Podding along

A couple of weeks ago Chris Lee from Run Marketing kindly invited me to speak at an event he was running at Speed Communications on podcasting. It was a fascinating evening and I learned a fair bit from Chris, Kelvin Newman and Andy White, the other speakers. I focused more on the editorial side of what makes a good podcast. You can see my slides below.

On the night Chris suggested podcasting is something of a forgotten or neglected medium and I'd go along with this. Video is easier to produce than it's ever been but it still demands your eyeballs, which is a crucial difference.

Audio - and this may be my radio bias coming out here is still a wonderfully creative medium to play with, and convenient as well. You can listen to it on your daily commute, at work or while doing the washing up. It's also a great companion.

It may not be as sexy or as arresting as video either, but there is a huge capacity for growth, especially with the rise of smartphones. The potential users with the right delivery platform is growing and the software is easier to use than ever before.

Podcasting has also given radio a new lease of life. Many traditional media outlets offer their shows as a podcast, or as an extra to their more linear offering. In some respects, as with Radio Four's excellent History Of The World In 100 Objects, it becomes almost the primary method of consumption.

And the chances are that the majority of the listeners to these podcasts aren't really aware that they're engaging with social media - to them, it's just another way of listening that just happens to be more convenient for them. As one of my non-media friends told me, he now listens to his favourite shows on his phone rather than tuning in his radio.

We've seen how on demand services have transformed - and will continue to transform - television. With audio, the potential is even greater, in my view, due to the flexibility of the medium. As my fellow speakers all said, podcasting is currently an underpopulated medium. I don't see it staying this way for long.