It’s Time to Grow Your Podcast Audience with Android

Let’s talk about the Android platform in our digital space. If you want to double, triple or quadruple your audience, you need to be paying attention to the hundreds of millions of Android users that are waiting to be your next listeners.

In October 2004 when I recorded my first podcast, there were only a small number of devices with which to sync a podcast. Mobile devices only had rudimentary Internet connectivity. The iPod was new and the iPhone was still three years away. Yet in July of 2005, Apple had the foresight to build podcasting into iTunes.

This was great! We could sync our podcast content by hooking up a cable; iTunes would load our subscribed podcast to the iPod. We podcasters thought at the time that we had gained mainstream acceptance. But in July of 2005, independent innovation largely stopped, and over time, podcast directories were largely abandoned. The introduction of the iPhone in 2007 changed the world and caused the already Mac-heavy creation community to largely ignore everything but iOS.

Ten years later Apple still dominates the podcasting audience share, which is great for Apple but handicaps content creators looking to build their podcast audiences because other devices are largely ignored.

The Apple podcasting team has done a great job of promoting podcasts and highlighting popular shows by featuring them. Yet, podcasters crave — and need to — be featured in new and noteworthy mediums. Had independent innovation not slacked off in July 2005 and subsequently died, the landscape would be much different.

Many potential listeners out there do not own an iOS device. Many have an Android device or two and/or a Windows Phone. For now, let’s focus on Android: In our latest release of PowerPress, we have helped podcasters kick start audience growth on the Android by adding the ability to create a subscribe page. You can read about it here. On the page, we include the links for iOS as well free Android app recommendations and instructions on how to subscribe to the show.

So why am I harping on Android? Well Angelo Mandato, RawVoice CIO and the man behind PowerPress and our Podcasting Stats platform, sat down with his analysis tools and some statistical spreadsheets to plot out some potentials:

With Android doing dismally in Podcast Audience Share (10 percent to 12 percent) it is obvious that there is huge potential for audience growth. According to IDC, Android dominates with 84.4 percent of the worldwide smartphone market share. The U.S.-based market share is likely closer to 50 percent. With Android listeners only making up a small portion of the overall listener pool, content creators could easily double the number of listeners from the Android platform.

With that many prospective listeners out there and most shows only expecting incremental Apple listener growth, we all have to focus on building the Android listener base. By providing uniform subscription instructions via the PowerPress subscribe page and subscribe sidebar widget. The tens of thousands of PowerPress users can help move the bar as a collective. My No. 1 goal this year is to help podcasters gain Android market share.

On a side note, having just completed my team’s annual winter retreat, and actually putting the final touches on this piece at the United Lounge at O’Hare, I can say the roadmap for 2015 is going to be incredible, and I cannot wait to share with you what’s coming.

Meanwhile, go get those Android listeners.

Todd

Will Your Podcast Hosting Company Be Here FOREVER? – PCN Show 013

supernovaIt seems like podcasters deal with a lot of anxiety when it comes to media and website hosting. It’s understandable, as those two things are highly important when it comes to podcasting.

I tried to answer the question, “Will your hosting company be here forever?” If you’re dealing with your own angst over this issue, I hope my findings will help to put your mind at ease.

Links:

Original image by Hubble Heritage on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

Women in Podcasting: Interview with Miki Strong – PCN Show 012

Unemployable Woman Logo Podcaster NewsIn this episode of the Podcaster News Show, I bring you more news about women in podcasting. This episode features Miki Strong who is the host of the Unemployable Woman podcast. It isn’t about coping with unemployment! Instead, her show is for women entrepreneurs who want to be their own boss instead of working for someone else.

Link mentioned in this episode:
Unemployable Woman Podcast

There’s Still Time to Register for PodCamp Toronto

PodCamp Toronto logoPodCamps. In the past, these were the most common form of podcasting-centric meet up. I’m not entirely sure why PodCamps have faded in popularity over the years. But they are still out there.

This weekend (February 21-22, 2015), PodCamp Toronto will be held at the Rogers Communication Centre on the campus of Ryerson University. From the PodCamp Toronto website:

Unlike a conventional conference, at PodCamp you don’t have to be an expert to give a talk, you just have to be passionate. All you need to do is apply with your idea!

Don’t think you have something to share? Some of the best presentations are nothing more than a circle of chairs and some great discussions!

Here’s a partial list of sessions currently scheduled for PodCamp Toronto:

[Read more…]

Women in Podcasting: Interview with Kelly Mitchell

Kelly Mitchell Podcaster NewsKelly Mitchell is the host of the Agent Caffeine podcast which is for real estate professionals. She also is a host of Breve TV Uncorked with Debra Trappen. Breve TV Uncorked covers topics related to women in business (and more).

