April, Telum Media spoke to Yang Yi
, Co-founder and COO of JustPod
, on the development of JustPod and mainland China’s podcast industry. Joined by PRs and journalists throughout East Asia, Yi shared his thoughts on the qualities and advantages of podcasting and discussed how it can further connect with the PR and communications industry.
JustPod is positioned as a podcast company comprised of three key businesses, which are:
The Chinese podcast market and the audience
- Producing quality original podcast content;
- Providing audio services for companies;
- And as of 2023, helping Chinese companies going abroad to further develop their localised marketing communications strategies in Europe, the US and Southeast Asia through the podcast medium.
The number of podcast listeners in mainland China has been on the rise since 2019. In 2022, the number exceeded the 100 million mark.
The Chinese podcast audience is concentrated in tier-one cities, aged 22-35 and educated, with a certain degree of spending power, a positive attitude to life and curiosity.
Qualities and advantages of podcasts
Podcasts differ from traditional radio broadcast and talk shows in the following ways:
- Radio broadcast is in real-time, whereas podcasts can be listened to freely;
- Radio broadcast is a passive act of listening, whereas audiences possess greater autonomy in selecting podcast programmes;
- Radio broadcast depends on the channel itself, whereas podcasts can accommodate a wider range of content.
Compared to other mediums in the content market, podcasts have more vertical content and target specific audiences. Podcasts are also receiving increased media attention and have the potential to spark hot topics. Podcasters have a strong storytelling ability that can add a sense of “human touch” to their content. This presents brands with the opportunity to deliver a different message to their audiences.
Podcasts and communications
Based on the characteristics of podcasts and JustPod's practices in media and communications, Yi provided the typical ways through which PR professionals can collaborate with podcasters:
- Companies can do story pitches with existing podcast programmes;
- Companies can create branded podcasts, produce quality content and cultivate connections with listeners;
- Companies can also optimise podcast programmes for its internal communications.
During the Q&A section, Yi also answered queries from PRs regarding how to quantify benefits or ROIs on "podcast communications". Differentiating from news landing in a traditional media outlet or on a short-video platform, it's not easy to do maths on the communications effects from pitching with podcasts. However, this medium does have influence on PR and branding:
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- Podcasts are sources of creating conversation.
- Podcasts produce content that is difficult for brands themselves to generate, such as expanding on a topic’s themes, boundaries and values. Podcasters can work with brands to relate ideas that the brand itself is not able to say or is not in the position to say.