This podcast has published 100 episodes since January 13, and I feel pretty good about that!
As with the 100th, 200th, and 300th, so also now with the 400th – let’s review what we’ve learned in the past centuria of The Garrett Ashley Mullet Show to see what landed and what didn’t, and what differences become apparent when we consider what content was successful versus what at a minimum has yet to really take off.
For starters, of the 7 most popular episodes, there were 4 book reviews – ‘The End Is Always Near’ by Dan Carlin (#312), ‘The Fourth Turning’ by Neil Howe and William Strauss (#321), ‘Democracy in America’ by Alexis de Tocqueville (#325), and ‘The Plantagenets’ by Dan Jones (#352).
There was also 1 docuseries review of ‘China: The Enemy Within’ from DW (#333), and 1 SOTU review (#340).
Last but not least, I recorded 1 pop-culture mashup (#348) imagining what would happen if Fletcher Reede (Liar, Liar) and Cal Lightman (Lie to Me) walked into a bar together.
Of the 7 least popular episodes, I talked about how by 2030 you’ll own nothing and be happy (#376), plus explored Big Tech funny business (#379), and also talked about how and why teen girls are especially vulnerable to transgenderism (#390).
Besides these, we explored planning and plans, complaining, mockery, and how to stop school shootings (#393, 394, 395, 399).
The Law of Averages
For the most popular episodes, the average date of publish was February 20, and the average length was 49:55. The titles and subjects had more specificity and positivity, and I think that contributed to the greater interest my audience had in the content.
By contrast, the least popular episodes had an average date of publish May 13, and an average length of 56:44. And here the titles and subjects were more abstract and negative – not the winningest combination, apparently.
Some lessons learned include that book reviews seem to resonate with the sort of people who don’t mind long-form extemporaneous podcasts like mine. But at the same time, it would seem my audience prefers specificity and focus, as well as more positivity and upbeat conclusions and subjects. As much or more-so when negative or challenging elements are also in the mix, who doesn’t want to end on a high note?
One important realization in the last 10 episodes especially is that I need to talk less about negative personal interactions and situations, or at least change the tone and tenor of my discussion of such things, as well as how much detail I give, particularly when there remains private work to do working through said interactions and situations.
Abstractions explored through specific examples are more helpful in part because they are more focused that way. So there is no getting entirely away from leveraging private situations for selecting subjects of interest and relevance. But the question is less one of whether or not, more one of how, when, and in what proportion.
Besides these, another important insight is that the longer the content is out there, the more listens per episode I see. To be more precise, the ratio is nearly 7:1 listens on episodes published three months ago versus those published in the past three weeks. And this has been true since the beginning, but will only be all the more the case as the catalog expands and more listeners find this podcast through organic searches. More listeners are engaging content that has been live for months than are listening to every episode within the day or week it’s published, and I find that fascinating.
Also, getting closer to 45-minutes than 1-hour for overall content length maximizes the odds any given episode will reach target. This I think has to do with the same subtle psychology inherent to goods and services advertised for $19.95 versus $20.05 – even so little a swing as 10 cents can make a significant difference in what would-be consumers either round up to or round down to, for better or worse. However rational or irrational, this drives both purchasing and listening decisions because it must necessarily follow that if time is money then money is also time.
As We Have Opportunity
In closing, I’ll leave you with Galatians 6:1-10 (ESV).
“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. For each will have to bear his own load.
Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”
This is a good encouragement and warning to all of us, but I take it a bit differently than most when my thoughts turn to this venture.
As we continue on learning and growing and taking every thought captive to obey Christ, each phrase and line here especially is needful to remember for both the promises and perils are real and lasting. Therefore, I will continue on doing good to everyone as I have the opportunity here, and especially those in the household of faith.
As always, thank you for listening. Until next time, God bless.
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