When did you start podcasting? What’s your experience in podcasting from then to now?

I started podcasting in 2012. I began with BlogTalkRadio but realized early on I couldn’t control much there and moved platforms. It was really difficult in the beginning because there are so many choices for equipment and technology and no one end to end solution for it all.

What inspired you to become a podcaster?

As an experienced start up entrepreneur I traversed four very different industries and in spite of the hurdles was successful in all. A common theme popped up. No one is really very helpful when you’re starting out. I was tired of having to play games to get the information I needed and I thought there had to be a better way. My goal was to share the secrets of those who were successful and give all entrepreneurs a chance at a smoother opportunity for success.

What topics do you cover on Agent Caffeine and who is your target audience?

Agent Caffeine is specifically for professionals in the real estate vertical. Our show covers all aspects of real estate from building a business to understanding the real estate industry and it’s many intricacies. We’re about empowering the industry and inspiring innovation.

How does it differ from BreveTV Uncorked?

BreveTV Uncorked is a completely different show. The show was created for women entrepreneurs and women in business. We talk about all subjects as it relates to a woman’s journey in the business world, both personally and professionally. I recently incorporated my love for wine and fun into the show. We begin with a “What’s in your glass?” segment and talk about the wines we are drinking. There’s a playful aspect to the show as well. This show does interviews with women who are finding success in the entrepreneurial space as well as features my partner in wine, Debra Trappen and I talking about everything from Social Media, to Balance, to Love.

What words of wisdom do you have for women who are thinking about starting their own podcast?

Don’t wait. The space is still very much open for those who have the gumption and desire to get their voices out there. Create something uniquely you with a benefit to your target audience. Beyond everything else, be consistent. The biggest challenges of doing a show well are mastering all the aspects. You need to produce something people will love. You need to be consistent (like a weekly show – 1 episode a week is ideal). Promotion and adding value are key to making it interesting and keeping people coming back. Listen to your listeners. ASK questions and respond accordingly.

Think about how a podcast is going to fit into your bigger picture. Building a podcast is not an easy way to make money. It’s easier to spend your time. But understanding your WHY is huge. It’s not about you. It’s about your community. The one you want. The one you serve. The one who listens.

Academy of Podcasters

academyofpodcastersA new award for podcasters has come on the scene. Its called the Academy of Podcasters. As it is presented by Stitcher, one might speculate that this is the new face of the Stitcher awards (?). According to their website: “The Academy of Podcasters Awards will be a set of honors awarded every year to the best of the best in podcasting.  Through a unique take on the voting process that does not reward popularity as much as it does quality content, we believe this ceremony will soon become the most prestigious in the industry.”

It is held in Fort Worth Texas on July 31st during the Podcast Movement Conference. It is free to attend.

The Categories include:

Business and Industry
Comedy
Education
Entertainment
Games & Hobbies
Lifestyle and Health
Music and Music Commentary
News & Politics
Parenting, Family, and Kids
Science and Medicine
Society and Culture
Spirituality and Religion
Sports
Technology
World and International

Best New Podcast of the Year

 How are the Awards winners chosen?

Winners of the Awards will be chosen as a part of a unique two step process:

  1. NOMINEES

    10 Podcasts will be nominated as finalists in every category.  Those 10 are selected as follows:

    – 5 podcasts will automatically qualify by being the top 5 eligible podcasts (see eligibility & criteria) in their respective category inside Stitcher for the voting year.

    – 5 podcasts will be nominated by a combination of input from the Academy, the board,  and from other podcast rating services.  This will specifically be to not leave out “under the radar” podcasts, or those that for whatever reason are not on Stitcher.

  2. WINNERS

    1 winner will be chosen from the 10 finalists, through a multi-judge voting process:

    – Each category will be assigned 5 unique judges, who are members of the Academy.  These judges will not have any affiliation with the podcasts in their category, nor will they have a podcast of their own in that category.  While the voting members of the Academy will be made public, the judges assigned to each category will not be.

    – The judges will listen to a sample episode from each of the ten podcasts.  The sample episodes will be submitted by the nominated show themselves, or chosen at random if they choose not to submit a specific episode.

    – The judges will then score each podcast from 1-10 in each of a number of different criteria categories (see eligibility & criteria), and determine their total score for each podcast.  All five judges’ scores are tallied for all ten podcasts, and the top scoring podcast will be declared the winner.  The Board will be the only ones who know the winners until they are announced.

    – The winners will be announced at the Awards Show.


Timeline:

  • Qualified shows released: May 1, 2014 through April 30, 2015
  • Nominations period: May 1, 2015 – May 31, 2015
  • Final 10 in each category announced: June 1, 2015
  • Sample submission period from finalists: June 1, 2015 – June 15, 2015
  • Judges evaluate finalists and submit their scores: June 15, 2015 – June 30, 2015
  • Winners announced: July 31, 2015 in Ft. Worth, TX the night prior to Podcast Movement.

