6.5 years, 192 episodes and around 40,000 downloads later, I’m calling it. Earlier this month, I recorded the last episode of PR Talk. What began as a non-committal experiment turned into a passion, then a lifeline through Covid, until now, when it’s beginning to feel like an obligation, I know it’s time to say goodbye.
It’s not easy for me to end things, but I find comfort in knowing that anyone can access the episodes for as long as we’re able to host them online. Looking back at a complete body of work is extremely satisfying. All 192 episodes lined up in a pretty row, organized by title, topic, interviewee and episode number. 6.5 years of fraught, care and maintenance stored forever provides a lasting reward to this long-hauler.
Evolving themes are found within this body of work, illustrating a personal journey through growth.
Learning Directly From the Source
What initially sparked the idea for the podcast didn’t last long. Recording myself rambling on to a new employee, Connor Laubenstein, about various aspects of PR, I soon realized that hearing directly from the source — members of the media — might be more interesting, and helpful, to others. Who better than the media to tell us how to pitch?
Connor and I had a blast co-interviewing Portland media members. It was nice to have someone tag-teaming the early interviews with me. Likely suffering from impostor syndrome, I was actually quite nervous, wondering who the heck I thought I was to expect the media to be on my little podcast! We have a hard enough time pitching them as it is!
But after almost 15 years of having done PR, I needed this process to understand just how approachable the media really is. That is, if you do it right, which is what this podcast was all about. With the tenants of PR being very basic, the media tips started to sound the same, so I began to look outside that zone.
A Lifeline Through Covid Brings New Focus
After a while, Connor was off to other ventures and I expanded my focus to inviting all kinds of marketing experts on the show — from internal communications and search engine optimization, to multicultural marketing and of course, PR — while occasionally including special media guests.
And then. Covid. When it first hit, my daughter and I recorded mini-episodes on topics like balance, breaks and more. Calling this a “Fika Talk” take-over of the PR Talk podcast, we uploaded a handful of short takes and two full-length interviews with business-owner moms alongside their children. It’s easy to scroll through the episodes to find the “Fika Talk” section.
Through Covid, my comfort conducting the podcast from a distance grew. I began connecting with just about anyone, exploring topics as broad as time-management, body positivity, leadership, and most importantly, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).
Over the last few years, we’ve popcorned short snippets explaining key points found within my book, “A Modern Guide to Public Relations,” in between the interviews. I realized we didn’t upload all the Modern Guide snippets, so we’ll continue to do so even after the close of this podcast to offer additional learning opportunities.
This classroom of sorts brings me full-circle to the beginning.
My Wing Man & Wing Woman
All of this — along with so many other things — would not be possible if it weren’t for the support of my business partner husband, Mike Rosenberg. Mike produced and promoted the podcast, mastering the technical aspects, from sound editing to uploading to syndication.
While that detailed type of help was absolutely necessary, Mike’s emotional support is the reason I’m able to do so much. I often have these little crazy ideas that feel like they could be indulgent distractions. But not once has Mike questioned these whims. Instead, he actively encourages them.
Meanwhile, Veracity Account Executive, Cailyn Tegel, has done an expert job of taking these details off Mike’s plate as he advances his career. She quickly learned the technicalities, while also booking unique guests and marketing each episode.
But again, I’m mostly in need of emotional support. Remaining free of judgment, Cailyn understood when I decided to end the podcast. This was a hard decision, so I appreciated this support even more than the enthusiasm Cailyn provided when it was necessary to keep going.
Our Everlasting Thanks
There are so many others to thank in addition to my two wing-people.
PR Talk guests! It has been an honor to share your expertise to listeners who need it. Your generous offering of time is extremely valued by our team and listeners. Plus, our hats are off to the PR people who may have pitched you!
PRSA Oregon! Thank you for not only being our longtime sponsor, but for advancing the careers of PR people all over. By broadcasting these interviews to more people, you’ve supported those who trudge the murky, yet fulfilling, road of PR.
Marketing Podcast Network! Thank you for bringing us into the fold. We sure didn’t maximize your capabilities to their fullest potential, but we were honored to participate in the first ad reads and meet the supportive community. We can’t wait to see where you take this Jason Falls.
PR Talk listeners! Most importantly, thank you to all who supported the show by listening, reviewing, rating and sharing. We did it all for you and you reciprocated in spades. Thank you for trusting us as you journeyed through your own body of work.
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This episode of PR Talk is brought to you by PRSA Oregon
Throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington, PRSA provides members with networking, mentorship, skill building and professional development opportunities – whether you are a new professional fresh out of college or a skilled expert with 20 years in the industry. Check out PRSAoregon.org for more information on how membership can help you grow and connect.