Podcasting As A Marketing Tool

Podcasting As A Marketing Tool



Podcasting as​ a​ Marketing Tool
Should Your Company Be Podcasting? Before we answer that question,​ let's take a​ quick look at​ what a​ podcast is​ .​
Audio programming isn't revolutionary.A company called Audible.com has been selling downloadable content like audio books and radio shows for nearly 10 years .​
Now,​ thanks to​ the​ growing popularity and large storage capacity of​ Apple’s iPods,​ tech experimentalists are considering anew the​ possibilities of​ downloadable audio .​
Now with new,​ easy-to-use distribution tools and cheaper storage capacity in​ addition to​ the​ millions-sold iPod market,​ podcasting is​ going mainstream .​
The broadcasting part comes from syndication tools that allow listeners to​ subscribe to​ receive automatic downloads of​ new podcasts in​ episodes that interest them .​
People who produce podcasts use something called RSS (Really Simple Syndication) to​ create subscription feeds .​
Listeners point their podcatchers toward those feeds and receive their automatic updates .​
Apple’s iTunes software has built-in podcatching features,​ but you​ can also use other programs,​ like the​ free Juice Receiver .​
These podcatching programs transfer new episodes to​ your PC .​
Some software will then even deliver the​ files to​ your digital music player automatically using the​ RSS feed.
You can listen to​ podcasts without an​ iPod .​
Individual podcast shows are usually recorded in​ common audio formats like MP3,​ others are in​ AAC format .​
Some podcatchers’ auto-synch features only work with iPods,​ but you​ can listen to​ podcasts on​ any digital music player or​ on​ your PC with standard programs like RealPlayer,​ Windows Media Player or​ any of​ the​ myriad other programs available for download at​ no charge.
Your company can shape the​ message it​ delivers,​ and a​ podcasting series distributed regularly to​ customers is​ a​ great way to​ build their loyalty and create a​ bond with both customers and new sales leads .​
The trick is​ to​ offer content listeners will find useful .​
For some companies,​ the​ podcasting topics are more obvious than others .​
Music distribution services provider Nugs.net posts a​ monthly promotional podcast of​ samples from its archive while travel website Hotelbook.com offers podcasts full of​ travel tips .​
But companies that aren’t in​ the​ consumer services market can still use promotional podcasts—they just have to​ be more creative in​ figuring out what they have to​ offer.
If you're ready to​ begin making your own podcast,​ Audacity is​ a​ popular,​ free program for recording and digitizing and editing sound .​
HOwever,​ pretty much any sound software will work .​
Once you​ have a​ recorded sound file,​ upload it​ to​ the​ internet on​ your website; if​ you’re creating a​ series,​ set up an​ RSS feed pointing to​ the​ site where new episodes will appear .​
That’s all there is​ to​ it .​
Unless you’re aiming for top-quality production quality,​ podcasting is​ a​ fairly inexpensive undertaking .​
If you​ don’t want to​ go the​ trouble of​ doing your own production,​ services shops are springing up to​ handle podcasting chores .​
Some companies have a​ production staff and network of​ voice artists on​ tap to​ quickly convert scripts to​ ready-for-podcasting sound files .​
Others have a​ hosting and syndication service that handles podcast storage and RSS feed creation,​ with an​ unlimited bandwidth allowance .​
For marketers interested in​ podcasting,​ the​ obstacles to​ start up have never been smaller.




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