The objective of The Holderness Family Podcast is to give listeners a weekly dose of joy for those who are in relationships, are married, and/or are parents. Hosted by Kim and Penn Holderness, they tackle issues such as effective partner communication, the hurdles of raising teenagers, and mental health challenges such as ADHD and anxiety. Kim and Penn believe that if they are discussing or dealing with something at home, then chances are so are their listeners. Our overall goal is to create a safe space for people to learn, laugh, and feel seen.
While The Holderness Family Podcast has been around for several years, we decided to go deeper in 2022 and with an increased regular cadence. After such a tumultuous two years in the pandemic, we felt people needed joy now more than ever. We also believed it was important to discuss polarizing issues rather than sweep them under the rug. Our plan was to balance humor with real-life issues in order to achieve both.
The strategy for The Holderness Family Podcast was to toggle between two formats. The first format was more casual, candid discussions between Kim and Penn with no guest. These were typically around relationship communication and the tactics they learned through marriage counseling. Periodically, they would have a phone-a-friend segment with a tongue-and-cheek jingle "Let's call up an expert, because we don't know what we're talking about..." These short snippets allowed for expert back-up to the topic being discussed.
The second format of The Holderness Family Podcast was a more traditional interview with an expert around a certain subject matter. This ranged from parenting, self-discovery, finances, politics, mindfulness, ADHD, anxiety, and advocacy. Kim and Penn both come from a journalism background. Pairing this skill for interviewing along with their gift for comedy provided informative and enjoyable episodes. In both formats, Kim and Penn are vulnerable and are not afraid to cry or show their true feelings.
A unique challenge faced this season was taking on production of a 12-episode bonus series around Kim and Penn's time on the Emmy-award winning reality compeition show, The Amazing Race. Each week, they would recap episodes available both on podcast and through video on YouTube. Kim and Penn would also interview the pair eliminated that week as part of their show (marrying the two formats mentioned above into a single show.) These episodes were produced independently by Holderness Family Productions, but did receive the support of CBS. Ultimately, it was revealed that Penn and Kim had won Season 33 of The Amazing Race.
The Holderness Family Podcast received 4.3 million downloads in 2022 alone. Top episodes included The Amazing Race bonus recaps, what to do when you and your partner want different things, and how to support a partner with ADHD. Notable guest interviews were Former NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci, best-selling author Ian Morgan Cron, Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin of The Home Edit, Phil Keoghan of The Amazing Race, Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers of Pantsuit Politics, Keith Parrish of NASA, top-ranked pickleball player Leigh Waters, Dr. Kourtney Sims, Ethan Sawyer, and Dr. Marcy Caldwell.
But most importantly, The Holderness Family podcast has maintained 4.9 out of 5 stars on Apple Podcasts out of 2,987 reviews at the time of this submission. Every month listeners submit glowing reviews thanking Kim and Penn for their candor. Our podcast email and voicemail inboxes also receive lots of accolades.
While it's hard to measure our goal of bringing more joy to people, the increase in downloads and volume of positive feedback received tell us that we accomplished what we set out to do for 2022.