Jenna Weiss-Berman is a podcast producer and was formerly director of audio for Buzzfeed, where she worked on Another Round. In 2016 she co-founded Pineapple Street Media with Max Linsky, where she has cultivated an incredible roster of clients and projects. Here are five questions for Jenna.
About a year ago you left Buzzfeed to start your own venture with Max Linsky, Pineapple Street Media. How has the first year of operation been?
More amazing than I could have ever imagined. We’ve done shows for Hillary Clinton, the New York Times, Lena Dunham, and produced the runaway hit Missing Richard Simmons. We were profitable within two months and have now hired five full time producers.
A lot of what we do is production for hire for partners who actually own the content. We’re not attached to owning lots of IP (though we want to and do own some), and I think that makes us pretty appealing to work with. We’ll make a series for a big cable network, for example, and we may only own 10% of the show. To that end, we’re not a “network” in the traditional sense. We’re podcast experts who want to help other people start shows.
We’ve also just never been precious about our business model and are open to trying out new kinds of partnerships. We’re not attached to doing things one specific way or in a specific style, and we don’t pretend to have all the answers. We just want to go with the flow in this budding industry and always do what makes sense financially. So far that has meant we haven’t taken any investment money, and Max and I fully own the company and decide exactly what we want to do on a project by project basis.
I take an hour-long walk and write down my ideas. By the end I’m usually very pumped up!
What did you listen to growing up (radio or otherwise)? What was the soundtrack of your childhood?
Lots of NPR and Howard Stern.
OK, I want to get at least one silly question: one space after a period, or two?