This week, I listened in to a highly successful series for the very first time. I became aware of this podcast through a friend, who told me that I was living under a rock given the fact that I had never heard of it before.


Six minutes in, it became clear that this particular podcast was nothing more than a 45-minute rant. To the credit of the hosts, I do understand why. They sound like the three guys that everyone would like to be friends with. Their “likeability score” was off the charts.

Given that I had only sampled a few minutes of this long running series, it’s possible that I was “judging a book by it’s cover.” The series, which promises to educate the listener on things you’ve missed while walking around the zoo, was an interesting premise. Think of how many times you’ve circled the Bronx Zoo in New York or the Brookfield Zoo in suburban Chicago.

The wonderfully produced intro explained that while at the zoo, most people b-line it for the monkeys or the Dip-in-Dot cart, but miss out on the most exciting animal discoveries that are just a glance away.

You’ve visited the Bird House, the Reptile House, and the Primates House, but did you know about an hour outside of Oklahoma City, there’s a zoo where a baby chimp, a baby wolf, and two baby tigers have “bonded together and become quite inseparable“?

Me neither.

And if you were listening to this particular podcast episode, you wouldn’t have learned that fact. Or any fact, for that matter.

For forty five minutes, I listened as three wonderfully sounding gentlemen, probably the best friends in the world, ranted about Zoo-isms. But they never got to the point of their podcast.

They never delivered on their promise: to teach the hidden secrets of the Zoological Society where they work.


It’s simple. If the title of your podcast is “The One Thing You Don’t Know About The Brookfield Zoo” for instance, please deliver on that promise. There’s nothing more deflating than listening to a podcast only to find that the content never matched the episode title.

We’re in this for the listener. I don’t know if they were trying to click-bait me into listening, but this unfavorable listening experience wasn’t exactly encouraging me to subscribe and dive in to further episodes.

Deliver on your podcast episode title. Tease it early on in. In fact, there’s no crime in delivering on that promise early on in.

Wow me. You’ll earn my subscribe. Most likely, I’ll desire to listen to more episodes… and I’ll probably even tell a friend about your podcast.

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Rick is a dynamic radio programmer and on-air personality armed with nearly twenty years of progressive experience in commercial radio, digital and mobile strategy, format changes, and research. Rick holds a personal winning scorecard as a programmer and is an expert in Nielsen PPM and Diary analysis and implementation. In 2014, Rick was awarded the illustrious “30 Under 30” award from Edison Research.

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