All posts by Blubrry

Monetize The Easy Way: Inject Ads into Your Podcasts!



Most podcasters don’t start out with sponsors from day 1. But as your show grows, you may notice that your older episodes are still getting a decent, and steadily-increasing, number of downloads as newer listeners go back and “binge listen” from the beginning.

That means you could be leaving a lot of money on the table – and no, it’s not too late to monetize existing content, whether those episodes are months or years old.

Up until now, however, going back and manually inserting ads, promos, or affiliate spots in older episodes has created an obstacle that may not have seemed worth the time and effort involved.

Blubrry is about to change that. Very soon (it’s currently being tested), we will be rolling out an ad injection service that will offer free features to our pro hosting customers. The service will allow podcasters to dynamically insert pre-roll, midroll, and post-roll ads into already-published podcasts as well as future episodes. Podcasters will be able to set up ad campaigns to insert at specific timeframes in an episode, and will be able to upload multiple ads by priority at the designated injection point. We will also be rolling out geographic targeting in midsummer. Podcasters can even set times for ad campaigns to expire, so that ads don’t continue to run indefinitely.

Here’s just one example of how a Blubrry customer might use this service: you could record your own intro and ad together, then inject the segment as a preroll into existing and/or future episodes. Then, the pre-roll segment could be swapped out any time if there was a change, such as different jingle music or a new affiliate sponsor they want to promote.

Since the preroll option will be free for any pro hosting customer, it’s a great way to test out ad injection for yourself. “It’s also important to note that our Long Tail podcasting feature ties elegantly with the ad injection service, allowing podcasters to rebuild their episodes without being charged for replacing their past archive,” explains Angelo Mandato, CIO of Blubrry. While there will be nominal fees associated with some of the features included with this service, a base level will always be free for Pro customers – just one more reason why it’s wise to make Blubrry your podcast host today.

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Need music for your podcast? Blubrry and SourceAudio make it easy!



Launching a new podcast is a lot of work: choosing a title, learning your equipment, setting up your website, settling on a format. The last thing you want as a new podcaster is to have to worry whether your music is appropriately licensed for use on your show.

That’s why Blubrry is working with the respected music licensing platform SourceAudio to offer music for use in podcast episodes. Podcasters will be able to choose from thousands of tracks specially designed for podcast use, at a discounted rate exclusive to Blubrry. 

There are two options for using this valuable service: subscribe at $9/month, or purchase a single track for unlimited use. Note that all prices are for a single podcast use: if you have more than one podcasts, you can add them to your subscriptions as well for an additional cost.

“We are incredibly excited about partnering with Blubrry,” says Douglas Reed, EVP, radio and library services at SourceAudio. “Blubrry’s reputation in the podcast hosting community is unmatched. We look forward to working with them to provide a terrific and much-needed service to podcasters big and small.”

“Finding legal music available for podcasts has always been challenging, leaving few suitable and desirable options for creators,” said Todd Cochrane, CEO of Blubrry. “This new offering will improve tenfold the availability of legal music for podcast producers.”

Find out more by visiting our Blubrry/SourceAudio information page, or get started right now: subscribe at $9/month, or purchase a single track.

 

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How To Use Existing Podcasts To Kickstart Your Radio Network



When radio stations consider creating a podcasting strategy, they typically think in terms of leveraging existing radio talent, resources and content to create podcasts.

But why not try the reverse: leveraging existing podcasts to give struggling radio networks a booster shot – or simply add more great content to your current lineup?

As of April 2018, there are over 200,000 active podcasts and 500,000+ shows total. If you look at the sports category alone, there are thousands of shows and many are dedicated to content that would appeal to a local audience. With that much content being consistently created, there are a number of ways a radio station can leverage existing podcasts.

One would be to sign existing content creators into your distribution channel via content syndication. Radio has already mastered the art of programming syndication for broadcast, so it just makes sense to apply that model to podcasts.

By signing on existing podcast content, program managers can complement their current programming or fill gaps in the current lineup. This could be done creatively by re-packaging content to fit the traditional radio model, or slipping short segments of the content into locally-hosted and produced shows. Podcast creators would benefit both from the additional exposure to their show (offering opportunities to plug their show’s site or even working out a trade agreement to offer them ad spots to promote their podcast) as well as the opportunity to earn more money from their current sponsors by slipping sponsored spots into the body of the show.

While not all content would easily transition to on air-talent podcast content, by following this approach radio stations would be able to fill remnant airtime with content they could sell against with their own sales team. Better yet, podcasters often negotiate their own ad deals and could structure ads so that the radio portion is paid at the radio station’s normal rates for a time slot that they are given.

The world is changing, and in order for radio to stay competitive, it needs to move as fast as the rapidly-changing landscape. Just as radio networks are a natural pipeline for great podcast content, the same can work in reverse. Podcasts are rich soil, ready to be mined for content that with can be radio-ready with minimal production time and cost.

