What is a podcast?
A podcast is generally an audio file in an MP3 file format. There are also podcasts thatinclude video content and these are in MP4 file formats. Podcasts can be thought of as: “on-demand radio” that is either downloaded or streamed onto devices including smartphones, tablets, laptops, PCs, I-pads, on demand.
Podcasts are asynchronous, meaning that you as the podcast host can record your show at a time that is convenient for you and your listeners can choose when and how to listen to your podcast at a time that is convenient to them.
With recent advances in technology including WIFI and 4G, files can now be streamed directly to devices with no memory or download usage. So listeners have the choice of either listening directly from the source or downloading the podcast to their devices to store for listening at a later time.
Why podcasting will be HUGE in 2016
- Apple, from 2016 is set to dramatically ratchet up the competitive advantage of podcasting with Apple Play being built into the dashboards of new model autos, making listening to the 21st century “radio” medium of podcasting a button push away -– turn on the ignition and press a dashboard button and begin listening to your favorite on demand podcast.
- As daily commutes get longer, your podcast show becomes not only a life changing educational resource but also a readily accessible stress-reliever for otherwise frazzled commuters!
- Optimal technology is readily available and mostly FREE - invest in a mid-range microphone, download some free audio editing software on your laptop, get free MP3 recording software for Skype and you are ready to mix it with the pros!
- 2 Billion is a big number in marketing terms, would you agree? Well in 2015, the number of smart-phones reached 2 billion and this was double the 2012 figure of 1 billion. Now smartphones are a popular device for podcast listening be it at the beach, gym or on listeners' daily commute. 1 in 4 podcast consumers plug MP3 players or smartphones into the car audio system “nearly every day.”
- Apple has already changed the marketing distribution landscape with the development of I-Tunes as a convenient, 24 hour global portal for publishing, distributing, and downloading podcasts with the related podcast applications. Apple I-Tunes has 1 billion podcast subscriptions and over 215 million regular podcast listeners. I-Tunes has an 85% market share in podcasting, meaning that podcasting is highly concentrated in terms of distribution platforms so you only need to feed your podcast show out to between 1 and 3 platforms to reach almost the entire market! Easy, effective distribution is the hallmark of podcasting today.
Why podcasting is an ideal, new media marketing distribution channel:
Podcasts have several characteristics that marketers love:
- Stickability– How long do you spend reading a blog – a few minutes, perhaps? Well, many podcasts maintain listener interest for an hour or so and some “attention-experts” suggest that the optimal length for a single podcast episode is 22 minutes. To achieve stickability you need to really focus on meeting your listeners needs and keeping them engaged. Your show must contain only relevant, interesting information without any padding. Develop a listener avatar and recognize that your listener is tuned to WIIfm – What’s in it for me? Liven your show up with personality and dynamic voice changes – soft to loud and use of repetition of important points can deliver you the “lean in effect” of audience attentiveness. Plan your show to have structure by sectioning each episode by 2-4 sub-topics and transition effectively with or without music or sponsorship interludes. Transitioning might be as simple as “next we are going to be discussing…..”
- Shareability: To extend your audience reach there are many strategies. You can add links in your show notes and include calls to action in your episodes. Syndicate your content via distribution directories including Stitcher Radio, Sound-Cloud, Spreaker, I-Heart Radio, and on your own blog. Make effective use of landing pages on your web-site. In Record A Podcast online course you learn how to co-mingle audiences with other shows and to leverage the sharing power of your show guests.
- Evergreen: Podcast content is evergreen meaning that whenever a podcast is downloaded, streamed or listened to (be it on day 1 of an episode release or in 2 years-time) your sponsors’ messages or your own marketing content is heard long after your sponsors have ceased paying for their advertisements. The evergreen nature of podcasting advertising is a big factor in attracting large business to podcasting as big business looks to get a higher return from their marketing strategies.
- Quick, Easy and Low Cost: Podcasting is not only extremely low cost it is quick to get started with via Record A Podcast’s comprehensive, convenient, self-paced, online course and individualized show development support.
- A new revenue stream: Not only can your small to medium sizes business dramatically grow your audience reach and sales, but you can replace your old-media advertising expense with a significant new income stream – learn how to monetize your show with 15 second pre-roll and 60 second mid-roll MP3 audio sponsorships – yes as a course participant you receive all of the templates to launch, grow, and monetize your show!