In this episode Andrew visits with José Manuel de Urquidi, founder and president of Juan Diego Network, a podcast network with over 70 shows highlighting Catholic stories for Latinos. Andrew and José discussed what José was thinking when he decided to launch a podcast network, what growing a podcast network has been like and how ministries and nonprofits can utilize podcasts to expand their mission.
José is the oldest of six children. His parents were in ministry as he grew up in Mexico. As he grew up, he had a separation in his life between his church family and his school/social family. And it was in high school when he really started seeing the separation but it wasn't until after university that he began discovering how he could bridge the gap and create evangelization that would work for him.
Juan Diego Network
Currently, they have over 70 podcast shows as part of their network. A network typically groups podcasts that are reaching the same demographic, the same audience.
What JDN does is they evangelize, inform and entertain Latinos from all over. They do this in two ways, podcasting and summits.
"The multi-platform ecosystem that advances Catholic audio for Latinos.
Be it in Spanish, in English or in Spanglish the podcasts produced by JDN deeply connect with Latinos."
When José participated in the challenge, he had his own podcast but the network was just a dream. Through the challenge and the journey, he was able to begin to build this dream. Build a team, create opportunity for Latinos and more. Because of the process, it has only been two and a half years since establishment.
Can Podcasting be used to Advance Ministry/Raise Funds?
Yes and no. If you don't plan the podcast, it will not translate into being helpful. If you don't plan, the money you've invested into equipment, artwork, software could have been used somewhere else that will help the ministry.
But if you do follow a plan and focus on your audience and your objective, then it can definitely work. But this process is not for a short term fundraising project. This is for a long term plan that will build relationships with your community/audience.
Podcasting is not for quick wins. For 99% of people it's about building a long term relationship.
If you would like to connect with José, you can find him on LinkedIn and also at the Juan Diego Network website.
First is the importance of looking for gaps in the market and exploring what you can do to fill those gaps. José had a very colorful time both in and after university, as he said this was his Jonah time, but he kept coming back to this search for good Catholic content in Spanish. Not seeing anything out there, he then stepped out in faith and courage to solve the problem himself. This is a good lesson when it comes to ministry and fundraising for all of us. It isn't enough just to see problems or gaps and complain, but rather we should look for ways that we can step up and take action.
Second, I love his approach to starting a podcast and how he advises people with that interest. In particular, I think his message to start by identifying your desired audience is always going to lead to more clarity down the road. In fundraising, sometimes we can be eager to come up with ideas or strategies because we think they sound cool or think they could generate some dollars, but we should stop doing that and instead start identifying who we want to get in front of and then design strategies around that.
And my third takeaway was a very practical one around podcasting in ministry. Like I said, podcasting is great, but it may not be for everyone depending on your goals. José was smart in pointing out that ministries who need a quick win or need to build awareness about something rapidly should not expect a new podcast to be the answer. Maybe running ads or doing outreach through an established show is the smart play. Organizations looking to build long-term relationships can benefit from a podcast but that should be the expectation going into the project.
At the end of the day, podcasting is a great medium and can be a wonderful asset, but it does require some planning and forethought on the front end if you want to be successful.
I hope you enjoyed this conversation and hope that it gave you some good food for thought. If you have any questions about our podcast, please reach out to us at [email protected]. We’d love to chat. God bless.