A favorite podcast and blog of mine is Irish Fireside. Irish Fireside is about travel to Ireland, Irish customs, … and all things Irish. There have been 88 episodes and I’ve listened to every one of them. I was actually interviewed on episode 32 about my dual citizenship. Unfortunately, the audio quality is poor because were using a new setup and didn’t test it adequately beforehand. I don’t think I had a second take in me, so we left it as is.
Besides the fact that I enjoy the content, what is very interesting to me is how Liam and Corey have established real connections with people through their podcast and blog. I truly feel like I know them. They recently drove from Milwaukee to California and blogged along the way and back. It was billed as an Irish-American Roadtrip. They met listeners along the way. People opened their homes to Liam and Corey for meals and free lodging. People contributed at the web site to cover trip costs. It was amazing. There has been real trust built through this social networking process. I’ve had similar examples at work building relationships, trust, and teamwork. However, at work we have the advantage of knowing we are already part of the same company. With Irish Fireside, there was absolutely no foundation for trust other than the podcast and blog. I think listener comments and enthusiasm also contribute to a level of group trust beyond what could be done with one way communication.
Liam and Corey have also increased their reach by being active on Facebook and Twitter. I find the regular reinforcement on twitter definitely adds to the strength of the community. All in all, I must say they’ve found a niche and have built a brand through social networking. It will be interesting to see where Irish Fireside goes from here.