Internet researcher eMarketer forecasts that the total US audience for podcasts could reach 25 million by 2008, and perhaps 50 million by 2010. “The total audience for podcasts has shown meteoric growth, particularly in the US,” says Mike Chapman, eMarketer Editorial Director and author of the new Podcasting: Who’s Tuning In? report. “The active listening audience is much smaller, but it is still set to grow rapidly.”
A year ago, many people had not even heard of podcasting. Yet the number of podcast listeners who have ever listened to or watched a podcast is projected to top 10 million this year and reach 50 million by 2010. Today, many major media outlets, as well as thousands of individuals all over the Web, have their own podcasts, ensuring that niche markets and interest groups are well served.
However, many of these podcast listeners are one-time users, according to the new report. The key to increased spending in this new medium is for these one-time listeners to become regular, active podcast listeners. eMarketer forecasts that the active podcast audience in the US can be expected to reach 3 million this year, 7.5 million in 2008 and 15 million in 2010.
“Podcasting is not set to become a new mass-market venue, at least for the next half decade,” says eMarketer’s Mr Chapman. “By way of comparison, US broadcast radio still reaches close to 200 million Americans.”