Category Archives: Blubrry

Win Free Podcast Hosting For A Year!



 

Each year, International Podcast Day is a day to celebrate all things podcasting: the growth in both listenership and shows produced; the great range of stories; the sheer joy of producing a podcast. So this year, to help you get into the spirit of the day,  Blubrry is giving away some pretty primo prizes. To one lucky winner we’re giving away a year of our industry-leading podcast hosting, podcast consulting with an industry leading voice, promotion of your new show, and a great microphone. But you’ve got to submit your entry for a chance to win. We’ll announce the winner during our sessions on International Podcast Day, so be sure to tune in.

Submit your entry here!

What You Can Win

  • One year of  podcast hosting for free – any standard plan
  • Up to two hours of consulting from podcasting veteran and Blubrry CEO, Todd Cochrane
  • We’ll promote your new show on Podcast Insider
  • An ATR2100-USB Cardioid Dynamic USB/XLR Microphone

How to Enter

  • Create an audio, video, or written entry describing yourself AND your idea for a new show. If you’re going to submit an audio or video entry, it must be 5 minutes or less in length. If you’re submitting a written entry, it must be one page or less @ 12 point font.
  • Be sure to include your name and contact info.
  • Upload to our Dropbox (linked below)
  • Tune into our International Podcast Day sessions to find out the winner!

Get creative here. We’re looking for something a little out of the box, we want to be impressed with your idea

We can’t wait to see what you come up with.

Submit your entry here!

Terms & Conditions

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Podcasting 101: How to Start a Podcast



International Podcast Day is coming up on September 30 this year. We’ll be participating in the live events for sure, but also wanted to take a minute to reflect on the journey podcasting has taken over the past decade or so. And today we’re getting back to basics: how to start a podcast. Podcasting has become part of mainstream culture and media consumption, and it continues to increase in popularity–check out some interesting Podcast Stats Sound Bites we published in early 2019 for some examples. But, for this post, read on for some tips on how to start a podcast.

Pick your podcast topic & format

In order to start a podcast, you need to have something to talk about. Pick a topic that interests you, gets you excited, and that you could imagine talking about for hours. Maybe it’s a subject you’ve always been interested in, and want to take listeners along with you as you learn more about it. Maybe it’s a field in which you’re already an expert. Maybe you have a unique perspective on something. While you’re deciding on your topic, also keep in mind what format you’ll use: will you have co-hosts? Will you interview people? Will you go it alone? Some combination of all three?

Buy your domain and set up your podcast website

Sure, we may be biased because we’re a podcast hosting company. But we’re also right. You’ll have significantly more opportunities to produce, publish, and promote your podcast if you own your brand. One of the most fundamental ways to own & build your podcast brand online is to own your podcast feed, and to have your own website. There are tons of places to buy your domain name, so go ahead and search for one you like. Once you have your domain, you should check out podcast hosting from Blubrry. Our hosting plans come with one of the few IAB certified podcast statistics platform available in the market today. You’ll also get–included in your monthly  subscription–a WordPress website, PowerPress, no-fault overage, and syndication tools so you can get your podcast to Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and the other major podcast discovery platforms. Having your podcast on your own website allows you to follow best practices for podcast SEO, rather than relying on a podcasting platform to police the spammy bad actors out there.

Podcasting gear

We love good gear here. But know what we love even more? When people just start podcasting with whatever they have. At minimum, you need a way to record your voice, a way to edit the recording, and a way to get that recording to the internet (upload it to your Blubrry Podcast Website mentioned above, hint hint). There are tons of really great free audio recording and editing software options out there. Also, when you’re thinking about microphones, computers, headphones/monitors, keep in mind there is a huge used gear market online on sites like Ebay, Craigslist, and Facebook Marketplace to name a few. The most important thing when putting together your gear list is: get the minimum amount needed to get started. Once you’re up and running, hitting your stride as a podcaster, you’ll have plenty of time for gear upgrades.

Upload, publish, promote

Once you’ve got your topic, format, domain, website, and gear, it’s time to record! Don’t be afraid, do like Shia Labeouf says:

Ok. Now that you have your first episode in the bag, it’s time to upload it to your podcast media hosting account. If you’re using the Blubrry Podcast Website and PowerPress this is probably the easiest of all the steps. Read all the details here if you need a tutorial. Or, if you’re a Blubrry customer, reach out to our fine folks in customer support. We’re happy to help.

