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Is Podcasting Dead?

I’m going to take a guess: if you had all of your friends and family in one room and asked each one of them, “What is a podcast?” how many do you think would actually be able to give you an answer? Yeah, I kinda thought so. Yet each of us are passionate about the ‘casts we create and probably have 5 or 6 we regularly listen to (and yes, Kevin Smith’s Smodcast will always be a staple in my library).

There are far too many abandoned podcasts littering iTunes – just take a look at how many have 15-20 episodes under their belts only to suffer from Pod Fade. If you feel like walking away from your show because you feel like you’re just talking to yourself, take heed.

You know what one of the wonderful things about the internet is? Predictions are forever. Even if a post is unceremoniously removed, and it’s WayBackMachine can usually dredge it up.

Take a peek at this prediction from June 15, 2005

Podcasting Users to Approach 60 Million US Consumers by 2010

60 million. An aggressive number. Especially if you consider that only 4.5 million people had even heard of podcasts in 2005. But what was the reality at the end of 2010?

The Current State Of Podcasting 2010

The following are Edison Research’s conclusions.

Principal findings of the study included:

The percentage of Americans who have ever watched or listened to a podcast is 45%, up from 43% one year ago. This equates to approximately 70 million Americans 12+.

The podcast audience has migrated from being predominantly “early adopters” to more closely resembling mainstream media consumers.

Podcast consumers continue to prefer consuming content at their desktop, not on dedicated media players, but mobile phone media consumption is surging.

Podcast consumers index very highly for social networking behaviors.

Two-thirds of podcast consumers have listened to digital audio files in their vehicles by connecting an iPod or other MP3 player to their car audio system.


2010 Presentation of Edison Research data on podcasting. Originally presented at the Blogworld Expo in Las Vegas, this presentation by Edison Research VP of Strategy Tom Webster explores five years of data on podcast and downloadable media consumption habits, and presents new, thought-provoking insights for content creators.

70 million and counting

Podcasting is still in its infancy. New technologies take years to adopt into the mainstream. Where were cell phones, the internet and blogging 15 years ago? Facebook, YouTube and podcasts are all less than six years old.

Podcasting has garnered more than a 15x growth spurt since 2005. If it were to continue that trend, could we see a billion people downloading some sort of audio/video cast by 2015?

So, is podcasting dead?

About Jay Walsh

With a combined 25 years of design, marketing, podcasting, video and social media knowledge, Jay created with the goal of helping you make a better podcast.

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