While most public relations practitioners appear to be infatuated with the blogosphere, corporate podcasting could be lower hanging fruit.
According to a wave.3 [PDF], a global study by Universal McCann, the number of podcast listeners in the United States more than doubled in the last year and a half. During the same period in the United States, blog readership declined 2 percent and membership to social networks grew 3 percent.
That doesn’t mean blogging and social networking aren’t important, but it does mean the blogosphere and social networks have become crowded, busy and saturated. It also means blogs and social networks are among the most competitive new media communications channels to engage constituents through.
Podcasting, on the other hand, represents a far less competitive new media channel. Public relations podcasting initiatives can whisper in the ears of an influential, outspoken audience of brand ambassadors, compelling listeners to serve as word-of-mouth agents, repeating what they hear to their friends and family, and unfortunate as it may be, the source from which information comes is often seen as more important than the information itself.