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The Rise of Podcasts

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Podcasts have become a major form of popular media all over the globe. A recent study conducted by Statista shows that one of the world’s largest podcast hosting services hosted just under 70,000 podcasts and reached 6.9 billion podcast downloads worldwide in 2019. Podcasting services can be found on practically every topic imaginable whether it be sports, economics, religion, and many more. It seems like everybody who is anybody wants to or has created a podcast about something they are passionate about in their day-to-day lives. Of course, with the increase in podcast production, viewership has risen tremendously in the past. In general, why have podcasts become so popular and what about them makes them so attractive to listeners?

Podcasts are excellent ways for the common person to learn and gain perspective on a plethora of fields. Often the most popular podcasts in a particular field feature individuals who are widely known for their success in a particular field or skill. Furthermore, the hosts then invite guests who are also prominent within that field to allow for a beautiful and fruitful conversation for the viewers to be a part of- and this is the essence of what makes podcasts so unique and popular. The common person does not have access to these prominent individuals within their fields of interest, so listening to a podcast in which they can receive direct knowledge and advice from a terrific role model is one of the most beneficial things that modern technology can offer. The opposite side of this equation is also true; many individuals who have achieved success want to share their stories of success. The marketability of podcasts in conjunction with the modern consumer’s heavy interest in audio/video content allows for more success in podcasts.

Podcasts give an opportunity for prominent individuals from a wide variety of practices and studies the ability to share their stories with others in a concise and meaningful way. Some of the world’s most popular podcasts, such as The Joe Rogan Experience on Spotify, tend to focus on high-quality guest appearances to gain viewership. Many individuals watch The Joe Rogan Experience strictly to hear from guests that are on his show. This is of course not the say that guests are the only factor in successful podcasts, but they can play a major role.