Podcasts, Netflix for the ears?

I struggle to recall the last time I sat down to watch terrestrial TV excluding some sporting events. My TV has become an extension of my phone or tablet lately with apps such as YouTube & Netflix providing an excellent native experience on the larger screen. I find myself adding feature length videos from the likes of Casey Neistat to my “watch later” playlist on YouTube during the week so I can enjoy them on the big screen in all their glory in my down time. Netflix may just kill off terrestrial TV with its ambitious growth targets, plethora of Netflix Original content and unmatchable user experience.

So. That’s where we are with video – On Demand isn’t the future, it’s the present.

The same way Netflix and other Video On Demand services have changed the way we watch, podcasts are changing the way we listen.

Lately, I have been stock piling podcasts for listening to on longer journeys whether they are sports related, business related or even some comedy – the choice is widening literally by the day and its so easy to zone in and find a topic that will keep your interest for a considerable period of time.

For businesses, podcasts are a great opportunity to connect with your audience at a low cost and with a high engagement rate:

85% of listeners report that they listen to most or all of an entire podcast episode. Source

A study conducted by Edison Research this year shows a steady increase in the number of people listening to podcasts. You can read the full study here.

Big players are taking advantage of the upward trend in using podcasting as a marketing tool:

General Electric (GE) captured a huge audience with their podcast “The Message”. The series was for sci-fi lovers but also gave GE an opportunity to tell listeners about their Sonic technology. The campaign was downloaded more than 4 million times, garnered 187 million earned media impressions and became the most listened to branded content podcast in history.

Launched in October 2016, software company Slack have produced 26 episodes to date of their podcast “Work in Progress”. The series focuses on the role that work plays in people’s lives which aligns with Slack’s own missions and values. Director of Content and Editorial, Julie Kim gave insight in an interview as to why they started the series: “The goal here is to introduce new people to Slack, not necessarily to introduce these stories to existing Slack fans and users.”

There are lots of reasons to start a podcast but here are some of the most compelling:

  • Podcasting has a low cost of entry- grab a decent desk microphone or use your phone to record on the fly.
  • There is steady and rising adoption of podcasts as a means of consuming audio.
  • Podcasting gives you another way to tell your story to an engaged “opted in” audience.
  • Finally, I mentioned 2 examples of companies that are proving podcasting is successful and there is an opportunity to make a big impact.

For anyone interested, I have curated some of the business related podcasts that I find interesting below:

The Tim Ferris Show: http://tim.blog/podcast/

ConversionCast: https://www.leadpages.net/blog/category/conversioncast/

The #AskGaryVee Show Podcast: https://www.garyvaynerchuk.com/the-askgaryvee-show-podcast/

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