Buzzcast

You've Got Fan Mail! Announcing Buzzsprout's Text Inbox Feature

April 26, 2024 Buzzsprout Episode 126
You've Got Fan Mail! Announcing Buzzsprout's Text Inbox Feature
Buzzcast
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Buzzcast
You've Got Fan Mail! Announcing Buzzsprout's Text Inbox Feature
Apr 26, 2024 Episode 126
Buzzsprout

Send us a Text Message.

Buzzsprout's latest feature delivers listener love straight to your phone — Fan Mail! We dive into how we've been secretly testing this new tool and how you can turn it on for your own podcast. Then we discuss the difference between IAB certification and compliance, to celebrating the grind behind content creation success stories like Marques Brownlee.

View the discussion thread on Twitter/X!

📣 Sound-Off Question: Turn on Fan Mail for your podcast and let us know what you think! To have your response featured in our next episode, tap the link above to shoot us a text!

Links mentioned in this episode:


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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Send us a Text Message.

Buzzsprout's latest feature delivers listener love straight to your phone — Fan Mail! We dive into how we've been secretly testing this new tool and how you can turn it on for your own podcast. Then we discuss the difference between IAB certification and compliance, to celebrating the grind behind content creation success stories like Marques Brownlee.

View the discussion thread on Twitter/X!

📣 Sound-Off Question: Turn on Fan Mail for your podcast and let us know what you think! To have your response featured in our next episode, tap the link above to shoot us a text!

Links mentioned in this episode:


PodMatch
PodMatch Automatically Matches Ideal Podcast Guests and Hosts For Interviews

Support the Show.

Contact Buzzcast

Thanks for listening & keep podcasting!

Kevin:

I feel like we just logged on to our Riverside room. We got our cameras going so I can see Alban. And he's holding a big old Chipotle bowl and he's eating it. And the feeling I immediately got is that I just walked onto a plane and someone is sitting in the seat next to my assigned seat and they've got their whole lunch Totally different. And I'm just like, oh my gosh, I'm going to have to sit here and smell this for three hours.

Jordan:

That's who I am on the planes, because I'm always like flying to the south or something. It's like a 12 hour flight and I'm just like going to eat my lunch next to somebody I always feel so guilty about it.

Kevin:

Well, it's fine if you have you know, whatever you're going to bring food on a plane.

Jordan:

Bring a turkey sandwich, bring an apple, you know something like that.

Kevin:

I never bring like falafel or anything like that. No, you don't go to the Indian restaurant. You don't go to the walk and roll and get the big smelly thing. That's not acceptable.

Jordan:

That's like a layover food, that's if you have time to sit in the terminal. You can have that.

Kevin:

I wouldn't even do a layover Like that's, that's at home. I need my own home base to have a meal like that, Like I cannot be. There's safe food for travel, you know, like bagels, turkey sandwich and that's pretty much it, Like I'm pretty much fasting. Let's scratch that. There's no safe food Fast for travel there's no, safe food.

Alban:

This whole conversation is about food. I'm sitting here not eating, just listening to food stories.

Jordan:

You know I've been taking on airplanes lately is those adult lunchables, like Hillshire Farms has those.

Roger :

Yeah, it has like salami and like almonds and stuff.

Kevin:

Those are great for airplanes, so yeah, that sounds acceptable because that's more in the snack category. You know, I feel like this is.

Alban:

Kevin's version of the sock story. We're now going to be getting questions like is this an appropriate airplane food, kevin who flies?

Kevin:

maybe the least of us is like, but this is why I fly the least of us. I can't take it. So I would rather sit in a car by myself for 12 hours and drive somewhere than I would have to deal with somebody eating falafel in the seat next to me for two hours.

Alban:

Let me share a story about multiple mistakes on a plane. When my daughter was probably one, we flew to Alaska. And so from Florida to Alaska through Atlanta, the Atlanta piece, I want to say that's a nine hour flight. Well, when they're one, they're free if they ride in your lap. And so we went let's go, lap child, that's our flight.

Alban:

Well, when they're one they're free if they ride in your lap. And so we went, let's go lap child. That's our mistake. So there's three of us but then obviously a fourth person is in the row with us and she, no joke, the minute we take off, unwraps Indian food. She has a full meal and then, maybe like two hours in, our daughter starts crying and we go, oh, big mistake for us, Like we should not have done the lap child. You know we're locked in. Like this lady is with us for seven hours, there's no getting away.

Alban:

And my memory was that she didn't speak English. But then she took Emerson from my wife and, like, cooed her and relaxed her and it's just obviously been a mom calmed her down and then hands her back and I remember initially I was like, oh man, we're next to the person who has to eat food on the plane and it ended up turning out. It was like the kindest person ended up taking care of her child. So don't bring food, be sweet to babies and no lap children. That is such a bad idea. Every time I've done it it was a mistake.

Kevin:

That's a banger move. I've tried it multiple times. When people walk on planes with babies, I always say, oh, let me have your baby, let me have your baby. And no one ever gives me, but I end up with an empty seat next to me, so it's a win.

Alban:

Well, if the baby's been crying next to you for over an hour and someone says give it to me, then you're like you might know what to do, cause we don't.

Kevin:

Oh, I'm going to quiet this baby down. That's what I say.

Jordan:

I would not hand it off right now. Kevin, I think it's a little bit creepier when you say it.

Kevin:

Yeah, it doesn't work as well.

Jordan:

I'll make that baby quiet for you.

Kevin:

Yeah.

Jordan:

Give her a rear. Here we go. Welcome back to Buzzcast, a podcast about all things podcasting from the people at Buzzsprout. I'm Jordan, and joining me today, as always, are my hosts, Alban and Kevin. How are you guys?

Alban:

Doing well. How are you, Jordan?

Kevin:

Good hey. Oh sorry, that was weak, let me try it again, okay, hey.

Roger :

Hey.

Alban:

High energy. Hey, all right, let's average those out for our intro.

Kevin:

Oh, I'm excited. Today I did. I had my Jocko go. I've got high energy. I'm excited we're going to talk about some new Buzzsprout features. Well, one, I guess, new Buzzsprout feature today.

Jordan:

So we're at the end of the work cycle, which usually means we've been cooking up something new for Buzzsprout podcasters, and last week we published a Snapcast asking listeners to click the link in the show notes to text their guests for what the new feature is. And we did get some submissions for the new feature. Should we read through these before we reveal what the new feature is?

Kevin:

We had in the Snapcast last week. I challenged people to write in with what they think the new feature is going to be and then we said we would choose a winner if you guessed it correctly. Nobody, you know. Spoiler alert. Nobody guessed it correctly, which is a little surprising because there was a massive clue built into the contest.

Alban:

There's even more clues than the one you're thinking of. Last week we said what ways do you have for your listeners to contact you? That was what we had. You know that we've been doing some different ways of how to contact the show on this show for multiple months and we've been getting more and more excited about it. And then we said if you want to guess the new feature text, the show.

Jordan:

Click the link to text the show.

Alban:

And now everybody knows what it is.

