Ben Krueger is the founder of Cashflow Podcasting, a done-for-you podcasting and marketing service for entrepreneurs and thought leaders.
This interview was great. It contains everything you might want to know about the business of podcasting. We talk about how to start a podcast, the history of podcasting, the different podcasting platforms, the different types of podcasts you can do, and so much more. If you’ve ever thought about starting a podcast, listen to this interview and take notes, then listen again.
Ben began working in the podcast industry during a business internship in the Philippines. His internship was ending, and he needed to figure out how he was going to make a living. He was talking with Dan Andrews host of the Tropical MBA Podcast one night around this time. Dan complained about what was involved in the postproduction side of podcasting, and they came up with an agreement whereby Ben would handle postproduction for him. Ben’s business has expanded from there.
The History of Podcasting
The podcasting industry has gone through two major waves of interest. Around six years ago, the first wave of podcast were created by people interested in getting their message out there. These podcasts were in the categories of self-help, and learning.
There was a decline in the podcast marketplace in 2011. Between 2011 and 2013 the technology caught up to the platform. Everything became screens and smartphones, and you could access podcasts wherever you were instead of relying on the iTunes. In 2014 iTunes had its billionth download and it’s only grown from there. Now they even have cars with built in podcasting capability so you don’t have to bring another device with you.
As the podcast industry has grown several platforms have been created to meet the demands of the marketplace.
- Itunes: as of right now 60% to 75% of all podcasts are downloaded through iTunes. There hasn’t been a major update to the iTunes platform for podcasts since 2013. The new and noteworthy section of the iTunes platform is noticeably glitchy. Ben has a hunch that iTunes will overhaul its podcast platform in the next one to two years.
- Google Play is another channel where you can access podcasts. It’s Google’s answer to iTunes.
- Stitcher is iTunes for android devices. As of right now, (January 2017) it runs smoother and is easier to use than iTunes.
- Sound Cloud is basically YouTube for audio files.
- There are other podcast channels on the web as well. Google Play, Stitcher, and Sound Loud, along with other podcast delivery channels account for between 25% and 40% of all podcasts downloads. So it’s quite possible to build a following as a podcaster outside of iTunes.
How to Monetize Podcasts
There are two ways to make money with your podcast.
1. You can create a podcast with the aim of drawing a big audience to get sponsorships and make money that way. In order to make a good living with sponsorships you have to have at least 30,000 downloads a month, or you have to podcast for an audience that sponsors want to get in front of.
2. You can create a podcast with the aim of building a community of listeners that you sell your own products to. This is usually the way that works best for authors. If you use your podcast to create a community of listeners, and leverage those listeners when you have a new book to release it can be very powerful.
SEO Tips for Podcasts
Use YouTube. YouTube is owned by Google and it’s much easier to rank for keyword terms by posting a video of your interview than trying to rank your show notes page on your blog.
Two Ways to Use YouTube
1. Use screen capture software like Camtasia. Play your podcast audio, and have the image that accompanies it be either your iTunes artwork, or an image of you and the person you’re interviewing.
2. Make short 3 – 5 minute videos that are excerpts from your podcast interview. Post them on YouTube with a call to action to listen to the full interview and links about where to find you.
Types of Podcasts
In today’s marketplace there’s every kind of podcast imaginable. From traditional educational podcast, to conversational podcasts, to podcasts that are just one person and their thoughts.
As a podcast producer you have to decide whether you’re creating the podcast for your audience, or for yourself.
One type of podcast that has been successful is an interview style podcast where you make a list of all the people you want to interview, create a podcast around the topics you want to talk about and then use the podcast as an excuse to interview these people. It can be much easier to get business people and thought leaders to talk to you if you have a podcast because you’re offering them the opprotunity to get their message out to a new audience.
Podcasting for Authors
A few authors have distributed audio versions of their books through iTunes. These haven’t gotten massive numbers of downloads because people just don’t seem to look through podcasts for audio books.
A more successful formula is to have a miniseries podcast with a finite number of episodes.
Another thing you can do is record a speech or conference that you put on and release that as a resource for your community. Those types of things sit in the iTunes store and can bring leads for years.
How to Start a Podcast
Here are some questions you want to ask yourself as you consider creating a podcast:
1. What do I want?
2. What is my end goal? Do I want to build a community or find a mass audience so that I can get sponsors?
3. In two years where do I see my business and who is my audience?
Too often people create podcasts for the audience they have now without thinking about the different audiences they might want to attract in the future. Podcasting is a tool you’ll want to use over the long term. It’s a media channel you can leverage with some great potential results. But, podcasts are not a one-size-fits-all solution. So take some time to figure out what your goals are and come up with a strategy to achieve them.
Links and Resources Mentioned in This Interview
Google Play — Google’s store where you can find podcasts, movies, books, and music
https://soundcloud.com/ — Youtube for audio files
YouTube — Use Youtube to boost your search engine rankings by posting your podcasts on youtube
Cashflow Podcasting — Ben’s business. He’ll help you start a podcast and/or edit it.
Tropical MBA — a podcast about business and location independence hosted by Dan Andrews and Ian Schoen
Tom Corson-Knowles is the founder of TCK Publishing, and the bestselling author of 27 books including Secrets of the Six-Figure author. He is also the host of the Publishing Profits Podcast show where we interview successful authors and publishing industry experts to share their tips for creating a successful writing career.