Storytelling holds a special place in the heart of Irish folklore. We can trace our love of stories all the way back to ancient Ireland, where seanchaí entertained towns and villages, reciting rich and vivid tales of Celtic warriors and legendary battles. These custodians of Irish history served to preserve our culture and traditions, passing down tales for centuries through live storytelling experiences.
With a love of stories ingrained in our DNA, it’s no surprise that Irish audiences have embraced the podcast movement with open arms and ears. According to a recent study, 37% of Irish people listen to a podcast every month.
Whether it’s controversial conversations, a side-splitting comedy, or true crime that you’re after, podcasts not only satisfy our longing for a great story, but they also provide the perfect fix for the on-demand style of consumption that we crave. Podcasts offer quite a unique user experience compared to other forms of media – a more intimate experience, usually enjoyed alone by listeners and far removed from the visual cues that we’re used to.
The benefits of taking your podcast live
It’s interesting then that we’re seeing more and more podcasters moving into the live events space. From Blindboy to Football Weekly, many podcasters both in Ireland and the UK are recognising the value of live events to engage their audiences and further develop their shows. With the podcast space getting more competitive, live podcast events are a great way to deepen your relationship with your listeners and make your podcast stand out.
Here are just some of the benefits of transitioning your podcast to a live arena:
- Grow your audience. Live events provide natural opportunities to expand your audience. Promotion from sponsors or partners, press coverage, and loyal listeners spreading the word are all effective ways to grow your fan base.
- Introduce a new revenue stream. From ticket sales to partnership upsells, a live podcast show offers many opportunities to make money. By finding the right sponsors and creating the right pricing stategy, you can create a memorable and profitable show for you, your sponsors, and your audience.
- Give back to your audience. Live podcasts are an exciting way to give back to your supporters by offering them a space to get to know you, to connect with a community of like-minded listeners, and to experience a new level of entertainment.
- Learn from your audience. Interacting with your audience can be a valuable learning experience. Live shows give you the unique opportunity to see instant reactions from your audience, so you can find out firsthand what resonates best with them.
- Experiment. Live shows allow your audience to experience stories in dynamic and visual ways that traditional podcasting doesn’t offer. This provides an exciting opportunity for podcasters to find new ways to engage and entertain your audience.
- Strengthen loyalty. Sharing a physical space with your audience can help your listeners feel more connected to you and the podcast community as a whole. Get your event right and you can get ready for a whole lot of podcast love!
Top tips to bring your podcast to the live arena
Transitioning your podcast from a simple process in a familiar space to the complexity of a live stage can be daunting. Live podcast recordings will bring a host of new challenges and opportunities to consider, but the rewards will make it worth the effort! Here are our top tips to make sure you’re prepared and deliver the best live podcast experience for your audience.
Find the right venue
Finding the right venue can be the most challenging part of planning your live show. A venue typically needs to be booked well in advance, so it’s one of the first things you’ll need to tackle. Key considerations should include budget, capacity, location, and of course, your technical needs. You should also look for a venue that has a good reputation and strong social media presence – this can help to significantly boost your marketing efforts.
If you really want to wow your attendees, find a venue that complements your vision. Presenting your live show in a venue that aligns with your brand will make for a truly impactful and memorable attendee experience.
To find out more, download our Complete Guide to Finding the Right Venue for Your Event.
Promote your live show
The only thing more important than hosting a great event is getting the right people in the room. At the very least, you need to make sure your existing listeners know about your live show. But why not use this an opportunity to grow your fan base? Effective targeting on social media makes this easy.
Creating lookalike audiences based on your existing listeners is a powerful way to achieve this. Lookalike audiences help you to find people who match your existing audience in terms of demographics, interests, and online behaviour, so you can create ads to target the people who are most likely to enjoy your show.
Give yourself plenty of time to showcase the value of your event so you can generate as much awareness and excitement as possible. Social media, email newsletters, and of course, your own podcast, are great ways to engage your followers and encourage them to spread the word. Don’t forget to leverage any speakers or sponsors to share your event too and make sure to tag them on social media to extend your reach.
For more tips on targeting, check out our guide to Master Facebook Advertising and Sell More Tickets
Create an interactive experience
To make your live show truly memorable and to bring something a little different to your loyal fans, why not consider a more interactive approach to telling your story? Think props, live music, visual art, animations, or even a short film. You could also invite audience members on stage to participate in demonstrations, Q&As, or jokes. This is your first time physically getting in front of your audience, so use the opportunity to engage them with something a little out of the ordinary.
But don’t get too carried away! It’s important to use your live show to make your audience feel part of an experience that they know and love. To keep it familiar, you can incorporate recognisable elements from your podcast, like theme music, recurring segments, or catchphrases. If you want to put a twist on a familiar element, why not hire live musicians to play your theme music?
Practice makes perfect
Bringing your podcast on stage means there’s no room for edits or retakes. While you want your podcast show to feel natural and like it’s all happening in the moment, live events require a little more planning and preparation. Think of your show more like a performance – it’s important to have a loose script in place and to plan each segment thoroughly.
Factor in time for a stage rehearsal or read-through before your event to get comfortable with your new environment and to make sure everything flows nicely. This is also your chance to do a test recording to make sure your equipment is picking up everything it needs to. It’s also a good idea to have a second mic to pick up the audio from your audience if you want to include it in your recording. Of course, when planning your segments, don’t forget to allocate extra time for spontaneous audience interaction.
As podcasting becomes more mainstream as an entertainment medium, it’s natural that podcasters will find ways to create more engaging experiences for their audiences. Live podcast events are a powerful and exciting way to push the boundaries of the audio experience, experiment with new formats, and get to know your community of listeners on a deeper level.
Bringing your podcast to the live arena also gives your audience the opportunity to share a space with the voices that they know and love and elevate how they experience your podcast.
Here are some upcoming live podcast events to keep an eye on:
- Blindboy Podcast
- Bebelle Live Podcast as part of Cork Podcast Festival
- Football Weekly Live (The Guardian) & An Evening with The Blizzard Football Quarterly
- Echo Chamber Podcast
Grab your tickets on Eventbrite now!