Kevin:

That's right. So before we go into the full reveal a few of the guesses. Let's just quickly highlight a few of the guesses. Somebody guessed podgagement integration. Somebody guessed YouTube stats being able to record within the Buzzsprout app itself some sort of guest scheduling or booking thing or something Remote recording like recording within the app. That's a smattering of the type of stuff.

Alban:

These are good guesses, and I would like to say we can't ever do the guessing game again, because some of these are really good ideas but they're not things we're working on, and so it only feels like a letdown to see it and be like oh man, if you were thinking we were about to roll out full recording. That's a year-long project.

Jordan:

Yeah.

Alban:

And so it feels almost like a letdown.

Kevin:

Yeah, we do have to choose one of these, though, to give the prize to, because we did say All right, then I've got to go with the one from Alaska.

Alban:

Yeah, the number ending in 7892. The new feature is podgagement integration. That's not right, but at least it's on the right path. It's engaging with your listeners. Yeah so it feels like that one's the closest. Do you guys agree?

Kevin:

Oh sure, I think that's a really good argument. All right, 7892 from Alaska. Go ahead and shoot an email to support at buzzsproutcom. Tell them that you won Include your full number. They will text you back. So here it is.

Kevin:

We're talking around it a lot the new feature we're calling it fan mail and it allows anyone who hosts their podcast on Buzzsprout to turn it on and then you will get a link in your show notes. You get a texting inbox right inside Buzzsprout. A very, very cool way to experience this is through the iOS app that we have and the Android app that we're building and getting ready to launch soon, but once it's enabled, then you can also access it through desktop. The really nice thing about having this mobile platform now is that as soon as you get fan mail, you get a push notification to your mobile device so you can tap on it and check it out in real time, just like you would if you got a text message on your mobile device. But it does work on both. It works on desktop and the iOS app.

Kevin:

It's one-way communication. Your audience can text you, your fans text you, but you don't text them back, because we are respecting privacy. We're not revealing the full phone number. We only know the last four of the phone number. Everything else is obscured, and so it's like an inbox. It's a way for people to reach out to you and contact you and send you notes, but it's not a two-way text messaging thing. If we revealed the number and allowed you to text back, then you would be exposing your private phone number to your audience, and so that's not a place where we're starting. If we end up figuring out a way to do that down the road maybe, but what we've really been enjoying on Buzzcast is having a simple way for our audience to be able to contact us and shoot us one-way messages. Our way of communicating back to our audience is by doing the show, is by reading this.

Alban:

Yeah, we've been communicating with the audience for years.

Kevin:

Yeah, and so we read as we get messages, we read them or use them, or if they're just like a great job, thumbs up, then it just helps keep us motivated and keep us podcasting. But if there are things that we want to respond to, we respond on the show, and that's how I would encourage anybody to use this feature in the same way. I mean, that's what I think your audience wants to hear, is they listen to your show. They're a huge fan. If you give them a shout out on your show, then that's the best way to respond to something, not just texting back and forth, and especially not texting back and forth and then revealing your private number and then who knows all the different ways that can go bad.

Alban:

Yeah, I could tell you so many times I've given somebody a phone number for a work thing and then it's not many, but there's a percentage of people. It's a pretty low percentage. They were just like, oh, we're friends now. And you'll wake up and you'll be like, oh, I've got four texts from that one guy I met one time. I'm like I don't, I don't know how to let him down easily.

Kevin:

This has happened to you a lot yeah. Alban's giving his number out to a lot of guys I met this nice guy.

Kevin:

He's great, yeah, so we were very careful with that when designing how this feature is going to work and, as a listener of the show, you know that we've been testing this out in various formats for months and months and months on the show Of all the ways that we've tried to connect with our audience and have tried to get people to write in or connect with us. We were using Twitter back when Twitter was Twitter and then we used X when X was X. We have an email address where we say support at buzzsproutcom if you want to contact us. We have a Facebook group where we sometimes reach out for feedback. There we have email newsletters. We have. Am I missing other things?

Jordan:

We have a fan list page.

Kevin:

A fan list page boostagrams.

Kevin:

Boostagrams yeah, boostagrams, right, all these different ways that we've opened up, and of all of those, the texting solution has provided us the highest level of engagement, the most amount of comments coming back from the audience, and so that's what we wanted to be able to offer everybody who hosts on Buzzsprout, and really I mean it's free, like I was going to say affordable, but it is free. It's included with what you are already paying for, and so no additional charge to be able to do that Setting this up on your own. We actually had a question about this last week. We want to pull that question up, but somebody asked how they could do this themselves, and the challenge is that most of these standalone texting services are somewhere between $15 and $30 a month just to be able to get a number that you can text.

Jordan:

Yeah, it was Andy, host of Dudes and Dads podcast, that asked what service we were using and he wanted to implement it for his podcast. But this is better.

Alban:

Yeah, much easier. This was really a feature that's born out of our own pain point. The very first time we thought about this being a feature was after we set it up for this show. So if you could go back to somewhere in February where we said, hey, we have a number, you could text it. We never thought we would build this into Buzzsprout at that point. We never thought we would build this into Buzzsprout at that point, and since then the results have been so positive that at some point, kevin's like it'd be really cool to add this for everybody, and so it was pretty quick that we learned about it. We went this is really nice. We found a good partner, we figured out a way to set it all up and now adding it to everybody's account.

Alban:

One of the things people have asked and I'm sure we will get more people to ask is well, why is it texting and why isn't it one of these other ways? You know, why isn't it just a text box on a website? Why isn't it just an email address? Like all of those things work, and the answer is one. This has been much more effective, and I think it's because opening up on your phone where you're listening to your podcast.

Alban:

A text box and sending a text is very natural. It also communicates how long the message should be. So when people were sending us emails or sending us voicemails, we were getting things that were way too long to include on the show. We'd often have to edit them down, and that's not anybody's fault. It's just that when you send an email you kind of feel like this should be a paragraph, but when you send a text it might be four words.

Alban:

And the other nice thing about texts is the downside is they cost money. Every time that you send a text, mostly it's included in your plans, at least if you're in the US, but sometimes international texts they'll cost a little money If it's not on your plan. It costs a penny, and that's actually a benefit, not a negative, because what that does as soon as things cost any money, you weed out 95% of all spam, all the most malicious things where people want to just spam and they want to kind of wreck the experience. Most of them aren't willing to pay a penny or a couple pennies, and so pretty quickly we realized this is much higher quality, it's much easier to engage with on the show and people were just doing it, and so it's really worked out kind of perfectly.

Jordan:

Yeah, I mean in true Buzzsprout fashion, we have just this like really slick implementation UI for this. It's so nice because when you go to just like your main dashboard, you can click fan mail and then it shows up just with the last four numbers of the phone number, and we put up top the location of the phone number. So, you know, when we look at messages from people I can see like Trenton, new Jersey, florida, alaska, california, and so that's also really fun because you can see where the listeners that are engaging with you are from. And then, instead of all the text messages coming through and they're just like kind of in a list, we put them into threads and so when someone texts you a lot, it's not going to show up as a ton of texts, it's going to show as like one thread of texts that you can actually open and then go to that phone numbers page to see the history of texts for them. So it's really nice.

