At least one analyst thinks that podcasting may be about to finally live up to the hype. MediaWeek is reporting that an analyst with eMarketer sees explosive growth for the podcasting arena, due to a new advertising platform that Google is yet to create.
eMarketer's James Belcher sees 500% growth in the podcasting advertising market over the next 4 years, from a base of $80 million in 2006, to $400 million by 2011. The catalyst for that growth, according to Belcher, will be Google's creation of an audio version of its AdSense advertising platform.
Steve Rubel makes the good point that most of that revenue will flow to podcasting networks and the more popular podcasters, thus missing many of the average casters. As I've said before, I think the bigger growth could come from simply making the entire creation process easier. Course when companies have the incentive to more easily monetize podcasts, they'll find ways to streamline the process and make it easier for wannabe podcasters to get started.
Another area that I think could be interesting to watch in the coming years is whether or not music labels will begin to move more or all of their catalogs into the 'podcast-safe' file. Giving podcasters the ability to promote their favorite music is of course a no-brain way to leverage social-media to empower music fans to become evangelists for their favorite artists.
The Viral Garden, Marketing, Podcasting