Here’s a friendly reminder that content syndication requires continual monitoring. Opportunities that once seemed bright can dim overtime while new directions are constantly emerging.
A case in point: If you’re an investment firm that offers podcasts to be downloaded, consider making them available to also be streamed. Streaming video (e.g., Netflix) and streaming music (e.g., Pandora) get most of the attention, but faster Internet connections and wider bandwidths have also changed the access habits of podcast listeners.
The ability to forego the downloading and syncing process with a media player in favor of streaming a podcast on-demand significantly improves the podcast listening experience. I can tell you from my own experience that not having to plan ahead has resulted in my listening to even more podcasts, from more devices (desktop, iPad and smartphone) and more faithfully. I am crazy for podcasts. (And if it's data you want, see this TopRank blog post from earlier in the week.)
As long as you’re going to the trouble to create podcast content, making the podcast available on a streaming service could make an incremental contribution to your listenership.
Stitcher is believed to be “the largest platform for listening on Android and second largest on iOS behind only Apple [iTunes]," according to Libysn, the leading podcast hosting platform quoted in a Stitcher press release in October 2013.
In fact, a look at the top show in Stitcher’s Business and Industry category suggests that Stitcher has listeners who may be interested in what you have to say. Note that NPR’s Planet Money podcast is on 101,000 playlists. Something to strive for.
Many of the leading investment-type podcasts on iTunes can be found on Stitcher, but few investment company podcasts are.
An exception I found is Wells Fargo Advantage Funds' "On The Trading Desk" podcast whose screenshot from an Android phone is to the right.
Like on iTunes, if your podcast isn’t in Stitcher’s top 100, most of the optimization and promotion is up to you. However, see the Discover tab in the screenshot—here’s where a listener to the Wells Fargo podcast might be introduced to yours. As is, the referrals today are to The Dave Ramsey Show, the Suze Orman Show and other media properties.
If I were you, I would:
Make sure all internally are OK with the idea. Previously, some podcasters have balked at the thought that advertising would be displayed adjacent to their podcasts (see the ad at the bottom of the Wells Fargo image). There's no question that Stitcher has more of a commercial feel than downloading a file via iTunes. But, is this any different from posting content to Facebook or LinkedIn, which also place ads near your content?
Review the application process to be accepted as a Stitcher content provider, it’s not much of a hurdle.
Blow the dust off all that “download and add to your MP3 player” language on your Website and update it with the explanation that your content can be streamed and added to playlists, too. That will mean that you or someone on your team will have to experience Stitcher in order to write the copy. My bet is you’ll love it.
Throw a little promotional support behind your podcast when you get the word that your content has been added to Stitcher.
In the investment management space, podcasting has a tired vibe. But elsewhere Internet radio has taken off, and with the demographics that investment firms seek. Below is a screenshot from "The New Mainstream 2013," a study of Internet radio usage and adoption conducted by Edison Research, in partnership with Pandora, Spotify and TuneIn. And, even more on-point, Stitcher says the average podcast listener stays connected for an average of 22 minutes. Wouldn't you want in on that?