If you haven’t heard of podcasting yet, you’re going to very shortly. It’s at the same stage in popularity blogs were about 2 years ago.
It’s essentially a mini-broadcast, but not live. Anyone with something to say can make a recording of themselves saying it and post it on their blog or site and direct an RSS feed to it and their subscribers can pick up the latest podcast when it’s ready and posted.
Incidently, you’ll see a link for an MP3 file at the end of this written post. It’s my first podcast with me essentially saying the same thing that’s in this post. I guess it would be considered a “simulpodcast.” (Maybe I’ll be famous one day for coining that term first. Hehe!)
Anyway, just as the blog brought citizen journalists access to the common folk, podcasts will give the citizen broadcaster direct access to the common folk.
Adam Curry, one of the original “VJs” back when MTV used to actually play videos, is widely considered to be one of the first major podcasters with his daily podcast called The Daily Source Code. His listening audience is growing by leaps and bounds and is reported to be more than 50,000 listeners a day.
Think of what opportunities await those creative enough to use this medium to its fullest. I would venture to guess that about .5% of the American population even knows what a podcast is right now. But how many know what a radio is? It’s just a matter of time before the masses start finding podcasts and content they enjoy more than the BANALITY that is local radio. No restrictions on what you can say.. imagine a million Howard Sterns.
What this means is, the content that does stick out has to be even better and more creative than the most creative heads in radio right now. (Not saying much.) I can’t wait to hear what wonderous things the regular joe blow citizen comes up with for us to listen to every day.
So, how to get started in this. This is a perfect time to get a foot in the door without alot of noise to get in the way. Any podcast these days will get listened to because there are just so few of them.
Eventually newspapers and websites will start putting their content into podcasts for people to listen to on the way to work. It’s a perfect time saver. It’d be cool to be able to “listen” to all the blogs that you read in the morning, instead of actually reading them. (I know… many of them have too many links, but the ones that have just content, those are the ones I’m talking about.)
But while we wait for the newspapers to start doing this, what’s to stop some enterprising soul with a lot of time on his/her hands to sit down and read the want ads out of their local paper and categorize them into separate MP3 files according to the category they are listed in the paper and then offer the recording to job seekers. It’d be way cool to be able to listen to the job classifieds in your area on your car stereo on the way to work instead of sloshing through them in the paper.
How about reading all the different business opportunity ads like out of the major local newspapers and USA Today and offering a butt load of them in a podcast for people like me who would love to sit and listen to hundreds of bus opp classified ads.
You could have an entire site dedicated to delivering MP3 podcast files, listed by category and city for people to listen to on their MP3 players. If you’re looking for furniture, download the “Furniture for Sale” file for your city. Looking for a Lexus LS400? Download the “Luxury Cars for Sale” podcast file for your city.
At first the files could be free and you can just insert, vocally, an ad or two of your own to pay for the service. But then once people get used to using them and start relying on them, you could start charging .25 cents per file… or whatever.
The opportunities in podcasting are incredible. My mind just swims with ideas in this area. I have to consciously stop thinking about it at certain times because it monopolizes my thoughts if I get started on it.
Check out ipodder to read more about this amazing new movement. Get your creative juices flowing and have fun.