Why podcasts stats are important & how to analyze them

Podcast stats are a podcasters best friend. They tell you when, how, where, and on what devices your podcast is consumed. With Blubrry Podcast Stats, you can even get partial download reporting. You can use these statistics to help determine which episodes your audience likes and doesn’t like in order to build a more loyal and larger audience. It’s kind of like reading body language in person: it helps you understand that person is doubting what you’re saying when they cross their arms and cover their mouth with their hand. In the same way, podcast stats help you understand the consumption patterns of your audience, and what topics, timing, etc. resonate with your them. Then, you can give them more of the things they like (consume) when/where/how they want it, and less of the things they don’t.

If you really want to get into the nitty-gritty of podcasting, it’s probably worth perusing our Podcasting Manual. There’s detailed information about a wide range of podcasting-related topics, including answers to some questions you might not even know you have yet.

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How To Build a Podcast Network



Now that podcasting is solidly in the mainstream of popular culture, and now that there are so many tremendous podcasts out there, a lot of podcasters are beginning to look for that next edge to develop & grow their audience. One good option could be to create a podcast network. Here, we’ll briefly explain what that means and give some ideas on how to do it.

What is a podcast network and why should you build one?

Think about old-school broadcast TV networks: it’s a collection of shows that are cross-promoted, and they share overhead costs among other things. A podcast network is quite similar. A podcast network is a collection of podcasts that have decided to group themselves together in order to make cross-promotion easier, as well as possibly sharing production and overhead costs.

Why should you build a podcast network? Because your listeners are having trouble finding podcasts. We all know that podcast discovery is a big issue, and there are plenty of companies (cough)google(cough) spending plenty of resources to make that easier. One way you can make it easier is by making a podcast network. Putting together a group of shows that could potentially grow each others’ audiences through cross promotion is kind of a no-brainer. But it’s not all that easy with the tools that are currently available.

How do you build a podcast network?

Like most things, there’s the human side and the technical side. On the human side, you need to seek out and/or create podcasts that are in some way related. It could be that the podcast “on air” talent is the same. It could be that the subject matter is similar, or at least somewhat related. It could be that the audience demographics or interests are very similar. So, when you are creating your podcast network and approaching other podcasters to join forces, have a plan and a pitch as to why those other podcasters should join you. Help them understand what’s in it for them with things like revenue and cost sharing, cross promotion, etc.

On the technical side, it’s honestly not that easy right now. You can cobble together a working podcast network with some existing tools. Our CEO, Todd Cochrane, recently spoke with two podcasters who had just launched their brand new podcast network… after 3-4 months worth of work designing & coding. He mentioned to them that PowerPress is actually robust enough that you could create a network with it and in fact many have. And if you’re a Blubrry customer, our real live humans in customer support would be happy to get you up and running. Also—and we don’t usually tip our hat like this—we have something pretty big in store for later this year: Blubrry is putting the finishing touches on a Podcast Network Plugin for WordPress which will make it ridiculously easy to set up and maintain your own podcast network. We noticed that more and more of us are creating podcast networks, we have it nailed with publishing, but we wanted to make it easy to showcase a network. So what we have in the pipeline is going to extend the tools we have today. That’s how we got started way back in 2008, actually. We were podcasting, but the tools were lacking, so we built PowerPress. And hosting. And stats. Be sure to stay tuned for pricing and availability.

Podcast networks are definitely here to stay, and you might benefit from creating or joining one. But it’s still a bit tricky, on the technical side of things, to get one set up. But keep you eyes peeled for our upcoming podcast network plugin to be released.

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Blubrry Partners with Journity for Increased Website Engagement



Combining powerful site creators with podcast service providers

We know it’s hard to believe, but we’re not experts at everything, and that’s why we partner with other organizations to make sure you’re getting the best outcome for your podcast. Recently, we joined with Journity, a software and service company that helps nonprofits increase conversions with website personalization and behavior tracking — ultimately turning new visitors into partners.

