Discovering Global Opportunities for International Podcast Streaming Platform
How are podcasts made around the world? A podcast streaming platform engaged Reach Network to research to understand and find opportunities in the podcast creation process and monetization in 6 countries (US, UK, Japan, India, Brazil, Indonesia), where Somia researched and documented the study in Indonesia and helped to facilitate in the global synthesis process. This is the first time the platform has initiated an exploratory approach for their product in this topic.
We learned that content creation is only a fraction of what podcasters need to do, but they also need to take care of monetization, promotion and other mundane tasks that hold them back from growing into big podcasters. Therefore, we need to expand the opportunities not only on the creation process but also other content creator supporting tasks as well. Together with other country partners we mapped several big themes opportunity direction for the client to develop further, based on the struggles and untapped needs we heard from the content creators
To make sure we get the most from the initiative, the project project was broken up into 2 phases. The first one is desk research followed up with remote interviews with the content creators. This is to get an initial understanding and know which topics we should dig deeper into in the second phase with the ethnographic approach, visiting and observing directly in the content creator environment.
To be able to capture the richness and complexity of the topic being covered, we used a filmmaking approach when the content creators explained and shared their practices. Film clips are aimed to get the client a deep understanding of the content creators’ environment, creation process, and the way they interact with their audiences.
Our Journey and Process
First Phase: Remote Interviews
Before we did any of the interviews we carried out a desk research to get an initial understanding of the podcasting industry in Indonesia. It helps us to sharpen the research questions and prevents us from asking surface-level questions to the content creators. We then did the interviews with a variety of content creators: different types of content, formats, lengths of content, and number of audiences. This was to make sure we captured the plausible needs and challenges across the creators. We extracted key needs and challenges that the platform could focus on to be discussed in the global workshop.
In the global workshop, team from each country shared key insights to show what’s happening in their market. After rounds of clarification, the workshop then moved to see what is the similarities and differences across different markets. From the shared insights, the client then gave their view on which ones they were interested in more and could have a bigger impact on their product. These were used to determine the focus for the second phase, making sure the ethnographic approach was to dig details of the relevant topics.
Second Phase: Ethnographic Approach
We visited the content creators in their environment making the content. We would like to capture in detail the way they plan, create, edit, and promote their content based on the topic we had from the global workshop, using a design documentary approach. We were using two cameras that planned to shot different objects (e.g content creators’ face, environment, tools being used, etc) so later we could superimpose when we created the insight clips. In order for us to plan the shot better, we were giving our content creators a pre-task: they needed to create videos they explaining their podcast their environment where they record and edit the content.
All the detailed evidence from different countries is then aligned together using predefined frameworks. Together with the client, we then generated opportunity areas for them to develop in the future.
All the insights, quotes, film clips, and opportunity areas where the client should tap into were then stitched together in an interactive medium, which the client could always revisit to develop future strategies and features, or as an inspiration for different divisions such as marketing and communication.
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