Alban:

So the number we have from Coco Florida who's texted us, if they text five times, they're just going to have one little slot and we'll say plus four extra messages and you click in and you can see them all. And what I really like is often people will tell you their name once and then the second and third and fourth time they wouldn't say, hey, this is Kevin again. You kind of expect like, okay, you remember this is Kevin, and so we can see oh, yeah, that's the number. Oh, that's that's Kevin. Cool, he's writing it again.

Alban:

So I can follow up on whatever we talked about in the last show, what we mentioned, his comment. So it's a way, without it being creepy, that you can start to connect more and more with your audience. They're only giving you their phone number, only part of the phone number, so you can identify. Okay, these are different. We're giving you a general area based on the area code where the number is from so it may not be where they live and then you're getting the messages that they want to send and you're now going to be able to get fan mail from your podcast listeners and hopefully some of these will just be really positive. Almost all of ours have been so, and we'll encourage you not just to start podcasting, like you might have done a long time ago, but to keep podcasting and keep podcasting better and better as you continue to grow.

Kevin:

Yeah, it doesn't sound that huge, but it's become a problem for us is because we've given people so many different ways to be able to reach out and connect with us on the show, Like we are oftentimes scrambling right before recording to make sure that we've checked all of them and we have all the messages gathered together so that we can shout them out on air or talk about the things that they want to want us to talk about. And so we are checking X and we're checking a booster grams and we're checking a support emails slick text and all these things and we're trying to bring all this stuff together.

Kevin:

This solves that problem, at least for us. For us on this show, we are going to move to fan mail first. Send a text to the show If you want to connect with us first. It doesn't mean we're taking the stuff, we're not getting off of X or whatever. We'll still post those threads out there, we'll still check them from time to time, but at least we're not. We're not going to feel the pressure every time to collect all that stuff together in order to prep for the show. We're going to have one main way of connecting with us or getting a message to us. That will be very clear in our show notes. It'd be very clear about how we talk, about how to connect with the show. That will be the main thing that we talk about, and so it just makes podcasting easier as well, which is another point that we always come back to.

Kevin:

Everything that we do, we try to make it easier so that you can enjoy it and you can focus more on creating great content and not worrying about setting up 17 different ways for people to be able to contact you. Here's one way. It's great, it is super easy for your listeners and it's like tried and tested by us live on the show. As you've heard, it's the highest and best way that we've been able to connect with our audience, so hopefully that works for a lot of Buzzsprout customers as well. I'm loving it. I'm super excited about it.

Kevin:

So last week was the first time that we actually deployed a version of fan mail out for us to use on this show to do testing and getting those push notifications which just started a few days ago. We just got that implemented and rolled out. Getting those few push notifications as messages came in. So fun on your phone to know that, okay, somebody like I wasn't even doing anything, I was just out walking around the block and then I get a push notification. Somebody just listened to my show, somebody sent me a message. Tap it and read it.

Jordan:

And I love the callback of you've got fan mail.

Kevin:

Yeah, right.

Jordan:

Very AOL.

Kevin:

And I think it works. It's scalable too. This is one of the really fun things about it is it's scalable. So even if it's just you know your mom who's listening to your podcast now, your mom, it's another way for your mom to text. You now Just text the show, mom, and so maybe you'll respond more to your friends and family if they contact you through your podcast, instead of just ignoring their normal texts that come in.

Alban:

I wish I had it pulled up right now so I could read this text exchange. When we first started with the texting, I got a message and it corrected something on the show or it answered some question we had and I was like, wow, thank you so much. What's your name so that I can message? I can, like give you credit on the podcast. They're right back, Kevin Finn. I'm a huge fan of the show. Listen every week. Like, oh, like, when you're getting it in a number and it's partly hidden, then, yeah, you're going to get messages from maybe friends and family and be like hidden. Then, yeah, you're going to get messages from maybe friends and family and be like there we go.

Jordan:

That's my first fan. Even if it's friends and family, those still count. So when this episode drops, will it be rolled out to all Buzzsprout users?

Kevin:

or just like a select group? How are we doing this? The plan is for this to roll out for iOS first. This is really the first feature that we built since we launched the iOS app, and so we really wanted to utilize this new platform and form factor to be able to make it a really great mobile first experience. It also works wonderful on desktop, but, like I said, just the push notification portion of this feature, it's so fun. It's useful, for sure, but it's also fun and delightful and it's really fun to receive those, and so we really wanted to hone in on this feature. This is a great mobile first experience.

Kevin:

Like would we have even built this feature if we didn't have a mobile app? And I think the answer would have been no, because having to go to your computer and sit down and then check your fan mail just felt very you know 1995, dialing up to AOL to check your email. It just didn't feel right. And so we're super excited to have this new perspective to be able to look at. How do we improve podcasting for people, how do we make podcasting easier, how do we keep you motivated, how do we help you make your show better, how do we help you reach more people and how do we do that now that we have this new platform? And so this is like example one of how we're starting to live out this new future at Buzzsprout.

Kevin:

And so it is available on desktop, but we're going to roll it out and deploy it and make it available first through the iOS app. So you're going to open up your iOS app, you're going to go to the more section. You're going to see a new tab in there called fan mail. You're going to tap on that and you can activate it from there. Once it's activated, then you can go over to desktop and you can use the desktop UI to see your messages or block numbers that are sending you ugly messages or whatever.

Kevin:

One of the main features? Oh yeah, we didn't talk about the blocking.

Jordan:

No, we didn't. You guys blocked me too when you were testing it. I was like hey.

Alban:

Yeah, it was a test. We didn't really block you, we unblocked Jordan, right.

Jordan:

Yeah, you unblocked, me. So, Jordan right, yeah, you unblock me.

Kevin:

So, and then, probably within a few weeks of that, we'll allow people to enable it straight from the desktop view as well. And this is in preparation of the Android app, which we're working on very diligently. As that comes online, then we're going to feel like we kind of have everybody covered with a really great mobile experience. But yeah, so for the first couple of weeks it'd probably be available only for iOS customers to be able to enable.

Kevin:

I can't give a timeline on the Android side. I can tell you I am testing it on my Android device and things are looking really good. It is coming along. But again, just like we rolled out the iOS app, we wanted to make sure that it was an excellent and high polished experience for everybody right out of the box. We're doing that same thing for Android. So Android's still a little ways out, but it will be available and work. The texting feature does work for Android. So I do have my Android device. I can load up my show like in Pocket Cast. What's your Android device, Kevin? I have a Google Pixel 4.

Jordan:

That's just your like.

Kevin:

secondary yeah, my secondary.

Alban:

Kevin's one of those guys. He's got like a hip belt with an iPhone.

Jordan:

He's got an Android on the other side on the other side like the newest version of them too.

Kevin:

Come on, no no, no, no, no, I don't, I don't. The pixel 4 is a.

Jordan:

It's an older android device like how old, what, how old?

Kevin:

is it now they're on like pixel 8 or something?

