.
If you are looking for a podcast producer, reach out to The PM Agency team at firstname.lastname@example.org