Vodcasts Vs Podcasts

Podcasts exploded in 2020, it is likely the third step change for podcasts.

1st Chapter:
The first was listening on the go on your desktop or your iPod.

2nd Chapter:
The second was around 2018 when there was an explosion in better bluetooth headphones (many suggest it was the AirPods that gave podcasts another explosion)

3rd Chapter:
The third, better tech, cheaper tech, actively choosing your own time while C19 happened.

Podcasts, in essence, are straightforward and simple tech, typically powered by public RSS and able to be syndicated across the world in a matter of minutes. Despite a more recent movement towards gated podcasts and private RSS feeds, we are seeing popularity spike.

Eyes Vs Ears

One point a few people have made is we are inundated with visual content (content for the eyes) but we can decide what goes into our ears (Aural content). Video requires two senses, audio tends to need only one.

Why Popular Now?

The joy of podcasts is often the conversation, the simplicity of Q&A and hearing people discuss topics as experts.

The audio space is expanding rapidly, voice notes, voice assistance, voice search, podcasts, vodcasts, music, radio, audiobooks (aka audible).

Podcast’s still divides people, you are either a podcast listener or you don’t like podcasts.

You will often know a podcaster as they will tell you or like me be able to recommend a podcast for any given topic. I can recommend numerous within seconds.

What Is Winning?

Daily’s and regular shows people can listen as episodes or look forward to, daily’s are based around the news or a very specific niche.
Daily’s are harder to create and require quick turnarounds vs longer editing times on longer shows. Charts like this will be a good guide

Vodcasts aka Video podcasts

Vodcasts grew massively across 2020, why? The technology shift, the ability to record and publish has never been so easy.

Why do we love vodcast?

It is how we are wired as humans, in 2020, we have had less interaction, but as humans we have a few safety measured baked into us to enable our survival. We look for cues, we look for how people interact and react and we feel a connection. These are all areas why vodcasts are having their moment.

Zoom for sure made it easier, but platforms like Instagram Live, YouTube, LinkedIn and Vimeo all made it almost frictionless to hit post and publish conversations between a few minutes and in other cases over two hours.

Business Casual Podcast – Gary Vee & Kinsey Grant

This is a great example of how what was a podcast has been turned into a vodcast by using tools like Zoom and Squadcasts.

Most known example: The Joe Rogan Experience is the most famous example of a vodcast, 2-3 hours of two people talking, moving over to Spotify is a clear sign of how popular a presenter and guest vodcast can be. Joe was smart in releasing it into snippet format, YouTube clips and also releasing the full audio version (podcast) for free.

FWIW: Spotify brought the exclusive licence to Joe Rogan’s podcast for north of $100m. It is Spotify’s most popular podcast but not everyone is happy about it, especially his fans. Exclusive is good for the podcasters/host not so good for the fans built on platforms.

Vodcast Over Podcast

Here is a brilliant example of when to put a vodcast out over a podcast. Rio Ferdinand appears on comedian and presenter Mo Gilligan’s podcast, you see the vibe, the energy and the connection when you watch this vs just listening.

Rio Ferdinand & Mo Gilligan Podcast

If you are looking to make the shift or start a few things to consider:

  • In-person interviews with multiple camera’s works well
  • Zoom can be messy if more than one talks at a time
  • Guests can find it hard to answer questions with a camera, I struggle to focus in on the little green dot vs consider my answer
  • Many creators or hosts struggle to edit so really consider if the quality is up there and right for a vodcast, video podcasts will be filtered in coming months, like almost everything, quality will beat quantity

Consider watching or listening to my recent appearance on Re:Signal’s zoom podcasts How to move from a specialist marketing disciple to CMO.

Re:Signal Podcast With Me & Kevin Gibbons

Three good recommended follow up reads on podcasts

Blog growth marketing

4 Minutes of Brand Validation – Attest Performance Brand

Attest launched their Brand Performance book this week, it’s a great snackable guide to thinking like a performance marketer and applying to brand marketing.

Attest asked me to be part of the validate chapter, the TLDR validate is where you validate your idea with data and use test, learn, and iterate to refrain your brand or brand offering.

This week we ran a virtual launch party (yes it’s 2020 we did it virtually) and each author ran through and provided a teaser of their chapter. I had four minutes to introduce radio ads and my wider recommendation of audio as a pillar of you marketing plan in 2021.

It’s well worth reading my chapter’s co-author Anna Brook‘s section on how she applied this thinking to and why it was so important to their success.

