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Oct 2
How Not To Pick a Podcast Consultant: Derek Gehl
I ran across this post on Mark-Ho.com. Mark reports on a recent podcasting seminar he went to hosted by Derek Ghel that and was "was amazed at the contents they (sic) Derek spilled out during the course."

Mark recapped some of the high points, but I was left scratching my head. The entry is dated October 1st, which might be important when I take a walk through some of the "amazing" stats that Derek imparted.

Derek says:

  1. Feedburner manages over 42,210 podcasts
  2. Podnova lists over 27,000 podcasters
  3. iTunes carries over 20,000 podcasts
I say:
  1. Feedburner is today
  2. Podnova lists 71,884 podcasts today
  3. iTunes - well, I don't use it so I can't fire it up to verify, but I'm highly skeptical that iTunes has less podcasts in it than Feedburner.
Those are some technical errors. Now for some philosophical errors about what podcasting can do for you:

Derek says:
  1. Significantly increase your visibility to your target market AND to search engines
  2. More easily understood as compared to text.

I say:
  1. Hmm....target market yes, search engines probably not quite yet. Except for a few fledgling audio indexers, search engines aren't spidering audio yet. Good show notes would certainly help indexing, but if your goal is to increase visibility to search engines, you should be complimenting your podcast with a blog proper.
  2. That's wholly dependent on the information you're imparting. Long dry tables of figures are much better suited for text. Stories are better suited for audio.
So here we have a guy presenting on podcasting who is using seriously out of date stats and some arguable process statements. While I don't doubt that Derek has started and ran some very profitable Internet businesses, a quick and Technorati shows that as far as I can tell Derek Gehl hasn't make a single podcast. Or if he has, he's failed to use his own techniques to make it visible.

Now, I'm somewhat hesitant to put Derek into my Snake Oil category as I don't see him trying to sell me overpriced or free goods for hundeds of dollars because they're bundled with "secrets". At the very least, I'm going to present Derek as a bad example of a podcast consultant.

As Leesa says "Show me yours".

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