Jordan:

no, seriously yeah oh my gosh for a couple years I'm thinking like my husband I just bought him like a new phone, it's like the pixel 2, and I'm like oh, maybe I didn't just buy that I doubt it, um, but the texting does work now.

Kevin:

So, as of last week, we had somebody shoot us an email because they tried to text us from an android device and the the link didn't work, um, which was helpful, and then I realized, oh my gosh, we haven't had our internal testers testing from android devices because we've been targeting ios deployment. So that has been fixed. So now if you open up, I would say google podcast, but that's going away for all us customers anyway, um, but it's customatic. Yeah, it's customatic. Work on android.

Kevin:

Podcast attic is what I use on android, but there are some good, there are lots of good options for podcasting on android, um, and the links now work.

Kevin:

So it fires up it's called messages on Android, also at least on my version of Android and it pops in the number and it fills out the body text with the unique number for your podcast and then a message after it says do not remove, and then people can type whatever they want, send you your message, and that lands in your podcast inbox.

Kevin:

Some other things that we should cover One is blocked, and two is how to communicate, how to use this to your audience, and I think that it's important for you to. If you decide to enable us for your podcast and roll it out, you should talk about it in your show and you should tell people that when you tap the link, it is going to open up the messages app on your phone and it's going to have a number pre-populated in there and it's right next to that number. It's going to say do not remove. If you remove that number, you won't get the message, and so tell people not to remove that number. That number is what uniquely identifies your podcast in our system, so everyone's texting the same number. How do we know which podcast to deliver it to? It's that number, and so we have had a few texts come in where people have removed the number. Those don't get delivered to us.

Jordan:

And that's got to be our listeners too. It just goes out into the ether.

Kevin:

It goes out to the ether.

Alban:

Yeah, the first moment that you could figure out what we thought maybe we would build this, I think, is the beginning of March, because that's when we started adding that code to our podcast. The code might have been totally fake and it was only texting a single podcast and it was us, so we still got all of them, but we that was when we went oh, it'd be really cool If we had one number, everyone could text it and we could differentiate which podcasts they were intended for. And so we built it into our old solution, which served no purpose except showing us what percentage of people will actually leave that number in there and what text and what message could we use to communicate. Don't remove it and do not remove work.

Kevin:

Yeah, so let your audience know that when they tap the link, it's going to pre-populate a message. Leave that number in there and then go ahead and shoot your message and that works fine. Let's talk about blocked for a second. Okay, so in fan mail, when you first tap onto it, you'll see like an inbox view and when you first turn it on, obviously you won't have any messages. But as messages start coming in, once in a while you might get a message that you don't like. It's very rare, but there are some, especially around like political campaigns and stuff that's happening right now in the U S.

Kevin:

There are people who will spend the money to send basically unsolicited text messages In email. We call these spam. Same sort of thing happens in texting to a much lesser degree, but it does happen. If you get one of those, what are you going to do with it? You don't want them anymore. You don't want to see them in your fan mail inbox, so you can block it.

Kevin:

You might also, if you've been podcasting for any amount of time, you hopefully have not had to deal with it much, but every once in a while you'll get a troll, and troll is just a word that has popped up on the internet for anybody who's just trying to solicit a reaction. Either they're trying to be negative or they're picking on you for one reason or another, and we didn't want anybody to have to deal with ugly troll messages sitting in their fan mailbox and so and what block does is it removes those messages, kind of like a spam filter for your email. It moves those messages out of the main fan mail inbox and any further messages that you receive from that number will just land, basically, in your spam folder, which we're calling blocked, so you don't have to look at them. If you ever, you know, accidentally block a number or like we did we blocked Jordan when we were testing and we want to unblock them, you can just go into your blocked list, see all the numbers that you blocked, tap into them and see the messages.

Kevin:

Remind yourself why did you block them in the first place? In Jordan's case, it was just because we were testing. She didn't send us anything awful and so we unblocked her. But if you go in there, me to vote again, again, again, so that stuff's all been thought through, those tools are in place so you can keep your fan mail box nice and clean and tidy.

Jordan:

Something else I actually really like about this is that you're able to customize the text link. So when you enable fan mail, you can put the link location either at the top of the show notes, like how we have it, or you can put it at the bottom of the description, and you can either have just the default send us a text or you can do custom texts. So if you, you know, maybe have like a funny word for people writing in or something like that, then you can type in whatever you want to show up as a link and then just save that. So yeah.

Kevin:

So we really like interaction from our audience on the show. If you've listened for any amount of time, you know this, because we ask for it all the time. We have a whole segment at the end of the show that we do, called sound off, where we love interacting with our audience. If that's a big part of your show. We wanted to give people the ability to put a way to contact the show the primary way to contact the show at the very top, the first thing in your show notes, like before you see anything else, and not necessarily because it has to be the most important thing, but just because it's the easiest place then. So when you're talking about, hey, I'd love to get some feedback on this topic that I covered in this episode, look in the show notes. You're going to see a link to text the show. We wanted that front and center. That's not right for every podcast, but it's certainly right for this show and it's probably right for a lot of other shows as well, and so that's why we gave the option of do you want to put it first thing front and center? Again, not because it's the main thing you're talking about every time, but it's a really important part of your show and it's something that you really love and it helps keep you motivated.

Kevin:

Or you ask questions on a regular basis, like make it easy for people to find that link not that they have to scroll available, but it's not a big part of your show. You don't ask questions very often, you're not looking for guests, you're not looking for feedback, you're not soliciting, but you want to give people an option. If, every once in a while, somebody wants to contact you, you want to make it easy, then putting it after your description is totally fine, because somebody who's not being asked on a regular basis to contact the show, but just has a question pop up once in a while, making it easy for them to find this fine at the bottom of the show notes. So that's why there's two different options of where you want to put it.

Jordan:

It's kind of fun being able to toggle between putting it at the top or putting it at the bottom. So, like you said, if somebody doesn't normally ask questions or doesn't normally get feedback from their listeners, but maybe in one episode they ask them a question, so if you know one episode, we decided to change it to create a buzz then we could change the text to create a buzz for the link and then put it at the top of the show notes so people can be like, oh cool, what's this you know? Or send in your sound off response and we can change the link to say that instead of just like shoot us a text. So yeah, I think it's kind of neat that you can just those those small changes make such a big difference into customizing the experience for your listeners.

Kevin:

Yeah. So like if one week, that's a great example. Jordan, if you're going to do like a contest or something or you're asking you don't normally solicit feedback, but in one episode you do you can go into your settings and say I'm going to make it really easy for you to contact me this week. There's a link right at the top of the show notes. It says text the show and then after that week is over you can go back into your settings and put it back at the bottom of your description for future episodes. So it's dynamic. It moves back and forth. It does change that on all of your episodes but again it's just moving. Where that link is easy, it's at the top of the show notes, but actually you've changed it back. It's not that big of a deal, but it is a really nice, fast way to move that link around in your episode descriptions whenever you need to.

Alban:

Well, we'd love to hear what everyone thinks about the new feature. We'd love to know what you think about fan mail. So if you want to let us know, send us a text, click the link in the show notes and send us some fan mail, and if you hate it, let us know We'll block the number and move on. We won't really block it for negative feedback. It's good to get both sides of it. But if it's true trolling or you're sending us your political opinions, you may not hear us read those out on the show. Yeah.

