Podcasting: An Internet Marketing Approach Every Small Business Owner Should Consider
People realize that reading is the way of the web, but they really, really prefer listening and even watching stuff online. Some people mistakenly believe Yahoo is the second largest search engine. It’s not. YouTube is. People love hearing and watching and their clicking on YouTube is proof of that that.
If you want to show off your expertise (and it’s the most important thing you should do online), you should consider podcasting. In a future article, I’ll get into video podcasting, but let’s keep things simple by going over audio podcast.
A podcast is an audio or video presentation covering a specific topic. They’re called podcasts because you can easily make them available on iTunes and listen to them on your iPod. You can also tune in using your PC, MP3 player or just about anything connected to the Internet.
If you want to see some examples, visit the iTunes store to find the thousands of podcast programs cover every topic imaginable. For example:
- You can listen to the Marathon Training Academy (see http://marathontrainingacademy.com). They publish audio podcasts on long distance running.
- You can listen and watch Yoga & other useful stuff with Tara Styles (see http://tarastiles.com). You guessed it. It's a program by Tara Styles covering Yoga and other useful stuff.
- You can even listen to me. I publish My Take on the Sunday Readings (see http://www.PurelyCatholic.com). It’s a weekly reflection on the Sunday church readings.
Many people are intimidated by the idea of publishing a single podcast episode and even more scared about launching a series. But it’s not as difficult and expensive as might think.
I record my weekly program using a microphone and sound card that cost me less than $200. I record it all using the same laptop I use for everything else with FREE software called Audacity that works perfectly on both Windows and Mac. There are a few other pieces of software that help make things easier and they're free too. And to make you program available, all you need is a $4 per month web hosting account you can get just about anywhere.
And it’s not like you need a professional recording studio. I record my programs in my home office and I’m proud to say it sounds really nice. Follow the http://www.PurlyCatholic.com link and you can hear for yourself.
If you want to go with video, you do need a camera, but that’s inexpensive as well. The prices keep getting lower and lower. And the process for producing them isn’t any more difficult except you can't do the recording in your PJs. (I usually record my podcast Sunday mornings in less than formal attire.). You'll need a few more pieces of software, but those are free or less than $50 total.
If you’ve been in sales, you probably have the topics you can cover in a podcast laying around your office. You can present it yourself or recruit a partner that can do it with you. You have one person asking the other questions talk show style and cover your information in a 5 to 20 minute program.
Just think of how effectively this can be for delivering a presentation and establishing your expertise.
If you a realtor, you can talk about finding the perfect foreclosure property. For a career coach, you discuss the top 5 ways to launch a successful job hunt. For a lawyer, you give legal advice to help businesses save money or avoid trouble.
And when you are done, your viewers have not only hear your expertise. They hear you. And that's much better than just reading something you've written on the same topic.
I hope you consider giving it a try. There isn't too much you have to put at risk. You could, however, be missing out an opportunity to reach customers that didn't even know you exist. This could be the key to getting someone to remember you and make you a top choice when the time comes to purchase the stuff you have to offer.