TryPod is a recent effort hatched by industry executives to combat “podcast unawareness.” The goal of TryPod is to grow the overall podcast audience by encouraging people to share their favorite podcasts with those who don’t yet listen.
In 2016, 24 percent of Americans (67 million people) listened to a podcast in the past month, up three percent from 2015, according to last week’s Infinite Dial report from Edison Research.
Nancy Mills is a resident of Washington DC. She’s 67 and retired, and she’s a podcast power listener who is celebrating TryPod in a serious way. We spoke to Nancy about her listening habits and what she’s learned about how to be an effective podcast evangelist.
Let’s start at the beginning. How did you become a podcast listener?
My daughter encouraged me to try it, but I don’t remember how I actually got started. Lots of hunting and clicking I think.
How long have you been a listener?
I’ve been listening to podcasts for years now. I’m a longtime radio listener and was thrilled when I discovered podcasts because they allow me to listen to whatever I want, whenever I want.
What is one of your favorite podcasts? What do you love about it?
OMG, so hard to narrow it down to just one. But if forced to choose I would probably select 99% Invisible. 99pi has made me a more curious and appreciative consumer of my human-made environment. I think I stop to look more often, and even when not looking, I see with greater attention.
How do you discover new podcasts to listen to?
Just as I will almost always take the recommendation of a good friend about a book s/he thinks I would like, I often ask people what their favorite podcasts are and why. I consider my favorite hosts to be “good friends” too — if they recommend another podcast I will almost always check it out.
How are you participating in TryPod?
I’m a podcast evangelist and I’ve definitely proselytized about particular episodes, and shared them on social media or with friends, in that past. I’ve realized that lots of people are not podcast listeners but would really enjoy it.
But it wasn’t until TryPod that I realized that people, particularly people my age, needed more — they need to be shown how to do it. And that was really a revelation. Looking back, I think that a lot of people I recommended podcasts to never got around to listening because they didn’t know how! So now I need to go back and help with that.
Are you going to be following up with people?
Yes! I have a list of people I’m going to be reaching out to!
Before I heard about TryPod, I actually encouraged a new friend (also of my generation) to give podcasts a try. She told me that she would ask her daughter to show her how but this discussion has convinced me that I should call her to check in and help if need be!
You are such a power listener! What do you love about podcasts?
One of the things I love about them is that I feel no pressure about trying them and abandoning those that don’t speak to me. With books, I have this sort of guilt or pressure to read a certain amount before I decide whether I want to read the whole thing. Most podcasts, on the other hand, are short — I can easily sample what’s out there and then decide what I want to listen to.
Thanks, Nancy!See you in the archive,
The Pop Up Archive team