The first question we must answer is, “What is a podcast?” According to Wikipedia, a podcast is “a series of digital media files (either audio or video) that are released episodically and downloaded through web syndication.” In English, a podcast is simply an audio or video file that you can listen to or watch via the internet. One website described a podcast as nothing more than a blog on a personal level. Podcasts are becoming the alternative to traditional written blogs. Many podcasts can be accessed through ITunes or a podcast directory. Anyone can create a podcast by using websites such as PodOmatic and Hipcast.
The question now is, “What do podcasts have to do with public relation?” The answer is everything. Students can learn from them. Professors can teach using them. Professionals can promote their company through them. Podcasts are a way for students and average people to keep up-to-date on public relations issues. By following PR professionals’ podcasts, students can stay in the know on issues that may affect them after graduation. Many seminars and conferences now are producing a podcast version so those who are unable to attend can still benefit from the information.
Traditional written blogs are transitioning into podcasts. In many areas, people would rather listen to an audio or watch a video rather than sit down and read a blog. If following instructions or steps, audio and video can be more beneficial because they actually show the steps being done rather than just listing them out. I also agree that podcasts are more personal than blogs. It is one thing to read what a person wrote but when you hear their voices or watch them do something; it is as if you are there with them. People always say they want to be heard. Podcasts are the way to make that happen.