Are you a radio executive or building a content network? Blubrry will be at the NAB Show, ready to discuss your podcast strategy. Contact us if you’d like to schedule a meeting to get proactive and learn how to leverage the massive content pipeline that podcasting has to offer.

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

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Why Radio Should Embrace The Unlimited Distribution Podcasts Offer



When podcasting debuted in 2004, the ability to take audio content on-the-go was still novel and exciting (remember when iPods were new?). Portable audio devices started the digital revolution. Now, it’s a given that consumers will take their media with them and enjoy on-demand access…but most radio hasn’t caught on to the diversity of podcast content and therefore the reason for its global appeal.

Today, most radio content still airs exclusively live – meaning potential audiences won’t hear it unless they happen to be near a radio while it’s playing (and, unless that radio happens to be tuned to a live broadcast. These days, many are not.)

And while the majority of radio has stuck to a dated, linear model, audiences have largely moved to on-demand listening – consuming whatever they want, whenever they want, 24/7.

Unlike the limitations of radio, there are a close to 100 different devices, apps, and sites where a listener can find a podcast. Apple Podcasts is currently the primary player in this space, but Google Play, Spotify, Pandora, apps, and a dozen or so sites make it easy to syndicate and consume the latest podcast content. Podcasting natively has already invaded smart home devices, and you can easily listen on-demand with Amazon Alexa, Microsoft Cortana, Apple HomePod and Google Home.

Blubrry pushed the boundaries in 2016 when we began working with major streaming provider, StreamGuys, to distribute podcasts via internet radio, adopting a linear option for podcasts. Podcast2Radio expands podcasts to Kindle, Apple TV, Aha Radio, Sonos, Alexa, Tunein, vTuner, Xbox One, ZenoLive, Shoutcast and more. Yes, some radio networks allow streaming via apps, buried among thousands of other stations – but by focusing solely on a live format they’re missing out on the opportunities of podcasting.

Radio has power locally, but by not embracing podcasting, networks are missing out on a huge opportunity to spread their message more widely, give their on-air talent a broader platform, and yes, sell more advertising. Just look at Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, etc.: they are winning huge market share of music listeners to include spoken word content rich podcasting.

Fight or flight: radio needs to fight. By diversifying their content and distribution methods, they’ll appeal to the greater masses. They’re fully capable of this: as networks and stations get creative with marketing highlights and new content programming, they’ll find lost audiences.

Part 1 and Part 2 of our NAB radio series illustrates that it is possible to do both. Radio can hit a home run and bring a lot of traffic to their sites, where listeners can get their on-demand fix and satisfaction from their drive time show as well. Podcasting is exploding, but the question is: when will radio stations build a strategy to jump onboard?

At the upcoming NABShow, Blubrry will be speaking to radio executives from around the world and helping them discover their podcasting strategy to compete completely in this quickly growing section of the digital space. Contact us to create an appointment and get started creating your station’s podcast strategy.

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Will Podcasting Save Radio?



In a few short weeks, broadcast executives will make their way to the National Association of Broadcasters show in Las Vegas. For the first time, NAB has a dedicated Podcasting Pavilion that will feature a dozen or so vendors that work in the podcasting space, and RawVoice/Blubrry will be there to talk with radio executives, creators and any attendee looking to launch a show or build a powerful network. 

Why has NAB sanctioned a Podcast Pavilion? Simple: podcasting is hot, and continues on an upward trajectory.

If you have young adults, you’ve likely noticed they are not listening to much radio. And with the proliferation of smartphones, consumers of audio content have a huge opportunity to listen to content from a variety of sources that continue to grow their podcasting catalogs, whether it be Spotify, Pandora, or Apple. Podcasts are everywhere now.

Radio can withstand another 20 years, solely because listening on your car drive is still important to some. And radio is still largely regional, which can serve an important purpose. But that won’t be enough to sustain the medium without some forward-thinking intervention. With apps like Waze eliminating the need for local traffic reporting and a large selection of music apps, radio stations will need to work harder and harder to stay relevant as more and more people discover alternative services with music you’d never hear on the airwaves. Even iHeart Radio, known for years as a frontrunner in streaming audio, filed for bankruptcy just a few days ago. 

The radio industry truly does have some brilliant creators out there that — if given a chance and budget — would likely make a huge impact and garner millions of listeners if allowed to do what they do best. And in theory, radio professionals are already at an advantage when it comes to podcasting success. “Broadcasters are already producing content every single day in studios and with equipment that most podcasters would kill to have,” suggests Zack East, Brand and Station Manager at Midwest Family Broadcasting in Benton Harbor, MI, and also a Blubrry customer.

