How Podcasts Can Help Your Online Business

By: Brandon Hong

Podcasts has evolved from being just a hobby for the music enthusiasts to a serious marketing tool adopted by large multinational corporations.

In fact, it's evolution and transformation is tied closely to that of blogs. The reason is because podcasts is basically just an audio mp3 file which is distributed using Rss feeds.

Think of podcasts as your different radio channels. You can tune in to a classical channel, or rock channel or jazz channel and so on.

Initially the use of podcast was mainly done by music enthusiasts and hobbyists who wanted to share music files and audio with others.

Just like blogs when podcast first came onto the scene, podcast was thought of nothing more than some form of fun hobby or activity. It was not long, before companies realized the potential of podcasts

- building client relationship,
- branding,
- getting their message out there
- syndicating their content and ultimately
advertising their services and products through the use of Rss feeds, which was in-built into blogs

As can be seen, what started as a simple form of fun hobby soon evolved into a powerful marketing weapon. Podcasts is not just for the music enthusiasts anymore.

Companies and businesses understand the power of podcast and how podcast can help their

For example:

1. Companies like General Motors and Microsoft, create podcasts that combine information and product news for people who may be interested, such as investors, car, computer buffs or industry analysts.

2. News channels, like CNN, put their headlines and some of the brief news stories into a podcasts format.

3. Radio stations have turned some of their programs into podcasts which they upload daily and make available to people who might enjoy the program but are unable to listen to it when it is initially broadcast over the airwave.

4. Museums, art galleries, and historical sites create broadcasts for users to listen to as they walk through, replacing the human guide that would do tours, and allowing an individual with a personal audio player to go through at their own pace.

5. The director of the sci-fi television show “Battlestar Galactica” creates a regular
podcast to tell subscribers about the behind-the-scenes effort to make the show.

Why do you think these large multi-national companies bother to create podcasts? Obviously it helps them with their business and bottomline!

Let's take a look again at how podcast or podcasting can help your online business.

1. Podcast can grow, expand and multiply your business.

Podcast uses Rss feeds and with the explosion in the use of Rss feeds, this means you can submit your Podcast to many podcast directories.

Just like the way a listener tunes in to a particular radio channel, podcast listeners and subscribers will look for a specific niche podcast to subscribe to.

This means you can reach out to new market and new consumer you otherwise would normally not be able to do with traditional forms of business advertising and promotion.

2. Flexibility and repeat advertising

Podcast, being essentially and audio file, offers consumers choice, convenience and flexibility. With the proliferation of mp3 players, your podcast can be downloaded, stored in an mp3 player and listen to over and over again.

Think about how much it would cost you to repeat an advert? With podcasts, it's totally free.

3. Ready market, to the tune of millions waiting to be tapped.

Recent years have seen the gigantic and exponential growth of audio mp3 device players, especially Apple's iPod. There are millions of loyal iPod totting fans out there. They are constantly searching for audios to download. You can serve these lucrative niche markets by offering niche podcasts.

These are just some of the many examples how podcast and podcasting can help your online business.

With such a big potential and the technology being in it's early unsaturated stage, this is truly the best time to leverage on podcasting technology to grow and multiply your online business.

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Brandon is author of blogs, rss, wordpress and podcast courses. Discover how easy it is to grow, expand and multiply your business with podcasts.

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