Kevin:

No, I mean, we really are super excited. Like I said, one of the most fun things about creating Buzzcast is hearing back from the people who listen to it and enjoy it, whether you're responding to a question or you're asking a question or you're just saying thumbs up, great show. Or sometimes it's negative feedback. It's stuff we could be doing better, but whatever it is, we like receiving it and we hope that a lot of you out there who are creating your own podcasts and your own content like it as well. And if you do, now, here's a really great, effective and easy way for you to give your audience just to reach out to you and contact you. So, like Alban said, please, we love feedback, we want to hear it, good or bad. Download the iOS app, head over to the fan mail section, enable it, give it a shot, and I really hope that your audience uses it and reaches out to you and it helps you keep podcasting.

Jordan:

Spotify has ended their IAB membership and this means that the companies owned by Spotify, like Megaphone and Chartable, are not IAB certified. And it's interesting because they say that they still support the IAB and will remain compliant. And for anyone who's like me, who is not sure about like the difference between IAB certification and IAB compliance, james at Pod News published a handy article titled IAB certification and compliance the difference where the answer seems pretty simple. And so those who are IAB certified have to prove that they are compliant with the IAB and how they measure downloads, and they have actual auditors to review the systems that they have in place. And those who are IAB compliant do not have anybody testing these download measurements and so, in essence, they can just say whatever they want about how their downloads are measured.

Alban:

Yeah, To my knowledge, the first person who ever said they were IB compliant was Kevin. There was a short period where it was like a really big deal for podcasters where they were like, whoa, is my host compliant? I think maybe Blueberry was the first that they got certified. And then they were like, hey, this is actually a big deal. And so podcasters started hearing maybe your stats are all messed up. And so we looked at their spec and we go, oh well, we do everything. They say we're following all the guidelines. And so we said, yeah, we're compliant, and I think we might've been the first just to say we're doing all this stuff. We're going to vouch for ourselves, though I don't know if we want to spend the money to do the full audit.

Jordan:

Yeah.

Alban:

Though then later on ended up bringing somebody in to do the audit, just to get the little badge that said yes, buzzsprout's good to go, your stats are good, and we got the stamp of approval.

Jordan:

I mean the certification costs, like 15 grand or something like that.

Kevin:

Yeah, it's pricey. So here's the thing. I do not think this has anything to do with Spotify not willing to spend the money to get certified.

Kevin:

Yeah, I think this is more about Spotify being in a position and making a stand that they do not need to follow anybody else's rules. Yeah, probably rightly so. Like they are in a more unique position than most podcast hosts in that they not only have the distribution, they have the consumption. They control both sides. So, through hosting on Megaphone and then people listening in Spotify, not only do they have all the data that any other podcast host would have, but they have a lot more. They have all the player side data as well, and they reveal some of that to podcasters. So you can log into the analytics section of your Spotify dashboard as a podcaster and you can see more things than we can display through the Buzzsprout stats stuff. So they have some demographic information. They might have a different way of calculating consumption data how much of an episode somebody has listened to or the demographic information, so male, female breakdown or gender breakdown. I don't know what else they do in there. They don't give you a ton, but here's the reality is that they have a ton and they probably want to make that available to their advertisers. So they probably know, like average household income, level of education, some of your online purchasing habits and a lot more stuff that you probably have no idea that they know about you, but they do, just because of the nature of the way Spotify works.

Kevin:

In order to listen on Spotify, you have to have a Spotify account. In order to create an account, you've got to put in some information and then they probably have tracking cookies and pixels and follow you around the internet and they probably pull that with a bunch of other data that they buy off the internet. So they have just like any other social network and again, this is not me saying Spotify is bad for doing this. This is just the nature of social networks and tracking and people who sell advertising as part of their business model or because it is their main business model, the more data that they can find out about whose attention they have at any given moment, it allows them to target ads more accurately and effectively to those people. Therefore, they can charge more for the advertising, and so that is the value that Spotify is bringing to their advertisers.

Kevin:

It is not how do you measure a download, and it is not about are we following this guideline or that guideline. I don't think any of their advertisers care Like Spotify can tell you directly. We know exactly how many people listen to this episode and we can tell you how much money they make. And we can tell you how often they change jobs. We could probably tell you what type of car they drive. We might even be able to tell you what room in the house they were in when they were listening to your podcast. We can tell you if they were in a good mood or a bad mood. We can tell you how many children they have, and so do you think they've really their advertisers care about IAB certification.

Jordan:

No, I mean, a lot of advertisers do care about IAB certification. So I was just, I was thinking like how could Spotify not recertify, you know, when they have chartable, when they have megapable, when they have Megaphone? And that makes sense now in that context.

Kevin:

Yeah, I'm sorry. I realize now, as you said, that I was coming off like I was responding to you. I was talking hypothetically, so like directly trying to answer your question. No, I'm not like hypothetically. Do we really think that Spotify's advertisers are coming back to them and saying, hey, you're not IAB certified anymore, we're not going to pay the same high CPMs? They're going to be like, look at the treasure trove of data that we have. That doesn't IAB, stuff doesn't matter, right, look at this treasure trove and so that's what's going to justify our high CPMs and stuff.

Jordan:

Yeah.

Alban:

Yeah, I think you're going to buy ads because you're making sales and Spotify is saying look, you don't need to know there was a part of a download, which is what the IAB guidelines would say Though we see enough was downloaded that you can count it as a download. They're saying not only do we know it was downloaded, we know exactly how much. We know how much was played. We know they played through the ad. They didn't skip any of the ad and we can kind of guess they probably actually listened and paid attention. And then we can also show you because we cookied your site. Oh, they also made a purchase and so as an advertiser, you're like I don't really care if you're certified whether or not this download was delivered. That's totally just a step along the journey, and you just told me they made it all the way to purchase and that's all the advertiser really cares about at the end of the day. I put $50 into advertising. I got $150 back. Man, am I excited? So I don't need any certifications along the way.

Kevin:

Yeah, and there's two things that Spotify would have to give up to maintain their IAB certification. One is a couple thousand dollars. They do not care about that, but the two things that they do care about is they would have to open up their code base to the IAB auditors, and I do not think Spotify wants to. Nobody wants to do that, including Buzzsprout. Nobody wants to do that unless you have to, and so somebody like Buzzsprout.

Kevin:

We felt compelled to do it because we had enough of our customers who were saying we want to be with an IAB certified host, so we were compelled to do it.

Kevin:

I don't think Spotify wants to do that. They don't want to reveal their code base to anybody outside of Spotify, and I don't think they're feeling compelled to do it because they have all this other data, so they don't need the IAB certification. The other thing is that to be IAB certified, you have to do all the things that the IAB says, and so the IAB not only do they say here's how you measure downloads, they also say here's some analytical data that you have to provide. You have to say things like you have to show a listener number and you have to show downloads and you have to measure downloads in this way over this period of time, and I bet Spotify is like hey, if we're not compelled to do it, we'd rather not. And so we've got our own measurements based on what our own average. We want to answer to our advertisers. We don't want to answer to an organization. The organization doesn't pay us money.

