Podcasting has been around for many years but has not, until recently, made too much of an impact on the ability of a company to get leads and sell.

However, the landscape has changed greatly over the last six months or so, as many high-worth potential leads have discovered podcasts because of the rise of high-profile business and political leaders beginning to podcast.

Also the meteoric increase of use of the smartphone and iPad has led to people using podcasts when they are on the move, in the gym and whilst doing many other activities. It has been estimated that there are 50 Million podcast listeners on iTunes alone, with humour being the largest category followed closely by all business-related topics.

So whilst many more people are turning to podcasts to educate and entertain themselves, the number of people who are creating podcasts is not increasing at the same rate. This means that there is a valuable opportunity for those businesses that choose to grasp it. Even a 10 minute per week tips and ideas podcast on iTunes can reach thousands of people and increase your reach as a business.

An example is Wes Murray’s Essentially Fit (a fitness podcast for the over 40’s). Before he started his podcast, he was doing well with his business, however it has exploded afterwards in the number of leads that he is receiving.

A great content idea is to simply interview other business leaders in your field who are influential. Not many people will turn down the opportunity to broadcast to thousands of people. But any content that engages will build a following. When deciding on your podcast content, do remember it is possible to podcast using video as well as just audio.

A great resource to learn what is needed to start podcasting is the Podcast Answer Man. He has details of everything you need to get started (although he does go a bit high-end, when really all you need is a basic microphone and audacity – a free piece of software).