A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

How newspaper publishers could embrace podcasts in partnership with newsagents in Australia

Now that podcasting is mainstream (thanks to the blessing this week from Apple – 1,000,000 consumers signed up for podcasts in 48 hours), newspaper publishers in Australia could embrace the technology which is sensitive to the unique newspaper distribution network in Australia.

In addition to embracing the podcast models of overseas newspapers where stories are available from their websites, they could also create podcasts for playing in newsagencies.

Given that many of Australia’s 4,600 newsagencies have computers and in store sound systems publishers, in partnership with newsagents could:

  • Publish podcasts which preview background pieces and other timeless items in the next day’s paper. It would be a cinch to download the content and add it to a play list for the day in store. It connects newsagents, consumers and publishers in embracing the technology and provides relevance for the existing channel.
  • Publish podcasts which update stories covered in the newspaper that day.
  • Publish items which promote features in the newspaper that day.
  • Use the newsagencies as a point of feedback. Maybe consumers could record live feedback for newspapers or provide email feedback? Using the newsagency as a public and local face of the newspaper. This local connect is being used well by some US regional newspapers.
  • A good example might be a sound bite from an interview in the newspaper. This adds value to the newsagency visit and makes the story in the newspaper more interesting.

    Each of these podcasts should be short and made for broadcast in a retail environment. They should respect that the publishers are in someone else’s space and therefore not clog them with advertising. The whole idea is to make the product on sale in the store more interesting by providing another dimension to it.

    Podcasting is a means by which stories can be quickly and easily published and with the network of newsagent outlets across the country and publishers working together it could help revitalise the news connect newsagents have with consumers.

    Newsagents consider themselves specialist retailers and it’s time, in this world of so many new and low cost publishing and mobile access options that we embraced the opportunities to demonstrate out specialisation.

    I’d certainly embrace broadcasting podcasts from newspaper publishers in my shop as a means of driving sales.


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