Remember six or seven years ago when podcasting was going to be the end of radio? well that didn’t exactly work out the way it was supposed to. Podcasting is still a very valuable medium for very specific audiences. It works great for personalities that are able to draw their passionate audiences in to a regular show. Podcasting also works well with a B2B audience, for education and for music, audiophiles. But it never gained traction with the general mainstream.
There are a few reasons podcasting never gained mainstream adoption. Podcasters didn’t have the rights to play music, that is unless they were already associated with a radio station or other media company that already licensed the rights. Production of podcasts is another deterrent. While producing a podcast is relatively simple, it still requires some equipment, software and the patients to learn how to produce and edit it. Finally, I’d argue the last barrier to producing a podcast is hosting and distribution. Hosting large audio files can be expensive, especially for a pure hobbyist and then distributing that podcast via iTunes and other podcast distribution channels is relatively simple, but still above what your average person is willing to take on.
The bottom line is that for your average person, podcasting is just too much work – especially in a 140 character world. This is where SoundCloud comes in. SoundCloud is super easy, it’s free, up to 120 minutes, and pretty cheap after that.
SoundCloud has really easy apps for your phone that allows you to record, post and share quick and easy “sounds” (think mini podcasts). Here’s one I did while traveling last week.
My new favorite quote. by tacanderson
There’s no editing needed, no intro’s or background music, just quick little audio posts. You can, of course, do a more professional sounding podcast if you want. This is probably the best approach if you want to attract advertisers or if you’re doing this as part of a company marketing effort. But I’d still keep it simple.
And while SoundCloud doesn’t produce an RSS feed, it’s super easy to hook SoundCloud up to a Tumblr account and push your “sounds” through Tumblr. And while SoundCloud is targeting the music industry, there are several non-music examples, like Robert Scoble and Fred Wilson.
The other great thing is that SoundCloud is very social, as people can leave visual comments right in the player itself and if you combine it with Tumblr you have the advantage of their built-in community as well.
- Some Advice to Tumblr and Posterous Users (newcommbiz.com)
- A Video Panel About Social Media and Startups In Europe (newcommbiz.com)
- Using SoundCloud to upload and link audio from WordPress. (comm563.wordpress.com)
- A guide to SoundCloud (liesdamnedliesstatistics.com)
- Audiophilic startup SoundCloud raises a reported $50M (venturebeat.com)