Alban:

They take our money. Advertisers give us money, so if they want something, we'll do it for them. You know, as soon as they left the IAB, that was right about the time that they added followers public follower numbers inside.

Alban:

Spotify and I wonder if those are related that they couldn't show that follower number unless that follower number was in the same IAB guideline. It's the way that they would say oh, this is a listener or not a listener. And so Spotify said you know what Followers? It's going to be more similar to the people who listen to the music. We have a way of doing all this. We're going to add it to podcasts. It's really cool. Oh, I guess it technically doesn't really line up with IAB. We don't really line up with IAB, we don't really need it anymore, and that might've made the decision easy for them and then say $15,000 publicly traded company.

Kevin:

So how does that impact the necessity for other companies like Buzzsprout to be able to continue our certification with the IAB? I don't think it has a big impact. To be honest with you, if you advertise on Spotify network, they're going to be able to make their case for why they don't need to be IAB certified For anybody else. I still think it's important right now, but I don't think it's a long-term solution for the podcasting industry. I think long-term, the podcasting industry needs to come up with a better way to be able to certify hosting analytics, and we need to be able to do that in a way that doesn't have a big price tag associated with it, because that's a barrier of entry for competitors to enter the space, which sounds weird for somebody like Buzzsprout to come out and say we want more competitors in the space. But it makes us all better.

Kevin:

Like Buzzsprout is why do we work hard every day to stay on top of our game?

Kevin:

It's because we have competitors who are pushing us, and so we want to remain the best place to host a podcast in the world, and I don't want to be this type of person, but I've seen it happen in industry after industry after industry is that as soon as all the competitors like the competitiveness and the industry goes away, then companies stop innovating.

Kevin:

It's just the reality of it, and so if we want to stay on top of our game, if we want to continue to be the best host, we need people pushing us to be the best host, and so I want more competitors in the space. I want more hosts coming out and saying, oh look, we launched this new feature, we're doing this, and I want our response to be, oh my gosh, that's great. How do we offer that to our customers and how do we one-up it? How do we do even more? Having to spend $15,000, $20,000, $30,000 to get IAB certified is a barrier to entry that I don't like, and so I would love for organizations like Podcasting 2.0, op3, the Podcast Standards Projects to come together and figure out is there another way for us to certify hosting statistics that doesn't have this big price tag associated with it, because it allows more people to enter the space and be innovative. But until that happens, I think the IAB is the best thing that we have. We should stick with it for now, but start moving towards a better solution.

Jordan:

Kevin, you dropped a link to a tweet in our outline. Can you tell us a little bit about this?

Kevin:

Yeah, yeah, yeah, the MKBHD tweet.

Jordan:

Yeah, and it's funny because I don't know who MKBHD is. And so I was like oh, I knew you guys were going to be so upset, but I don't know. We're not upset but you've watched a video Like a little disappointed.

Kevin:

I'm not disappointed in you. I'm disappointed for you because he's awesome. He's a tech reviewer, um, and he's, he's, I don't know. There's something about his personality that he is just so likable. From the first video that you watch. You will like him Universally, I think likable personality, as close as you can get to it and he breaks down tech and he does deep tech stuff and makes it very relatable. So, even if you're not a super techie person.

Kevin:

Anyway, all this has to do with, it's so easy to look at creators who are now at the top of their game MKBHD I do not know how many followers he has on YouTube, or he also does podcasts 18.3 million, 18.3 million Unbelievable, and deserves every bit of them. He's, like I said, really great creator, but we forget where they started, where they came from and how long they've been doing it and how long they've been doing it and how long people they've been grinding to get there. So it's so easy to look at that and just say I'll never be that. Or the other thing that we can do is we can say I've been doing this for six months. Why am I not as popular as MKBHD? And so, yeah, this tweet was somebody who's just pointing out the fact that MKBHD actually started a very long time ago. Now he's 30 years old, but published his first video on YouTube when he was 10 years old and they linked to that video. And watching that video I don't know it just warmed my heart a little bit to remember that we all start somewhere.

Kevin:

Mkbhd had the benefit of being able to start when he was 10 years old doing his first tech review video. We all didn't have that opportunity. I didn't get to create my first podcast till I was probably 35 or 36, but we all start somewhere and it's usually it's not good. It's not good compared to where he is now, but it's actually really good for a 10 year old. So you can see some of that natural talent, but you can also see the grind and the work that this person has put in over 20 years to be able to create what he now has One of, if not the most popular tech reviewers in the world.

Kevin:

And so, yeah, I just thought it would be good for us to talk about that a little bit and link to it in the show notes for anybody who feels like they're struggling a little bit, or I feel like I've been doing this for so long and I'm not getting the traction that I deserve, or I don't know. There's a lot of emotions that go around watching somebody who's at the peak of their career. Where did they start?

Alban:

What's really impressive is in the first six months that Marquez put out videos. He posted 200 videos in the first six months. We reviewed everything. Any phone a family member had, he did a review. He reviewed mice like a mouse for your computer. He was reviewing keyboards review. He reviewed mice like a mouse for your computer. He was reviewing keyboards.

Alban:

Any piece of tech. He did a review of his computer while he used the computer to film it. So the only thing he could really show you is like the parts that he could get in front of the screen. But he was 10 and he was into it and his parents were like go for it. So 200 tech videos in six months and it took so long for people to subscribe. But I feel like what's so impressive is he just kept going. You get so much better by doing the thing you're trying to get better at. If you're not doing it, it's going to be really hard to put together a great tech review video if all you do is you watch great tech review videos. If you want to be a great tech reviewer, you've got to review tech. There's a wonderful quote from Stephen King and he was like if you ever want to be a good writer, you've got to be a great reader and you've got to be a good writer. You've got to do both Consume it, but then actually do it and you will get better.

Jordan:

That's like the people that we meet. Oh man, I had this happen at a pod fest. Someone came up and they're like I'm just kind of spinning my wheels, I'm not gaining any traction with my podcast. I've been doing it for this long. And I said, oh well, what you should do is guest on other podcasts. And he said, oh, I don't listen to podcasts. And it just made me think like well, there's your problem. Like you got to actually like communicate with the community and do the thing you want to be good at.

Jordan:

Yeah, I understand his thinking behind it, cause he didn't want to you know influence the way that he wanted to podcast, and so he didn't want to consume other people's podcasts because he didn't want to think to himself like, oh well, I'm just going to be copying this person if I listen to them. He wanted it to be his own thing. But I think that there's definitely something to be learned through some form of imitation, and whether that be, you imitate until you create your own version of something because you have your own spin on things.

Alban:

When it's your personality going into stuff, and I think a lot of people lose sight of that, yeah, imagine how ridiculous it would be if what you did was I want to be a great dancer and you spent hours a day watching dance videos. We all know, okay, that's absurd, like you need to get out there and you start dancing. You can watch a couple of dance videos, get an idea, try to imitate, but go dance like, learn it.

