Do you ever get tired of listening to the same old songs on your commute to work? Are you looking for more audible content to take in on your weekend drives to the cottage or an alternative to your next Netflix binge at home? Say hello to the world of podcasts.
As an active city commuter and a big fan of road trips, I’m constantly on the lookout for new and interesting content to absorb while I’m en route to my next destination. Before I knew it, I found myself deep diving into the world of podcasts. This blog shares my findings of what podcasts would be beneficial for marketers to have a listen to, whether directly or indirectly related to the industry.
Podcasting audiences continue to rise. According to Edison Research, an estimated 73 million Americans listen to podcasts at least once a month with continuous growth in listenership amongst each age bracket. Podcasting’s “share of ear” amongst other audio sources (music, radio, etc), has doubled in the last 4 years – a significant shift in its growing popularity. And in Canada, according to the Canadian Podcast Listener Landscape Study, nearly more than 7 million Canadian adults (24% of the 18+ population) listen to podcasts at least once a month with more than 7 in 10 listeners having first started listening in the last 3 years, which only serves as an indication of this fast-growing audience.
Alongside this growth in listenership comes opportunities for brands to connect with consumers through this new medium – whether through owned content (see: GE’s podcast The Message which garnered 8 million+ downloads and even new branded podcasts launched by RBC, Shopify, and Slack) or opportunities in podcast advertising, which is anticipated to hit $659 million in revenue by 2020. More so than ever, brands are eager to understand where their consumers are spending their time online and uncover the means in which they can organically connect with them in ways that are already integrated into their online and at home interests and habits.
In the interest of uncovering new content that one can apply specifically to this industry and things that, as marketers, should continue to be curious about, I took a closer dive into some recent podcasts that I believe every creative thinker (and person who is generally curious about the world), should consider giving a quick listen:
Hidden Brain – As a psychology major and someone who is perpetually fascinated by the way people behave, this podcast immediately stood out to. It truly makes you look at consumer behaviour in a different light, which can inform your strategic approach to connecting with them. Hidden Brain uses science and storytelling to reveal the unconscious patterns that drive human behaviour, the biases that shape our choices, and triggers that direct the course of our relationships. Not only does it showcase entertaining topics of interest, but it also provides helpful insights that can be applied at home and in the workplace.
Notable Episode: The Edge Effect – This particular episode features social scientist Adam Galinsky, who makes a striking link between diversity and creativity, the transformative impact of learning about other cultures, and what steps we can take to continue to think outside the box.
Under the Influence – A CBC Radio podcast, Under the Influence explores the changing world of marketing. From discussing brand colours to jingles to celebrities in advertising to how Super Bowl Sunday saved the avocado – this podcast touches upon the topical factors that impact marketers and consumers alike, while taking the listener on a backstage journey of the nuances of the advertising world and the challenges that face our ever changing industry.
Notable Episode: How Tourism Survives a Tragedy – What does a city do when it’s number one source of revenue is compromised due to a massive crisis? From a fluke protocol update that allowed Las Vegas to channel the love and support that visitors gave to the city to how Toronto overcame the negative impact of its SARS outbreak in 2002, this episode illustrates through case studies how cities have overcome these tragedies to reinstate their tourism through crisis plans, responsiveness, and the right communications approach.
99% Invisible – For those in the creative industry, this podcast is all about the unnoticed architecture and design that shapes our world. Its goal is to expose the unseen and overlooked aspects of design, architecture, and world activity. From why Sigmund Freud opted for a couch over an armchair to origin stories of the fortune cookie to how Barney got mixed up in the design of the Toronto Raptors jersey in the 1990s – each episode focuses on a single topic of specific element of design, features interviews, and commentary from experts who have been personally influenced by the design.
Notable Episode: Interrobang – In this latest episode release, 99% Invisible explains the origin of punctuation focusing specifically on the use of the “questioning exclamation” and how it found its way into advertising. It even includes a small anecdote on how a Chief Judge drew some unintentional attending to a case ruling because of its usage. While not directly tied to a particular trend or industry observation, it may just make you stop and reflect on the importance of punctuation the next time you end a sentence with a “?!”. Interestingly, the second half of the episode drew me in even further diving into the origin of the hashtag and its evolution from a touch tone dial button to its ever-pervasive use on social media today.
The range of topics and genres within podcasts has become so vast you can now find podcasts on virtually anything that piques your interest. For myself, I’m admittedly a true crime junkie (any fellow Murderinos out there?), and shamelessly on occasion will indulge in a little reality tv banter about everyone’s favourite dating show. But this recent exploration of new podcasts that tap into insights and topics relevant to marketers and creative thinkers has, at least for myself, uncovered a new world of content that I, for one, plan to keep tuning into week to week.
Stay tuned for more podcast recommendations as I continue to share new audible territories worth lending your ear to!