By Rex Hammock
The first time I wrote about podcasting was 14 years ago, on September 29, 2005, on RexBlog.com. The day before, a Google search for the word “podcasts” turned up only 24 results. “I can see magazines, associations, churches, schools and companies utilizing podcasting to distribute regular audio content to their audiences,” I wrote. In other words, I was enthusiastic about the future of podcasting. And, despite a constant stream of predictions from “experts” that “podcasting is dead” (not to be confused with podcasts about death), I still believe the golden age of customer-focused podcasting is before us.
By that, I mean the kind of podcasting that is intended to make customers smarter in a way that adds value to the product or service that a customer purchases from a seller.
My favorite new podcast is a prime example of what I mean: Adobe’s Wireframe is a podcast about user experience and design hosted by Khoi Vinh, Adobe’s principal designer. Rather than focus on the nuts and bolts of Adobe products (the company has plenty of tutorials and training for that), Wireframe explores the critical role of design in our lives.
And because Wireframe has the same high level of production value that you find on podcasts from sources like NPR, each episode exposes listeners to the power of audio as a narrative tool that can turn interviews into riveting stories.
Here’s how Vinh describes it (and as a listener, what has made it a go-to for me):
“We wanted to elevate the discussion around design so that it’s treated with the same seriousness, thoughtfulness and sense of fun as any general interest subject matter—arts, culture, technology, sports etc. It’s surprisingly uncommon to hear or read about design in this manner, as we’re much more accustomed to how-to tutorials or inside-baseball articles. It’s much rarer to find stories about design that are exhaustively researched and fact-checked, that are produced to professional broadcasting standards, and that take a ‘big picture’ view of the impact of our craft. And it’s no wonder why; each episode of ‘Wireframe’ took dozens of hours of research, writing, recording, editing and production.”
Takeaway: As we’ve often said, the most valuable form of marketing with customer media and content is that which focuses on helping a customer become better at what they do, not the kind that focuses primarily on hyping a marketer’s product. Wireframe illustrates what we mean. And it’s a great inspiration for those who want to build a deeper, longer relationship with their customers.
Image: Getty Images
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