Welcome to Gain, an interview series where we ask podcasters about the backstories of the great work they’re creating.
Today, we’re speaking with Lisa, one of the cohosts of The Ladies of Lithgow. Need a giggle or a distraction? The Ladies can offer laughs, friendship, wine time, stories (mostly true), and anecdotes about royals, cults & growing up in the 80s and 90s. The podcast launched in November 2018 and is based in Australia.
Where did your podcast idea come from? What’s the backstory on the name?
My now cohost of The Ladies Of Lithgow, The Duchess, told me over dinner she wanted to do comedy, and I told her about my friend’s podcast, The Hot Flush. Then I said, “We should do a podcast.” We said cheers to that and ate more dumplings. We did a lot of planning but knew ultimately it would be a show about friendship. We’ve known each other since birth because my mum and The Duchess’s grandmother worked together.
To land on a name, we brainstormed in Messenger with my inner circle, and my sister Leah came up with The Ladies Of Lithgow. We grew up together in Lithgow, NSW, with our weather man, Legend, the city’s finest DJ and trivia host. We liked the alliteration. It says who we are and what we are about: laughs, fun, and anecdotes.
Who was the first person you told about your podcast?
I’m not sure. I’ve got a big mouth and I am talking all the time. It was probably Legend or my husband. The reason why I told Legend is we talk a lot about Lithgow and he has the best memory in town.
When did you announce your podcast’s existence to the world? How did you do it?
I started a Facebook page because I’m familiar with it and Instagram from my blogging days. I started with adding friends because we had a long lead time. It grew over time, and I added old blog posts about Lithgow I wrote when I lived in Bali (When I lived there, I wanted to write. I ended up writing about Lithgow a lot.).
I did some Facebook lives to hone my delivery skills, and I also did a comedy masterclass with Steve Martin.
Why did you want a podcast website for The Ladies of Lithgow?
I’m vacuous– it’s all about subscribers and new listeners to me. RadioPublic can do technical things that I am unable to do. The Podsite drives traffic. I see it in our stats all the time. If it wasn’t for RadioPublic, we’d still be using my old blogger account.
You publish a new episode of your show. What’s your approach to promoting it?
I tell our Facebook group, and I reach out to the group when we are recording and ask for questions and ideas. My friends are always up for a question or two. I had some great feedback about some racist bullying on a fashion page from my friend Elizabeth. My friend Phoopie is full of ideas - bless you, Phoopster!
Blogging taught me content creation is a two-way exchange. You cannot put content out into a vacuum. It’s your responsibility to connect with your audience because podcasting is very intimate. We take that feedback seriously. Once recorded we push content on Facebook, Instagram, and community groups, such as the Back to Lithgow Reunion Facebook page and Lithgow2790.com. The right hashtags are crucial, and we figure out what works through trial and error. I usually start by looking at other hashtags on Instagram with similar audiences.
I have other podcasters kindly promote me. Sometimes they mention me on their podcast and share my content. These are usually friends of mine from the blogging world, but I’m starting to reach out through the Australian Podcasters Network Facebook page. The Duchess and Legend comment and like and share the posts as well with their networks.
What’s your favorite episode of your podcast? Why is it your favorite?
The Mindfulness Molls. (Moll means a woman of dubious morals in Australia.) It’s probably unintelligible but how did we laugh. We probably sound like parrots here, but we do not care one bit. Also mindfulness people annoy me.
Describe a recent time you talked about your podcast in person. Who were you talking to? What did you say to help them learn more about your show?
I get a lot of blank looks sometimes because people don’t understand the technology. So I did a video about what a podcast was and how to listen because some people are intimidated by the platform. It was shared on Facebook and Instagram. With people like my dad, I say it’s a radio show on the internet.
In describing our show, I tell people that our podcast is old friends talking about royalty, pop culture & growing up in Lithgow in the 1980s. It’s about friendship.
When you record your podcast, you might think about your imaginary listener who will hear this episode soon. What’s your mental image of this listener, and how do you incorporate their needs into your recording?
Well I know who my listeners are thanks to Whooshka. The audience is in Sydney and the rest of NSW, aged 35+. Mostly female. In my mind, they like champagne, despise Camilla Parker-Bowles, and love Meghan Markle.
It’s all in the stats: our listeners like to hear me being unreasonable because life can be frustrating. My cohost The Duchess is a lover, not a fighter, so she’s a good foil for my rants. She’s great at linking current events to the show. We get the most listens when we host together.