At Blubrry, we don’t care how people listen to audio content – so long as they listen! We have extensive experience working with radio groups across the U.S. and globally – and we make it easy to make the transition. “To offset the very reasonable cost of Blubrry’s services, we started charging our clients a very low per-podcast sponsorship fee to have their name and billboard mentioned in each podcast,” explains East. “In just 6 months, we’ve sold roughly 25% of our nearly 60+ podcasts – new money from the same production already hitting the air, in most cases. We’ve also created new podcasts on behalf of our clients. Those are new podcasts that didn’t exist and are completely client-focused, but hosted by our on-air staff, and hosted on our station website. So, the station benefits from the exposure to the client’s customers, and the client benefits from the promotion of the podcast being hyper-locally focused to the area.”

This forward-thinking approach to making top-notch content available on-demand is what will keep radio relevant in the years to come. Not only does it give younger generations – used to having complete control over their personal entertainment – a reason to keep checking in to what the station is doing, but podcast content can support radio content and vice versa, reminding radio listeners who aren’t yet avid podcast listeners that podcasting is another great option, while reminding die-hard podcast listeners that there is still value in radio.

Time will tell how long it takes radio executives to determine when it is time to add podcasting to their programming mix. Public Radio figured it out a long time ago, but it will take a little longer for the commercial radio space to fully embrace podcasting. But to us at Blubrry it’s a no-brainer: while radio is local, podcasting is global, and we live in a global world.

There are opportunities to serve both and open revenue streams only dreamed about by local stations. Catch the Blubrry team at NAB to discuss those opportunities: we may not be radio insiders, but we are podcasting masters and can provide tools, service, consulting and simple advice to become radio’s savior. Take it from the forward-thinking East: “A year ago, when we first ventured in to serious podcasting, we didn’t know what it could produce for us in terms of new revenue and bringing people to our stations. Now I’m not sure where we’d be without it!”

Get an exhibit pass to visit the Blubrry team at NAB.

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Blubrry Directory Reaches 500,000 Podcasts!



Blubrry is celebrating an important new milestone: last month, our directory reached 500,000 podcasts listed!

The directory has been around since 2006, but a combination of Blubrry’s continued growth, and the overall popularity of podcasting, has kept the directory active with new listings.

So what is the Blubrry Podcast Directory? We describe it as an “alternative podcast distribution portal.” It doesn’t replace, or compete with, other large directories like Apple Podcasts. Instead, it’s a complementary portal that can help podcasters expand their reach by making their show available on devices, hardware, and software that is not otherwise easy to access.

“The Blubrry Directory feeds subscribeonandroid.com and subscribebyemail.com, and makes migrating to Blubrry services seamless,” says Angelo Mandato, CIO of Blubrry. Listings are updated hourly, with a complete episode archive available from the day the podcast is added. Blubrry’s Podcast Directory will also distribute your podcast to devices like Roku TV, GoogleTV, Android, Samsung SmartTV, and more.

Remember, you’ll still need to submit your podcast to Apple Podcasts and other directories. But the Blubrry Directory fills an important gap and should be part of any podcaster’s distribution plan.

 

Why not jump on the bandwagon and join the 500,000+ podcasters enjoying the benefits of being listed in the Blubrry Directory? It’s easy, it’s free, and it just takes a few minutes to join. Just imagine, soon you might be part of a group of podcasters one million strong.

 

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“Alexa, Play My Blubrry Podcast!”



Smart speakers are everywhere these days, and one of the best ways to keep listeners hooked on your podcast is to help them access it anywhere they happen to be.

Luckily, if your show is hosted with Blubrry, it’s now easy for listeners to find it through their Amazon Echo device. Instruct your listeners to follow these steps:

To enable MyCast on their device:

  1. On the Alexa App, go to the menu and select Skills. Or, go to the Alexa Skills store on the Amazon website: https://www.amazon.com/skills.
  2. Search for “MyCast” and select it to open the skills detail page.
  3. Select the Enable Skill option.

To use MyCast

There are two ways to play a podcast from MyCast:

The first way is a two-step process. First, start the Alexa skill MyCast and, second, tell MyCast to search for your favorite podcast.

  1. “Alexa, open MyCast”
  2. “Search for **Your Podcast Name**

The second way is to tell Alexa to search for the podcast at the same time you open MyCast. Keep in mind, you cannot pause your speech when you ask Alexa to do both steps, otherwise she will not understand.

  1. “Alexa, open MyCast and search for **Your Podcast Name**

Things you can do once the podcast starts playing:

Once the podcast is playing, you can tell Alexa the following commands:

“Alexa, Stop.” – To stop playing the podcast.

“Alexa, Pause.” – To pause playing the podcast.

“Alexa, Resume.” – To resume playing the podcast.

