Anchor announced Anchor Trailers. They put together a blog post about best practices for creating a trailer for your podcast.
When you record a trailer using Anchor, we’ll automatically transcribe your words into a beautiful, animated video that you can use to promote your podcast. Embed it on your website, post it on social, and share it all over the world. You never know where your future listeners may be.
Anchor Trailers is Anchor’s latest feature to help their podcasters get the word out about their podcast. Anchor says that trailers are a trademark of successful podcasts and a powerful way to share your show with new audiences. This new feature is an improvement over Anchor’s feature that allowed podcasters to mark episodes as trailers.
It appears that a podcaster who used Anchor Trailers to make a trailer for their show could use that trailer as their official trailer on Apple Podcasts. Anchor Trailers are one minute in length, and podcasters get a warning before their time runs out. It is possible to select some “smart background music” to go in your trailer.
Anchor notes that if the focus of your podcast changes over time, it is possible to create a brand new trailer for your show. Back in 2005, when I started podcasting, we called this type of thing a “promo” and passed them around to other podcasters to play on their shows. The difference is that Anchor Trailers involve animated video, which just wasn’t possible at the dawn of podcasting.
The only thing I find strange about Anchor Trailers is that they encourage podcasters to create a trailer before they’ve actually gotten started on their podcast. It might make sense for a show that has already recorded and edited several episodes to put out a trailer before the podcast officially launches. But, I cannot imagine how a person could create a trailer when they haven’t yet worked out what their podcast is actually about.
Anchor announced that listeners of your Anchor podcast can send you audio messages from any device, browser, or in the show notes of any podcast app. You can put the audio messages right into your podcast. No app required.
How it works:
Listeners can tap a link in your show notes to send you Voice Messages, no matter what device or browser they’re using, or which app they use to listen. They can also click the button on your podcast’s Anchor profile. This will take them to a window where they can record a message up to one minute long. Once they hit send, they’re done! You’ll be notified every time someone sends you a Voice Message.
You’ll find your incoming Voice Messages in the creation screen on Anchor’s mobile app and web dashboard. From here, you can listen to all the messages your listeners have sent, and immediately add any into your next podcast episode. For any messages that you want to include, you can add them as segments in your Episode Builder and easily place them wherever you want in your episode.
Anchor did something that I believe will prevent people from using the Voice Messages feature to harass or threaten Anchor podcasters. Anchor does not permit anonymously sent Voice Messages. Senders will need to sign up or log into an Anchor account in order to send a message, so podcasters can see who the Voice Message is coming from.
Anchor announced that you can now share Anchor podcast episodes and profiles right to a Snapchat story, which will link back directly so anyone who sees your story can immediately listen in their preferred podcast app.
Tap “Share” from any episode or Anchor profile page, and you will see the Snapchat logo come up as one of the sharing options. This will open a new Snapchat story, with custom sticker and swipe-up feature that deep-links to the podcast. You can add a photo, caption, additional stickers… anything that makes it your own!
After the story is posted on Snapchat, your friends can swipe up to see the option to listen to that podcast episode on any platform where your podcast is available. The podcast will open right in their selected app.
Anchor says that sharing your episode everywhere you possibly can is one of the best ways to grow your audience. Anchor plans to add more ways to do that.
Earlier this month, Anchor released redesigned analytics for their desktop dashboard. Now, they announced brand new mobile analytics. It lets Anchor podcasters see their analytics on the go.
Anchor’s redesigned analytics includes new features: Estimated Audience Size, Upgrades to current stats, and the ability to see where listeners are hearing you. Anchor podcasters were first able to view these new features in their web dashboard.
Estimated Audience Size is the average number of plays your episodes get within 30 days after publishing. Anchor says this is a great indicator of how many people are listening to your podcast.
Upgrades to current stats have also been implemented. The podcast plays chart in the Anchor dashboard now gives podcasters the ability to see which episodes are driving the most listens. Podcasters can now see when they published each episode and which episodes most contribute to peaks in your plays.
The Anchor analytics now have a listener geolocation chart that lists the countries around the world where an Anchor podcaster’s audience is hearing their podcast. It shows a breakdown of what platforms listeners are using to hear your podcast. There is also a way to sort your episodes list.
Anchor says that they had been asked to give podcasters the ability to see their analytics on the go through the Anchor app. As of March 21, 2019, the Anchor app has the same analytics information that podcasters can access through their web dashboard.
We heard that Spotify was in advanced talks to acquire Gimlet Media. In a surprise move, Spotify announced that it has not only acquired Gimlet Media, but also has acquired Anchor.
The transactions are expected to close in the first quarter of 2019 and subject to customary closing conditions. The terms of the transactions were not disclosed.
With these acquisitions, Spotify is positioned to become both the premier producer of podcasts and the leading platform for podcast creators. Gimlet will bring to Spotify its best-in-class podcast studio with dedicated IP development, production and advertising capabilities. Anchor will bring its platform of tools for podcast creators and its established and rapidly growing creator base.
Gimlet tweeted: “Big news: we are very excited to be joining @Spotify!” It included a Spotify tweet that said “Spotify to acquire Gimlet Media Inc. and Anchor. Read the press release here to learn more about how we’re accelerating growth in podcasting:” The tweet included a link to the Spotify press release.
Anchor posted on Medium an article titled “Anchor is joining Spotify”. It clarifies a few things. Anchor says that it will be bringing Anchor’s suite of tools for podcast creation, distribution, and monetization, to Spotify’s community of more than 200 million global users.
