The faces – or rather, the voices – of podcasting are now more diverse than they’ve ever been. As podcasting, in general, has become widely popular as a form of entertainment, news, and education alike, a growing number of BIPOC podcasters are rising to the top of the ranks.
According to a recent article from InsideRadio, more than 40% of the collective audience of the podcast universe are non-white. Compare that to the U.S. population, which is only about 33% non-white, and it certainly seems that the industry’s efforts to nurture diversity are working.
The article quotes Tony Hereau, VP of Cross-Platform Insights at Nielsen, as saying, “It happens with the diversity of programming. There is a zero barrier of entry for anybody to get into podcasting and that has served the industry well because it has allowed for lots of different voices to come into podcasting and add content that they don’t get anywhere else.”
For BIPOC creators and listeners alike, that diversity is a big part of what has made podcasting so attractive.
Diverse Audiences – and Podcasts – are on the Rise
In the past decade or so, podcasting has seen meteoric growth across the board. But that growth is particularly impressive among BIPOC listeners, and many creators attribute that to the increased presence of BIPOC podcasters.
Podcast publishers are working overtime to fulfill the demand for increased diversity, and the response thus far has been immensely enthusiastic. For most BIPOC listeners, this comes as no surprise: after all, many of them have been calling for more BIPOC podcast hosts and shows for quite some time.
In September of 2020, the world’s top commercial podcast publisher (iHeartMedia) announced the launch of The Black Effect Podcast Network. The network features a selection of content from Black creators, curated by industry influencer Charlamagne Tha God. Topics range from pop culture and comedy to mental health and social justice, all aiming to encourage conversation, deliver entertainment, and offer diverse perspectives.
Shortly after debuting The Black Effect Podcast Network, iHeartMedia announced that they would be dedicating one-half of all podcast development towards building a more diverse platform. This includes seeking out new shows and concepts from BIPOC content creators, as well as continuing partnerships with well-known media leaders such as Shondaland (a production company owned by Shonda Grimes).
Top BIPOC Podcasts
Searching for a new podcast to listen to and learn from? With such a wealth of outstanding podcasts by BIPOC creators, you have plenty of great options to choose from.
Here are just a few of the top-rated BIPOC podcasts to check out:
- Code Switch, an award-winning BIPOC-hosted podcast that explores conversations about race
- Still Processing, a culture podcast hosted by Jenna Wortham and Wesley Morrison
- Here to Slay, a podcast based on the black feminism perspective from Roxanne Gay and Tressie McMillan Cottom
- Red Table Talk, from actress Jada Pinkett Smith, her daughter Willow Smith, and her mother Adrienne Norris
- Louder than a Riot, an NPR-published podcast that delves into the world of hip-hop and the ways in which it is linked to incarceration in the U.S.
Those are just five of the hundreds of BIPOC podcasts that have received a warm welcome from listeners – and a multitude of well-deserved accolades from the industry.
How to Get Started in Podcasting
Have you ever found yourself wondering how to become a podcaster? You probably already know that you need a certain amount of passion, dedication, and personality, but technical and podcasting skills are just as important.
By enrolling in podcasting courses at a media-focused school, you’ll be able to learn (and practice!) skills such as:
- How to use microphones, audio workstations, and other industry-specific equipment
- How to record a podcast
- How to edit recordings into a polished final product
- How to navigate the media industry
A media school can also help you connect with internships, networking opportunities, and more – all of which can make it easier to stand out from the competition and land the job of your dreams.
Be a Part of Podcasting Future as a Media Schools’ Graduate
For BIPOC creatives, podcasting is a one-of-a-kind medium with an audience that’s eager to listen and engage. So, now’s the time to make the leap.
At the BeonAir Network of Media Schools, with campuses located in Miami, Chicago, Colorado, and Ohio, we offer a broad range of programs for individuals who want to break into the media industry. Whether you envision yourself as a podcast host, audio engineer, or media marketer, our campuses have options to suit your goals. Learn how to record, mix, and edit in our audio production classes, practice hosting in our broadcasting program, or develop your content creation skills in our digital production courses – it’s entirely up to you.
Make your move today: apply to join one of our media production programs now!
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