YOUR VOICE OR MINE
By: Ali Tarawneh | Client Servicing Director | Another In Kingdom
15 years ago, a new word was added to the English dictionary: PODCAST, the audio blog that allowed listeners to download audio files and listen to them at their convenience. The Webster Dictionary definition is “Episodic series of spoken words, digital audio files that a user can voluntarily subscribe and download to a personal device for easy listening”. Can you imagine it’s been 15 years already?
Anyone can create a PODCAST. From political satire, current events opinion, fitness and sports to gaming, automotive, health and wellbeing, music and culture; the topics are endless. PODCASTERS their opinions while projecting their personality. The more they are considered a reliable reference (a voice of reason) the more loyal listeners the get. The more loyal listeners they get, the more likely they are to commercialise the PODCAST and open it up to advertising and product / brand endorsement.
Today creating a PODCAST is a very popular means of income generation for individuals (with an opinion) in the USA, Canada and the EU. The trend is catching up (slowly but surely) across the Middle East and Africa. As PODCASTERS start to build listenership, advertisers’ interest in this unconventional digital platform grows.
Advertisers' interest is based on their ability to engage very specific audiences on a format that is deemed credible and honest. Keeping up with the demand for of attribute-based profiling and media selection, they can now zero in on high potential audiences and engage them via a neutral voice…the PODCASTER! This makes it a lucrative message projection channel for them in terms of budget efficiency and speaking to the right audience at the right momentum of truth.
Moving away from individuals to brands; podcasting can be a new owned platform for them that they use to reach and interact with their target audience, but consumers are not buying into it, they don't want to "willingly" spend their time listening to commercial based messaging. That’s why more and more brands are focusing their efforts on sponsoring individual PODCASTS. Which PODCASTS do they sponsor? The ones with an engaged audience and a topic relevant to their business offering.
Think about it for a minute, as a consumer you are more likely to believe in a product or brand when someone you trust and actively listen to tells you to believe in it (The power of family & friend endorsement). PODCASTERS are influencers who have a more genuine connection with audiences than many of the social media influencers who are ready to sell their channels to the highest bidder. Podcasters are much more selective in the brands they endorse and sell advertising to, because they tend to take a higher sense of responsibility.
The next time you are on the tube, on a flight, on a treadmill, on a bus or in a waiting room, look around you at all the people who have their earphones in. Check the changing expressions on their faces, if you focus in, you will be able to tell which ones are listening to a PODCAST.