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PodCast Marketing: How Effectively Are You Deploying This Definitive Marketing Solution?

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by Octopixy
Each day starts and usually ends with the same BIG question. Our clients and prospects ask us, "How can I grow my business and capture my fair market share?" Our answer is quite simply, "Build yourself a base of prospects and work that pipeline relentlessly and efficiently."

One BIG tip that I can offer you as read my short synopsis today, learn how to become a successful PodCaster and watch your bottom-line fly skyward!

Over the past decade, the Internet has created many new breakthrough marketing mediums. From successful ezine publishing and distribution straight through to more pronounced search engine optimization practices.

As a television and radio broadcaster/marketing consultant, I have had the sincere pleasure of understanding just how important both the radio and television marketing methods are to businesses and individuals in getting the word out to their prospective audience.

Our weekly online radio show, Net Talk Radio has been received very well amongst listeners and advertisers alike. I guess I always knew that in time, connectivity speeds and portable hand-held devices would ultimately allow for a more expansive target audience reach.

The day has finally arrived!

Although, we began using our online talk radio format years ago, we are now able to sweeten the pie by allowing our listeners to almost effortlessly download our show (information and entertainment) right into the iPod and iRiver devices. Now our audience can listen where ever and whenever "they" like. Plus, as an added-value benefit to us and our valuable advertisers, we can track every hit (listener) around the clock for about the cost of a cup of coffee! We make all this happen by deploying one of today's best emerging audio/blogging technologies popularly referred to as, "PodCasting".

PodCast Marketing: *Anyone Can Do This!

First, What is Podcasting?

Podcasting is a term that manifested as a fresh way to describe the technology used to push (share) audio content from web sites down to consumers (clients) of that content, who usually listen to it on an iPod (hence the term "pod") or any other type of .mp3 player (iRiver) at their command, convenience and control.

PodCasting is somewhat similar to the concept of time-shifted video software and devices like TiVo, which let you watch what you want exactly when you want it by simply recording and storing video, except that PodCasting is primarily used for audio to date. (Universal video deployment is most likely just around the corner.) With that stated I should explain, however, that this easy to use emerging technology can be used to push (deploy) any kind of file such as photos (images), software updates, videos and/or text.

PodCasting uses an XML-based technology called RSS (Real Simple Syndication). Content publishers (PodCasters) describe new content in an XML RSS file which includes dates, titles, descriptions, and specifics links to the .mp3 files. This "automatically" generated file is referred to as an RSS feed. Dave Winer is considered by many to be the creator of RSS and a pioneer in the environment of applied XML. The component to making PodCasting work with RSS is "enclosures" (remember that term), an element supported by RSS 2.0.

As a consumer or end-user, you simply run an "aggregator" (remember this term, too) program like MTV's Adam Curry's iPodder software on your local computer, which lets you easily subscribe to RSS feeds. Programs like Adam's will either by schedule or by random design, download the RSS files, and check to see if any fresh content is available. If new content exists, the audio files are automatically downloaded and put into a folder (of your choice) on your hard disk or directly routed to your mp3 player.

I used an asterisk as noted above to make this very honest and often painful-to-some disclaimer. When I stated that "Anyone Can Do This", I should more accurately state, "Anyone that properly learns (from a real professional) and activates their own PodCast process can reap the significant harvest of BIGGER numbers by creating and nurturing their own emerging community. As an online business owner this is HUGE and required! This marketing solution can not only make you financially solvent, it can even make you a "STAR"!

Fitting The PodCast Magic Into Your Arsenal

Here now is a list of things to do to prepare yourself for your first PodCast presentation.

1. Research The PodCast Element

Learn precisely what PodCasting is all about and how it works. I recommend visiting http://www.google.com and typing, "PodCast Radio" into the search field.

2. Physically Search Out Only The True Professionals

Create a list of those PodCasters that undeniably know exactly what they are doing. Align your yourself with only the best. From this list, call them on the phone and pick their brain(s). If you cannot locate an actual telephonic point of contact, I strongly urge you to wipe them from your list. You want to do business with those that believe in "touching" their market with more intimacy and one-to-one personalization rather than just an email. Remember, you are looking for a friend. A mentor. Not necessarily someone to take your money and be off. A solid partnership (friendship) is your objective here.

3. Discover Your Passion

What passion do you share with others? What true value will your audience glean from you? Who is your target audience? Understand your "WHY"!

4. Develop Your Plan & Work Your Process

What do you need to learn? What do you need to do? What specific date will you be ready? Who will provide you with the support you will need to fulfill your plan. What equipment is required?

5. Make Your Podcast Happen!

As you roll out your "new-to-you" adventure, don't expect total perfection on day one. Be kind to yourself and know that you will evolve. We all started from square one. You should have heard my first radio air check from my first radio gig in Bakersfield, California. I sounded just like a bumbling knucklehead. :-) Enough practice and desire can make you near perfect, but do be fair with you and give yourself time to grow.

Listen to other Pro-PodCasters. Listen to your local radio stations. Read books and articles like this one on a daily basis. (I do it everyday!)

6. Finally... No Excuses!

If you "really" want to crank up the heat on your marketing efforts, than PodCasting will give you the significant marketing advantage.

Know this...

Others will talk about it, but never make their move.

You, on the other hand, will except no feeble excuses and get working on your very first PodCast right away! (At the very least, be sure to move PodCasting up near the top of "TO-DO" list!

In closing today...

I have illustrated only a fraction of what you must know before you go piling into your PodCast endeavor full steam ahead. Be sure to identify and experiment with all angles of marketing when it comes to producing an on-going, money-generating PodCast production for all the world to hear and take notice!

Happy PodCast Marketing!

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