How Podcast Producers Are Orchestrating the Podcasting Industry

By Avinandan Banerjee
Published on August 22, 2023
illustration featuring a mic on top of a abstract interface of instagram like social media interface with icons of like, share, and common emotes

Amid a wide range of podcasts taking place these days, where listeners are focused on interesting content, a new factor is emerging: who is on-mic?

Producers who often work behind the scenes step into the conversation and play a key role in shaping podcast programming. 

These craftsmen go through a challenging work environment, from coordinating logistics to cleaning, all while contributing with their expertise in the air.

As podcasts grow in popularity, the role of the on-mic producer comes into play, adding a new dynamic to the medium. 

Podcast Producers Wear Multiple Hats

The role of a podcast producer goes far beyond just supervising, recording, and logistics, they are responsible for editing – things like trimming dead air and improving sound clarity, maintaining pace, inserting ad breaks, and polishing the final product.

This careful post-program work keeps the show going, enhancing the overall experience of the podcast.

A podcast producer’s critical eye ensures that every punchline and idea is well delivered, making the hosts seem smarter and funnier than they otherwise would be. 

Producers like Bobby Wagner, who works on shows like The Ringer and The Big Picture, have to ensure that the hosts remain unencumbered by backstage challenges. 

The on-mic producer often goes beyond the technical role, creating a soundboard and security blanket for the guests.

They are quick to verify facts during arguments, offer contradictions, and ensure a smooth transition during recording. 

Essentially, they act as audience agents, steering conversation in a direction that audiences can appreciate.

Bobby Wagner and Craig Horlbeck, creators of The Ringer, have been called youth mentors in the conversation about generational content. 

Former All Fantasy Everything producer Marissa Melnyk offered a female perspective to balance the male-centric discussion.

These insightful tangents keep the show from going too far and make it more relatable. 

Managing Varied Roles and Contributions of Cast Members

Maintaining and managing dynamic public figures and personalities is another important part of the producer’s role.

Effectively composing a podcast with multiple guests requires navigating different perspectives and balancing their chemistry. 

Sometimes the filmmakers even mediate conflicts to keep the conversation flowing, collaborative development is the key, with the filmmaker acting as a go-between when tensions arise on the set.

Cast members air differently, usually depending on their comfort level and the history of the show.

Some of the cast, like Ben Hosley from Blank Check, have switched from being just behind the scenes to third-party host-like characters. 

Others, like Chapo Trap House’s Brendan James, prefer extended donations from time to time, producers can also have a huge impact on the production cost of podcasts. 

Such contributions are critical to the success of the podcast, and the positive relationships with the hosts often cement their place in the fabric of the show. 

Choosing the Perfect Time to Speak 

On-mic producers understand the importance of time and artistry, they carefully consider their contributions and ensure that their comments keep the conversation flowing without any interruption.

Their guiding principle is to be an aggressor and not an addition, moreover, having a good sense of editing adds another level to the production quality.

Fans embrace these producer personalities because they enhance the podcast experience.

By interacting with hosts, providing insight, and improving content, on-mic producers have become an integral part of the podcast landscape.

As the role of on-mic producers continues to evolve, listeners and hosts alike appreciate the unique position they bring to the world of podcasting.

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