Over the past two years, monthly podcast listening has grown by 40 percent, according to “The 2017 Infinite Dial Study” by Edison Research and Triton Digital. With listener and subscriber numbers on the rise, this new channel on the block is an authentic, conversational medium that, for many, trumps other popular digital and even traditional platforms.
If you aren’t familiar with podcasts, here is a brief overview of how they work:
A podcast is essentially an audio file that is available to stream or download. If listeners like your content, they can subscribe to your channel through one of many podcast-specific apps or websites. Whenever you upload new episodes, those files then download to your subscribed audience’s devices.
So, what’s all the fuss about?
As podcasts have evolved, there has been a significant increase in shows that are hyper-targeted to their audiences. For example, the popular “Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History” program includes shows that are up to six hours long and detail entire dynasties. Many of these shows offer a more intimate form of one-on-one entertainment with hosts who audiences love and trust.
That’s incredibly valuable for a marketer or relevant brand, right?
Although the shows themselves offer great connections to audiences, there is one very important distinguishing factor that explains this medium’s rapid growth: content that can be digested anytime, anywhere.
You don’t need a screen or even a wi-fi connection to experience hours of content at a time. In the age of the multi-screen experience, podcasting provides marketers with an audience that is captive, yet on-the-move. Whether it’s driving/walking to work, going to the gym, working in a cubicle or going on a road trip, podcasts provide a way for millions of people to access your content wherever they are.
Not only that, but these listeners are actively seeking out this content and asking for it to be pushed to their devices on a regular basis.
“People are listening, more and more frequently, and for longer and longer. For brands and advertisers, now is the time to join the conversation, if you haven't already,” said Jason Hoch, chief content officer at HowStuffWorks.
For marketers, this is an opportunity to build the foundation of what is rapidly becoming a household platform. Brands don’t need a production studio or a professional emcee to create content. It’s as easy as hitting record on your smartphone or using a free app, such as Anchor. Just as with many other marketing platforms these days, the means of production are in everyone’s hands. You have the tools; you just need to decide whether or not the platform is right for your audience.
Only time will tell if podcasts are here to stay, but they’re definitely here now.
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