Nonprofits looking to start a podcast, come to Blubrry. And when you’re ready to customize your website content based on what your audience is looking for, Journity has you covered.

We know that it can be overwhelming to add a new element, such as a podcast, to your site. And the last thing you want is for your podcast to get buried on your website, resulting in fewer subscribers and less exposure.

That’s where Journity comes in — encouraging the visitors who are most likely to listen to your podcast and subscribe to click. Journity works in the background showing your audience relevant content and personalized prompts in real-time. 

Best of all, this isn’t only for hosting customers, but for any Blubrry user. All of our services will integrate with Journity’s personalization platform to ensure your site will connect the right message to the right people at the right time.

Personalized and predictive fundraising is crucial to a nonprofit’s digital impact. NPOs such as St. Jude’s, Charity:Water and Girl Scouts are using personalized engagement strategies to boost conversions and connect with people in a deep and personal way.

Combining our services, you’ll be able to:
  • Drive new subscribers
  • Gain feedback from listeners
  • Push for more positive Apple reviews

Journity’s team started in 2004 — only a year before we did — and provides digital solutions like SEO, donor growth, content engagement, email acquisition and more. 

We can’t wait for you to give it a shot. You can learn more about Journity here and our partnership here. They have case studies you can review and a team ready to answer your questions.

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Shocker: Podcast Consumption Continues to Increase



Each year, Edison Research and Triton Digital release a report called taking “closer looks at the audience for podcasting in America.” The great news is everything’s coming up Millhouse (although, unlike the fictional character reading big things into insignificant events, these really are big deals that have huge implications for all podcasters).

Key takeaways:

  1. Listening to podcasts has officially crossed into the mainstream: more than half of Americans aged 12+ report that they’ve listened to a podcast; a third have listened in the past month (that’s about 90 million listeners for those of you doing the math at home), and nearly a quarter have listened in the past week. That’s about 62 million Americans who’ve listened to a podcast in the past week.
  2. Since 2014, podcasting’s “Share of Ear” has more than doubled, growing by 122%. A related bit of info in the slide deck provided by Edison: nearly a third of non-listeners don’t listen to podcasts because they don’t know how to consume them, cant find them, or are so overwhelmed by the sheer number of podcasts that they don’t know where to start. Which, in our opinion, is why you should be focusing on SEO for your podcast, and why you should own your own brand and host your podcast on your domain (with Blubrry Podcast Hosting, of course).
  3. While podcast listenership grew across all age groups, the largest gains were from people aged 12-24. Surprise surprise! Young people, who’ve grown up with social media as a utility, YouTube as their radio, and streaming video as the norm, are migrating more and more towards podcasts.
  4. Podcasting is good for advertisers: more than half of “podcast consumers say that they are more likely to consider brands they hear advertised on podcasts, compared to 7% who say they are less likely.” So, as you monetize your podcast, you’ve got a solid story to tell potential advertisers. Even more, if you’re a Blubrry Podcast Hosting or Podcast Stats customer, your podcast stats are IAB certified—the gold-standard in the industry. And, we recently launched our dynamic ad insertion platform which is both as capable as (if not more than) other offerings and less costly. That means it’s easier than ever to monetize your content, and you’ll have better margins with Blubrry.
So, keep at it. Keep podcasting, building your brand, and growing your audience. Because there are literally millions of Americans who might absolutely love what you’re doing.
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Deezer The Podcasts You’re Looking For



Blubrry Podcasts Now Distribute to DeezerSorry, we couldn’t resist the obvious pun + sci-fi reference. We also couldn’t resist making it easier than ever for podcasters to distribute your podcasts to even more listeners. Which is why, for the past year, we’ve been quietly working with Deezer behind the scenes. The result? Next week you’ll be able to submit your podcast to Deezer and their 14 million monthly active users through Blubrry, one of the most flexible and powerful podcasting platforms on the market.

How do I get my podcast on Deezer?

It’s actually pretty easy. All you have to do is use your Blubrry account–even a free one– and claim your podcast listing in the Blubrry Podcast Directory if you havent already and then submit your show through the Podcaster Dashboard. We’re putting the final touches on everything, and will have this new distribution location ready to go live next week, so make sure to check back.

Why Blubrry & Deezer?

