Celebrate the Holidays with Free Recording Gear: Podbean-Samson Giveaway

The Podbean team wishes to share a huge thanks to all the hard-working podcasters who bring entertainment and education to so many listeners. Podbean and Samson have partnered up to provide a special holiday gift to one lucky podcaster.

Podbeansamsonggiveaway

Samson and Podbean are committed to developing products that help you create, produce and distribute your podcasts easily and affordably. We want to make sure your unique voice and story are heard.

From November 15th to December 15th podcasters (and future podcasters) can enter to win a Samson “Streaming Studio”. The Streaming Studio includes 1 x Q7 x Dynamic Microphone, 1 x MD5 Desktop Stand, 1 x MXP124FX USB Mixer, 1 x Z45 Headphones, and 1 x TM10 XLR Cable.

Streaming-Studio-Package-10-30-new

Visit Podbean.com/samsongiveaway to enter the holiday podcast giveaway. A winner will be chosen on December 16th and notified by email.

Happy podcasting and happy holidays!

Samson and Podbean Podcast Recording Solutions Giveaway: Press Release

Podbean is excited to partner with Samson for this exciting podcast studio giveaway. Check out the press release with more detail below and enter to win on the Podbean/Samson entry page.

podbean-samson-giveaway-news

Samson, an industry pioneer in professional audio solutions, today announces its partnership with podcasting platform Podbean at Podcast Movement 2017 for a series of monthly giveaways over the next three months. Kicking off this month’s giveaway at Podcast Movement 2017 entrants will have the chance to win Samson’s Podcast Pro Studio System, a full suite of gear worth over $1,000 that would give any podcaster, especially one just getting their work off the ground, the ability to produce high-quality audio content.

From August 20–September 20, podcasters worldwide can enter by registering on the Podbean website as follows: GIVEAWAY CONTEST LINK. This will be followed by a drawing from which the winner will be selected. Only entries from this date range will be eligible for this giveaway package. Samson and Podbean will be offering a new giveaway package each month for the next three months (separate entries required).

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The Podcast Pro Studio System that will be given away after the first month’s drawing is comprised of the following products that aspiring podcasters need to produce professional-quality broadcasts:

  • Q8x Professional Dynamic Vocal Microphone (2): Provides the ultimate in sound reproduction for live and studio vocal and instrumental performances. This high output mic faithfully captures a wide dynamic range with exceptional mid-range clarity. Its supercardioid pickup pattern provides maximum gain before feedback, while an updated body design and pneumatic capsule shockmount minimize handling noise.
  • MXP144FX 14-Input Analog Stereo Mixer with Effects and USB (1): Features Samson’s premium MDR (Maximum Dynamic Range) mic preamps to provide wide frequency range and natural response. The single-knob compressors keep your recorded audio levels even, minimizing post-production work. The built-in USB interface makes recording your podcast to a computer easy.
  • Z55 Professional Reference Headphones (2): Offer exceptional detail and clarity with an immersive soundstage and frequency response that’s impeccably balanced. The Z55s deliver all the subtle elements of a mix. No hype, just the ultimate in sound reproduction, comfort and convenience.
  • QH4 4-Channel Headphone Amplifier (1): A 4-channel headphone amplifier designed to distribute your audio to up to four individual headphones, each with its own volume control. Its compact design is perfect for use with any studio or desktop workstation, as well as with your laptop or smartphone when you’re recording on the go.
  • MBA28 Microphone Boom Arm (2): The perfect microphone accessories for any radio, podcast or home studio setup. Its articulating design provides a maximum horizontal/vertical arm reach of 28″. The MBA28 features internal springs that allow for silent and effortless positioning, which is ideal while recording or during live broadcasts.
  • Tourtek TM10 10′ Microphone Cable (2): Features two 24-gauge, multi-strand inner conductors wrapped in a braided copper shield with 96% coverage, protected by a 6mm PVC outer jacket. The result is a premium cable providing excellent rejection of RF and electromagnetic interference.
  • Tourtek TI10 10′ Instrument Cable (2): Features inner stranded copper conductors covered by a PVC insulator, which is wrapped in a second carbon insulator, then wrapped in a braided copper shield with 96% coverage. This is protected by a 6mm PVC outer jacket. The low capacitance cable provides excellent rejection of RFI/EMI interference and superior sound quality.

“Podbean is committed to developing tools that help podcasters create, distribute and promote their podcasts easily and affordably. We’re excited about this opportunity to partner with Samson to bring some lucky podcasters such high-quality equipment,” says David Xu, CEO of Podbean.

“We are thrilled to offer the podcasting community a chance to win our innovative new Podcast Pro Studio setup,” said Sean Meagher, Director of Marketing at Samson. “Samson’s partnership with Podbean further strengthens our commitment to making high-quality and affordable equipment available to podcasters around the world.”

