The Production Room was founded in 1995 as one of the first full time digital commercial recording facilties on the central coast of California. We started with 4 stereo tracks, 16 mb of ram and a 250 mb hard drive. A lot has happened since then. Today we're focusing on ways to serve clients who are creating web based media content. This includes strategic planning to integrate the benefits of traditional media, web design and IT solutions into new programs produced especially for on-line consumers. Join in the conversation. Throw rocks at glass houses. Share your vision of the future. This is the most progressive time in the media arts since Johannes Gutenburg invented movable type!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Podcasts: Communication, Branding or Marketing?

What the heck IS a podcast.

I honestly thought I knew. Generally, podcasts are described in technical terms and defined by how they are distributed. Podcasts are usually represented as low tech messages or program content that are subscribed to or downloadable online. Like blogging.

But that isn't actually what a podcast is to the communicator or the listener and they are the only two parties that matter in this equation.

We are working in a medium created by technicians. We need to start defining our terms better. To start with I recently found that it's important to define what a podcast DOES.

I had designed a podcast project that would include informal interview style Q&A with the client which I would minimally edit into a simple audio program structure: intro, body, conclusion, close. Nice and clean.

We tried it. The client didn't like it. They felt it didn't represent them. Ironic since they had spoken every word themselves. But it was a predictable result.

Any Company, Individual or Commercial entity that has invested in creating a brand identity will not allow anyone to muck about with some half arsed effort at ad-libbing lamely through a podcast about who they are or what they do.

So Podcasting is on the road to becoming just like other "Reality Programs". That means highly produced, tightly controlled and structured to look and sound informal. In the process, goals are defined, ideas are focused, communication is direct and brand identity is protected.

There's a lot more to this than meets the ear, and I'll have more to share about this very soon. Right after the client hears our revised program.

And by the way, shouldn't you be subscribing to this blog?

3 comments:

Darryl Pearce said...

In printed material, there are significant and self-evident differences among ...say, graffiti, stickie-notes, index-cards, and books.

With the advent of hyperlinking, technology allowed them all to point at each other... and now even if they are different media. Some to sell (see Aqua Teen Hunger Force lightbrights and Boston), some to elucidate (see Talking Points Memo), some to rouse the rabble (Michelle Malkin).

In many comment strings, folks point off to internet video, sound, and other obscure sources--and for a guy like me (whose mind wanders relentlessly) it's great!

In business, choose any two: good, fast, cheap.

In politics, choose any two: honesty, support, intelligence

In media, what are our choices? And how are they limited?

John Quimby said...

Billy Pearl and Ken Levine produced a documentary in the early 70's about top 40 radio. They described one format as being a, "synthesis of MacLuhan and Pavlov". Brilliant.

The medium is the message and you hit them with the message just as many times as you possibly can.

Today I think we're coming back to public speech as the medium - amplified by technology and colored by style.

Darryl Pearce said...

What's a podcast...?

Some stuff here:

http://www.boingboing.net/2007/06/20/rule_the_web_show_da.html

~ ~ ~

Word verification: wpqbzl

wpqbzl?!

...man, is that hard on somebody with dyslexia.