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What is a Podcast Blog?

James Withers
James Withers

A podcast blog is a journal-style internet site that invites visitors to download frequently updated digital audio media. Often designed to imitate the format of a talk radio show, the podcasts featured in such a web log are usually uploaded with the aim of reaching a wide audience. Furthermore, visitors to such a site are often encouraged to subscribe to its content free of any charge.

Among the various uses for a podcast blog are storing an archive of an organization's recorded memos, functioning as a promotional tool for a musical act, or disseminating an infomercial designed to reinforce the claims of a written advertisement. Furthermore, text-to-speech tools such as Oidogo can be used to effectively convert written material into a podcast.

The term "podcast" serves as an acronym for the term "Personal On Demand BroadCAST", in addition to serving as a reference to the popular media player marketed by Apple named the iPod. Podcasts do not, however, require an iPod to be played.

Handheld MP3 player loaded with podcasts.
Handheld MP3 player loaded with podcasts.

Podcasts may be recorded via a variety of recording instruments, including microphones, cameras, MP3 players, and even telephones. While most podcasts are available for users to hear without a download, the download option is still commonly provided for those interested in saving a particular podcast.

Popular publishing platforms for a podcast blog are WordPress and Blogger, which are both free to use. However, blogs produced for a professional purpose may be produced via specialized platforms in order to permit a high degree of user control over site content. Thus, while few production costs may be incurred if one chooses to use a popular publishing platform, costs may increase depending on how much control a user cares to exert on site content.

Syndication is usually a vital component of a podcast blog. Bloggers frequently aspire to convert casual visitors into subscribers by encouraging listeners to receive updates through an RSS or Atom feed. Other ways to promote a podcast blog include offering visitors the ability to indirectly promote the site via embeddable links, as well as to publish a webcast in a video format on popular sites such as Youtube or Metacafe.

Through syndication, a podcast blog often gains increased viewership. As a result, the blog receives a higher search engine ranking, with the potential to draw more visitors. Thus, when paired with blogs podcasts may reach a larger audience than if published in a standalone format.

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Discussion Comments


@umbra21 - The technology isn't extremely expensive, but if anyone is thinking about starting a podcast they should still invest in at least a decent microphone. I've tried to listen to bad recordings before and no matter how good the content might be I'm just not going to sit through something I can hardly hear or understand.

A good microphone and an editing suite are the main things, although good voice actors wouldn't go astray either. There's a reason most of the top podcasts use professional actors and radio hosts on their shows.


@bythewell - I think part of the reason for the renaissance of podcast shows is that podcast technology is just so easy for people to get hold of and it's so much cheaper to make a radio show than even a short film. You can include any special effects you like as long as you can describe them with sound and words, but they can still have the spontaneity of a live show.


I have to confess that I always thought podcasts were a little bit silly, and weren't going to catch on. I mean, when you can take music everywhere on MP3 players and watch full television shows and movies on tablets and portable video players, there doesn't really seem to be a niche for radio-style shows any more. And if there is, it's more likely to be with live radio.

But I heard so much about a couple of different podcasts that I decided to give them a go and they are really good. It's nice being able to walk and listen to a story at the same time and some of the information I've discovered through podcasts has been very interesting.

I don't think they are for everyone, but I would recommend that people look up a podcast blog on a subject they like and see if it tickles their fancy.

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    • Handheld MP3 player loaded with podcasts.
      Handheld MP3 player loaded with podcasts.