Sunday, April 30, 2006

Who's Listening to Podcasts?

According to a recent InfoWeek article citing Forrester Research,"Only one percent of online households in the United States regularly download podcasts from a PC to portable media players.... Nevertheless, interest remains high, and people are expected to use the technology more in time."

By the end of this year, Forrester projects 700,000 U.S. households will listen to podcasts and by 2010, the number will soar to 12.3 million.

But bear in mind that this report focuses on the average consumer. What about technologists, who are more likely early adopters of technologies such as podcasting?

InfoWorld has tried to tackle that question with a survey by Palmer Research. Palmer surveyed 1253 respondents, of which 706 downloaded a podcast in the past six months. Over a third of the respondents had downloaded a podcast in the last month. The survey was conducted from February 23 through March 2, 2006.

To give credit where due, this data is from a presentation by Paul Calento, VP of marketing and research, InfoWorld -- paul_calento@infoworld.com.

The group rated podcasts as the second most favorite IT information resources (on a 7 point scale):
  • IT publication rated 5.37 (mean)
  • Podcast rated 4.96
  • Email newsletters rated 4.81
  • Blogs rated 3.96
The respondents' job functions broke out as follows:
  • 65.8% -- IT/Networking
  • 25.3% -- Business management
  • 8.9% -- Other
They represented the following industries:
  • 42.4% -- General Business
  • 28.1% -- Computer Related/Consultants
  • 19.3% -- Government & Education
  • 10.1% -- Other
How long should a podcast run? (A really useful question!)
  • 34% -- 10-19 minutes
  • 22% -- 6-9 minutes
  • 20% -- 4-5 minutes
  • 18% -- over 20 minutes
It wouldn't be accurate to say podcasts are all the rage, but clearly they're a valuable and influential part of the mix for the technology audience.


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