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My Blogger Friends
Last weekend I went to the inaugural Podcamp UK and co-presented a session with Lucie Follett on the monetisation of podcasting and podcasting measurement using engagement metrics, in the auspicious surrounding of Birmingham’s NTI (new technology institute). It was fast paced and innovative. You may be able to spot us in one of the photos? There were a whole bunch of people there including all the top UK podcasters, Twitter guys (I twitter, do you?), bloggers, journalists and new media folk in general.
In the social media ecosystem, in which I would include podcasting, there is so much potential for businesses to use podcasting to generate brand awareness and interest in their product or service from a niche audience. At the same time, there is an increased awareness of the potential monetisation of podcasting, if it is done effectively. I am still a big believer in “Content is King” - ie create podcasts that genuinely interest and compel your target audience. And have seen examples where “view movie” (ie watch podcast) with the right kind of engaging content has resulted in a tripling of lead generation on a particular car company’s website, such as brochure requests. So podcasting can and does work for business when done in the right way - you need a good story, and definitely not my boss told me to do a podcast!
However, how do you begin to measure a podcast’s effectiveness?
Due to the nature of downloadable media, there are a number of difficulties when it comes to getting accurate metrics from podcasting and issues to consider which impede the efficient implementation of big marketing or advertising campaigns across multiple website.
-How many podcast downloads are there – if the podcast is embedded in the website, is it still considered to e a podcast?
-How many viewers actually watch or listen to the podcast once it is downloaded?
-What degree of the podcast is listened to, for example if you have ad in the podcast towards the end, how many people actually listen to it?
-What true influence or buzz is actually generated by the podcast, because link content (popularity) does not equate to influence.
The key things is to look at podcasting in the same way one does other social media.
Engagement metrics are key. Things to consider include (and please feel free to add any more via comments):
1. Visitor reviews of your podcast (for example on itunes).
2. Visitor comments – where a podcast:comment ratio is the most helpful one as it strips it down to pure engagement on a podcast, by podcast basis.
3. Social capital/Visitor influence – if an established reviewer ie top podcaster or specialist within the industry writes a review/comment etc, this will have a lot more influence than if Sam from Dunkirk did (sorry Sam).
4. Ranking on established podcasting platforms, such as podcasting news top 25 or podcast alley top 10.
5. Wisdom from the rest of the web, such as the reaction on the blogosphere, twitter-sphere, facebook-sphere, general search engine results etc.
The monetisation of podcasting, is not about corporates trying to strangle the life out of a vibrant, independent podcasting community – which will definitely continue to thrive, but a marketing journey where businesses who understand social media will use it to their advantage. Businesses that podcast will be able to measure those tangible or intangible (hence engagement metrics) benefits to their business, and where eventually marketers and advertisers will be able to efficiently implement advertising across multiple podcasts, similar principle (but very different at the same time) to the way google adwords has their content network advertising – where you can run campaigns on a keyword/sector basis, having illustrated the value of advertising on podcasts or websites running podcasts.
Thanks so much for reading and do let me know if you have any thoughts or ideas, or if you completely disagree.
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