Anchor also said: “If you are already using Anchor to make your podcast, today’s news means great things for your ability to create and build your show. To be clear, the way you create, distribute, and monetize on Anchor does not change. We will continue to operate Anchor’s platform as you know it (but now as part of Spotify!), and in fact will only be getting better.”
Anchor has introduced Anchor Sponsorships. Anchor says it is streamlining the entire process of podcast advertising.
Anchor Sponsorships gets podcasters paid by matching them with sponsors and helping them easily create custom advertisements for their shows. It’s a new world for podcast advertising, and anyone can be a part of it.
Anchor says that Anchor Sponsorships “revolutionizes the entire podcast advertising process by streamlining it into a single platform.” It claims that Anchor Sponsorships is “the first and only podcast advertising platform open to all podcasters and sponsors of all sizes, regardless of how many plays a show gets, or the size of a marketing budget.”
How does Anchor Sponsorships work? Any U.S. based Anchor podcaster can opt to turn on Sponsorships in any (or all) of their episodes. Once the podcaster does this, Anchor will get to work finding a sponsor match based on factors like subject matter, audience size, location, and more.
The podcaster will be notified when they have a sponsor match. The podcaster will always have the choice to opt into that sponsorship or decline and wait for a new match if they feel the sponsor is not the right fit.
It appears that Anchor podcasters can use Anchor’s creation tools to record an ad for a sponsor. It is also possible to import a pre-recorded version. Podcasters choose exactly where ads will fit into their episodes. Whenever a podcaster publishes a new sponsored message, Anchor will automatically update all episodes that have ad slots, across everywhere the podcast is heard.
How do podcasters who take part in Anchor Sponsorships get paid? Anchor says: “You get paid as soon as your ads are heard by listeners. Rates are based on a CPM (cost per mille, or cost per thousand impressions) set by the sponsor, competitive with podcast advertising standards.”
Podcasters can cash out the total balance directly to any bank account or debit card through Stripe, (Anchor’s payment partner). Stripe takes a $0.25 fee on withdrawal transactions. The podcaster keeps the rest.
Anchor announced that it now has a Cover Art Creator. This was made possible because of a partnership between Anchor and Unsplash, a website that has a vast library of high-quality images that people are allowed to use for free.
Anchor points out that having eye-catching artwork for your podcast is an impactful way to attract new listeners. Anchor’s partnership with Unsplash enables people who are not artists, photographers, or designers, to easily create great cover art for their podcast.
The Cover Art Creator can be accessed by people who have their podcast on Anchor. It provides a curated image library. Anchor says that this library is “totally free to use even if you’re monetizing your podcast.” The Cover Art Creator also provides customizable fonts and layout of your podcast name on top of the image that you have selected.
To celebrate this new feature, Anchor will be sharing on Twitter and Instagram all podcast cover art made with the Cover Art Creator. They will use #AnchorxUnsplash. Anchor and Unsplash will select the very best 10 podcast covers and promote their respective podcasts on social to get those podcast in front of even more listeners.
Anchor has introduced smart background music that can be used in podcasts that are on Anchor. There are 100 background tracks to choose from that intelligently mold to your audio. In addition, Anchor added brand new Sound Effects and Interludes tools.
Anchor points out that the perfect blend of voice, music, sounds and transitions in a podcast can be difficult to pull off. It takes time to find the perfect music and to ensure that you have the rights to use it. Not everyone knows how to create unique sounds or to properly edit a podcast. This is why Anchor has added smart background music.
The smart background collection library had over 100 beautiful, podcast-ready background tracks, free to use with no restrictions. A lot of the new tracks come from Blue Dot Sessions. The library can be browsed by mood, name, or keywords.
Each track will intelligently adjust in volume so that it sounds natural with your recording. Here’s how it works: the background song automatically starts at full volume. Then after an intro, the music dips and your recorded audio comes in. The song loops until your segment is done, and then at right at the end, the music swells back up, and fades out. This means your background music sounds really polished, never outshines your voice, and takes just a second to apply.
The new Sounds and Interludes include sound effects or musical interludes. Many of the interludes are short “stingers” that match the background tracks. Anchor says that you can also import your own background music, sounds, or interludes to easily reuse whenever you want to.
Anchor has unveiled new editing tools for Anchor podcasts. These tools are available now in Anchor’s iPhone, iPad, and Android apps. The editing tools will be coming soon to Anchor’s web platform.
Now you can edit your podcast audio without needing anything but Anchor, available for free on iOS and Android. Like everything else from Anchor, these new editing tools make your life easier by providing everything you need to make your podcast sound great, and nothing you don’t.
Features of Anchor’s editing tools include:
Trim: Quickly trim the start and finish of your recording without needing to go into a heavy editing workflow. This is great for those times when you may have a false start at the beginning of your recording or a sign-off at the end that you decide to include in the podcast.
Split: You can split a recording into multiple segments, and use them together in one episode or spread across multiple episodes. The split tool comes in handy for inserting transitions, voice messages from your listeners, your intro jingle, or any other audio into your existing podcast.
Rename segments while editing: Remove any audio you don’t want to use with a single tap. As you split up your audio, rename the segments you want to keep without breaking your workflow, so editing is lightning quick and your segments are easy to find and manage later.
Smart Flags: Add flags while you’re recording so you can easily come back to important points when you’re editing (either to remove them or to highlight them in your podcasts.)