Are you a podcast enthusiast interested in learning more about the Women of Color who influence this growing industry? Perhaps you aspire to start a podcast and want an inside look into how other Women of Color began. Every week, we feature a Woman of Color in podcasting, from producers to editors and hosts. Today, Bethany Hawkins, the CEO and Founder of Crackers In Soup, joins us.
Crackers In Soup is a high-energy, women and minority-owned podcast management company that ADORES their clients. Bethany can see what you want for your podcast and then strategize to make that happen. Read about how Bianca Hughes successfully relaunched a podcast using Bethany’s help. Bethany is ready to work with new clients, from graphic design to launching a podcast. Crackers In Soup does everything to help you get ready! Find out more about the services and rates Bethany Hawkins offers on our Podcast Editors Directory.
Podcast Production Extraordinaire Bethany Hawkins
“I wanted to do something that fed my soul.” – Bethany Hawkins.
How did you get started in podcasting?
I was in the corporate world for over 18 years. Three years before I began my business, my friend and co-worker, knowing my love for Levar Burton, came up to me and asked if I had ever heard of the podcast “Levar Burton Reads.” I had not and did not even know how to download the podcast to listen to it. She showed me how and I binged every single episode. I then found other interesting podcasting topics and began to binge those.
After feeling like the field I was in no longer served my purpose mentally or spiritually, I decided to bet on myself and start my own business centered around something I loved: podcasting.
In 2019, I opened the doors of Crackers In Soup.
What’s something you wished you knew before you started?
In the beginning, running a business is more work than working for someone else. You wear many hats: from an employee who provides deliverables to an IT person who has to figure out their computer issues to everything in between.
Once you start onboarding employees and contractors, you have to put on the HR, payroll, and finance hat. You don’t even get a chance to take off a hat before you put another on, so they are all just stacked high on your head, and you are trying to keep them all balanced.
The thing that will get you through is knowing your why. Why did you start this business, and what do you want from it. Also, what can you give it? This will get you through the more challenging days.
What do you wish people knew about your profession?
I wish people knew that you could absolutely grab a microphone or record yourself on your phone, upload it, get an RSS feed, and you will have a podcast. However, there are many steps to having a GREAT podcast! The extra steps and care you give your show will make your podcasting experience easier in the long run.
I also wish people knew that creating a podcast is a form of art. From graphic designing (cover art and graphics), writing copy for show notes or scripts, editing/audio engineering, to being a voice-over actress. There are so many different creative aspects to creating a podcast.
What advice would you give to newcomers to the industry?
My advice would be to invest in yourself and your business. Find someone you enjoy and see if they have a mentorship program or purchase a course from a trusted source.
If you don’t have the funds to invest on a smaller financial scale, you can join groups and communities like WOC Podcasters! In addition to WOC Podcasters, I am also a part of She Podcasts and Black Podcasters Association.
These three groups have not only taught me so much in terms of podcasting, but some members feel like family. We share not only podcasting advice but our goals and what we want for our futures in podcasting. When you find podcasting communities like these three, you can genuinely see how you can thrive in this industry.
What products or services do you currently offer?
Currently, Crackers In Soup offers consultations, graphics packages, launches, and post-recording packages.
Share your favorite guide or resource that has helped you navigate the audio world.
Honestly, the support of friends in communities helped me navigate the audio world.
Initially, I learned from watching videos on YouTube. Then I found people that I invested in that helped me along the way.
Kimberly Sumpter of Sistahs Connect helped teach me how to utilize Audacity for editing purposes.
Britany Felix of Podcasting for Coaches taught me the importance of equalization.
Jordan Duffy, AKA Engineer Jordan, spent hours teaching me how to edit on the more advanced DAW (Digital Audio Workstation), Hindenburg.
Danielle Desir Corbett, the founder of WOC Podcasters, helped me love dynamic mics.
Corey Gumbs of Black Podcasters Association helped me understand the difference between dynamic mics vs. condenser mics and the necessity of hard-wired headphones.
When I say I have a whole community, I have a WHOLE COMMUNITY. Also, I want to shout out myself. People can show you, but you will never get better if you don’t implement what you’ve been taught and practice.
Do you have a podcast? Tell us about an episode of your podcast that you’d love for people to check out!
I DO have a podcast! It is an award-winning podcast called, Chatting Over Chowder.
Chatting Over Chowder is a podcast where two minority women speak to other women in the podcasting industry about what podcasts they listen to…while eating chowder.
I would love for you to listen to the episode, Being a Thought Leader in Podcasting, where we spoke to the phenomenal Danielle Desir Corbett because she is the QUEEN of support. She champions minority women in this industry like no other!!! She also drops some really dope gems!
You can also watch the video.
Where can people find you?
People can find me on my website: www.crackersinsoup.com.
Connect With Our Community
Thank you so much, Bethany!
If you are looking for a supportive and encouraging podcasting community, join us at WOC Podcasters Community.
We also have a growing directory of Women of Color service providers. You can introduce your services, connect with our diverse and talented community, and show the audio industry what fair rates look like. From podcast producers to attorneys, this is a place where you can point your friends, family, and colleagues.
Read Next: Meet Sherley Joseph, a podcaster and founder of The Black Canadian Creator Directory.
Brittany Ngo is the Opportunities Coordinator of WOC Podcasters (Women of Color), an organization dedicated to the growth and representation of Women of Color in the podcasting industry. In 2021, Brittany relaunched the WOC Podcasters Job Board with improved search functionality and shared over 200 paid jobs. These include a wide range of positions from producers to editors and hosts at award-winning organizations across the globe. Brittany also supports the community by coordinating events and connecting members to a variety of grants and unique opportunities in audio.