Dallas, TX (June 19, 2007)–According to new research from The Diffusion Group, 11 percent of adult broadband users (some 12 million US consumers) listen to podcasts at least once per month. TDG’s latest report on new media usage, Podcast Usage Profiles and Demand Forecasts thru 2012, predicts that by 2012, this number will grow to 24 percent of broadband users (38.5 million Americans).
TDG identifies two specific factors that are keeping a lid on usage: (1) podcasting continues to be perceived as too complex for average consumers to use, and (2) they remain unaware of the quantity and quality of content available for podcast consumption.
“Despite the fact that the Oxford University Press selected ‘podcast’ as Word of Year in 2005, most consumers have a very poor understanding of the medium or the variety of content available for consumption by podcast,” said Dale Gilliam III, director of primary research and author of the report. This lack of understanding, notes Gilliam, is due primarily to the multiplicity of ways in which pundits and marketers have used the term.
Gilliam continues: “At the end of the day, the way consumers come to understand a new medium such as podcasting will strongly determine the types of experiences and value they attribute to the concept. When those in the business of articulating and promoting this new medium use language inconsistently, the power of the concept to attract and engage users is diluted.”
The report also finds that among those that listen to podcasts at least once per month, 68 percent use a portable device while 49 percent listen on a PC (an interesting insight given that many define podcasting as only a portable medium). On average, users listen to 5.4 podcasts per month on a portable device and 4.7 on a PC; those who subscribe to podcast services are signed up for 4.1 different feeds; and 70 percent of users rely on iTunes to access podcasts.
The Diffusion Group