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“If there’s a listener on a platform and they’re wondering if Dave Ramsey is there, that’s my goal—to have the content there so they can consume it, and we can make a difference in their lives.” That is the mandate set forth by Brian Mayfield, Executive VP for Ramsey Media, home of the massively popular syndicated “Dave Ramsey Show.” 

Foremost, the listener comes first, Mayfield explains in the latest Radio Advertising Bureau “Radio on Main Street” podcast. “We want to be there for them, because that’s where our content comes from,” he says. “We try and find out what they need and they want, and then it’s our job to help them understand. The challenge that we are trying to address in today’s world is where are those people? We just want to be there.”

“The Dave Ramsey Show” is heard on more than 500 radio stations in North America, with the podcast airing on iHeartRadio. It’s also available via app, live on YouTube, and via live audio and video on DaveRamsey.com.

His empire has led to the expansion from radio to become a clear winner in the podcasting space to reach that audience—and those beyond. According to the iTunes Top Shows roster, “The Dave Ramsey Show” is No. 25. In a survey of its listeners, Mayfield says they discovered that 80% of radio listeners don’t listen to podcasts and 80% of podcast listeners don’t listen to radio, “So we have tapped into two very different audiences. There was some bleed over, but for the most part, we realized we were in two different worlds.”

As a result, he says that the group continues to focus on radio as its main product, aiming to continually grow the audience there—but with a team also dedicated to podcasting, “knowing that we aren’t cannibalizing to any large degree.”

All the same, the syndication executive cautions that jumping into podcasting should not be a given, just because it is available as a separate platform. “I wouldn’t do it just because everybody else is doing it. Just the sheer number of podcasts that are out there today, there’s a lot of people that are trying it and not necessarily able to sustain it,” Mayfield offers. “You’ve got to be consistent, you’ve got to keep the content fresh.” 

In fact, he advises: “If you’re thinking about launching a podcast, if you can’t map your content out for at least three months from day one, you probably don’t have enough content to be relevant in the podcasting world. These consumers are grabbing content on-demand. If they like it, they’re grabbing another piece. It’s almost like binge watching.”

That said, he heralds how podcasting has helped the Ramsey brand grow. “There are a lot of analytic tools. We’re always trying to learn from that. One of the things we’re trying to identify now is how many are first time listeners,” he explains. “The podcast world is a huge opportunity. It’s a huge complement if you’re on radio to expanding with what you do on radio.”

Both Dave Ramsey and the company’s Ken Coleman Show are repurposed into podcasts, “giving us the opportunity to reach both audiences with the same content.” But beyond that, he notes, “There are a lot of people in radio that are taking the opportunity to expand beyond what the talent does on the air, to go deeper into content, with better Q&As. You’re in complete control of what you want to do, you’re not limited by a clock. Podcasting also gives us the opportunity to launch new personalities and new pieces of content and expand beyond what Dave does.”