Gain: How Jon and Joe launched and promote Dynamic Duel

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 Jon and Joe, the hosts of Dynamic Duel. Twin brothers Jon and Joe review superhero films and find out who would win in Marvel vs DC fights using stat-based simulations. The podcast launched in January 2016 and is based in the United States.

Listener YungTocs says about the show: “As a non-comic reader Johnny & Joe explain everything clearly and are easy to follow. They are very passionate & knowledgeable about their favorite comic book characters. I move each episode to the top of my list when they come out. Keep up the great work!”

Zimbio says about the show: One of the TOP 20 Podcasts for Sci-Fi & Fantasy Lovers! “In this epic podcast, twin brothers Johnny DC and Marvelous Joe go head-to-head while reviewing superhero movies from DC and Marvel. Yeah, these brothers are seriously dedicated to their craft!”

Where did your podcast idea come from? What’s the backstory on your podcast’s name?

Our podcast was born out of our natural sibling rivalry and love for all things Marvel and DC Comics related. As twin brothers, ever since we were young we looked for ways to differentiate ourselves from each other and establish separate identities (not sure how many people can relate, but it sucks to constantly be confused for someone else). The problem with that was that we shared many of the same interests, including comic books and movies. So in our journey of growing up – identical yet unique – we found ourselves bonding and yet dividing ourselves over the Marvel vs. DC debate. The conversations we have on the show were the same conversations we’d have every time we got together– we just decided to start recording them.

The name ‘Dynamic Duel’ is a play on the term ‘dynamic duo’ which is a reference to the classic team up of Batman and Robin. ‘Duel’ refers to the matchups we discuss in our show, and alludes to the rivalry between us as the hosts. Between the comic book angle and the competitive angle, we thought it was the perfect name.

Who was the first person you told about your podcast?

We didn’t tell anyone our plan until after we recorded our first episode, because we weren’t sure if we would be any good. That day was actually our 30th birthday, and immediately after recording we were taken aback by a surprise birthday party, where we were able to tell all our closest friends and family.

When did you announce your podcast’s existence to the world? How did you do it?

In addition to telling all our friends and family at our 30th birthday party, we announced the show on our individual social media accounts. Our first episode was published within a week from the show’s conception. We didn’t really have any buildup because we had no idea how to promote the show at the time.

Why did you want a podcast website for Dynamic Duel?

When promoting a podcast, you never know where to direct your potential audience because every listener has their own app preference. Typically, we would just link to our RadioPublic episode pages, but a Podsite makes the process even simpler. Now, we just give people our URL and everything a listener needs to know can be found simply, including what the show is about, where they can listen to us, how to find us on social media, etc. Also, a website is a great way to give your audience a visual feel for the show, which we take pride in as graphic designers. We love the site design Podsites provide.

You publish a new episode of your show. What’s your approach to promoting it?

We post the episode to all of the show’s social media channels, including Facebook, the marvelvsdc subreddit, and Twitter. In every episode, we ask our audience a ‘Question of the Week’ and get responses via email and social media. We award our favorite answer with a prize illustration that we feature on Instagram. Each drawing gets turned into a T-shirt that listeners can buy on our TeePublic shop. We also create a video of each episode that viewers can watch on YouTube.

What’s your favorite episode of your podcast? Why is it your favorite?

Our 100th episode was a ton of fun because not only was it a landmark achievement, it was also a massive undertaking where we pit not just one Marvel character versus a DC character, but the Justice League against the Avengers. Our process of determining a winner was a huge mathematical process – we had to compare matrices of data instead of just lines of data because each team had so many characters. It was fun to answer the question of who would beat whom, not just for ourselves, but for our curious listeners. Also, in that episode we announced an auction where our listeners got to bid on original art we had commissioned for Detective Chimp and Howard the Duck. All the proceeds went to the Women Helping Women nonprofit organization.

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?

Recently, I was speaking with an acquaintance named Chris about the Avengers: Endgame movie, and I brought up our show. I don’t typically mention the podcast in casual conversation because not everyone is in our target audience, but if they express interest in anything Marvel or DC, I’ll tell them about it. Before our Podsite, I would typically have to explain what podcasts are and how they can listen to them. But since we got our Podsite, I was able to just direct Chris to the site where he could not only listen to the show, but see where else he could enjoy it.

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?

The mental image of our imaginary listener is very much like ourselves. They’re people who enjoy listening to podcasts and probably listen to a lot of them, so we’ve worked hard to improve our editing to make sure the show moves along at a good clip. Our listeners love superhero comics and films with lots of punchy action, so we try to be as energetic and engaging as we can while we’re recording (that’s easy due to the passion we have for our topics, and the fiery debates we find ourselves in). Our listeners love to laugh just like us, so we never hold back the humor in our sibling rivalry, in both our show and our blooper reels.

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