Going through the articles submitted to PowerHomeBiz.com for possible publication, I have noticed a significant uptick on articles focusing on RSS. Many article writers are proclaiming the wonders of RSS, asserting that businesses must jump on the RSS bandwagon in order to grow their market reach. Same with podcasting – that this is the new nifty tool that businesses must use.
But how are RSS and podcasting being used? Are they actually being used out there?
An October 2005 white paper published by Yahoo entitled “RSS – Crossing into the Mainstream” showed that RSS have very limited adoption — even awareness — among Internet users. The study finds that only “12% of Internet users are aware of RSS, and only 4% have knowingly used it.” That’s a very low percentage!
Podcasting has an even lower usage rate. The study finds that while 28% of Internet users are aware of podcasting (which they attribute to media coverage and buzz), only 2% actually subscribe to podcasts! No wonder Business 2.0 magazine recently declared podcasts to be mere fads that will soon disappear.
The numbers put into context the decision of using RSS and podcasting for a business. For a home business with limited resources and technical knowhow, the study gives comfort to the slow adoption to these technologies. Afterall, only 2% of the Internet population use podcasting — a very low number to target resulting in high probability that the whole effort may not pay off. Afterall, how sure are you that your market is part of that miniscule 2% who listen to podcasts? Well, according to the study, only if you are targeting those who are tech-savvy and heavy media users.
The study is interesting, and you can find it here