Webinars & Podcasts are go-to sources of marketing & communication for a plethora of businesses.
Here are some of the latest webinar and podcast statistics that prove the same.
- There are about 464.7 million podcast listeners worldwide as of February 2023. The number is expected to reach 504.9 million in 2024.
- As per the podcast index, more than 4,011,947 podcasts have been published online. This number will reach unexpected heights in the future.
- According to OptinMonster, 58% of marketers use webinars as a promotion tool.
- As per BrightTALK, 81% of professionals choose webinars over other forms of content for engagement & improvement.
In this blog, we will compare podcasts vs webinars based on some essential factors. So whether you are a student, a professional, a business owner, an entrepreneur, or simply someone looking to expand your knowledge, we will provide valuable insights into the world of webinars and podcasts.
Before we dive into that, let us look at the primary difference between webinars & podcasts.
What is the Difference Between a Webinar and a Podcast?
The primary difference between podcasts and webinar is that podcasts are available in the form of audio, and they are recorded. Whereas the webinar is an event taking place online in the form of a seminar. Hence, webinars can have live video & audio.
Podcasts are free and available on various popular apps like iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts, etc. Webinars can be free or paid, depending on the organizer. They are hosted on popular software like Zoom, WebinarPress, Livestorm, Zoho Meeting, GoToWebinar, WebinarJam, etc.
Webinar vs Podcast: A Detailed Comparison
Both webinars & podcasts are a form of digital media that is best for educating users, providing insights, and engaging well with the audience for your lead generation purpose. But they differ when we talk about the format.
Webinars are live events where a speaker or a bunch of panelists present information through video, slides, or screen sharing. They also conduct Q & A at the end of the section to increase interaction and engagement. A webinar is planned for a specific date & time. People who want to attend the webinar are requested to register the same ahead of time. Even though webinars are recorded live, various webinars are pre-recorded and can be viewed anytime in the future.
Conversely, podcasts are audio recordings that users can download from a wide range of platforms as needed. They are recorded live or pre-recorded and generally consist of one or more hosts making a deep conversation on an exciting topic or talking interviews. Podcasts are held on a specific day of every week, every month, etc., and users can subscribe to the podcasts and get notifications whenever a new podcast is available.
Talking about the webinars, they help you attract a relevant & targeted audience. How? Webinars typically require users to sign up and sometimes pay a fee, which can limit the audience to those willing and able to pay. However, this can also result in a more targeted and relevant audience, as those willing to pay will likely be more invested in the topic.
On the other hand, podcasts are free and widely available on various platforms, making them accessible to a larger audience. It would be beneficial for reaching a more comprehensive range of listeners. However, since podcasts are not typically gated, the audience may be less targeted and more general.
Webinars and podcasts both are suitable for engaging with the audience. However, they differ when we talk about audience engagement.
Webinars provide some of the best interaction features, like polls, Q&A sessions, chat rooms, etc., to ensure a maximum number of users get involved. The presenter can increase engagement during the session by responding to the questions & comments. The webinar includes various graphical representations like videos, images, slides, etc.
Conversely, podcasts are pre-recorded audio shows published online. Podcasts don’t provide the same level of interactivity as webinars but are an effective tool for engaging with the audience. Podcasts help you achieve interactivity with the help of storytelling, discussing exciting topics, and building emotional connections with the listeners. It doesn’t have any option that allows live interaction with the audience. But podcasts focus on garnering loyal audiences through their informative format.
A webinar can be free or paid. There are a number of people who are ready to pay to attend a webinar. You can monetize the webinar by showing various ads. You can also promote products & services, share affiliate links during the session, and generate money.
On the contrary, podcasts are usually free. People refrain from paying to listen to podcasts as they don’t have a chance to interact with the speaker face-to-face. However, similar to a webinar, you can also monetize your podcasts through ads, and affiliate links, promote products or services to sell, and offer paid access to some exclusive content.