Jordan:

That's like I want to lose weight and someone will watch tons of like runway models.

Alban:

Well, I like weight loss videos that might be more intense, but this is so good. The tweet Kevin, linked to MKBHD, did a hundred videos to get 74 subs. Mr Beast, the largest YouTuber of all time 100 videos got 760 subs. Pewdiepie 100 videos to get 2,500 subs. It's totally within your grasp to beat all of those numbers.

Alban:

All you have to do not that this is easy is do 100 videos and then just keep going and you're going to get better and better and better. It's inevitable that you would get better at the thing you're doing all the time. It will almost be difficult for you to not become an expert podcaster if, over the next 10 years, you say we're going to do a thousand episodes and I'm just going to keep publishing. You are going to be a great podcaster. I was just on Dave Jackson's show last week and he's been podcasting since 2005. It's easy to look back and go man, that guy's almost been doing it 20 years. No wonder he's gotten better. If only I'd done that. Well, you have that chance. It's just the chance is in 2044, you can look back in time to now and go oh, that was the bad first episode and the bad hundredth episode and the bad 200th episode and then all of a sudden pretty good episodes from then on out.

Jordan:

Yeah, there's people who want to learn a language or want to learn, you know, to play a violin, and they're like, oh, but I'm in my thirties, so I've like missed the mark. I can never learn to play violin. Well, I mean, if you started practicing today, in like, let's say, five years, you could be somewhat decent at violin, and then you'll be like 35 and playing violin it's such a short period of time. Or you think of, like, alan Rickman. I mean, he didn't start even acting until he was in what? His forties I think it was forties or fifties and then he became this like huge star. And I think that a lot of people are just like, oh, it's too late for me, it's too late for me, I can't do it. But there's so many people who don't even get started until later and they pivot their career or something like that, and then that ends up being their thing. So if you have it in you that you want to do this thing, like, the best way to do it is just start. You have to start somewhere.

Kevin:

There's some saying that applies to most disciplines in which you just get better at over time, and the saying goes something like the best time to start X well, we'll just use podcasting.

Kevin:

So the best time to start podcasting was 10 years ago.

Kevin:

The next best time to start podcasting is today, and that's what we're talking about here is like, obviously, the earlier you know, the best time to invest in the stock market, the best time to invest in the stock market, the best time to become a soccer player, anything was sure. If we could all go back and start at five years ago or 10 years ago or 20 years ago, that would have been better, but you didn't, and so the next best thing is today, and that is. It's hard to remember. But the second part of that saying is because it takes time to get good, and the longer you do it, the better you will be, and so nobody really talks about the second half of that statement like what is implied when you say that first part. But the second part is that it just takes time, and so I love those numbers that Alban just quoted. Mkbhd shipped 100 videos to get 74 subscribers. How many times have we bumped into podcasters at conferences or through support channels or X, y or Z.

Alban:

They say, I've done a hundred episodes now and I only have, you know, 90 downloads per episode. Okay, You're beating MPBHD. You're already on pace. You're beyond the greatest tech reviewer of all time.

Kevin:

I know that doesn't sound like a lot, but you were on this journey and at the end of this journey comes great things, but it is a long journey.

Jordan:

There's a screen grab I have here from Mr Beast, where he posted how many subscribers his channel had had every year on his birthday I mean four years into having his channel, he had 76 subscribers four years.

Roger :

And there's so many podcasters.

Jordan:

They're like I've been podcasting for two years and I can't seem to get over you know, a 100 or 200 consistent listeners and it's like, well, youtubers just kind of have this connotation of being like a viral sensation, or you know, youtube explodes in popularity and like that's the best place to be found. But even with that it still takes time. It's still this marathon.

Kevin:

Yeah, yeah and I don't want this to sound like we're shaming anybody If that was you, or if you felt like that, like I've been doing this for this amount of time and I feel like I should have more at this point. That's not a saying. Oh, that's a dumb, dumb way to think.

Kevin:

It's not a dumb way to think but it's a reminder that you're on a journey, and the journey is hard and you're doing good work and we want to encourage you to stick with it, because the only way to see payoffs is by staying with it. So if you let that discouragement take you out of the game, you will never become the violin player that you wanted to be, the dancer that you wanted to be or the podcaster that you wanted to be.

Alban:

One of my favorite ways that I've ever heard this kind of expressed somebody online was on this forum and they were saying you know, I dropped out of college years ago and it always kind of hurt. I wish I'd just gone to college and gotten a degree. I don't really even know if I'd need it, but I've always wanted to have graduated from college. But now I'm already 35. And if I went back now I wouldn't graduate until I was almost 39. And somebody wrote back and go well, in four years you're going to be 39 anyway. Do you want to have a degree or not?

Alban:

Oh man oh what a good point. Yeah, the age thing that you've added on, it's going to happen anyway. You will be 39. If you're 35 now, you're going to be 39 in four years. You could be 39 and have a degree, if that's what you desire or not. So which one do you want? Something about the way the language like unlocks instantly in my brain yeah, so you might as well just do the thing you want to do. Maybe you'll even find out. Oh, I never wanted a college degree anyway, and you'll be able to let that dream go, but maybe you will find out. It really meant a lot to me and I got to do it.

Kevin:

Yeah, by all accounts, mkbhd. After publishing a hundred videos and only having 74 subscribers, traditional logic would say like you should quit. This isn't working out for you, Mr Beast. Four years in to creating video content for YouTube and having 76 followers dude, you should quit. This might not be your thing. Steph Curry what was he? A junior or senior in high school, not being looked at by any colleges? And how tall was he when he was a sophomore in college? Like 5'10", 5'9" Basketball. Really, steph, you're a smart kid. You've got a lot of opportunity ahead of you. I don't think basketball is your ticket.

Jordan:

Now he's the producer of Holy Moly, so who's laughing?

Kevin:

That's not what he's best known for, but the greatest people always have these stories of this long journey that they had along the way, and the thing that's common between them all is that they didn't quit, they didn't give up, and so, anyway, I saw this tweet from MKBHD. It was a really good reminder of this is that the best people, who are the best at the world at things no one starts out. The best, they put in the work, they put in the time, they stick with it. Even when all the evidence in the world comes down and points at you like you should probably quit, they still keep going.

Kevin:

Now, maybe not true universally, if you look at, like some of the early American Idol auditions and stuff Like Simon Cowell's, like singing's not your thing, like maybe Simon's right on some of that, but podcasting is the thing that you can get better at right, and things like basketball and YouTube creation or whatever you're excited about and you're passionate about. You can get better at these things and so will you become the best in the world. Well, the best in the world requires the work and the dedication and the genetics and the talent and luck and timing and all these other things, but so you might not end up the best in the world, but you can get good, you can get really good, you can have a really positive impact. You can have a lot of success even if you don't ultimately end up being the best in the world. That's the encouragement that I want to offer. That's the encouragement that I got from this tweet. So thank you, guys for entertaining me and talking about a little bit.

Jordan:

And hopefully it's encouraging to anybody listening to this as well. It's time for SoundOff, the segment where you send in your responses to our podcasting questions. Alban, do you want to read the first text that we have here?

