Sunday, March 2, 2008

Can You Afford Not To Be Podcasting?

As I sat down at the keyboard to write a post on why every radio station should be podcasting; I decided that first I better do some research and unearth a few stats to support my forthcoming arguments.

You already know that podcasting is still in its infancy and you also know that it is expected to experience exponential growth over the next few years.

I ran across an interesting piece that suggested that podcasting was most like the print media (huh). They also pointed out how radio, unlike nearly every other media, is not an on-demand entity (hmm). Yes, you can turn it on any time and get something coming out of the speakers, but not specific on-demand content. You can see where I am heading with this. Check out the article from EndgamePR:

Seven Ways that Print Media is like Podcasting
Mar 2nd, 2008 by Steve

Something occurred to me today. While there are obvious similarities between podcasting and the broadcast world, in many, many ways these two types of social media are actually more like print media than radio or television.

Here is a list of seven ways that print media is just like podcasting:

1) There’s no governing body in the United States that regulates who can own a newspaper or magazine.
The reason for this is that anyone who wants to can start a print publication. If you like, you can run a newspaper or magazine from your mother’s basement. Ironically, this is the stereotype of a podcaster or vidcaster … a guy living out of his mother’s basement.

2) Newspapers and (particularly) magazines can fill a very small niche and be successful.
Think of all of the special interest magazines you’ve seen. I’m sure you’ll find one for people with chronic ingrown toenails if you look hard enough. Podcasts, meanwhile, are almost by definition a niche medium.

3) Once you publish something in print, it’s out there forever.
With the exception of reruns and a couple of other situations, radio and TV broadcasts hit the airwaves once and are gone forever. Newspapers, magazines, and podcasts can stick around forever if you have enough storage.

4) Magazine and newspaper readers can choose to subscribe.
Readers subscribe to the print publications they want, and it’s delivered right to them. If they prefer, they can skip subscribing and just go out and get it themselves. This is a huge similarity with audio and video podcasting.

5) Magazines and newspapers are extremely portable.
You can easily take your newspaper or magazine to work, the gym, or even into the bathroom. You can do these things with radio, but it’s pretty tough with television unless you’ve got a small portable … and my eyes aren’t good enough to see those tiny screens anyhow. Plus, once the digital TV broadcast switch happens in the U.S., all of those portable TVs that use “bunny ears” are going to be paperweights anyhow.

6) Magazines and newspapers are available when you want to consume them.
Television has solved this problem with DVRs. Traditional radio … not so much.

7) Magazines and newspapers are easy to share.
When you’re done with a magazine, you can give it to the guy or gal who has the cubicle next to yours at work. If you like a podcast, you can email the link to a buddy. Try to do that with a traditional radio show.

Interesting observations.

Are you creating content good enough to compel listeners to download you?

1 comment:

Steve Mullen said...

Hi Harve,

I'm glad you enjoyed my post on podcasting and print media. I agree with you that radio stations ABSOLUTELY should be podcasting. I'm an avid podcast listener and a professional business podcast producer, and some of my favorite shows on my iPod right now are NPR programs. Podcasting definately solves the problem that radio has of NOT being on-demand.