Sharing a Spiritual Message through Podcasting

A Story of a Successful Daily Jewish Podcast: The 5-Minute Daf Yomi podcast

The 5-Minute Daf Yomi podcast with Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld is a daily show that’s recently achieved 100,000 downloads.  Rabbi Herzfeld has published more than 700 straight episodes of the podcast, which provides commentary and insight into a page of the Talmud in around five minutes. These concise spiritual lessons have been popular with listeners around the world. Rabbi Herzfeld’s podcast was recently featured in a Jewish community newspaper, which shared stories of the many ways the Rabbi has spread Jewish teachings over the years and how podcasting is extending that.

Read more to learn how podcasting can be a simple and fruitful way to share a spiritual message. Interview with Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld:

Why did you decide to start a podcast?

I started to do a podcast because I found that not enough people in our congregation were able to attend my daily Talmud class. I originally started it so that I could share one short spiritual teaching with our congregation on a daily basis.

Was starting a podcast easy for you?

I am technologically inept so I was very skeptical about being able to do a podcast. I thought it would take me hours of extra work and that I wouldn’t have the resources to do it. I was shocked at how easy it was for me to record a podcast using the Podbean app. Basically I just use my smartphone and speak into it and then upload it. It’s so simple.

What have you discovered since having a podcast, or what’s surprised you?

When I started I was shocked at how many people listened. The Talmud is a very esoteric text and I use a lot of technical terms but clearly there are fans of the podcast. This gratifies me because I believe the message of the Talmud is a pure spiritual message worthy to share with people.

I am always surprised when strangers tell me that they hear my podcast. One time a lawyer actually cited one of my podcasts as part of a legal proceeding. I got a kick out of it.

But my favorite times are when my children listen to it and cite it back to me.

What tools have you used to promote your podcast?

The only promoting of the podcast that I have done is that I use it as my signature in my email and I post every episode on my Facebook account. (Podbean has auto share options that make social media easy!)

What’s in the future for your podcast?

There are over 2700 pages of the Talmud and it is my goal to do a show for each of the pages. I have less than 2000 episodes to go!

When I am recording the podcast I feel that I am not only making an episode for people today but also a teaching for my children’s children and future generations.

What one thing would you tell someone thinking about starting a podcast?

To all those who think they have a compelling message to share I suggest you don’t worry about how many listeners you will have, just be true to your message!

5-Minute Daf Yomi with Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld can be found on Podbean. Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld of Ohev Sholom – The National Synagogue provides commentary and insight into the daily Daf (a page of Talmud studied around the world), offering spiritual lessons from the Torah and Jewish tradition.

Want to know about creating a podcast to share your message? Read more and learn about recording a podcast right from your phone with the Podbean app. You can also join the Podcasting Smarter Facebook group for tips and resources.

Non-Profit Podcasting: Using a Podcast for Advocacy

In our continuing series about non-profit podcasting, we hear from Peterson Toscano, host of Citizens’ Climate Radio. The podcast is a combination of training and information about the advocacy work of Citizens’ Climate Lobby. They’ve seen the benefits in encouraging and connecting with their advocates all over the world through their podcast.

CCL

Case Study in Non-Profit Podcasting: Connecting Advocates

1. Why did your non-profit organization decide to start podcasting? Were you familiar with other advocacy organizations producing podcasts?

Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) realized that in addition to the training audio and video we offered, people needed something different in order to encourage them in the hard work of climate advocacy. We have members all over North America and around the world. Some feel isolated and discouraged. The purpose of the show is to give them a shot in the arm while also reinforcing our organizational identity. We also know there are new members coming in all the time, so we wanted them to understand the tone and the approach of the organization. We felt the podcast would be a helpful tool to do this on a regular basis.

I think up until we tried it, we did not know of organization podcasts, just personal ones or podcasts around topics. I had been a volunteer with the organization and was producing and hosting another podcast, Climate Stew. Some of the leaders at CCL heard my show and approached me if I would do one like it for the organization.

2. What is your primary objective with podcasting?

To encourage climate advocates while also educating them on communication tactics. We also wish to reinforce the organization’s personality and approach and highlight successes.

