Feedburner are claiming that there are now more podcasts than radio stations in the world.
According to Rick Klau, FeedBurner’s VP of Business Development, his RSS feed management company are now managing just under 45,000 podcast feeds, compared to just 6,000 podcast feeds being in May 2005.
This latest figure represents an average month on month growth rate of 15% and now exceeds the total number of radio stations worldwide.
Feedburner managed podcasts represent 30% of Digital Podcast’s database of over 12,000 feeds, which, with a bit of rule-of-thumbery, has led some to suggest that there could be as many as 149,000 podcast feeds out there on the Web
Podcasts and Videocasts
Rich media feeds (podcasts and videocasts) currently represent some 20% of the quarter-million RSS feeds managed by FeedBurner, who say that their managed podcasts are listened to by more than 1.6 million aggregate subscribers.
Subscriber numbers have more than doubled in the past six months, with FeedBurner’s figures indicating that subscriptions to rich media feeds are outpacing general RSS feed subscriptions by about 40%.
A clearly excited Klau switched to hyperbolic: “Back in 2000, the DVD format, just 3 years old at the time, was declared the most successful product launch in consumer electronics history, outselling the VCR five to one.”
“Using these statistics as a benchmark, in less than two years, the number of podcasts available online is tenfold that of DVD titles in nearly half the time,” he frothed.
Podcasts as site promotional tools
Although some podcasters have focussed on promoting their work on iTunes, they could be forgetting a hefty chunk of their potential audience, as figures show that 43% of the subscribers to FeedBurner-managed podcasts use other podcast clients.
Podcast directories are also growing in popularity, and are proving to be an effective means of driving downloaders back to the podcasters’ originating Web sites which can then evolve to become their own, stand-alone, consumption medium.