This week I talk to Brendan McDonald, producer of WTF with Marc Maron. We talk about the finer points of producing a world-class podcast, including booking the President of the United States, Barack Obama on their show.
Brendan is the yin and Marc is the yang in making WTF get made. Brendan explains in details of the operations and production around creating their podcast, how they work together, and how booking President Obama was a year in the making.
Additionally we learn about how collaboration is key when building a successful podcast, and how having no agenda when creating a show like WTF is what makes it stand-out in the podcast world.
Great quotes from Brendan
“Having the White House reach out to us is the reason that (the interview) happened. We wouldn’t have been so bold as to go the other way. I think that was just a huge win for podcasting in general. He has his pick of media outlets, a lot of options at the disposal of the President if he wants to communicate to the country and the world. So it’s very validating to know that podcasting had achieved a level of acceptance in the media landscape.”
“That kind of yin and yang makes the relationship work—not just as professional colleagues. We’ve been friends for eleven years now.”
“In the six hundred plus episodes we’ve done, we won’t do promotional interviews for the full episode... Mark will graciously have his friends over sometimes and do ten minutes at the beginning of an episode to help somebody that has a book out or a movie out, or something like that. His feeling about that is it’s kind of like an everybody can help everybody out situation. It’s not that we go requesting promotional stuff. It’s that people were gracious enough to appear on our show, which helped raise our tide quite a bit, so of course we’re going to pay the favor back.”
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