My Chapters Background: Radio Ads

  • My section is focused around using an “old channel” in radio to validate our idea and build out a stronger brand presence
  • Why? We (JustGiving) needed to increase awareness of crowdfunding (aka peer to peer crowdfunding so that means money to friends, family, and community over charity) as a newer product offering for JustGiving
  • At the time JustGiving had 16-17 years history in the charity fundraising space (known for running a marathon, swimming or giving up drink for charities to receive the money) but not clearly in the crowdfunding space
  • It is hard to shift a long-serving brand product without a larger, further-reaching campaign on a broader network vs always-on campaigns that rely on keywords and knowing about a product or service.

Why Is Validate So Important?

  • Firstly it is essential to remember: Validation is an essential step to any marketing plan, whether you choose to use the insights or data or not.
  • Validation often allows you to fight battles you were not confident you could compete in, let alone battles you need to win
  • In many organisations if you do not get the results you hoped for at the first time – marketing tends to stop work on that campaign, this goes against what Marketing is and should be, allow validate to help you with this
  • For me Marketing is a test and learn discipline, you rarely get a big win the first time, this is what a performance brand and why the performance book is going to be useful.
  • Anna’s example is a great example because they revisited dogs mums a few times to get closer, more refined, and rolled out a powerful brand campaign that the customers wanted and the brand were happy with and aligned with their mission.

A Chapter Teaser… Why Radio?

  • Over 20 million people in the UK listen to the radio daily
    • RAJAR data (worth a read here) will really help you understand the size, reach, and the stations that are powerful
  • Radio enables you to:
    Target the right people at ‘pivotable moments’ (driving, listening to while making dinner, in the shower etc) to take them from: 
    Need state (need to do something about x but can’t decide which or what platform) ➡️ action state (I have to take the action and create a page and raise money).
  • We leveraged national radio ads to target our core demographics in need state (need to do something about a situation that is close to me) to tip them into action state (I have to take action about this problem)
  • We had the opportunity to test multiple ads but doing the research and trusting our partners’ data and having confidence in our idea, we ran in multiple slots we optimised for and targeted
  • The ad was finely tuned (the chapter really breaks down the campaign), we were supplied data and slots and we saw a very successful campaign. Based on data, trust, confidence.
  • It really did work, this was my favourite campaign and I would always look to target radio as an alternative channel to big bang campaigns
  • You could ignore & not run the validate phase, the campaign or idea can still work BUT chances are you wouldn’t have been signed off by 99.9% of company’s leadership teams or an ROI focused CMO
  • The famous example who ignored validate (or went against it) was Red Bull.
    • Red Bull actively ignored all data point and launched and starting a new category disrupted the fizzy drink industry and create (a new) energy drink category.
    • I would say in 2021 this would be thrown out of the meeting and the board rooms instantly. Let’s say this is where validate could make and break concepts and ideas

Remember in most businesses the CFO is the decision maker…
Data is the CFO’s favourite currency, they like to pair it with ROI and ROAS”

Two Motto’s To Help Guide You

I have two sayings:
  1. Always be marketing, Always be auditing

This is a motto that I have applied for years, as you always need to market but you need to committed to finding and discovering the best marketing via data and validation.

Validating what you do falls into marketing and auditing. At any point, you should be able to revisit and refresh your approach. Use this approach to keep you on track and enable you to demonstrate to senior leaders this is really well optimised and thought through thoroughly.

2. Head, Heart, Gut (Marketers)

Head, heart, gut is another one of my saying that applies to stress testing and pushing out marketing or growth campaigns,

🧠 Head is the data driven approach, the modern day marketing approach. Often marketers have relied heavily on the head.
Why? The data is there = you execute that tactic, campaign, or channel, it is almost too obvious to do that action or not to do it.

💖 Heart is the data isn’t definitely supporting it (say 70% there) but I am going to put my all into this and it will work by being creative, working on the area’s that didn’t show up in the data or the numbers, and work channels harder and smarter. Hand crank.

💪 Gut, my gut is saying just because there isn’t data we are going to prove it wrong and will put everything in it to make it work and deliver something unbelievable, this is the campaigns people love to work on and I believe wins awards.

Of course, data and insight is core to stress testing but when the data isn’t quite there or you don’t quite get the results, here is a process to think about:

Review it ➡️ audit it ➡️ tweak it ➡️ go again and ➡️ go harder,

That gut reaction is often the best signal and power that drives you in your career and makes something successful.

