Why Podcasting is Important for Your Business
If you have kids you know that hollering and screaming does no good. Many small business marketers act like parents, and think they have to holler scream shout, and froth at the mouth, to get people’s attention. This is not needed in any scenario. Unless, that scenario is overly crowded, and then I still don’t think that yelling is really the answer. So, how do you rise above the fray. How is your business supposed to be heard above the cacophony that is small business internet marketing?
Podcasting is one avenue that is starting to become noticed. This medium was for the longest time known as “Amateur Hour” to one tech giant who has left this world. It has also been described as a bunch of geeks hanging out in the basement talking about Star Wars. 9 years ago, they were right. The sound was bad, people were using headset microphones and didn’t put much stock into the sound quality. Yet, now it is about the quality. The quality of the recording has vastly improved, and the quality of the content is even more engaging than other traditional forms of media. This medium is rapidly becoming very popular. With Smart phones becoming more and more prevalent. There is also iOS 8 having the Apple Podcasts app native. There are going to be millions of people starting to explore podcasts. More so with Stitcher Internet radio being added to cars. Podcasts may already be exploding but that boom is going to get bigger. Podcasting has matured and transforming into a thriving industry with a very different way of thinking.
What is Podcasting? (Technically)
Podcasting is at its heart, a media file that can be downloaded through RSS enclosure tags. RSS is an XML file that allows for easier means of consuming content through the use of an aggregator, or reader. The Enclosure tags are nothing more that special tags in the XML document that tell the RSS readers that there is media in the feed. The Enclosure tag tells what type of media is in the feed, how large is the media, and where the file is located. So with that definition you can actually have a podcast that is nothing more than PDFs.
With all that said if you boil it down, a podcast is a show that is delivered to a listening device automatically after it is published.
There is some misinformation that a podcast is any episodic content released on the net. This is akin to every tissue being called a kleenex or the act of running a photocopier, a xerox. Technically, they are wrong. If the file, whether it be audio, video or even a pdf, is not able to be downloaded through an RSS feed then it is not a podcast.
What is podcasting (Philosophically)
Is a way to become very intimate with your audience, or potential customer. This is because your show is personally selected by the listener. They chose you. Out of all of your “competition” your audience member wants to hear from you. Podcasting is actually a very solitary act because you are in fact talking to just that person who has allowed you to talk in their ear for however long the show ends up being.
If anything, podcasting is a revolutionary means of marketing. It is revolutionary because how much money is spent for a 30 second spot on the radio or on Television? More money will be spent on that little speck of time than will be spent on a podcast, and you get to be in your potential customers ear for several minutes, if not an hour at a time. All that time they are listening to you, as you build trust with your customer. What other marketing medium can say that?
Podcasting is a means to turn your customers into fans. What would be better than to be able to take those people who already like you. Remember, they chose to listen to you, and build on that trust and confidence. Keep building on trust till your customers are raving to other people about how awesome your products are.
What is podcasting (to your business)?
According to Edison Research, in the Time Spent Listening to Audio Sources, Podcast consumers are about 1.7% of all listeners. Now before you dismiss that “small” number. Most podcast listeners listen to almost 6 hours of content, and that there are about 13 million podcast listeners world wide. These listeners are fanatics. They find a show and will consume all the episodes. Often when a new listener discovers your show they will go all the way back to episode 1 and get every bit of knowledge you disseminate.
The Following is a 5 minute webinar about what Edison Research found out. And yes, Podcasts are bigger than you think.
With those fans they become even bigger fans when you actually meet them in person, and take the time talk to them. Podcasting has a lot of the same effects on people as radio and television. How did you feel when you first met your local weatherman, or local news anchor? I remember being a little star struck when I first came across “Doppler” Dave Oliver in Amarillo. He was out eating and I had to go shake his hand. When he warmly shook my hand, Channel 10 News got a new viewer.
Customers, also like to feel like they are included. Hershey Chocolate used to do something like this way back in the early 1900’s. They offered tours of the chocolate factories. People enjoyed learning how the chocolate bars were made, and even got to sample the chocolate. Often this gave the customers a sense that they were included in something special and would become fans.
Podcasting is a new medium in the grand scheme of all things media, but it is unique in the effect it has on its listeners. The podcast consumer starts to invest interest in the business and grows as that business grows. The listener cheers with you as you share each success and will support you in your failures. As a means of marketing a business, this is worth millions and with just a little time and energy that small business can generate a following that will leave their competition behind, scratching their heads.
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