3. What benefits have you seen?

This is hard to say. Anecdotally many people come up to me at our regional and the international meetings to say how helpful the podcast is for them. They get fresh ideas and are encouraged in their work. The podcast also serves as an outreach tool for perspective volunteers. People who have nothing to do with CCL are finding the podcast on social media and in searches and have started listening.

5. Any challenges you’ve found in podcasting, or future changes/goals?

Since our channel is a hybrid of both teaching audio and the podcast, I am sure there are people who subscribe to the podcast but don’t want to hear all that other audio. We might look at ways to be able to keep it on the channel while being able to have people subscribe just to the podcast.

Advocacy organizations thrive by educating and empowering their members/consumers. Non-profit podcasting is a great way to get messaging out to consumers efficiently. Advocacy organizations may offer news/updates, advocacy training, and an array of educational content in their podcasts. As demonstrated by Citizen’s Climate Lobby, a podcast can be a great rallying tool for advocates and way to keep members connected.

Why Your Non-Profit Should Have a Podcast

non profit organization podcasts

Podcasting can be a wonderful communications solution for non-profit and cause-based organizations. Some non-profit organizations use a podcast to communicate advocacy information to members/supporters. Others may repurpose educational and informational content to reach a wider audience. The audio format is a great way to increase engagement and spread your organization’s message further.

Non-Profit Podcasting: A Case Study in Expanding Engagement

Michelle Mittelstadt, Director of Communications for the Migration Policy Instituteand MPI Europe, shares her organization’s experience of podcasting with Podbean:

1. Why did your non-profit organization decide to start podcasting?

Podcasting represents a great ability to project beyond our geographic boundaries for our events and webinars. We see podcasting as a quick-form and effective way of engaging with audiences, at a time and place of their choosing. It seems like more and more organizations have been getting into the podcasting space.

2. What is your primary objective with podcasting?

Sharing our knowledge with new audiences, in ways that work for them.

3. What benefits has your non-profit organization experienced from podcasting?

Podcasting has significantly amplified our reach, and represents an effective way of identifying new audiences.

5. Have you run across any challenges? Do you have future goals for podcasting for your organization?

We’ve to date used podcasting chiefly to present our events and webinars. Soon, we’ll be adding expert interviews.

The Migration Policy Institute Podcasts can be found on Podbean.

Non-profit organizations benefit from having a strong communications strategy, to interact with supporters and donors, educate consumers and raise awareness. A podcast is an engaging solution to enhance your non-profit’s communications plan.

Educating a Wider Audience with an Organization Podcast

Organizations can benefit from podcasting in many ways. One great example is the ability to reach a wider audience and further the organization’s outreach all across the world. Read more below about how one organization has benefited from their widely popular video podcast.

CIA

The Culinary Institute of America is a premier culinary college. John Barkley is their Director of Strategic Initiatives, Digital Media. He shared his thoughts on why the organization uses podcasting and how it’s contributed to their objectives.

Why did your organization decide to start podcasting?

As the world’s premier culinary college, a non-profit educational institution, one of our core initiatives is documenting and preserving world cuisines.  We started this free video podcast, “Video from The Culinary Institute of America”, as a way to extend our documentaries on global cuisines to a larger audience outside of the CIA classrooms.

What is your primary objective with podcasting?

To share knowledge about food and cooking with future generations of chefs and food enthusiasts.

What benefits have you seen?

It’s great having the exposure we get through Podbean and iTunes. We are reaching an audience that we might never connect with via our traditional e-learning channels.

Have there been any particular features of Podbean that have made it easy for you to implement?

The interface and scheduling aspects of Podbean are easy to use and make podcast publishing simple.

Any challenges you’ve found in podcasting? What future changes or goals do you anticipate?

One of the challenges with maintaining a huge library of video podcast content, is the data storage requirements. In addition, scaling up for the future of 4K video podcasting will bring added data storage requirements and require flexible and affordable cloud-based systems like Podbean.

Organizations like CIA are using podcasts to find new audiences and further their outreach. There are so many creative ways your organization can use podcasting. Podcasting is one of the most accessible mediums, and Podbean makes it easy and affordable. Podcasting can help you reach a wider audience, tell your story in a new way, and reach (and exceed) your goals.

You can find your foodie inspiration on their beautiful podcast at http://cia.podbean.com/.