A Bigger Concept To Takeaway

🎧 Audio Is A Pillar Of A Performance Brand 🎙

  • “Audio” has always been an underrated medium.
  • From Radio ➡️ to more modern-day Podcasts ➡️ to the much-discussed less evolved than expected voice search and voice assistant space.
  • Audio will continue to be an essential part of the performance brand, especially gaining trust in the validate section.
  • Remember: in almost all businesses in 2020/2021 Marketing budgets and spends are going to go to what you have most certainty in working, so validate is going to be essential
  • Why Audio as a category?
    • Think more than just radio, be inspired by:
      • Podcasts
      • Radio
      • Audiobook
      • Voice Notes
      • Voice Search
      • Voice Assistants
      • & Music
    • All of these channels and the majority of learnings still apply to audio
  • The connection to audio is well documented and well worth leveraging:
    • Easy to remember (repetition is marketing’s 101)
    • An additional connection to the hosts
      • Guest reads are deliberate and highly demanded
    • You feel like you know the host and their personality
    • Audio is habitual, it’s one of the strong habits we have, from background music, to podcasts on our walks, to listening to our favourite DJ on a station

If you have any questions about performance brands and why radio works, drop me an email, DM on LinkedIn or DM on Twitter.

Don’t forget to…

Blog growth marketing

Marketing & Growth Podcasts Worth Listening To

As a big podcast fan and listener, I am often asked for recommendations and podcasts well worth listening to:

Let’s Talk Marketing – great guests and in-depth discussions around Marketing and making it work for businesses of all sizes.

Shiny New Object – a Marketing Podcast – short-form podcast from UK businesses typically from not just the biggest and most well-known agencies and in-house companies. Worth a listen if you want to hear stories on campaigns and learnings

Campaign podcast – Campaign magazine is worth listening to if you want to hear about advertising campaigns and Marketing leaders take’s

Math & Magic: Stories from the Frontiers of Marketing with Bob Pittman – Probably my favourite American podcast as blends great and influential long term Marketing leads and well known guests.

The Breakout Growth Podcast – More B2B growth focused, focuses in diving into business models and lessons. I personally enjoy the level of detail and how you take the guest lessons and 90% have something you can apply within your business

Pivot – Not just Marketing, dives into power, politics (don’t worry it’s entertaining and intelligent), the stock market and how brands are doing well or making stupid mistakes. Kara Swisher and Prof G are probably the best podcast duo out there

The Prof G Show with Scott Galloway – 45 – 60-minute pods with super-smart guests, taking numerous powerful topics and questioning how industries are likely to change. If you like opinions and humour Prof G is for you.

Courier Media (Magazine) – Has some of the most interesting stories from startups and smaller businesses facing challenges or thriving in the DTC world. Warning pod is likely going to make you create something yourself

Content Makers – Beth’s podcasts always have great guests and offers a different take on great content and what it means it create great content from across all Marketing disciplines (Marketing, advertising, PR, Social Media, SEO etc)

And importantly don’t forget My Podcast Interview With Beth Gladstone,


My Digest Articles

A friend of my Ed Vinicombe has launched his new start up The Digest and it’s a content great platform around inspiring content and content to make you question what you are doing and how to improve. I have written a number of articles for The Digest and here are my first round of articles for you to read.

Start your own venture
My top 10 tips if you are looking to develop your own venture or go out on your own ? 10 tips on starting your own venture

Here are my tips on free blogging platforms ? Free blogging and publishing platforms you and your business can choose from

Content Marketing
In typical marketing style here are my top 5 content marketing predictions My top 5 content marketing predictions and the trends you should leverage in 2016

Business advice articles
My personal favourite article The simple 21 questions you should ask to understand your audience(s)

The task every manager should do The manager breakdown task

You know I love podcasts but here are my top podcasts My secret advantage: podcasts

The list of business books you should read The business books that helped my career


Content Marketing Podcast with Render Positive

I was invited to be interviewed for Render Positives third video podcast. I really enjoyed their original podcast with ad legend Rory Sutherland (definitely check out his interview) and was great to be involved in this podcast.

My interview was just over an hour (kindly edited by the RP team) and covers:

  • Content marketing and my love for it
  • Becoming a “habit” in 2015
  • Social Media and the impact it has
  • Creating KPI’s, tracking campaign success for content marketing
    • How to win/borrow budget from other teams
    • What I think should come to market in 2015
    • My desire for content distribution app
  • My thoughts on top publications including VICE, Daily Mirror and Daily Mail
  • The future of apps
  • “New and popular” Social Networks:
    • Why instagram and Pinterest are great social networks and why they are going to be important for businesses this year
    • How to use Snapchat as a business and why you can
  • Behavioural Economics


As this was the first time I have been involved with a video podcast it was a really interesting experience and hope you enjoyed the video, if you would like the full transcript please jump over to the render positive post.

Please let me know what you think or if you agree with any of my points.

If you did not already see it my latest conference deck from #SearchLondon might really interest you.