Tell us a little about yourself and your podcast?
My name is Sean Kelley, I do podcast production, editing and consulting at Podcast Engineering House. I am also a big nerd and one of my hobbies is playing tabletop role-playing games. You may have heard of Dungeons and Dragons. I co-host and produce Gaming and BS RPG Podcast (GBS) with my co-host Brett, where we talk about games like D&D – how to play, find players, rules, different types and titles of games. We have had a show every week, once a week, for over 5 years now. Ok, that’s not completely true. We missed one week because I was involved in a motorcycle accident. We just dropped episode 282, and have a dozen additional bonus episodes.
I did one other show that has been on hiatus. It centered on more on my day job at the time. A solo show, I produced 20+ episodes of Talent Jockey. A show for job seekers, recruiters and hiring managers. Good show, but needed more focus. You can still find it where good podcasts are found.
You can find our show at http://gamingandbs.com
If you’d like help with podcasting, you can find me at http://podcastengineeringhouse.com
How did you get started in the industry?
I started in 2008. I launched the Grumbling Dwarf Netcast, because you know, the word podcast was still being heavily debated as to whether Apple could lay claim to the term. It lasted four episodes and it was over. It was a show on tabletop role-playing games, but a bit different from what I’m doing now with GBS. Since then I have been a crazy consumer of podcasts and just love the medium. There’s truly nothing like it.
I launched Gaming and BS RPG Podcast in September 2014 with my co-host, Brett. I have a bit more knowledge on recording than Brett, so I handle quite a bit more of the nuances of the show – editing, audio quality, software, gear, production, branding, the website…I simply tell him to show up and look pretty.
I wanted to be more involved in the production of podcasting and helping others so I pursued a deeper understanding of audio production, thanks to Chris Curan’s Podcast Engineering School – https://podcastengineeringschool.com (no affiliation). I listen intently to other podcasts about podcasting and take care of clients that want to tell a story, but they don’t want to handle all the other ‘stuff’.
How many podcast episodes do you produce each month?
Gaming and BS RPG Podcast is the one show that I produce right now that I have full control over. There are a few more that I’m involved in but only as a resource for my clients.
In what ways do you come up with new show ideas?
The role-playing game (rpg) community is special. It’s a hobby, but there’s a pretty big social aspect to it, even though the stereotype is to the contrary. One thing we were very intentional about with our show was to get the community, or listenership, involved with the show. Doing this has allowed us to lean on our fans to actual pitch us topics. They also send us emails, comment on our forums, or hit us up on social media. Otherwise I lean on Brett to come up with a topic. We have a passion for gaming, so we can talk for hours about a lot of different facets of the hobby.
How important is it to stay consistent with fresh content?
They say content is king. Hearing the same message each week won’t keep your listeners coming back for more. So keeping it fresh is important. As for consistency, we started diligently dropping shows on Tuesdays, but we moved it due to additional post-production work. However, the beauty of podcasting is that it’s on demand. Gaming and BS had fans waiting for shows to drop. It became a part of people’s routine, but that was the minority. We started to realize that fans listen, but tells us “I’m a few episodes behind.” No problem, we won’t get obsessed with hitting a specific day at a specific time. Although I’d recommend anyone starting a show to get into a consistent groove and only consider a change down the road. That’s the beauty of podcasting, you can do whatever you want, however you want.
Do you have any inspirations you look to for show ideas? How do you gauge your audience’s in your podcast topics?
I mentioned our fans, affectionately known as BS’ers. They inspire us quite a bit. We have a segment called Random Encounter where we field emails, voicemails and comments from social media. We read feedback, or play it, on each episode. Sometimes that feedback will spur discussion that goes back and forth between listeners. We also pay close attention to the rpg industry. Perhaps a new game was released and we want to highlight that game. There are youtube creators that talk about our hobby. Often times they will touch on a topic and we need to express our own opinion, or our own take, on the subject matter.
Do you have guests on your podcast? And if so, how do you go about booking guests?
While our show is more discussion between myself and Brett, we do have a guest on from time to time. When we do this, we will have a specific topic mind and know a person from our circles that we know has more in-depth knowledge of the subject matter. We will reach out to them on social media or via email and offer up the opportunity to be on the show. Our recording time is pretty regular, Sunday nights at 7pm cst. If there’s interest we’ll find their availability, send them a calendar invite and a reference document that outlines some of the expectations for before, during and after the show. It’s really not as formal as one might think. We are also not working with celebrities or representatives of high-ranking government officials.
What advice would you offer to someone looking for ways to come up with new show ideas for their podcast?
Use a spreadsheet or list to make note of topics you want to cover in your show. Make note of what you want to discuss each week/month/quarter. This will allow you to keep track of your schedule and move things around if the need arises. Driving down the road and an idea hits you, make sure you put it in the spreadsheet or tracker of choice. You can subscribe to blogs or websites that cover similar material. Use the topic and put your own spin on it. Maybe it’s reading a book, listening to music, perusing websites that contain subject matter relevant to your show. Use that but make it your own or reference the source. There are also other podcasts. We’re not the only rpg podcast. We often cover the same material as another show in our niche. That doesn’t mean we’re not original or that we share the same opinion or that we convey the topic the exact same way. That’s why we prefer one show over another even though both shows cover the same thing.