Webinars are generally longer as they offer more comprehensive information about the topic. Various polls and Q&A sessions are happening in a webinar to increase length and engagement.
Comparatively, podcasts have smaller lengths, and it is possible to consume them in bite-size chunks. Some popular podcasters like Joe Rogan and Tim Ferris prefer to have longer podcasts.
Webinars are conducted for a specific set of audiences. To conduct a webinar, you must do effective marketing to ensure it reaches the potential audience. If you don’t do marketing, it will not reach a larger audience, and you will miss the chance to interact with the audience.
In the case of podcasts, you need to build your audience over a period of time. The more subscribers your podcast has, the more sponsorship opportunities you have. You don’t have to worry about listeners prior to recording the podcasts. Moreover, it is a low-risk venture where you don’t require a lot of time, money, and resources to build podcasts.
Besides this, it’s okay if you don’t do marketing and people don’t show up, as you can do marketing anytime (excluding podcasts with time-sensitive topics, like the latest cricket news).
Regarding webinars, you can get immediate feedback from the users with the help of Q&As and discussions. You can also resolve any of the queries or concerns of your users in real time.
Podcasts are targeted at a wider audience who usually don’t respond instantly. If you have integrated automated software, the audience can look forward to Q&As. If there is not any feedback system, there is a possibility that you will receive negative feedback from the users.
When to Choose a Webinar?
Here are some of the scenarios when you should go with a webinar.
- If you are looking forward to launching a new product, a webinar is the best option to present it to the target audience, explain how it functions, and answer any questions.
- Do you believe you have expertise in a specific field and want to share your knowledge with the users? A webinar is an excellent choice. You can share your knowledge, answer burning questions and represent yourself as a thought leader in the industry.
- If you want to train a group on a specific topic, a webinar can help you achieve the same. You can reach people worldwide without going to the place and record a webinar for people who can’t attend it live.
- Have plans to generate leads for your business? Webinar is the best option. You can share valuable information with the audience and get their contact details in exchange.
- If you have a complicated product or service, a webinar is a great option to explain how to use it and gain users’ trust & credibility.
- If you belong to an education field, teachers or any other professionals can leverage webinars effectively to enhance the student’s learning experience.
When to Choose a Podcast?
Here are some of the situations when you should choose to go with a podcast.
- If you want to build a loyal audience and provide valuable content to the audience consistently, a podcast is a good option.
- Want to repurpose the existing content like the blogs? A podcast is an excellent choice.
- If you desire to reach a totally new audience, such as people on a daily commute, exercising, or more, podcasts can be your go-to option.
- Podcasts are a robust way to establish yourself as a thought leader in the industry. By sharing your viewpoints & insights on the topic, you can demonstrate your knowledge & establish credibility.
We hope that you have gotten a gist of the webinar vs podcast. Choose whichever suits your needs.
The best strategy is to start a podcast to reach out to the audience because it requires less time & effort.
After reaching out to a specific amount of audience, go ahead and launch a webinar to know whether the audience is interested in what you do and what you share online. It would help if you prepare well before hosting a webinar. If you have your website built on WordPress, it becomes easy to conduct webinars as it is easy and cheaper as compared to Webinar software. Webinar Plugins like WebinarPress can seamlessly integrate with your website and let you conduct different types of webinar.
Ultimately, webinars & podcasts help you share your valuable insights with the audience and increase sales in the long run.
Can you turn a webinar into a podcast?
Definitely, you can turn a webinar into a podcast efficiently. Here you have multiple options. Firstly, you can directly extract the webinar audio and turn it into a podcast. You can also create separate audio of the webinar and improve it to reach a wider audience and increase engagement.
What is the difference between a webinar, a webcast, and a podcast?
A webinar is a live or pre-recorded online presentation that involves a lot of interaction between the host & the audience. A webcast is also a live or pre-recorded audio or video broadcast stream on the internet without the ability for audience interaction. Lastly, the podcast is a pre-recorded audio or video program available on multiple platforms to stream online.