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(By Ed Ryan) Following Evolutions in Los Angeles, on the latest episode of Podcasting 2.0 (the podcast), hosts Adam Curry and Dave Jones spent the first part of their show discussing how much Podcasting 2.0 (the platform) was discussed at the event. It wasn’t much.
The podcast press does an incredible disservice, according to Curry; he believes that when the press keeps pushing podcasters to gain more listeners, it’s always going to be a disappointment. He says it’s not about more listeners, it’s about developing a relationship with your audience. And both Curry and Jones say Podcasting 2.0, the open-source podcast platform they’ve created, is how podcasters get there.
Curry says podcasting does not need an algorithmic discovery mechanism for podcasting. “That’s just not how it works. This is an inherently peer-to-peer medium. People telling each other ‘Hey, why don’t you check that podcast out?’ How did you find the last three podcasts you found? You didn’t find them, someone told you about them.”
[caption id=“attachment_7628” align=“alignright” width=“153”] Adam Curry[/caption]
Curry says the press doesn’t want to talk about Podcasting 2.0 because they didn’t invent it. For the record, here are all our stories covering Podcasting 2.0 since it was launched in September of 2020.
To make it into the everyday conversation with podcasters, the platform needs to be able to be understood by the everyday podcaster. That podcaster is not a tech genius. Throw in conversations about bitcoin payments, boostagrams, chapters, indexes, and other tech lingo and you’re going to lose a lot of people. Unless you are constantly explaining it to them.
When we gain new subscribers to our daily PBJ newsletter, we send each new subscriber a question: What is your biggest challenge as a podcaster? Thankfully, it’s not which microphone they should use. The majority of podcasters who respond to us are trying to figure out how to “break through the clutter.” Most podcasts that fail will fail because the podcaster was unable to make a connection with their audience. It will never be because the platform they were on failed them. It only takes a handful of listeners that love you. They will want to help spread the word for you. If you continue to deliver, your numbers will grow.
It’s no different from radio. Compelling content on radio wins, despite, at times, an unlistenable number of commercial interruptions. The minute you start losing listeners and your show starts dropping in the ratings, you’re gone. Just because you launch a podcast doesn’t mean anyone will listen. Chances are they won’t.
Unless you’re a YouTube or TikTok star, you were on a reality TV show, or you have a big network constantly promoting your show, you will have to hustle for every listener. By engaging with those listeners, making them feel like they are part of what you’re creating, they will help you grow your show. And that costs nothing.
We reached out to a handful of Evolutions attendees and asked them if they heard any chatter or buzz about Podcasting 2.0 at the event. This was certainly no scientific study (and we only attended the show virtually). We asked people we knew would be interacting with a large number of attendees. All said they hadn’t heard much at all about Podcasting 2.0. But really, whose fault is that? If you want a lot of buzz in the early stages of your company, you spend a lot of money on a PR firm. If you expect it to grow organically, that takes time. If nobody is telling your story, you should expect no buzz. Same goes for your podcast.
On their podcast Jones said, “If we’re not there, it doesn’t get talked about.” Bingo. The rule in radio has always been if two or more people are gathered, we had to be there. Big community events when there were hundreds or thousands of people, we REALLY had to be there.
On our own weekend podcast (now 214 episodes), my wife and I are constantly telling our story. Four years later, we’re still not taking anything for granted. Every person is a potential new listener. Every potential listener could be the next person to reach out to hundreds more. You just never know. We have cards that explain how people can listen, we go to events, we never stop pushing the show out on social media. I even slap stickers on people’s backs when they’re not looking.
How about Podcasting 2.0 stickers in the urinals at Evolutions? Time to flush away the old way of doing things. Maybe that’s a dumb idea, but Evolutions was a perfect big and captive audience to spread the Podcasting 2.0 gospel. Here’s the full cast of the Podcasting 2.0 team. Seems like there could have been a strategy to work the Evolutions crowd amongst these folks, some of whom are very well-known in the podcasting space.
Following their latest show, Jones wrote an article about the lack of publicity Podcasting 2.0 is getting. He wrote, “I realize that Podcasting 2.0 is confusing from the outside. The confusion is the result of the project evolving organically, rather than having a big, coordinated PR launch. That’s not something we can, or want, to do. Rather, we’d rather just explain it clearly. It’s not that hard.”
We suggested to Dave he send more press releases, more success stories, more podcasters using the service telling their story about Podcasting 2.0. We’re happy to help, if there’s news to tell, but the podcast press is not the PR arm of Podcasting 2.0.
Jones, in his column (which you can read HERE) says the Podcasting 2.0 project is a vision of what podcasting experiences can be in the future, a set of free, open source standards for how that vision becomes reality. “It’s really that simple. Just like podcasting only requires a microphone and something to say, Podcasting 2.0 is simply a vision, and a set of standards.”
Time will tell.
Coming July 19th and 20th…our 2nd annual How to Make Real Money Podcasting conference where I interview successful podcasters from around the world. At last year’s event I interviewed Adam about Podcasting 2.0.
I now understand the problem. Thank you for clarifying. Ed sees us as building a “platform” Fundamentally not what we are doing. Hundreds of thousand of feeds have 2.0 features, thanks to hosting companies like buzzsprout and RSS.com who understand this is the decades awaited enhancements to podcasting. Entire working groups were formed and disbanded over the last decade who never published a lick of working code. Over 15 apps support these enhancements. See newpodcastapps.com That is our story. The elephant in the room is the general view that without a “big player” i.e Spotify Apple, Google or Amazon, it’s just a waste of time and we need to be a YouTube, or Mark Cuban to get real traction in the “industry”. The podcasting 2.0 project has created the Podcast Standard. It is well documented (https://github.com/podcastindex-org/podcast-namespace#The-%22podcast%22-Namespace) and implemented globally. We do all this with no funding, we are a value 4 value open collaboration. Everyone has a day job. No one gets paid. Everyone is doing it for the necessity of enhancing podcasting. And yes, I expect the same from the for profit companies that cover and report on the ‘industry’ This project is as much for apps as it is for hosting companies. Several big players in this industry are implementing the Podcast Standards. Some don’t, or only with lipservice. We don’t need or even have any funds for a PR arm. But for sure we can ask the visionary hosting companies to communicate the Podcast Standard in their advertising and marketing. Much of which funds the ‘podcast press’. I’ll make sure we have urinal stickers for y’all in Dallas.
#### [GoverntheMente]( "email@example.com") -
Podcasting 2.0 isn’t something that has to be known and popular among the general public. It is like i.e. HTML-5, most internet users aren’t aware of what that entails, but they know the apps they use that support that protocol like Chrome or Safari.