Podcast vs YouTube: Which One Should You Start & What Lasts?
Recently, podcasts and YouTube videos have been on the rise. More and more people realize their vast benefits - especially the passive income that you can earn. Are you are a content creator for your business or starting a personal brand? Are you wondering which is better - podcast vs. youtube? Then let me help you decide on this post. I’ll present to you the advantages and disadvantages I’ve experienced in each medium, so you can choose what’s right for you.
First, let’s talk about Podcasting.
A podcast is much like a TV program with a series of episodes except that they’re only audio episodes. Each episode is a digital audio file or a recording that may be streamed or downloaded from a website or other platforms.
A quick trivia: the word “podcast” came from the words “iPod” and “broadcast”. Ben Hammersley first mentioned it in an article for The Guardian in 2004.
Here are some key advantages and disadvantages:
Start with little equipment.
Since you only need to create an audio file, you need fewer pieces of equipment compared to creating a Youtube video. For a podcast, you just need a good microphone and a laptop. Over time, you can add more equipment like an audio recorder, a boom arm, a pop filter, and a shock mount. In a previous post, I cover how you can start a podcast for as little as $500 and have fantastic quality sound from episode one.
Multiple platforms mean multiple audiences.
With podcasts, you can choose from several platforms to share your content. Some heavy hitters include Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Alexa, and many more. Choose one that best suits your needs and would reach your target audience. But, to get a wider reach, leverage as many platforms as possible.
Versatility works to your advantage.
One of the most significant advantages of a podcast is that your audience can easily stream or download podcast episodes and listen to them at almost anywhere and anytime - while cooking at home, driving or commuting to work, during a workout, or when merely killing time. That means you can get large amounts of attention with useful, valuable content.
Here are a few hiccups to consider when running your podcast:
Friction between recording and publishing
The recording and editing of your audio file may be quite easy, especially if you have the skills and the right equipment. However, the challenge starts in setting-up. Unlike Youtube videos that may be uploaded directly to the website, podcasts need a host platform such as the Buzzsprout to upload your audio file to various streaming platforms mentioned above. For iTunes, there is at least 3-4 days processing period. There are other parts to navigate, including recording an intro, ad-rolls, editing video call interviews, and so on.
Sharing is caring...but difficult.
Since podcasts are available on various platforms, an interested listener may not be able to share your podcasts with others unless they have the same platform installed in their device. Some platforms are available only on iOS devices, so Android users will not be able to see the podcasts on these iOS platforms. So, as a creator, you would need to get your podcast listed on multiple platforms if you want to have a wider reach.
The fact that podcasts are only audio may also pose a disadvantage, especially for those who have a short attention span. Since there are no visuals, there’s a high tendency that the listener will suddenly tune out because of distractions.
Accurate tracking is difficult.
Since a podcast needs to be downloaded to the listener’s device, exact metrics are difficult. Downloads are a great measure, but how can you convert that metric into engagement and revenue? You can’t tell which part of your podcast resonated with the listener. Most times, you have to come up with your own success measures, especially from a Content Marketing perspective.
In 2005, YouTube changed the game for video creators. Now, anyone can publish video content and share it with the world. Compared to podcasts, Youtube has built up a massive audience - from kids to adults. It’s essentially become a search engine, second to Google itself.
YouTube is not only a great Content Marketing tool, but you can also create a personal branding business that could generate income for years to come.
Here are some advantages and disadvantages to consider:
Since Youtube is already in most devices and you may even access it directly in an internet browser, you would surely reach your target audience no matter what age they may be or what device they are using. YouTube receives hundreds of millions of views a day, so you have a built-in audience raring to go.
Since it has been around for long, its developers were already able to create algorithms to help its viewers. It suggests related videos that might personally appeal to the viewer. This increases the possibility that your target audience would see your video/channel. Since it’s a search engine, you can learn YouTube SEO to give yourself an edge in finding organic traffic.
Monetization in 2008 changed the game. With the right content, you can gain a following that will then bring you recurring income. YouTube videos will be monetized once you have a minimum of 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time. That may seem a lot when you’re just starting, but once you’ve put in the work, both views and monetization seem to snowball.
You can’t fake it
There’s a saying that goes, “give the people what they want.” While, in theory, that makes sense, if you’re not passionate about the subject, it won’t last. With YouTube, you’re putting yourself on camera for the world to see. If you aren’t talking about what drives you, people will notice, and you’ll burn out. YouTube works when you are your genuine self.
Needs a bit of an investment
As a podcast, you can start a YouTube channel with just a camera phone.
But soon, you’ll want to get some more equipment. The equipment can include a vlogging camera, tripod, lighting, and, eventually, some sort of background setup. These tools work for a basic home setup.
If you wish to do record videos outdoors, consider another outdoor camera, filters, and outdoor equipment.
The costs can rack up, but don’t let that deter you from starting. Quality of content will often trump the quality of the video.
Whatever content you decide to create, there’s a high probability that a similar video is already on Youtube. There are also several more established channels competing for your ideal audience’s attention. Fitness and food blogs are a typical example. As such, you need to be extra creative and unique so that your video will stand out among others. You also need to understand YouTube’s algorithms so your video will be favored over other similar videos.
YouTube stretches your skills and time.
Creating video content is difficult. At the base level, you need to be engaging and entertaining, with a clear outcome for each video. From there, you need editing skills, which can take hours per video at first. Over time, you’ll need to build lighting skills, consider B-rolls and audio, all stretching your skills, time, and money.
Both podcasts and YouTube have their pros and cons. We hope that our list above helped you weigh on which medium to use. At this point, you’d need to consider your content, skills, resources, and target audience for you to make the best choice.
Podcasts work best because they are easy to set up, you can still stay behind the scenes, and can establish you as a long-term expert. If you can attract an audience with just audio, you’re onto something.
YouTube gives excellent feedback from analytics, and you can start monetizing faster than podcasts. My advice; record your podcasts with video and upload them on YouTube! My Brutally Honest Podcast has garnered an audience from both video and audio. Start with a podcast then graduate to video.
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