Consuming Podcasts on mobile devices has come a long way since Libsyn started 8 ½ Years ago (Nov 2004). In the early days consuming a podcast on a mobile device took a lot of work by the end users.
First listeners needed to download a special program like iPodderX - then they manually entered in the RSS feed of the show they wanted to listen to (don’t even ask about finding shows back in the day). Then once the files downloaded to their computer - they had to manually connect their iPod or other MP3 player to the computer and sync. And if they commuted - they had to remember to do that every morning before they left for work.
Sure Apple released iTunes with Podcast support in June 2005 - and that helped a lot to grow podcasting - but fundamentally the issue of download and sync to iPod did not change just the application people were using. People still had to remember to sync the mobile device. Actually some people still do that to this day.
However things started to change in June 2007 - with the release of the iPhone and the new Smartphone world. The iPad kicked in another important segment in early 2010.
Smartphones and Tablets now make it possible to download directly to the mobile device - for instant access to a listeners podcasts and no need to sync.
While the iPhone was released in 2007 - it has taken until 2013 for Podcasting to reach a very important milestone.
Today more podcasts are downloaded directly to Mobile devices than to computers.
This is a huge deal.
In March 2013 for all the downloads from all the 13,000+ shows hosted with Libsyn - we saw the following stats for where podcasts were directly downloaded to:
Mobile = 51.37%
Computer = 48.58%
Set Top Box = 0.05%
If you want to geek out in stats a little bit more: on the mobile side there was a 4.76:1 ratio for downloads to iOS devices directly vs downloads to Android devices.
Of course given Apples long and strong history of supporting Podcasting and Google’s generally apathy towards Podcasting - that ratio is not surprising. But is important in pointing out - that getting Android users engaged in podcast consumption is the low hanging fruit out there.
There are a lot of people that even today say consuming podcasts is too difficult.
Based on What?
Today podcasting is as easy to consume as Angry birds is to play.
You open your mobile device - you tap on the app and you consume. It really is that easy.
Maybe people are saying “THEIR” podcast is tough to consume. And that might be because they don’t have their own smartphone app.
Looking at the Libsyn stats for March over 7.5% of mobile downloads happened directly to Podcasters own stand alone smartphone apps - not the generic apps - but their own branded apps. And that percentage is growing every month.
If you don’t have your own smartphone app in the iTunes store, Amazon Store and Google play store - then maybe your podcast is not as easy to find and consume as your peers.
If you are hosting with Libsyn - you now can have your own stand alone - free to the end user - smartphone app for iOS and Android. If you want more details - email me - rob (at) libsyn (dot) com - we are doing a special beta program until May 10th. So email me soon.
The other advantage of having a stand alone app in the apps stores is discoverability. People searching for a subject matter may stumble upon your show - while not looking specifically for a podcast - and decide to give your app a try.
So here it is!
Those of you using Blogger, check it out and let us know how it works out! Especially since we just released our sleek new HTML5 Player!
Here is the full TUTORIAL of how to go about cross-posting your podcast directly to Blogger.
We look forward to hearing your feedback!
Give it a go!
We are ready for you to test it out and let us know what you think!
We’ve got a great HelpDesk Article to get you going with our new HTML5 Player. We can’t wait to hear your feedback.
Don’t be shy, leave us a comment ;)
We are crazy excited to share with you our new Libsyn Facebook App!
Check out the short video above to see the Libsyn Facebook App in action :D
At it’s essence the app is a podcast directory where we people can browse through the libsyn podcasts and play them straight from Facebook.
How cool is that?
Whenever you or anyone plays one of your episodes from the app, what they play will show up on your/their timeline. You can comment or like the post as well.
This is an excellent opportunity for your episode and podcast to have greater exposure, and be discovered by folks that may not know about it.
As a bonus of all of you sharing and listening is that as a community we get to guide people to discover new podcasts and new content that they may not have been exposed to before, without having to leave Facebook to do it!
We look forward to hearing your thoughts!
Quick summary of Mylibsyn: As a podcast producer you have the ability to offer premium content subscriptions to your audience with one login across multiple platforms. You can read our introductory post to find out more
We thought perhaps you'd like to take a look at really awesome ways that other producers are using Mylibsyn to create fantastic premium offerings for their audience and monetize their content at the same time.
In this post we'll take at what Marc Maron is doing with Mylibsyn.
Marc Maron's podcast is free. All his awesome interviews are FREE! BUT those awesome episodes don't stay free. In his RSS feed you get the latest 50 episodes.
Marc is using Mylibsyn to offer extra special access and content for his fans. For a minimal fee you can subscribe to WTF and have complete access to all his back catalogue (over 200 episodes!)
The cool thing about this subscription is that you can get to this content in a myriad of ways: iOS app, Android app and website, so no matter where you are you can get your hit of WTF. You can think of this sort of the way that you would use Netflix or the Kindle.