 

Here is the eligibility

  • Qualifying podcasts must have not released their first episode after the start of the eligibility period (May 1, 2014)
  • Qualifying podcasts must not have released their most recent episode greater than one month prior to to the end of the eligibility period (April 30, 2015)
  • Qualifying podcasts must be available free of charge via subscription or download.
  • Qualifying podcasts are eligible to be nominated as a finalist in a maximum of one category, plus the Best Overall Podcast of the Year.
  • Qualifying podcasts must be originally distributed via podcast, and not re-purposed content from a television show, terrestrial radio show, a live event, etc.
  • Any interpretations of this eligibility and final say will default to the Board.

Here is how the voting is handled:

  • Five independent judges who are members of the Academy will be assigned a category containing ten finalists.
  • Each judge will score each podcast on a scale of 1 to 10 in the following categories, for a maximum score of 50
    • Quality of audio
    • Quality of content delivered
    • Quality of show production
    • Additional Criteria
    • Additional Criteria
  • The Board will then compile all votes from all judges, and the highest scored podcast from each category will be declared the winner.

When Should a Podcast Episode be Deleted?

TLDR podcast Podcaster NewsRecently, an episode of the TLDR podcast that had raised some controversy was deleted. I’ve spent some time reading various articles about it and tracked down where I could listen to the episode that had been removed. This wasn’t hard to do. Gawker posted an embed of where to find the TLDR episode on Soundcloud in their article about the episode.

Doing so has made me wonder about when, and under what circumstances, should a podcast episode be deleted from the website of the podcast. Clearly, deleting it doesn’t automatically mean it is gone from the internet forever.

A vivid example appears in the Gawker article where the deleted TLDR episode can be listened to. Podcasters shouldn’t assume that deleting a controversial episode, (or even one that was simply “less than stellar”) will make that episode impossible for people to listen to. It’s not really gone, it’s just somewhat less easy to locate than it was before.

Deleting an episode could make people who have never listened to a particular podcast before become interested in seeking out the deleted episode. The implication is that there was something “juicy” in it. Or, maybe they wonder about the “behind the scenes” reasons why the episode was deleted and this causes them to go in search of answers. I’d been unaware of the TLDR podcast until after I started seeing articles about the deletion of one of their episodes.

The episode I’m talking about was episode 45. It was hosted by Meredith Haggerty. She spoke with Amelia Greenhall. The two talked about Vivek Wadhwa (who did not appear in this episode of TLDR). An addendum on the blog post for episode 45 says:

WNYC decided to remove this episode, because it centered on an internet debate about author Vivek Wadhwa and we failed a basic test of fairness: we did not invite him to comment. We are planning a follow-up that will address both the original issue and the ensuing conversation around the removal of the episode. We are keenly aware of the discussion out there and will release the new piece as soon as it is ready.

Should an episode be deleted because it failed to live up to standards that we would expect from journalists? Is that criteria one that all podcasts should adhere to, or just the ones that are “newsy”? I don’t have answers to these questions. What I do know is that this situation is a good example of why podcasters should take a moment to think about the content in their new episode before publishing it for the world to listen to.

Upcoming Events Feature Women in Podcasting

New Media Expo logo Podcaster NewsYou may have heard about the upcoming podcasting events that will take place in 2015. I wanted to take a moment to highlight the women in podcasting who will be hosting or speaking at these events. It is nice to see women who podcast in prominent roles at events that are focused on podcasting.

The 10th Annual Podcast Awards event will take place on April 13 – 16 of 2015 at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, during the New Media Expo. Emily Morse, who started her Sex With Emily podcast in 2005, will be one of the hosts of the event. She is a sex and relationship expert who earned her Doctor of Human Sexuality from the Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in San Francisco. She received her BA in Psychology from University of Michigan.

Podcast Movement will take place on July 31, August 1, and August 2 of 2015 at the Omni Hotel Fort Worth in Fort Worth, Texas. Podcast Movement held its first event in 2014.

Sarah Koenig will be the Closing Keynote Speaker at Podcast Movement 2015. Sarah Koenig is the host of the very popular Serial podcast which debuted in October of 2014. The second season of Serial will appear sometime in 2015 and will feature a different story. Previous to Serial, Sarah Koenig worked for more than ten years as a producer of This American Life.

Aisha Tyler will be a speaker at Podcast Movement 2015. She started her Girl on Guy podcast in 2011. Her podcast was selected as a best new comedy podcast on iTunes in 2011 and a 2012 Stitcher Award nominee. Girl on Guy has had over 6 million downloads. In addition to being a podcaster, Aisha Tyler is an actress, writer, and the voice of Lana on FX’s animated series Archer.

