The US TV Guide has launched a podcast, TV Guide Talk, which they say provides: “inside scoop, off-beat opinions and answers to your questions about the latest entertainment headlines, the hottest TV shows, the newest movies and the biggest celebrities in this weekly Podcast”.
The TV Guide folks are engaging with their audience by inviting feedback on stories listeners want to hear in future podcasts.
Okay, so here we have a magazine creating audio content and making it available at no cost. Currently, the content is like a segment of the magazine, a story if you will. Mediocre production values which I am sure will improve if they see consumer acceptance of their experiment. Advertiser support will follow.
If they improve content and production and if technology continues to evolve to make podcast access easier (and it will), the TV Guide experiment will become their preferred method of getting their brand to consumers. Podcasts, like magazines, are, for the publisher, the delivery mechanism for advertising. They cut out the traditional news and information supply chain.
Given easy access to TV Guide like program schedules online and more up to date than the printed product and the launch now of these podcasts it is reasonable to wonder about the implications for the magazine and those who sell the magazine. There will be a tipping point. Itâ€™s a way off but how far off is anyoneâ€™s guess. That they are playing in this space is proof that they can see a tipping point. Maybe the magazine will morph as a result into something offering more reflective content which lends itself to existing only in print whereas the podcasts will be about more immediate news.
Still no major print media company in Australia playing in the podcast space.