Rockin’ Libsyn Podcasts: Who Cares? What’s The Point?

This series is all about libsyn podcasters. Its sole purpose is to introduce these awesome podcasts to the world as well as share their podcasting insight to empower the community!

Q & A’s with Dr. Sarb from Who Cares? What’s the Point?

When did you start podcasting?

I started podcasting just a few months ago, at the end of November 2016.

I’d been thinking about it for a while, but I decided I was just going to get going and “build the plane as I fly it”, after taking a basic podcasting course on

Why did you start podcasting?

I listen to podcasts a lot. I love factual podcasts news podcasts, but a lot of comedy podcasts too.

I have done some radio interviews in the past, where I’ve talked about disaster response and recovery, but also another area I have some personal experience and professional expertise in – and that’s parenting.

Now I know there are a few different psychology podcasts, but nothing like I really had in mind. But one of the things I’m really interested in is making knowledge that experts generate in journals or other publications that people aren’t aware of and perhaps can’t access – making that knowledge more available to the public.

So, I thought, what about if I interview some of those researchers who publish this stuff– and make it more available to people who may not find the journals particularly thrilling or engaging.

So, my podcast was born.

What’s your show about?

My show, “Who cares? What’s the point?” is billed as the podcast about the mind for people who think.

When I was a Ph.D. student, one of the slides me and a few of my fellow students included in every presentation we did said this; ’Who cares? What’s the point?”

This encouraged us to really double down and focus on why anyone should care about the research we were doing. This podcast does the same thing. I invite psychologists from around the world to tell me and my audience briefly about their research, and then I prompt them to answer those two questions – who cares?

And what’s the point, focusing on the possible implications of their work. This way, you get to hear stories about how the brain works, without putting your mind to sleep.

What’s your podcasting set-up? Hardware, software, CMS, etc.

Mine’s a pretty simple set up. I use a Mac running Adobe Audition as my chief production software, along with Skype and Facetime, using the Call Recorder application to record the interviews.

I use an Apogee MiC microphone, as well as a standard set of headphones, and a Rode lapel-mic with my iPhone 6+ for topping and tailing the show before and after the interview segments.

The show music is a track called Curiosity by Lee Rosevere, available on Free Music Archive. Overall, it’s a pretty simple set-up, but I like it and the sound quality seems good – but I’m learning more about audio sound-mixing all the time. I use the Levelator for that, which really seems to work well.

How have you promoted your podcast?

I haven’t really done much promotion other than set up a Facebook page and a Twitter account.

I haven’t paid for any advertising, but the show does seem to be getting a little bit more popular. I guess it is word of mouth, but it’s very hard to tell.

Most of my listeners seem to be in New Zealand, but the next biggest audience is definitely the USA. But I’m keen to grow the audience and make people more aware of what we talk about.

Like, tell fact from fiction on a post-truth internet, or why we tend to pick objects in the center when we’re presented with choices?

We also talk about whether our levels of body hydration are linked to how much pain we might feel, and whether we become less skeptical of religious ideas when we think about our own deaths.

Those are just a few of the 18 episodes we have out now, and I’m releasing a new show every week. I’d love to create a bit more of an online buzz around the show through Facebook shares and through Twitter (@wcwtp and @sarb) so it would be great to hear from anyone who hears this about any episodes you listened to and what you got out of it.

And of course, I’d love to get more of a footprint on iTunes. I also have a partnership with the Science Media Centre of New Zealand to get the transcripts published on the Sciblogs website – which is a network of science bloggers in New Zealand.

What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?

I guess one of the things I’d wish I’d known when I’d started is just how hard it can be to get noticed.

There’s definitely a niche there – I’d consulted with a couple of folks who produced some of the bigger psychology podcasts and they saw a gap that might podcast is definitely addressing.

But without the backing of a major sponsor, or organizational promotion, or a community of people sharing and commenting your content, it’s pretty hard to get noticed in the sea of content that is available.

So, patience and community building is definitely something I’ve learned to try to focus on, and I’m still learning.

Also, I am definitely learning every day from others, and I’m continuing to learn. I knew that would be important from the start, but as you continue, you become aware how much more you still don’t know as you go along.

So, shows like The Feed become even more important to plug into other people’s experience in their podcasting journey both as producers and also as listeners who give me clues as to what might work for them.

Then there’s the international side of things – I guess I’ve learned that the different geographical communities really are like different markets, some big, some small, but all incredibly interesting and it’s thrilling when I see someone from a new area connecting with my show.

Ever ask yourself why something matters? And whether or not there is a point? You had no idea that there was a podcast just for you, did you? Time to SUBSCRIBE to Who Cares, What’s The Point!

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