Start-up Stories is a blog series following the lives of inspiration self-starters who are running their own business or project.
Who are you? Daniel Carpenter – Podcast Producer.
What’s your business? The Paperchain Podcast. Series two starts on 23rd August 2017!
Tell us about Paperchain Podcast
I started The Paperchain Podcast about eighteen months ago. It’s a podcast in which I interview authors, poets, songwriters, and playwrights about their work. The focus of the conversations is usually about inspiration: where do their ideas come from? Each guest also performs a brand new piece of work they’ve written for the podcast based on a prompt set by the previous episode’s guest.
If I’m honest, the podcast is for me. Or rather for people who, like me, love discovering new writers and listening to brand new work. Really, it was a surprise that the podcast became so popular and that people tune in each month to listen.
I’ve been lucky enough on this second series to be able to partner with STORGY magazine. Also, I’m working alongside some brilliant small publishers, such as Dead Ink, to source emerging authors for the show. I hope in the long term this can continue, and that as the show develops and garners a larger audience, I can find other avenues of funding and sponsorship.
So, Dan, what happens behind the scenes?
It depends on the time of year. Early in the series, I look for artists who might like to appear on the show and organise recording dates. Each episode is a follow-on from the previous one, so I have to know which order the episodes will air in before I go into recording. I don’t have a studio. The recorder I have is good enough that I can meet artists in a variety of places and still get a great sound. I interviewed a songwriter next to the Thames and it was one of the best sounding episodes. Once the first few episodes launch, I can relax into the promotion. I mainly promote the show through Twitter. Although, I also use Twitter to chat and talk about literature and art in general, which I think helps build my audience.
This year, my marketing strategy has been to reach out to literature blogs and online magazines to pitch features about podcasting. It was through this that I found STORGY, who replied to my pitch enthusiastically. They asked me to not only write a feature for them but also to partner with them on the podcast. That came as a bit of a surprise, though I was hoping to find someone like them to work alongside. It’s been great so far! It’s already producing great results, even though its only been a few weeks.
What’s your story?
I started listening to podcasts about five or so years ago. I fell in love with the idea of producing something for everyone to have free access to. My background is in live literature production, but not audio production, so I spent a while considering whether I really wanted to try this. I was a bit concerned that the sheer number of shows out there would dwarf whatever I was doing. But in the end, I came up with a concept that I loved and ran with it. I bought some basic recording equipment and taught myself how to edit audio using Garageband. Then I roped a friend of mine, poet Dominic Stevenson, to talk about poetry and perform a new poem – that became the first episode!
Any advice for keen start-ups out there?
Go for it! I wish someone had told me that the moment I had the idea for the podcast. If an idea comes to you and you can’t stop mulling it over, go for it! Why not try it out and see how it goes? That’s the best advice I can give.
Where can we find you?
Start-up Stories is a blog series following the lives of inspiration self-starters who are running their own business or project. Its aim is to offer advice, motivation and inspirational stories to start-ups, small businesses or those thinking about starting their journey. What’s your story? Contact me if you’d like to be involved.