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Podcast Advertising & Host Involvement

Discussion in 'General Podcast Discussion' started by Adam, Sep 20, 2016.

  1. Adam

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    So a topic came up last night when I was discussing a few things with the developer that is building the new media hosting platform...advertising. Anyone that knows me even a little knows I hate advertising, but I need to address the elephant in the room. Other media hosts insert themselves into a show advertising space to make an extra buck. I am more of the Netflix type of person, where you pay for the service and that's that.

    I know that if I offer hosting it will naturally bring in shows that advertise in their audio. I accept that and now I need to have a discussion about it.

    My goal is to offer the very best experience for as little as possible. However, advertising is a factor. I am not in the mindset that I need a cut of your advertisements because you are paying for hosting and not hosting with mandatory rules in how you can monetize. Most podcasts don't have them and if they do they are small time. Why mess with the little money they get? I don't see a reason, but there is a factor that makes a difference.

    If you have advertising in your podcast then you should have to click that you do for disclosure. This is how YouTube address ad placement in the media, but I am not sure if they de-monetize if that's the case. I want a podcast show to mark that the show does contain ads. I think it's fair for transparency. The other side of that is that if your show has advertising on it then that usually means you are a bigger show that uses more bandwidth and storage. This is where I know I have to offer a tiered system.

    For example:
    • $5 for media hosting, stats, email marketing...etc.
    • $10 for all of that and containing ads.
    • $20 for using a ton of resources.
    Basically, at the end of the day I just want to offer reasonable rates and stay out of your finances. I am not saying the above is the final price. We are still working on what features we have and how much it's going to cost us. I have to factor in labor, design, AWS, and all of that.

    I do want to avoid shows that over-advertise as well. Shitty shows are a reflection of the platform and I have to balance that too. If you need an example then feel free to listen to anything on BlogTalkRadio. Listen at your own risk. They use some shitty compression or something. Where do we find reasonable balance? What is acceptable? I would love feedback so I can define what we are going to offer and address the future financial concerns.

    P.S. I just got approval for our Kickstarter that I will put up shortly.
     
  2. Daniel

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    Wow that was awful. I got aboutn15 seconds into the episode before I got a headache.

    For me it depends on what we're going to look like. For example, if a shitty podcast is on the Blubrry platform, I don't see that as reflective of Blubrry.

    Then again, I don't think of Blubrry as a place to find podcasts. So if AMPN is going to set itself apart by being a spot for premier podcasts, I could see being more selective.
     
  3. Adam

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    This is part of my problem. I want both. I want the segment that AMPN hosts like we have always done in the past. I also want to sell hosting to those that might not make my cut. So this is a huge thing for me to try to answer. Both would reflect the AMPN. I need the hosting to pay for the platform, but I want the featured shows like yours to promote. This is a hard question to fully answer.

    The good side of things is that I have time. We will have a bit of time that we refine the look, feel, and process. Each show is going to be managing their uploads and content.

    The third thing that is important to me is this community. While it's been a couple of us using it, I am about to overall it to the next level. I am finishing a wrap up of a forum I built for the last 10 months or so. It is epic and I can take that knowledge and transform this community quicker. There is work to be done and we will get there.

    I just feel like advertising shouldn't be inserted. If you make a $1KUSD for an episode then I don't see why I need a cut beyond hosting plan fees. You have earned that. With that said, I don't want shows on the network that are loaded with ads. They are terrible content-wise and I want a say in what is hosted here. This is the part I want to get right. I have to create the guidelines for shows to agree to. It boils down to me being able to finance monthly costs without being a dick to the creators.

    Edit: 5th paragraph: I just feel like advertising shouldn't be inserted.

    It originally said should.
     
    #3 Adam, Sep 22, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2016
  4. Guinness Ian

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    I just ran across this thread, and I'm not certain what to make of it...or your question in general.

    As long as my content is not breaking the law in some way or running contrary to standard service terms (assuming your Terms of Service/Use will be fairly typical), then I would want you to stay out of my content and not dictate anything to me about the nature or amount of advertising I may include in my podcast. As a consumer, I would stay very far away from any media hosting service that charges me based on how much my content earns...unless that hosting company also served as an agent for obtaining said advertisement(s).

