Teachers are very busy people, and they don’t have a huge amount of love for exam boards. AQA - one of the UK’s biggest exam boards - wanted to begin new conversation with teachers, lifting the lid on how exams are set, managed and marked. They wanted to create genuinely useful content that would give teachers new tools to help their students in the run up to the exam season.
“Inside Exams” is a long running series, hosted by teacher, speaker and influencer Craig Barton. Episodes explore issues like how papers are adapted for SEN students, how grade boundaries are set, and how AQA responds to a deluge of tweets straight after an exam.
Branded podcasts work best when they have a well-defined message for a niche audience. AQA have used the media to create a warm, accessible long term asset to help and inspire British teachers.
For over 18 years, we have been one of the UK’s leading experts in creating promo campaigns for TV shows and series.
As part of our ongoing work for BBC Radio Cross Trails, Fresh Air has produced many of the BBC's biggest drama and entertainment campaigns of recent years. We work with major advertising agencies, and recording with major talent.
Since 2013, we’ve also been the audio creative partner for ITV Creative, building their radio advertising campaigns for huge shows, including Britain’s Got Talent, Downton Abbey, and the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
On top of that, we’ve worked with Channel 4, Sky, A&E Networks, and UKTV, helping them to all turn great visual properties into original, exciting an arresting audio campaigns.
We love to show that a radio campaign isn’t just a TV campaign without the pictures. We script, cast and direct the creative to make the very best use of the medium.
Want to hear some samples? Visit our Soundcloud page
By far the most fun we’ve ever had in a studio. The Mudds is a 21-part children’s audio series, originally commissioned by CBeebies Radio.
The series is set in the wonderful world of Duckpool, and was co-created by Terry Deary - writer of Horrible Histories. it stars the legendary Bernard Cribbins as daft Gramps, previously undiscovered Ulani Seaman as the feisty Edith, Mrk Benton as Pyla Dog, and Wayne Forester as the squirmy hero Arfur Worm.
The Mudds won a New York Festival Award for the best Young Person’s/Children series, and has been downloaded thousands of times as a podcast - available here.
The Reality Tea - BBC Sounds
“The Reality Tea” is Fresh Air’s first commission for BBC Sounds, presented by our very own Raj Pander and Pilar Nalwimba.
A weekly fix of the hottest news, gossip and fun from the world of reality TV, whether that’s Love Island, Keeping up with The Kardashians, TOWIE, Made in Chelsea, or anything else.
Raj and Pilar are social media and reality TV experts, having spent years behind the scenes at ITV2. They were scooped up by BBC Sounds to present this weekly shows, with reality TV star guests and contributions from the listeners. It’s a lively, no-holds-barred love-in for reality fans everywhere.
Radio Advertising. Doesn’t sound so glamorous?
Audio Advertising. Sound a bit sexier?
The truth is, they’re the same thing and they’re growing! Radio ads are still some of the most astonishing effective campaigns out there - they just need to be made brilliantly. Believe it or not, in the first half of 2018, radio was the fastest growing advertising medium in the UK.
And audio advertising, on digital audio, smart speakers, podcasts and music streaming services, opens up all sorts of extraordinary possibilities, with personalised creative, 3D sound, and much more.
The rules are still the same - make it punchy, make it witty, and remember the unique, intimate context of the audio listening experience. Now that everyone’s listening on headphones, multiply that intimacy by ten (or thereabouts).
We love making radio ads. So much more fun than telly.
Houses of Parliament Podcasts
In this iTunes top 10 (!) podcast, produced for the Houses of Parliament, writer and comedian Meera Syal explores the way our country is run day to day.
Granted access to the inner workings of Parliament, Meera walks us down the corridors of power to uncover what really happens at the heart of British government. Over six episodes, we discover how the government is formed, how the laws that shape our daily lives are agreed upon and enforced, and how our leaders are held to account and by whom.
Perhaps most importantly, with the insight of members of the public and key figures within the houses, we discover the ways in which parliament affects your daily life…and how you can affect it.