The content is there when you want it, as much of it as you want, in whichever way you want to consume it.
Marc does a fantastic job of explaining to his audience what they get access to and how they get access.
Through Mylibsyn WTF gets it's own clean and beautiful premium access web page. From there his audience has the opportunity to consume the free content as well as sign up for the premium content. Pretty easy!
So what exactly is the premium content?
You can also see from his website that he's spent a lot time educating his audience and making sure that the added value is very clear to them.
As always communication with your audience is the key toward success with any aspect of your podcast, especially when you begin to offer premium content.
The beauty of this model is that the listener is empowered to make whatever choice fits with THEM. The level of commitment and engagement with the content is a reflection of their values.
Are you a libsyn user?
Libsyn is pleased to announce the immediate availability of the Libsyn Beta Program. Libsyn is looking for people to help test it's next new features. Libsyn Beta program users will get to test drive the latest and greatest from the Libsyn development team and see what's to come in future versions of Libsyn.
If you're interested in helping us test and providing feedback consider submitting a beta tester request. Our beta program will be opened up to only a select number of producers who request invites so hurry and get your requests in now.
If you are interested in being on the cutting edge of all things Libsyn login to your libsyn account and head over to our beta request page:
***REMEMBER*** You must be logged in to access the page!!!!
In order to refine the way that we serve you guys we have a new HelpDesk that offers an array of choices to get support for any issues that might arise using libsyn.
Here you get an opportunity to share with us what part of our system you are having trouble with.
Please fill out all the information required within your ticket details.
NOTE: Although your name and email are not required to submit a ticket they are incredibly helpful in communication with you.
You have plenty of space to let us know your issue.
You will immediately see a screen that summarizes your request, including your Ticket ID. You may want to make sure you note your Ticket ID even though you will be receiving a confirmation email.
You will receive a confirmation email from Libsyn Support, whose title will include your Ticket ID plus the title of your message to Support.
We would love to get your feedback :)
Let us know your thoughts and ideas for articles in the Knowledge Base. That would be rockin'
Have you seen the press releases? Just in case you hadn't, here's a little summary via Podcasting News:
Wizzard Media partnered with online subscription expert MediaPass to offer this new service to its publishers. Integrating MediaPass extends podcasters’ smartphone-based monetization models to the web. The potential benefit to the subscription revenue model is that it builds on itself over time through renewals, unlike advertising-only models.
“While a lot of current podcast content will continue to be free for audiences, this new feature allows our publishers to boost revenues through customized subscription models, targeting the optimal mix of free and paid content,” says Laurie Sims, President, Wizzard Media. “Implementing this new service is as easy as AdSense and takes less than 15 minutes, delivering to our publishers the benefits of a sophisticated paywall without the immense startup costs.”
So, libsyn is offering a whole new fancy pants service for podcasters! The cool part about this service is that it's not only for podcasters but bloggers as well. The functionality is pretty versatile. I can't wait to see all the creative ways in which it can be applied by all sorts of online content creators!
Better than breaking things down for you guys here in a written blogpost, why not offer what a couple of awesome podcast consultants have published about our new release? You get a chance to hear about our service PLUS you get to know some pretty awesome podcasting professionals whose service you may use at some point ;)
Both of the interviews below are with our VP of Podcaster Relations Rob Walch.
Here they are! Enjoy.
Subscribe to School of Podcasting via iTunes HERE
Subscribe to The Podcasters Studio via iTunes HERE
Subscribe to Podcast Answer Man via iTunes HERE
Wanna see what they look like to non-members?
The ability to publish premium content is brand spanking new, so those of you existing libsyn users will not see this in your dashboard...YET!
But if you are interested in getting going with this or have any more questions, please contact Rob at Rob (at) Wizzard.TV
We have gotten a lot of great feedback about our blog posts, largely positive, but now that we're getting into a groove we want to reach out again to see what's working for you guys. We know we've sprung a lot of changes on our users. Change can be tough, but we aim to make this all worth your while. We've collected a lot of strange, diverse and wonderful info over the years, at Podcamps, Expos and of course virtually. it is not always clear to us what info is most helpful to you guys.
Lets start with something simple.
What nagging questions do you still have as a Podcaster?
Please respond in the comments below, and we'll all chime in where appropriate... Open session style. Don't be shy, help each other out too.
We are happy to announce that Libsyn now offers an Android app, in addition to the iphone/ipod touch apps for podcasters.
The Android version of Wizzard’s podcast Apps are compatible with all devices running Android OS 1.6 or higher, including popular phones from Sony, Samsung, Motorola, T-Mobile, LG, HTC and Dell. See a brief video demonstration of the new podcast App here. According to stats from Google, Gartner and Canalys - there are now over 50 million activated Android phones up from just 8.5 million at the end of 2009 - growing at a pace of over 200,000 new activations each day.
Here is a snappy little video where you can see the Libsyn Android App in action.