    Although, as I said above, I may just be missing a key part of the conversation.
     
  5. Guinness Ian

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    As an aside, I personally would scrap the forums for general conversations until you have a community level sufficient to sustain it. Perhaps limit the forums to the handling of support problems and questions; then leave the general chit-chat and "what do you guys think?" for your site blog.
     
  6. Daniel

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    I see where you're coming from, but it's not uncommon for services and software to be separate between commercial and non-commercial pricing tiers.
     
  7. Guinness Ian

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    I think your statement above is key. If Adam is building a media hosting company like Spreaker or Blubrry, then the standards he applies to the content being hosted will likely be much lower than for programs added to the AMP network. I don't really know what I'm expecting his new thing to look like...except perhaps a bolder AMP-type Network, but also for the hosting of media?

    If I had a fuller (or any) understanding of what the service/platform will look like, then perhaps I could provide better or more useful input.
     
  8. Guinness Ian

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    True...but I never really thought about podcast hosting in that context. Whether or not a podcast has a host-read ad typically doesn't have any direct impact on the host platform...unless that platform also frames or features the hosted media in some way.

    Perhaps there will be two 'sides' to the new site; one for standard off-the-shelf hosting and another network-ish side where there is a symbiotic relationship between the content and the site.
     
  9. Adam

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    Great points from both of you. I had forgotten all about this thread until I saw your replies. I think you might be right Guinness about closing up the forums for now. I haven't really dug into the site as much as I wish I had. I got side-tracked on another project and preparing to retire from the military. I will adjust the forums in the next month.

    For the hosting, yes it will be more of a bolder AMPN. I want some control over it, but for controlling the content and advertising, it's not something I want to be intimately involved with. Just the hosting and marketing of the shows and network. I need to work on the entire package more and once I get to the Philippines i will have more time to dedicate to the project.

    I seriously appreciate the replies. I want great shows representing the site and I don't want to monitor them for making money. It doesn't feel right. You both gave me something to think about for today so I can appreciate that at 7:23am.
     
  10. Adam

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    I could easily lockdown the forum. I like being transparent whenever possible. I don't think there is anything wrong with any of the conversation here other than maybe I offer too much insight, but that's like therapy for me. Maybe there conversations might help someone else trying to do this as well.

    My goals are simple. Offer network support, hosting, and community for all. I have thought about downsizing the front end and making the community and articles standout. I don't know. The remake of the site is taking a bit longer than expected which is perfectly fine. I want to get it right and that is very difficult to do.

    P.S. My personal blog should be good. I activated the login plugin. Let me know if there are other issues.
     
  11. Guinness Ian

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    Have you considered creating a Slack Channel (or similar) for your community?

    Slack should require less time, effort and expense on your part while still providing conversation and community. I don't know how many active forum users you currently have but it seems like the forums represent a lot of site overhead to accommodate just a handful of people. Slack might be a better alternative for you as you ramp up your other initiative. Once that gets going, you can switch from Slack back to a new forum environment...or not.

    Also, from a site visitor perspective, a forum with a large number of threads sitting dormant for months doesn't instill confidence in the site or enthusiasm to join in. Hence, until you have a more active community here under your new business plan, the forums as they are can potentially be hurting your brand.

    On a personal note, I have struggled mightily with the question of forums vs. Slack vs. comment threads vs. social media to capture and engage with our readers/audience. When our site relaunches in January we'll be going with Slack and comment threads initially (as well as weekly open discussion threads). Then, when/if the community grows to a sufficient level, we may open a forum or a forum-like experience.
     
  12. Adam

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    I use Slack but not for something like this. I don't think you can archive info but I haven't been on any of my Slack channels in a few month. I agree about the majority of the forum stuff being about everything except what people want to read about. I will do some cleaning up this week.

    I still want to push information out that is valuable, but it will take sometime. I just finished a 4 month transition for another community I built. It's a bit more busy and it taught me a lot that I can use here. Changes are coming and the old stuff will disappear.
     

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