Toronto Mike

The Remarkable Rise of Podcasting

Podcasting is one of those terms that most people have  heard of but not everyone can accurately describe. Put simply, a podcast is  essentially a radio program which is distributed over the internet as opposed  to using one traditional radio station. These shows are then available to  download on various platforms, although some people prefer listening to them in  real time. The cool thing about podcasts is virtually anyone can start one and  if what you're saying is interesting enough, there's a good chance people will  flock to you. According to statistics published on Convince and Convert, around  112 million Americans have listened to a podcast at one time or another in  their life and a further 67 million tune into a podcast at least once a month -  with an estimated 525,000 active shows and over 18 million  episodes floating around in cyberspace at any one time, it seems that more and more  people are taking to the digital airways in order to put their views across.  This begs the question, what's behind the surge in podcast popularity?

 Podcasting in its earliest form has been around since the  1980s, when it was known as audio blogging and Podcasting as we know it today  has been around for over a decade, so why has the concept suddenly taken off  over the last few years? Well, for starters, one of the answers lies in your  pocket. The fact that every man and his dog now owns a mobile device has played  a big part in the rise of podcasting and with ever increasing internet speeds, listening to your favorite commentator  on the go has never been easier. What's more, the size of your screen is irrelevant, so  your enjoyment isn't limited to what device you own - often one of the  drawbacks of watching movies or TV shows on your smartphone. In 2018, if you  like hearing about the latest NBA news or Kanye West's recent antics, for  example, then all it takes is one click of the "subscribe" button and  you'll never miss a beat.



Starting Your Own Podcast is a Piece of Cake
 Despite the fact that the podcast market is already pretty  saturated, there's always room for something a little different and armed with  an original idea and a little bit of technical aptitude, setting up your own  podcast couldn't be easier. One of the main benefits of setting up your own  podcast in the current climate is that you have a choice of platforms to upload  your work to. Since around 2005, Apple has been the main playerwith regards to  the podcast distribution game but Google Play, Spotify, Soundcloud and  Stitcher, among others are now getting in on the act and it's really down to  personal preference as to which directories you end up going with.

Internet Hobbies are Currently All the Rage
 As of 2017 according to Statista, global internet users were spending  on average around 135 minutes a day on social media and so it's no surprise  that internet-based activities such as podcasting and live-streaming are on the  rise. Live-streaming in particular has enjoyed a close relationship with gaming  in recent years, with 3rd person shooter Fortnite streaming from sites like Epic Games is currently the game of  choice for streamers on sites such as Twitch and YouTube Live. In addition to  this, live streaming has moved into more niche territory, with online casinos  such as Betway Live-Casino providing live blackjack,  baccarat and roulette experiences which use high definition streaming to put  players at the heart of the action and allow them to take part in an active  live-streaming experience. The game of chess has also enjoyed somewhat of a  renaissance thanks to live streaming of online tournaments, with popular  Canadian Grandmasters Aman Hambleton and Eric Hansen (collectively  known as Chessbrah) attracting impressive figures for a game which was seen by many  to be on the decline only a few years ago. With Twitch now allowing non-gaming  content onto the platform, live-streaming and podcasting are undoubtedly the  current flavors of the month.

Podcasts Can Make You a Decent Amount of Money
 It's important to note that the production value associated  with podcasts is very low. Armed with a high quality microphone and a spare  hour or two to get properly set up, there's no reason why you can't turn  podcasting into a potentially lucrative venture. With the average CPM (cost per  thousand) for a podcast estimated to be between $20 and $45, the cost to value  of podcasting is incredibly low, especially when you consider that the figure  for web ads on platforms such as YouTube will only land you between $1 and $20.  As long as you're committed to consistently delivering content to your loyal  followers, then there's no reason why podcasting can't be a source of income  for you - provided you're also talented and manage to get those listeners, that  is.

The Future of Podcasting

According to BBC Radio, the term  "podcast" is an early contender for word of the yearfor 2018 and the British  broadcaster is quietly confident that podcasts are the future. The  accessibility and sheer diversity that can be found within the podcast genre  means that there are shows which cater to every single need, no matter how  obscure and niche the genre or category may be. With the modern person now  arguably busier than ever, time is precious and podcasts provide the perfect  background noise that can easily be absorbed while getting on with the rest of  your day. It's difficult to say just where podcasting will be within the next  ten or twenty years owing to the speed that modern day technology advances.  However, many avid listeners have already pondered the question and it's fair  to say the possibilities appear to be both endless and extremely exciting in equal  measure.

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About Toronto Mike
I own TMDS and host Toronto MIke'd. Become a Patron.