Why women are Podcasting?

Radiodays Europe and Women in Podcasting

Radiodays Europe held the first European Podcast Day in Copenhagen, Denmark in June 2017. If you didn't attend this event you may have heard of some of the speakers who gave presentations at last year’s Podcast Day: Helen Zaltzman, Answer me this! And The Allusionist/Radiotopia Podcasts, UK, Paula Szuchman, VP, on-Demand Content, WNYC Labs, USA, Caroline Bratt Pouron, Content Strategist, SR P3, Sweden, Leslie Merklinger Senior Director of Audio Innovation, CBC, Canada, Irina Tjelle, Host and Journalist, NRK, Norway, Ruth Fitzsimons, SVP International Operations & Content Partnerships, AudioBoom, UK, Elizabeth Lane, Research Manager for Multiplatform, BBC, UK and Claire Tonti Creative Director, Planet Broadcasting, Australia. Just over half of the speakers at the event were women, this was also reflected in the audience where a much greater percentage of those attending were women, than purely radio focused conferences.

Many women are involved in podcasting as hosts and behind the scenes, also many podcasts are focused on women and women’s issues. From Edison’s ‘The Podcast Consumer 2016’ research 44% of listeners to Podcasts in the US are women. “Deborah Frances-White says that “The Guilty Feminist” has had 8m downloads in the past 15 months. Sarah Koenig’s “Serial” was the fastest podcast ever to reach 5m streams and downloads on iTunes”. The women speaking at Radiodays Europe Podcast Day 2017 had either worked in traditional radio previously and had become independent or continue to work in traditional radio but within the field of Podcasts, podcasting appeals to women for a variety of reasons content, flexibility and freedom.

Manoush Zomorodi in an online article last year said that women are good at using podcasting to take risks and talk about issues that normally get left behind by mainstream media. Podcasts are often niche dealing with issues which are embarrassing, gender specific, controversial, emotional and offer women a platform without the usual limits which traditional radio can sometimes involve. 

One suggestion for the reason women are choosing to work on podcasts is flexibility.  Producing a podcast, even though still time consuming isn’t the same as working on the breakfast show. Podcasts tend to be shorter in length and can be recorded in less time allowing for great work life balance. Also, this relatively new digital platform is appealing to young women who want to connect and want to be heard unlike Twitter (confrontational), Instagram (my perfect life and body) and Facebook (my mum’s on there it’s not cool), podcasts are another way to deal with topics which are affecting young women today.

Women are having a far greater impact in the podcast world whether behind the scenes, as the talent or as the listener. 

Follow the speakers at Radiodays Europe Podcasts Day, 12th June, Copenhagen, Denmark - Register here