Public Radio Exchange COO Breaks Down “The Business Of Podcasts”

Dollar signsKeri Hoffman, chief operating officer at Public Radio Exchange recently published an article on the business aspects of podcasting. It’s an interesting read and will surely provide some new insights to both new and veteran podcasters alike. The article is broken down into a series of major points, covering everything from media hosting to monetization.

Hoffman notes how, when PRX first ventured into podcasting, the state of media hosting was abysmal. Fortunately, that’s changed for the better over the years. Regardless, she has some good advice to create, “…a podcast feed that points to a stable place.” And when looking for a hosting provider, “Basic metrics like number of downloads and subscribers are how you will measure your success. If your host doesn’t offer these, walk away.” And perhaps most importantly:

If your podcast feed is not a domain you control you may have trouble upgrading or moving to a new publishing platform in the future. If your show URL is something like –, you may have a tough time extracting your feed since it is tied up with the domain of your host. Potentially, you could lose listeners in the transition. The best way to avoid this problem is to purchase a domain name and then use that for your feed.

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Beware Of Podcast Snake Oil Sellers Promising Riches

Snake OilA revitalized interest in podcasting has been seen among the general public over the last few years. And that’s great as it means more people will be exposed to the medium for the first time. Most of these newcomers will likely listen to a few shows by subscribing thru an aggregator like iTunes or Stitcher. And some will go farther than that and decide to take on podcasting themselves. We should embrace those coming into the world of creating podcasts, offering help and advice when needed.

On that note, here’s some advice I’d like to impart to anyone who needs help starting a podcast of their own: Beware of supposed podcasting “experts” offering high-price training/consulting services unless you know for sure that their claims are valid. It’s one thing if a podcasting advisor offers to train you in the technical aspects of podcasting. It’s something entirely different if they promise you that you’ll get rich quickly thru podcasting. Be especially weary if someone promises you that following their steps will guarantee you a huge audience, tons of social network followers or “easy podcasting money.”

It’s absolutely true that anyone can make money thru podcasting. And there are people out there making everything from a little beer money all the way up to a six-figure income. In all of these cases, these podcasters would likely tell you that the money they’ve earned didn’t come easy, and that it took years of consistently producing a quality product and building an audience.
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