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Podcasting updates the brand

Will Currie
Podcasting and vodcasting (video on demand-casting) offer publishers an opportunity to update and reinvent their brands, and all media owners should be doing it, claimed Will Currie, head of online for Emap Performance, speaking at the PPAi/AOP conference on 3 May.

“We are living in an age of pull media; podcasts help sustain this on-demand requirement,” explained Currie, citing research from BMRB that 28 per cent of 16-24 year olds have downloaded a podcast, with up to 38 per cent likely to in the next 6 months.

Kerrang Logo
Metal music site Kerrang, with its audience of loud, energetic 14-19 year-old teen rebels affectionately known as generation K, is an ideal fit for this new content delivery method, and Currie sees podcasting as “a credible form of marketing” and “the next natural delivery platform for the brand.”

“We need to work out where our audience wants to go next – and try to beat them to that port of call. Podcasting is becoming the mainstream for this audience.”

And it’s not just the youth audience that is responding to podcasts. The BMRB statistics show that 17 per cent of UK adult internet users overall have downloaded a podcast.

Currie sees the benefits as free added value experience for the audience, saying that there is only so much that text and images can offer audience: “It helps them get a step closer to their favourite bands; audio and video move things on.”

He continued that podcasting and vodcasting have made Kerrang more relevant, as well as opening up a potential audience of millions via iTunes.

With one member of staff hired to edit and film footage, Currie says that the investment has not been a huge one, although admittedly the title can lean on the resources available through Emap Performance’s radio team.

Currie highlighted the following things to consider when launching a podcast:

  • Quality of the product
  • How should voice your brand?
  • Podcasting is a broadcast medium – challenge for journalists
  • Top and tail content with branding – you never know where it will end up and need to make sure audience knows who’s created it and where to go for more

Finally, Currie outlined the commercial proposition, which includes TV-style adverts within the content itself, potentially supplemented by product placement. “Podcasts offer a compelling idea for advertisers, as they command an audience with a clearly defined interest.” He added that adverts need to be compelling and relevant: “Users know that they’re in charge of the fast-forward button.”

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