The Rise of Podcasts – Exploring the growing popularity of Audio Content!

In today’s digital landscape where information is readily available at our fingertips, the way we consume content is constantly changing. Audio content such as podcasts has emerged as a powerful medium for entertainment, education, and communication.   

Australia has experienced a surge in podcast listenership in recent years, and more and more small businesses are recognising the potential of audio content as a valuable tool for marketing and customer engagement. The good news is that you can too! 

Discovering how your business can leverage the growing popularity and of podcasts and other audio content is an important opportunity to capitalise on and can be an incredibly powerful addition to your marketing strategy.  

How popular are podcasts, really? 

According to recent studies, podcast listenership in Australia has been rapidly rising. In 2022 alone, podcast content reached 9 million Australians, with listenership increasing by 54% from the previous year (Accumulate). In 2022, Australia overtook the US at the biggest podcast listening country in the world! (The Infinite Dial Australia 2022) 

Not only are more people listening to podcasts, but there has also been a significant increase in podcast creation. The top podcast in Australia has 600,000 subscribers and 2 million monthly downloads. Individuals and businesses of all sizes and from all kinds of industries are leveraging the medium to share knowledge, entertain, and connect with their target audience – and it’s not hard to see why.  

Where are people listening? 

These days, there are a broad range of hosting platforms that allow the sharing of audio content. In Australia, the most common distribution methods for podcasts are: 

  • YouTube – 42% 
  • Spotify – 33% 
  • Apple Podcasts – 21% 
  • ABC Listens – 16% 
  • Google Podcasts – 15% 
  • Audible – 10% 

What types of content are people listening to? 

While most listeners in Australia enjoy comedy content (who doesn’t love a good laugh?), specialised content on a wide range of topics are popular amongst men and women from all demographics. Podcasts on commerce, health and wellness, news & politics, contemporary lifestyle, specialist discussion and sports are just some of the many discussions Aussies are tuning in to.  

Branded Podcasts 

Many businesses have started creating their own branded podcasts to establish thought leadership, build brand awareness, and engage their audience in a more intimate way. These podcasts often feature industry insights, interviews, and discussions relevant to their niche. 

Sponsored Podcasts 

Some businesses collaborate with established podcasters to sponsor episodes or create custom content that aligns with their brand. This strategy helps reach a wider audience and tap into the loyal following of established podcasters. 

Implementing audio into your marketing strategy 

Knowing where to start in the world of audio content can be daunting, but we promise you – it’s easier than you think! Here are some things to consider: 

  • Understand your Target Audience: Before diving into podcast creation, small businesses should conduct market research to understand their target audience’s preferences, interests, and pain points. This knowledge will help shape the content and format of the podcast to resonate with the intended listeners. 
  • Defining your Objectives: It’s essential to establish clear goals for the podcast, such as increasing brand awareness, driving website traffic, or establishing industry expertise. Having a defined objective will guide your content creation and ensure your audio experience is rewarding for both listeners and your business.  
  • Plan your content & get creating: Small businesses should develop a content plan, including episode topics, guest interviews, and a consistent release schedule. With enough advertising in the online space, it’s no longer enough to simply sell – you must create value for your audience too. Creating engaging, valuable, and high-quality content is crucial to attracting and retaining listeners.  
  • Hit record: Recording equipment, editing software, and hosting platforms are necessary considerations for producing professional-sounding podcasts. Small businesses can start with budget-friendly options and gradually invest in better equipment as their podcast grows. But with the growing popularity of podcasts, there are many great and affordable equipment options on the market.  
  • Get the word out! Once the podcast is ready, promote your podcast across various your various channels, including their website, social media platforms, email newsletters, and relevant online communities. Cross-promotion with other podcasts or influencers can also help increase visibility. Wise Up can help with this too! 
  • Engage, engage, engage: Encouraging listener feedback, questions, and suggestions fosters a sense of community and helps you better understand your audience. Take the time to engage with your listeners on social media, email, or live events and reap the rewards of create stronger connections and loyalty. 

Our Tips & Considerations 

  • Start Small and Be Consistent: Don’t overwhelm yourself! Running a business is a big job, so begin with a manageable episode frequency and duration to ensure consistent content delivery. Consistency really is key to building an engaged audience! 
  • Embrace Authenticity and Originality: This is your chance to showcase the unique aspects of your business and let your personality shine through the podcast. Authenticity and originality will help differentiate your content and attract listeners who are genuinely interested in your brand.  
  • Use the power of collaboration! Explore opportunities for collaborations with industry peers, influencers, or relevant organisations. Collaborative episodes or guest appearances can really expand your reach and credibility – some of our favourite episodes of podcasts we listen to have been guest specials! 
  • Don’t forget the data: Make use of the great analytics tools provided by podcast hosting platforms to track key metrics such as downloads, subscriber growth, and listener engagement. This data is incredibly insightful and will help refine content and measure the podcast’s impact on business goals. 

As the popularity of podcasts continues to rise in Australia, small businesses have a valuable opportunity to leverage audio content to connect with their target audience, establish thought leadership, and build brand awareness.  

By understanding the preferences of your audience, creating compelling content, and effectively promoting your podcast, your businesses too can harness the power of audio content to skyrocket your marketing results.  

Embracing this growing trend can position your business as an industry leader and create a strong bond with your customers in the digital landscape of today and tomorrow. 

If audio content is something you’re interested in, we’re here to help. As podcast listeners (and creators!) ourselves, we’re more than happy to discuss all things content & strategy.  

If you’re ready to take your marketing strategy to the next level, be sure to check out The Marketing with Confidence Podcast with Mary-Anne Amies. Whether you’re a business owner or a marketing professional, our founder and CEO Mary-Anne talks all things digital and marketing, with the latest trends, interviews and opportunities each week! Listen and subscribe here.  

Want to learn more?  

You’re just in time! The Infinite Dial 2023 Australia webinar will be hosted on June 27th at 10:30am AEST and will reveal all the latest insights on Australia’s digital media consumer behaviour. Discover the most up to date trends and important considerations for your business, especially if you’re considering a foray into the wonderful world of audio content.  

You can register for the 30-minute webinar here. 

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