Podcasts are a wonderful way to establish Thought Leadership credentials for any business, demonstrating the expertise available within the organisation and from its partners.
“Insurance Tomorrow” is a series exploring the major global trends that will impact businesses and whole sectors in the decades to come. Nick Hewer hosts panel discussions with the leading experts in the insurance industry to establish the risks and the opportunities they bring.
Aimed at Insurance brokers, it’s a great example of a business using podcasts to reach a valuable niche audience with perfectly in-depth targeted audio content.
In autumn 2016, Fresh Air partnered with the National Trust to produce the National Trust Gardens Podcast – the organisation’s first podcast project, looking behind Britain’s hedges. Over three 25-minute episodes, Head Gardener Alan Power learns the stories and secrets of Britain’s most beautiful heritage gardens, from the people who help to look after them.
Then, in June 2018, the Trust celebrated the anniversary of women winning the right to vote in UK general elections with a five part series “Women and Power”. Presented by Kirsty Wark, the series tells the story of the struggle for universal suffrage, from the earliest rebellions in Manchester factories, through to the famous suffragettes, Millicent Fawcett’s suffragists. The show was part of a national programme throughout Trust properties across the country, emphasising the connections between the stories and the Trust.
The National Trust is perfect for podcasts. Every location and every building holds hundreds of stories. Since piloting with us in 2016, they’ve created their own in-house podcast department, and are planning a range of new series over the next few years. We love being their podcast production partners.
The Resilience Sessions
BLESMA is an extraordinary charity for injured military veterans. They train them to tell their stories in the interest of inspiring a generation of resilient people.
The Resilience Sessions is a series of podcasts bring the veterans together with well known people to talk through their stories and compare life experiences.
Among others, Ray Winstone is in conversation with Ken Bellringer, who lost both his legs when he stood on an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan. Carol Vorderman chats with Si Harmer - a medic who also lost both legs, Stuart Harris talks about his PTSD with suicide survivor and mental health advocate Johnny Benjamin, and Michael Caines meets Mark Ormrod - a former Royal Marine and triple amputee.
We hear how they coped in their darkest days, what pulled them through, and how they are moving on with their lives.
As well as the main episodes, there are shorter shows featuring the veterans telling their stories completely solo. They’re extraordinarily moving.
In late 2017, Historic England ran a campaign to celebrate “irreplaceable” places in England. They wanted to make a podcast to accompany the campaign and dig out the stories behind both the famous and lesser known places nominated. From a hut in Bletchley Park where modern computing evolved, to the iron railings which suffragettes chained themselves to – we stepped back in time to the very roots of our national identity. And with Emma Barnett and Suzannah Lipscombe as our hosts, made a brilliant podcast about history that might be right on your doorstep!
Then in the summer of 2018, we were back with a new Historic England podcast - “Spirit of the North”. Photographer John Kippin was given the task of exploring the North of England to capture its spirit of innovation , creativity and culture. The accompanying podcast is a five part trip around The North with wonderful voices and stories to make any Northerner homesick.
We've been working with Audible on several shows - hold tight, they're on their way, we promise! And in January 2016 we sent comedian and travel journalist Dom Joly on a winter break with one helluva twist.
“Dom Joly's Big American Vacation” is an 8 episode podcast available to download on Audible.co.uk. It follows the intrepid Dom, jet-setting around the US of A in search of the weird, the wacky, and the downright creepy. He's been wrestling alligators, taming bulls, and meeting a frozen dead guy up in the windy mountains of Colorado – we kid you not! Can't do that in Tenerife, now can you?
With microphones in both his ears, we recorded every second of his 3 week adventure – sneezes, snores, and the occasional naughty word, along with outrageous characters, wayward sat-navs, and some very uncomfortable situations.
It was perilous at times, Dom nearly lost an arm in the making (pesky alligators), and just about made it home in one piece. So, very soon, you'll be able to hear it all - wishing you’d been there in one instant, and super relieved you weren’t, in the next!