Make a special effort to let your listeners know about this capability, both on your show and via your blog and social media channels. Remember, the easier it is for your audience to find your show, the more likely they’ll listen again and again. 

 

 

 

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Blubrry Affiliate Payouts: A Great Source of Podcast Income!



Blubrry’s affiliate payments for the last quarter of 2017 paid out on January 17, including the annual bonus for anyone that qualified – meaning any affiliate who brought in $1,500 or more in sales.

The annual bonus happens every year even if you haven’t made any new sales. That means if you have a great year, you’ll continue to earn long-term.

But if you aren’t at that level yet, don’t worry! Whenever a new customer uses your affiliate code, you’ll earn the amount of the service they bought. That means, if they buy a $20 hosting plan, you’ll receive $20, as long as the customer using your code remains a paying customer for 2 months (3 months total.) You’ll begin receiving payments once you’ve reached $50 in sales.

And you don’t even have to be a podcaster to join the affiliate program. Bloggers and social media influencers can also promote Blubrry’s products and services, and earn. As an affiliate, you’ll be able to share coupon codes, which may be valuable to your audience even if you aren’t a podcaster yourself. Just apply here.

“Our most successful affiliates are doing it all: podcast episodes, social, blog posts. They are actively promoting Blubrry products and services, and in some cases they are working with podcasters as consultants, trainers, etc.,” says Todd Cochrane, CEO of Blubrry. However, Cochrane points out, one of Blubrry’s top affiliates isn’t consulting or teaching – he is mainly a podcast host. “So, anyone has the opportunity to earn.”

Questions? MacKenzie, our Services and Affiliates Coordinator, has answers! Email her at mackenzie@blubrry.com to get started.

 

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Podfest 2018: Come Learn (And Earn) With Blubrry!



The 2018 Podfest Multimedia Expo will be held at the Orlando Wyndham Orlando Resort Hotel, February 8-10.

Blubrry team members Mike Dell, Customer Support Coordinator, and MacKenzie Bennett, Services and Affiliates Coordinator, will be representing at the Blubrry booth.

The Blubrry booth will be part of the Treasure Map hunt, offering attendees the chance to win prizes valued at $300 and up. To enter, go up to the Blubrry booth and say hello!

Even if you aren’t a prize winner, everyone who visits the Blubrry booth can’t help but win. Mike will be available to offer top-notch tech advice, while MacKenzie can answer questions about monetizing your podcast through an affilliate partnership.

Podfest Multimedia Expo bills itself as “the conference for podcasters, digital influencers, and changemakers who want to grow their brand and audience and maximize their income.” With a focus on educating podcasters of all knowledge levels, the event is a great fit for any podcaster, beginner or veteran.

The event kicks off unofficially on Wednesday, February 7, so early birds can meet new people, connect with old friends, and get checked in. The official schedule begins Thursday at 9AM, with conference tracks on monetization, multimedia, technology, audience building, entrepreneur, and social media, as well as workshops like YouTube and Boss Lady. The event will end with a sure-to-be hilarious roast of School of Podcasting’s Dave Jackson.

Feel like you’re missing out? Tickets are still available! 

If you can’t attend, follow along with the conference hashtag, #pme18. You’re sure to learn a lot just by watching the conversation.

Will you be at PodFest this year? Let us know in the comments!

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Shopify and Sermon Library: Two New Specialized Plugins To Make Your Podcast Even Better



At Blubrry, we’re always looking for ways to help our podcasters create more revenue and reach their audiences more effectively. We’re excited to announce that we’ve recently partnered with two new plugins: the ecommerce platform Shopify, and Sermon Library, which allows churches to organize and publish sermons on their website.

Here’s more information on these plugins and the benefits of using each with PowerPress.

Shopify:

If you’ve been thinking about selling your own podcast merch, you may have been deterred by the time and expertise involved in setting up a shop, figuring out how to take payments, and collecting your customers’ information.

Shopify makes the ecommerce process painless.

In addition to giving you the ability to securely accept credit card payments from customers, this ecommerce heavyweight offers additional features like the ability to accept discount codes, create printing labels, and much more. There is no limit to how much inventory you can carry, and Shopify will handle the entire billing and shipping process, as well as create the branding on your ecommerce pages so you don’t have to.

Shopify and Blubrry have partnered on a special deal: Receive a discount of at least $29 for a free month’s trial. Find out more at our partner page.

Sermon Library Plugin

Churches and clergy are always looking for more effective ways to serve their congregations. Publishing sermons online can be a great way to reach congregants when they’re housebound, traveling, or unable to attend regular services.

The Sermon Library plugin works seamlessly with PowerPress to help churches publish and organize sermons online. Check out a demo to see Sermon Library in action. If you decide to use Sermon Library, be sure to download and install PowerPress as the two work in tandem to keep your sermons organized.

 

 

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