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The Anti-Hero's Guide To Podcasting in 2023

June 13, 2024 Deciphr AI
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When it comes to podcasting, there are many strategies that creators can use to stand out in a crowded field. All things considered, conventional wisdom dictates that the key to success is to be likable, relatable, and inoffensive. 

But what if I told you that being controversial, even downright unlikable, could actually be the key to dominating the podcasting scene in 2023? 

In this article, I will explain why the anti-hero approach is not only viable but necessary in today's oversaturated podcasting world. Here’s what we’ll cover: 

  • Why being “likable” doesn’t get you anywhere sometimes
  • How political correctness can hold you back
  • Embracing negative reviews
  • Taking risks when it comes to your content
  • Authenticity is better than perfection
  • The Anti-hero approach: the future of podcasting

While I’m unapologetically an undercover “Swiftie,” I promise this isn’t some gimmick. The anti-hero approach to podcasts actually works. 

Read on to find out why…


“It’s me, hi, I’m the problem, it’s me!”

Let's face it, being a goody-two-shoes is boring. In fact, it's downright forgettable. Who wants to listen to a podcast host who doesn't challenge the status quo or make waves?

That’s why this line from Taylor Swift’s “Anti-hero” is nothing short of genius.

The anti-hero is unapologetic, controversial, and downright fascinating. And sometimes, you’ll have to embrace your inner anti-hero to stir up the masses and get people talking. 

Just take a look at Howard Stern. Love him or hate him, the guy has been dominating the radio industry for decades with his no-holds-barred approach. He's not afraid to tackle taboo topics, push the boundaries of what's considered acceptable, and make people uncomfortable. And you know what? It works. People tune in to hear what he has to say, even if they don't necessarily like him as a person.

The same can be said for podcasters like Joe Rogan and Bill Burr. These guys aren't afraid to speak their minds, no matter how controversial their opinions may be. They're not trying to be likable or to appeal to the masses. Instead, they're carving out their own niche by being authentic, raw, and unfiltered. And guess what? It's paying off big time.

But why is this approach so effective?

People are craving authenticity in a world that's becoming increasingly filtered and curated. They want to hear real opinions from real people, not some watered-down version of the truth.

By embracing the anti-hero persona, podcasters can tap into this desire and build a loyal fanbase that's drawn to their unique perspective.

Of course, there will always be naysayers who argue that the anti-hero approach is too risky or unprofessional. They'll say that it's better to play it safe and avoid controversy at all costs. But let me ask you this: when was the last time you remembered a podcast that played it safe? When was the last time you recommended a forgettable podcast to a friend? The truth is, the most memorable and successful podcasts are the ones that take risks and push the envelope.

So if you want to dominate the podcasting scene in 2023, don't be afraid to embrace your inner anti-hero. Be bold, be controversial, and most importantly, be yourself. Your audience will thank you for it.

Why Being PC is Bad for Business

Think of political correctness as the podcasting equivalent of wearing a suit and tie to a pool party. Sure, you may look respectable and avoid offending anyone, but you'll also stick out like a sore thumb and probably won't have much fun. In the same way, sticking to politically correct topics may make you seem respectable and inoffensive, but it also makes you boring and forgettable.

Nobody. I repeat, NOBODY wants to listen to bland content!

So go ahead and stir the pot a little. Talk about controversial topics and share your unique perspective. Sure, some will get offended or disagree with you, but that's okay. You'll attract a passionate and engaged audience who appreciates your honesty and willingness to take risks. In the end, it's better to be authentic and memorable than to play it safe and forgettable.

Why Negative Reviews Can Be a Good Thing

“I absolutely love negative feedback!” — said no one ever! It stings, it's frustrating, and it can make you question everything you thought you knew. But when it comes to podcasting, negative reviews are not the end of the world. In fact, they can be a blessing in disguise. 

Negative reviews are like a gym workout for your podcast. They may be tough to swallow, but they make you stronger in the end.

Think about it this way: would you rather have a bunch of lukewarm reviews that say your podcast is "fine" or "okay"? Or would you rather have a few passionate negative reviews that spark discussion and debate? 

Negative reviews can be a sign that your podcast is actually making people think and feel something. Plus, they give you valuable feedback that can help you improve your content and grow your audience. So, the next time you receive a negative review, don't panic. Embrace it as an opportunity to learn and get better.

Why Taking Risks Pays Off

Taking risks can be daunting, but it is essential for growth and success. When you step out of your comfort zone, you open yourself up to new possibilities and experiences that can lead to great things.

Don't be afraid to explore controversial topics or take on a new persona that challenges your audience's expectations. In doing so, you may just find a loyal following who appreciates your willingness to take risks and break the mold.

Remember, every successful podcaster was once a beginner. They took risks, made mistakes, and learned from them along the way. Don't be afraid to stumble, but keep pushing forward and trying new things. Who knows, your next risk may just lead you to your biggest success yet. So embrace the unknown, take chances, and keep striving for greatness.

Why Authenticity Trumps Perfection

Authenticity is key when it comes to podcasting. Here are some reasons why being genuine is more important than striving for perfection:

  • Relatability: By embracing your flaws and imperfections, you become more relatable to your audience. Listeners appreciate authenticity and honesty, and are more likely to engage with you if they feel a personal connection.
  • Vulnerability: Being honest and vulnerable about your opinions and experiences can create a deeper connection with your audience. By sharing your struggles and triumphs, you show that you are human and can create a sense of camaraderie with your listeners.
  • Stand out: In a sea of polished, perfect podcasts, being authentic can help you stand out. Your unique voice and perspective can attract a loyal fanbase who appreciate your honesty and authenticity.

Remember, your listeners are tuning in because they want to hear from you - flaws and all. So don't be afraid to embrace your authenticity and let your true self shine through in your podcast.

Why the Anti-Hero is the Future of Podcasting

As the world of podcasting grows, it becomes more and more saturated with content. With so many voices competing for attention, it takes something truly special to stand out and attract a dedicated following. By taking a contrarian “anti-hero” stance and presenting a controversial and unapologetic persona, podcasters can create a unique perspective that sets them apart from the crowd.

This is especially important in a world where traditional media outlets often play it safe and avoid controversial topics. By embracing their flaws and imperfections, anti-heroes can create a deep connection with their audience and establish a level of authenticity that is difficult to achieve through traditional media channels.

With the rise of social media and the democratization of content creation, authenticity is valued above all else. People are drawn to those who are unafraid to speak their minds and challenge the status quo.

In a world where the traditional gatekeepers of media are losing power, the anti-hero approach is the future of podcasting.