Podcasting. It seems to be everywhere these days, but it’s not a new art form by any means. Through podcasts, we’ve renamed and rebranded the old tradition of gathering around the radio and listening to news and stories. What was once a bygone relic is now cool and hip. Most importantly, it is crucial to your marketing strategy.
According to C &C Media, the strategy consulting firm founded by Jay Baer, podcasting has been experiencing steady growth over the past few years. A whopping 67 million Americans tune into podcasts each month; most noteworthy, 42 million tune in weekly. That’s 15% of the American population. Clearly there’s a growing audience filled with engaged listeners and potential customers for your business.
Is Podcasting Right For You?
Intrigued? Well, who wouldn’t be? Podcasting is interesting, fun and a great market for your business. Now, you may have concerns about the technical details. Podcasting needs recording and editing equipment. Furthermore, it also requires technical know-how to use it properly. How can you be sure your audio sounds professional? How can you cut it down to a reasonable length for your audience?
Many a would-be podcaster has been tripped up by the technical aspect of the process. Who can blame them? It can be pretty hard to figure out things like RSS feeds and media hosting. Most of all, that’s not even getting into how to encode your audio files and sound levels!
Be assured right now: creating the podcast you’ve always dreamed of is actually within reach. Still unsure? Let's look a little deeper. First of all, let's explore why podcasts resonate with people. Then we can look into why the podcast format works. As a result, you should definitely tap into this growing market for your business.
Technology and Human Desire
When defending his beeper business, Dennis Duffy from 30 Rock says to his girlfriend Liz Lemon that “technology is cyclical.” (For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure of watching the show, it aired circa the mid-2000s — not exactly the heyday of the beeper.) In the case of the beeper, we all know that it’s gone by way of the dodo. But, in the case of the format, perhaps there’s a level of truth in Dennis’ statement. Humans have a deep desire to be in touch. Maybe we aren’t beeping each other, but we still send all sorts of transmissions and messages to each other. Consequently, tapping into human desires is key for marketing and business.
Another human desire is for stories, which have always been an important way to connect. Think of the cave paintings in Lascaux, France. They depict the struggles and triumphs of daily life for early humans. In short, people have always enjoyed sharing stories and consuming them as well. It just seems to be intrinsic to our DNA that we are involved in storytelling.
Technology has seen all sorts of breakthroughs and developments over the years. This naturally influences how people engage and consume media. The technology for storytelling evolved to add the visual component through screens. As a result, film and TV stole radio’s thunder for decades. After all, people react strongly and emotionally to visuals. So, for a long time, the magical formula for storytelling was: good story + audio + visual = broad and powerful way to unite people through universal themes.
The Podcasting Advantage
Podcasting has reintroduced the strict audio format back into pop culture. The rise of the smartphone directly contributed to the rise in podcasting. Think about it: with a smartphone, you can access your favorite podcast during your commute. If you live in a car culture, you can’t watch content while driving. But, you certainly can enjoy listening to it! Even if you live in a city with great public transportation, you likely prefer podcasts to video. Not only do they use less data, but you can enjoy them and keep your balance on the subway.
Plus, like the radio generation, people have realized just how much fun it is to consume audio narratives. Audio serves a different way to tell a story. Like books, the listener can create their own mental visuals to the content. Instead of some Hollywood casting agent or exec calling the shots, it’s your imagination in the driver’s seat.
The Evolution of Things
Podcasts are also increasingly accessible to anyone who wants to jump in on the action, thanks to the evolution of technology. For example, think of cellphones in the 80s: enormous expensive, hilarious bulky versions of the streamlined smart phones we see today.
Same goes for old fashion radio/recording equipment: it was cumbersome and cost-prohibitive. Mass manufacturing allows people to access these goods cheaply and easily. No longer does someone need to work in a studio or buy into incredibly expensive, bulky equipment to record themselves. Therefore, wannabe podcasters can access affordable mics and editing programs. As a result, anyone can make a podcast!
Take your brilliant idea and invest in a good microphone. Start creating your own content and have fun with it. Finally, build your business and your brand before someone else does it!
Edit, Schmedit: Face4Radio Can Handle it!
Are you a keynote speaker, a consultant or a growing business? Are you looking to use audio to build your client base and generate more leads? Have you found yourself struggling to handle all the techie hocus pocus? Yes, technology has made the equipment more accessible. But, that doesn’t mean the editing is any easier or more enjoyable.
Don’t give up — just get in touch with Moondog Kelly, who runs Face4Radio, our podcast editing service. With Face4Radio, you can focus on creating your content, fulfilling your vision and making your mark on the podcasting world.
Don’t let technical roadblocks prevent you from podcasting. Do get out there and create content for your podcast. Share your story with humanity. Tap into the potentials of a captive, engaged audience for your business. In conclusion, don’t sweat the audio details: Face4Radio has got you covered.
“radio” by Flickr user FastPhive is licensed under CC by 2.0.
“The cave painting of Lascaux exhibit” by Flickr user Jason M Ramos is licensed under CC by 2.0.
“Portland Army Radio Station WXCV_01” by Flickr user Sam Stokes is licensed under CC by 2.0.