Making Money from Podcasting
Career Path : Arts and Entertainment
Since it was declared New Oxford American Dictionary’s word of the year in 2005, podcasting has been near the forefront of new media buzz. The attraction of creating podcasts for next to nothing and having instant potential access to millions of people has proven irresistible for all types of content providers and yet the constantly evolving concept seems still in its infancy in many respects. There is a glut of content of widely varying quality listeners must navigate through. Then there is the question of charging money. Providers with valuable knowledge or information to share might eventually realize they can’t sustainably give it all away for free and seek reliable methods to monetize their goods.
Podcasts take advantage of technological communication advances to distribute audio content that others can subscribe to, download and listen to using their computer, iPod or smartphone. Audio is ideal for people on the go, checking out a comedy show while they exercise or catching up on a college lecture in the evening. Manufacturers have rushed to make cars iPod-compatible partly in response to consumer demand for informative or entertaining podcasts. They function much like a focused radio show but can be easily created with basic computer tools – a microphone, recording and editing software, and internet hosting and sharing applications.
Content and Uploading
Before you can think about selling your podcast you need to consider whether anyone would actually buy it. Most people have only about a 7 minute attention span for audio, less for poor recordings or poorly conceived projects. Apparently 85% of all podcasts originate on iTunes, which takes a 30% cut in exchange for access to millions actively seeking all types of broadcasts. To upload here you’ll need to first upload an MP3 to your blog or website or another service, then make it available to potential millions with an RSS feed. Selling through your own site has inherent risks and rewards. Services like PayLoadz help sellers bypass the challenges of luring subscribers with marketing techniques and the tech demands of handling podcasts and payments. Apps are available for selling podcasts and services like MyLibsyn assist listeners by ensuring only premium product appears while providing other simplifying measures.
The old business training bait and switch technique can be applied by first building an audience with free podcasts and then selling either some or all future episodes. Alternately, some podcasters offer part of the show free with full versions only available to paid subscribers. Podcast networks welcome any podcasts with ready audiences that they can use to sell advertising while those who are ready to apply some accounting training and extra work have increased revenue by landing their own sponsors. Others use podcasts as part of a multimedia strategy to build their brand, increasing all-around business by selling an iPhone app along with the free podcast or simply using it as a marketing tool.
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