Deezer is huge. As of January, 2019, “Deezer had 56 million licensed tracks in its library, with over 30,000 radio channels, 14 million monthly active users, and 7 million paid subscribers.” And–like about every other streaming audio platform–Deezer wants in on the growing podcast market. Which is where Blubrry comes in. “We touch in excess of 75,000 shows and have 150 million downloads a month across all of our customers” says Todd Cochrane, Blubrry’s CEO. “So, we could bring 75,000 shows to Deezer.” Even better? If you’re a hosting customer, Blubrry’s IAB  certified podcast stats platform will still give you the most reliable, accurate data available on the market today.

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Podcast Platform Updates, August 2019



In an effort to continue making it easier than ever for you to produce and grow your podcast, Blubrry is constantly tweaking, developing, and redeveloping our industry-leading podcasting platform: from Podcast Hosting, to IAB Certified Podcast Statistics, to PowerPress. Going forward, we’ll post periodic updates about our progress, and some of the major releases we think you might find interesting & helpful. Read on for some bright shiny podcast platform release from Blubrry for August 5, 2019.

Cast Feed Validator, Revitalized!

There’s always more you could do to produce and promote your podcast. Beyond curating and creating killer content, you have to actually publish your podcast and make sure it’s out there and accessible to your listeners–all listeners. You can breathe a little easier today, though. Blubrry has made that last part easier for you with our free service, Cast Feed Validator.

Cast Feed Validator checks to see if your podcast RSS feed is working properly. It’s really that simple. And it’s really free, too. All podcast directories have to read and play your podcast; and some of them–including Apple–will accept a feed that isn’t actually working the way you want it to.

Run your feed through our Cast Feed Validator and we’ll tell you what needs improvement and what is flat out broken; quick results for podcast necessities. Fast, free, and reliable assessment for your podcast feed.

We thought it was such a great service that we acquired it in 2017. We also knew it needed a bit of TLC and some updating which we’re excited to announce today. Some of the new goodness is listed below:

  • Mapping of Apple’s old and new categories. Learn more about that here.
  • SSL certificate tests
  • More in-depth tests on server behavior and metadata
  • Feed tests that look for hard-to-find bugs

But wait, there’s more! This isn’t just limited to Blubrry users, any podcaster can check their feed. We are keeping it free because a properly working directory is better for the entire podcasting community. Take a look at the new site and test your feed here

Play and Partial Download Reporting Now Fully Available

Earlier this year, we released Play and Partial Download Reporting as part of our IAB Certified Podcast Statistics platform for our Advanced Stats customers. It’s been great seeing more and more podcasters use this valuable service during our free trial period. Today, that service is still available, and it’s only $5 additional per month. Make sure to double check yours if you want to retain access to partial download reporting in your Advanced Stats.

More podcast platform updates coming soon

Every couple weeks or so, we’ll post another update, detailing some of the things we’ve been hard at work on, trying to make it easier for you to podcast.

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Cast Feed Validator, Revitalized!



There’s a never ending list of things you need to do to create and promote your podcast. Beyond your fascinating content, you’ve got to publish and make sure it’s out there and accessible to your listeners – all listeners. We’ve made that last part easier for you with our free service, Cast Feed Validator.

This ultimate test checks to see if your podcast RSS feed is working properly – that’s an easy way of explaining what it does, because it really does not much more than that. Podcast directories have requirements to read and play your podcast, and some of them – including Apple – will accept a feed that isn’t actually working the way you want it to.

Run your feed through our test and we’ll tell you what needs improvement and what is flat out broke; quick results for podcast necessities. We took over the service in 2017 knowing it was time for an update.

New Features:

  • Mapping of Apple’s old and new categories. Learn more about that here.
  • SSL certificate tests
  • More in-depth tests on server behavior and metadata
  • Feed tests that look for hard-to-find bugs

This isn’t just limited to Blubrry users, any podcaster can check their feed. A properly working directory is better for the entire podcasting community. Take a look at the new site and test your feed here

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Full, Dynamic Podcast Ad Insertion Now Available



You work hard on your podcast—to tell great stories and to build your audience.  And, until now, ad insertion could be a pretty expensive proposition each time you wanted to swap out your inventory. But, as we all learned from Harry & Lloyd in Dumb And Dumber, just because you paid a lot for your orange tuxedo, doesn’t make it good.