Women in Podcasting: Interview with Fariha Roisin and Zeba Blay

Two Brown Girls logo Podcaster NewsTwo Brown Girls is a pop culture, film, and television podcast. It is hosted by writers and critics Fariha Roisin and Zeba Blay. They cover topics ranging from race, feminism, and politics to current movies and newly released albums, from the point of view of women of color.

You can follow the Two Brown Girls podcast on Twitter @TwoBrwnGirls. So far, my interviews with women in podcasting have focused on one woman at a time. However, since this podcast is called Two Brown Girls, it seemed appropriate to interview both hosts.

When did the Two Brown Girls podcast begin? Have either of you been involved in podcasting outside of this show?

Fariha: It began in 2012. We formed an idea of doing something as a duo mid-year then in November 2012 we finally decided on a podcast. It was a new medium for both of us and I think I’m just beginning to get a handle on it—two years later—but I still feel like my speech is profuse with ums and ahs which are things that are so natural and organic in normal day-to-day conversation but not so endearing when you’re doing it professionally. When you’re listening to yourself every “like” begins to burn a hole in the ozone layer—and your ego—it’s horrible! After a while, though, you learn to forgive yourself. What’s the point if it’s no fun? Besides, I think part of our appeal is that we’re relatable. I’ve always thought of Two Brown Girls as a podcast that sounds like you’re in a conversation with two mates, and it makes it easy to create that atmosphere when you are creating something with one of your closest friends.

Zeba: I’d never been involved with podcasting outside of the show, although for a long time my go-to form of entertainment was podcasts and radio shows. The idea of taking the conversations Fariha and I have and sharing them with other people was nerve-wracking at first, but has ultimately been super gratifying – it’s cool to see how many people out there relate to the things we talk about.

What inspired each of you to become a podcaster?

Fariha: Nothing really in particular. We just wanted to get our voices out there. There was a serious lack of voices like ours and we were sick of it. We’re both smart, insightful women and we felt like we needed to contribute in a positive way.

Your website describes the Two Brown Girls podcast as a pop culture podcast. What kinds of topics do you discuss?

Fariha: Always race. Always feminism. Mainly an intersection of those two things. We also talk a lot about politics/social inequality as a result of immoral governance/racist social structures. 2014 was a year of one horrific thing after another so we had one episode dedicated to Ferguson, or one where we talked a lot about Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, etc. Both Zeba and my interests are wide and varied—so although we can talk about who’s hot (or rather not) in Hollywood—we also oscillate from topic-to-topic and can just as quickly talk about what’s going on with the drone strikes in Pakistan; or Islamaphobia in the media; or even the devastating news of Leelah Alcorn’s suicide (and her parents disregard for her, and continuation of misgendering her even after her death). It’s important for us to be able to be light—but serious when we need to be. I’ve cried many times on 2BG, as has Zeba. It’s been a really cathartic experience—I’ve also learnt a lot about life. Our listeners don’t shy away from calling us out, which I’m open to because I’m in no ways an infallible being. I’ve said things that I’ve had to rethink and I’ve had to question a lot of things that I was taught as a kid that I’m not impressed by. There were a lot of things I didn’t know before I started 2BG, and I’m constantly learning and evolving and trying to be a better person.

Zeba: I think what’s really important about defining our podcast as “pop culture” focused is that it highlights the fact that pop culture can be both low and highbrow. We do talk about more serious subjects regarding race and gender as Fariha points out, but even if we’re discussing Beyonce’s new album or the latest Marvel movie, we’re able to put it in a context that’s both fun and irreverent while also being critical on many levels. Pop culture is fun, but it’s also super important because it dictates so much of how we relate to each other and to the world we live in.

What advice would you give to women who are thinking about starting their own podcast?

Fariha: Do it! We need to carve spaces that don’t make room for us, which is exactly why Zeba and I created this podcast. I’m proud that in the few years that we’ve had 2BG there are terminologies that people say with fluency—whether it trans or women of color, etc—and that just didn’t exist when we started this. I’d like to think that we helped make these ideas more mainstream and so I encourage more women to create more spaces for themselves. Nobody is ever going to give you the space that you deserve—so you need to go out there and take it.

Zeba: I would say the biggest thing is to be original and have a point of view. Even if you’re flailing and don’t know exactly what you’re doing or supposed to do, having a keen and clear idea of the messages you want to convey and the type of audience you want to attract is vital. Now that we’ve been doing this for a few years, we’ve built a really nice community of followers, and I think that’s partly thanks to the fact that we’ve never tried to do or be anything else other than ourselves.