Alban:

Sure, from Brookhaven, mississippi. Of course we know who was in Iron man 2, robert Downey Jr and Terrence Howard I think that's in regards to Jordan didn't know who was running for president and I said that's like not knowing. The Iron man was an Iron man too.

Kevin:

She probably knows that.

Jordan:

And then we have a boost gram from David John Clark saying thanks for the comedians and cars doing coffee recommendation. Came home and watched the first two episodes. Love it Good. I'm glad you got to watch it.

Kevin:

David from the late bloomer actor Podcast also sent another Instagram to us, said thanks for your chat about listening data. I think it's intriguing A way as being useful for advertisers. I also think it's helpful for indies, like if people are listening to less than 10% of my episode, I think that's interesting. Or if they are listening to more yada yada, how I can make the show better. It's all helpful. I agree, David, and here's the thing. Is that information?

Kevin:

I think I mentioned it last week, but log into Apple Podcasts Connect, click into your podcast and check out the listener data Specifically. What you're looking for is, like they give you an engaged listeners number, and this is what I found so interesting about the whole advertising debate. Is we like how do advertisers know how much of an episode people are listening to? Well, for most podcasts like somewhere between 40 to 60% of all their podcast downloads come from Apple Podcasts, and this data is provided by Apple. They just don't allow third-party hosts to siphon in that data because of privacy reasons. So you actually have to log into Apple Podcasts Connect to get it yourself, but as a podcaster, you can do that, and so if you haven't looked at that data, go check it out. It is available on Apple.

Alban:

We also got a boost from Daniel J Lewis. Kevin gave him a little bit of grief for promoting his product last week without setting in sat, so he sent him in this time. He said how can I not support one of my favorite podcasts about podcasting? The last week, Podgagement, which is Daniel's company, collected 114 new reviews for our customers using Podgagement to engage their audiences and grow their podcast. That's phenomenal 114 new reviews. Love it.

Kevin:

Yeah, I think he did a little bit of numerology there, because he sent us 1,140 stats, so 1,104 is the number, or 114 is the number of new reviews that he got, and he added a zero on that for our stats boost. So thank you, daniel.

Jordan:

And then we got a text from 2218. I definitely feel you there. I want to know who my listeners are, but I have no way of knowing who they are because they never contact me. So I know exactly where you're coming from, because I've been doing this nine years. Yes, I don't know what it is, so hopefully you were able to turn on our new fan mail feature and see if that boosts your engagement at all.

Kevin:

Yeah, and note to anybody who was writing in, since that text was from 2218, we don't know your name. So when you send us a text, if you want to put your name at the end, then that would help us connect you to the number.

Alban:

And in the last episode we asked what are your thoughts about video podcasting? Is it good or bad? Eric reached out and said I thought it was one of the best discussions you've had on this last episode. It caused me to reevaluate how I promote podcasts to my new creators. Most of my focus will be on audio only. Podcast going forward. Eric, thanks so much for reaching out. Eric is a huge Tennessee Titans fan, but I got to give you a go. Jags Duval.

Jordan:

He's also very good at making music too Little known fact.

Alban:

Eric is a very nice guy. We actually have met at Jags Titans game before in a podcast.

Jordan:

Next up, we have a voice message from Roger Gowdy.

Roger :

Hey guys, I just wanted to say I couldn't agree more with your thoughts around the necessity or otherwise to add video to your podcast. I think one of the major reasons why podcasting is so popular is that it's what they call a companion medium. In other words, people are usually doing something else whenever they're consuming podcasts, whether that's going for a walk or driving to work, and so I think for many podcasters, if they apply a video first podcasting strategy, they're perhaps at odds with the consumption habits of their audience. I'd also love to take a sneaky look under the hood at the analytics and some of these long form YouTube podcast episodes to see how many people are actually reaching the end. Anyway, just some thoughts. Keep up the great work.

Jordan:

Yeah, I like this idea. I wonder if this is something that we can look at like for a future episode of Buzzcast. So thanks, Roger.

Kevin:

Okay. We got a text from 8944 from Oakland, california, wrote in said hey, this is Doc from the podcast Heroes to Science Fiction and Fantasy, I love listening to your show and listen to it religiously. You asked if I'm using video to promote my podcast. The answer is no, that I've narrowed that down to just audio. I think there's enough to do with just audio and it has some advantages and we totally agree. So thank you for that comment. We love audio and it's pretty much all we do for our show as well.

Alban:

Molly from the Small Business Hustle reached out. I'm barely a podcaster, but I became a listener because I was referred through word of mouth. I found it incredibly helpful when I'm doing something where I can't be visually distracted, like sewing or driving, walking, basically all the ings, the verbs. This talk about video podcast is ridiculous. It's either video show or audio podcast. If you, as a creator, want to make multiple formats of content in one take, then fine, do it. But doing audio only is podcasting in its totality. Podcast equal audio, video equals video. I tried to add a little bit of attitude in there, molly, to try to catch the real essence, but I love it.

Jordan:

Molly's probably not attitudey and very sweet. You just made her real sassy.

Alban:

Well, I read it, I got sassy, so maybe all the attitudes for me.

Jordan:

All right, and then we got an email from Brian Patterson, host of Brian's Run Pod. He says hi, my thoughts on whether podcasters should go the video route. I think you should not lose sight of why you did the podcast and what are your objectives of the podcast. I produce a running podcast and recently did a podcast that was a mixture of audio and video and the video part was to show our listeners how to do the exercises. The audio part was interviewing Lucy Tomlinson about her Pilates business. See, that's a good example. You're not going to be like watching a video while you're running, but it makes sense for him to have a video component to it to show what the exercises look like. So I think that's a good example.

Kevin:

Yeah, really good example. And then link that video in your show notes. If anybody wants to come back later and click through and watch the video, they can. Barnabas wrote in I'm very much audio only. I'm not opposed to video. If you want to do that, you can do it, but YouTube has never been a priority for me. And Barnabas also said I can connect with my listeners mostly through fan list, but I've also tried those Spotify Q&As and polls. Sadly, no one has contacted me yet. Well, here's the deal, barnabas Turn on your fan mail, get that text link in your show notes and see if people contact you through that. If they don't, let us know so that we can find your podcast. Click the link and we can contact you.

Jordan:

So for our next sound off question, we want to know what you think of the new fan mail feature, and there's only one way we want to hear about it is for you to smash that text button in our episode description, as Kevin was saying that's going to be the thing in podcasting is smash the text button.

Kevin:

It's not going to be a thing in podcasting.

Jordan:

We'll change the link text to just say smash this button. That's right, they can do it there. So be sure to click the link in our show notes to send us a text about what you think about the new fan mail feature and, as always, keep podcasting.

Kevin:

Remember text messaging fees may apply.

Alban:

There you go. Let's just use that clip right there.

Intro: Mistakes on a Plane
Introducing Fan Mail!
(Cont.) Introducing Fan Mail!
Spotify Leaves the IAB
Long Road to Success
Sound-Off
Post Script: Fees May Apply

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