Expensive ad insertion isn’t always good

That’s why Blubrry is proud to release our Full Ad Insertion platform today, available exclusively for our Pro customers—all you have to do it ask. Let our team know that you’d like access and we’ll enable it immediately. We’re positive this is going to ease your advertising worries, without adding crazy cost.

Have an ad spot or special show promotion you need to include in your episode after finalizing or publishing it? No problem. You can easily insert those audio spots into your episode with Blubrry before or after it’s published.

Combined with Blubrry’s IAB certified podcast statistics, exceptional hosting and optional websites, and easily manageable dynamic insertion, full ad insertion provides the complete solution for any professional podcaster.

“There are plenty of resources accessible to podcasters, but we truly offer a complete solution for publishing and championing growth,” said Todd Cochrane, CEO of Blubrry. “By launching full ad insertion we’ve guaranteed another podcast component that creators can easily manage at an affordable price.”

Even Better? Our Ad Insertion Platform is more robust… AND LESS EXPENSIVE than what’s on the market today.

Full Ad Insertion costs an additional $49 a month, and a 10 cent file rebuild fee, and can be enabled for any professional customer, including those migrating or currently launching their show. Learn more about costs and how to move here.

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New Monetization Partner: Stagepass



What is Stagepass?

Stagepass is a marketplace for creatives to auction experiences to their audience. Creatives are podcasts hosts, and also include, but are not limited to: speakers, artists, authors, YouTubers, and thought leaders. Each host is verified by Stagepass to let audiences know that experiences with that person will be authentic. Once a host is verified they can link their bank account with Stripe and immediately begin auctioning experiences. Hosts can post as many experiences that they wish and provide pictures and videos to provide more content for bidders on that auction.

Experiences can be in any format – in person, online, over the phone, or over any other medium. The key is that the experience is what the host makes it, and what their audience wants. For audiences, experiences satisfy an emotional need for deeper connection with hosts they have listened to for months and years. Podcast consumption is the most intimate medium, and listeners crave more than just one-directional flow of information – they want to get to know hosts better, tell hem what they like about the show, and experience something more meaningful and visceral than simply listening. Hosts have full control over the pricing structure and can set a starting and reserve price they are comfortable with.

Stagepass was built so that hosts can focus on their craft full-time, by providing value to the people that love them most – their audience. This gives hosts the ability to spend all of their time thinking about their audience, rather than what sponsors want to see in their craft.

Why Use Stagepass?

Flexibility: A tool for hosts to make additional revenue when needed (or wanted). Auctions can be conducted over any period of time, which gives hosts an easy way to throttle income when necessary. If a host needs to make income quickly they can conduct a 24-hour auction. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if a host wants to create anticipation and build interest over time, they can create longer auction periods.

Plays Well With Others: Stagepass is complimentary to other methods of income, including Patreon and sponsor support. Auctioning experiences does not take away from the value that Patreon supporters and sponsors derive from their relationship with the host. Patrons donate due to their appreciation of the art that the hosts create, and sponsorship value stems from the resonance that its products have on target audiences. Hosts can use all services simultaneously and satisfy the value experience of all of their monetization supporters. That said, Stagepass offers more value to audiences and supporters. With podcasting being the most intimate medium, listeners develop a sense of deep connection with hosts of shows, and desire to experience more with those people, in ways outside of the original medium. They crave connection beyond the show, hence the name Stagepass.

Timing: Jump in early, it’s the right time to begin monetizing through experience. Over recent years the demand for unique experience has soared. In a recent study, Millennials, who are now the largest consumer segment of the market, have reported that 72% would spend money on experiences over anything else (Inc.). Listeners are wanting more than one-directional engagement and are looking for experience.

Additional Benefits

  1. Hosts do not have to create additional content like Patreon.
  2. Users can create experiences that provide no preparation or follow-up.
  3. Experiences provide exponential returns with the auction system.
  4. Hosts can create as many auctions that they like.
  5. Users can avoid appealing to sponsors and focus on adding value to listeners.

Read more here to learn about Stagepass and get started in the Make Money section of Blubrry’s Podcaster Dashboard.

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