Beyond the airwaves: Exploring the podcasting phenomenon

The podcasting phenomenon is spreading like wildfire. More than 40% of the UK have listened to a podcast in the last month. And it feels as if everyone has jumped on the podcasting bandwagon, from comedians to financial advisers, even the royals.

But why has this medium captured the hearts and ears of so many, and is it worth exploring for yourself?

 

Navigating the podcasting landscape: Essential considerations

So, you’re considering launching your own podcast?

Podcasts have had their fair share of ups and downs since their inception in the early 2000s. And not all podcasts are created equal. While some soar to success, others falter along the way. To ensure your podcasting journey is a smooth and successful one, there are several key considerations to keep in mind.

Time and effort:  Firstly, brace yourself for the time and effort required – a shocking 90% of podcasts don’t get past episode three due to the level of commitment needed to keep them going. From conceptualisation to recording, editing, and promotion, each episode demands a significant investment of time and resources.

Frequency: Find your rhythm and stick to it. Consistency is also paramount, with a regular release schedule essential for building and retaining your audience. Whether you opt for a weekly release schedule or a bi-weekly cadence, consistency is key to building and retaining your audience.

Building an audience: Like cultivating a loyal fanbase for a beloved artist, building an audience for your podcast requires strategic planning and engagement. Leverage social media, email newsletters, and collaborations with other podcasters to expand your reach. Engage with your audience, solicit feedback, and create content that resonates deeply with them.

In-house equipment vs. external studio: You don’t need a professional recording studio to create compelling content. While external studios offer advanced equipment and expertise, don’t underestimate the power of in-house setups. With high-quality microphones, editing software, and a dash of creativity, you can produce professional-grade podcasts from the comfort of your own home.

Angle: Defining your angle is crucial. With a podcast dedicated to everything from beekeeping to stationery, carving out a unique niche is essential. What topic will you cover, and how will you differentiate yourself from the competition?

 

The rise, fall, and resurgence

Coined by Guardian columnist Ben Hammersley and pioneered by Adam Curry with iPodder in 2004, podcasts initially emerged as a platform for passionate creators to share their stories and expertise.

 

However, as technology evolved and social media platforms began to dominate, podcasts faced stiff competition for people’s attention from video-centric platforms, leading to a decline in popularity during the late 2000s and early 2010s.

 

Then in 2014 they experienced a remarkable resurgence. The widespread adoption of smartphones and the rise of streaming platforms such as Spotify and Apple Podcasts breathed new life into the medium. With their intimate, on-the-go nature, podcasts found a loyal audience, propelling them to newfound heights of popularity. This coincided with the breakout success of Serial, a true crime podcast hosted by Sarah Koenig, that’s often credited with putting podcasts on the map and with kicking off people’s fascination with true crime.

 

Looking ahead, the future of podcasting holds even greater promise. So, grab your microphone, hit record, and let your voice be heard in the vast expanse of the podcasting universe.

And if you are on the lookout for any podcast recommendations here are few favourites from the team at bClear:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0dbsqv0

https://intermediaries.uk.barclays/home/podcasts/