I'm really glad this topic came up because I think people don't always consider all the ramifications of podcasting for marketing. Beyond marketing your podcast itself (meaning your show), the technology can be used for myriad applications to help drive revenue or traffic.
For instance, you can create Podcast Audio Press Releases for your show. These are essentially like promos, but created to model the traditional press release format to appeal to a wider audience of folks who may not get podcasting. It's easy to see a number of traditional print press releases by going to any major corporation and looking for their "media/PR/or news" areas. Click on a press release and study the format. It's essentially just a title that grabs you plus three or four paragraphs about a new product/service. For podcasters, you could announce an anniversary show or a special guest. Again, I realize people are doing this with promos, but the point is to reach folks who haven't adopted podcasting with a format that they'll understand.
Another area that podcasters can use for marketing is marketing their skills as Podcast Consultants. I believe Rob Walch and Mur Lafferty talk about this in their excellent, "Tricks of the Podcasting Masters." I also feature a number of Podcast Consultant profiles on my site (http://podcasting.about.com
) Although I certainly understand/respect a podcaster who does not want to deal with corporations to help them create podcasts for artistic reasons, there are a number of great firms out there producing really fun material that helps consumers. GE is a great example. They have a recent podcast where they also demonstrate excellent marketing prowess in that they created a MySpace profile for one of the fictional characters in their podcast ("Ellie the Elephant.")
Anyway, the point here is that as a podcaster you can market yourself by setting up a website and posting some of your shows that show off your work well. Then send out press releaeses (audio and traditional) to either local businesses or big corporations you want to target. Get to know their product/service and pitch them on a couple of specific ideas. Then if you get to meet with someone from their firm chat about their needs and assess how much to charge. In my opinion, for a five episode podcast where you create all the branding (tags/intro's/out's, etc.) you should charge at least $2-$3,000. If that seems like a lot, don't forget that your client will be able to keep the MP3's you create for them and the music/copy you create will become their branding. Creating this kind of intellectual property for a company is big-it's the equivalent to creating a logo and $2-$3K is a STEAL for these people.
-And if you're making money helping firms create value-add, entertaining shows (created with good production values, etc.) you won't have to worry as much about finding sponsors or putting ads in your main podcast. Or you can do both and have multiple revenue streams. But by targeting corporate folks you're also helping to spread the adoption of podcasting which is the main type of marketing I'm focusing on right now.
Hope this helps and thanks for the great poll.
John C. Havens
About.com Guide to Podcasting