The podcasting space has seen exponential growth in recent years. Today, more than 57 million Americans listen to podcasts monthly (up 23%, year on year) and podcast advertising is forecasted to grow in the US about 25% a year through 2020. The number of podcasters is expected to grow consistently over the next few years as the industry continues to expand in reach and lucrativeness. And with giveaways like this, Samson and Podbean strive to be at the forefront of this expanding industry.

 

A Better Podcast Listening Experience with Intelligent Speed & Volume Boost

We’ve added two exciting new features to the latest version of the Podbean iOS app. With these features, users get a better listening experience customized to their needs and listening conditions.

Instruction page

Intelligent speed shortens silences in the podcast without distorting the audio. It’s a great way to save your listening time while still enjoying the audio as it was meant to be.

Volume boost normalizes volume to make listening in noisy situations easier. With dynamic compression equalization, you get a more consistent volume. This can really help when podcasts don’t have perfect sound and or for times when there’s a lot of background noise.

To use these features, simply click on the “speedometer” icon on the bottom right when listening to a podcast. You will be able to apply the features there. You can read more about How to Use Intelligent Speed and Volume Boost in the Podbean iOS app here.

Set Up Your Podcast Episodes to Be Played Directly in Facebook

Podbean makes it easy to make your podcast social. For example, you can automate sharing your episodes to Facebook (and many other destinations). To set up Facebook auto-share, simply connect your Facebook account (go to “Settings”–>”Social Share” and click the “Connect to Facebook” button).

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By popular demand, we’ve created a way for you to share your episodes as a native video in Facebook. This give you the opportunity to take advantage of Facebook’s timeline algorithms, which heavily favor video.

You now have two options for auto-sharing your podcast episodes to Facebook:
Click the pencil icon to choose how to display your podcast on Facebook.

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If you check “post link”, a URL to your episode will be published (see example below). This enables a user to click the link and open your episode in a separate window outside of Facebook.

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The new option we’ve added is to post the episode as a native video. If you check “Upload as video to Timeline”, your episode will be shared as a video that can be played directly in Facebook. Video podcast episodes will play as is; audio podcasts will play the audio with a static image combining your episode artwork and title, as shown below.

post_as_video_to_facebook

We hope you love this new feature. Our team wants to make Podbean the ultimate platform for podcasting smarter. Contact Support if you have any questions.

Better Listening with Enhanced Android App Features

We’ve added two exciting new features to the Podbean Android app (coming soon for iOS too). With these features, you can customize your listening experience to your preferences and listening conditions.

Instruction page

Volume boost normalizes volume to make listening in noisy situations easier. With dynamic compression equalization, listeners get a more consistent volume. This can really help when podcasts don’t have perfect sound and for listening when there’s a lot of background noise.

Intelligent speed shortens silences in the podcast without distorting the audio. It’s a great way to save time while listening at a normal speed.

To use these features, simply click on the “speedometer” icon on the bottom right when listening to a podcast. You will be able to apply the features there. You can read more about How to Use Intelligent Speed and Volume Boost for Podbean’s Android podcast app here.

 

Setting Up a Static Home Page for Your Podbean Site

On your Podbean site, you can opt to have a home page of your choosing rather than the default episodes page. For example, your podcast site’s home page could be a general introductory page or attractive landing page. It’s easy to set up so that your podcast site functions beautifully for your needs.

1. Start by creating the static page (you can also do this from step 3 below). Simply go to “Layout”->”Pages” in your dashboard. Click the “Create a new page” button.

create a page

2. Then go to: https://apps.podbean.com. Get the “Static Podcast Homepage” app.

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3. Click the “Settings” icon to select a page as “Home Page”. You can also select a page to show your list of episodes. Then Click “Save changes”.

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Get Your Podcast Ready for iOS11

Apple recently announced that Apple Podcasts (Apple’s podcast App) for iOS 11 will be updated with new feed tags.  Apple states this will allow you to more clearly present show and episode information to your users. Additionally, you can include diverse content and storytelling shows within your podcast (for example, serial shows and shows with seasons).

Podbean has integrated the new iTunes tags into your Podbean dashboard.  Please note that these new tags will only take effect (be included in your feed) when iOS11 is released. However, to get your podcast ready to benefit from the iOS11 updates, you can make any changes your desire in your podcast now.

iTunes New Feed Tags Explained

<itunes:type>

The type of podcast you are submitting can be either:

  1. Episodic (default). Specify episodic for stand-alone episodes or when you want your episodes presented and recommended last-to-first. This option also supports seasons, with the newest episode at the top. For new subscribers, Apple Podcasts adds the latest, most recent episode in their Library.
  2. Specify serial when you want your episodes presented and recommended first-to-last. This option supports narratives, storytelling, thematic, and multiple seasons. For new subscribers, Apple Podcasts adds the first episode to their Library, or the entire current season if using seasons.

<itunes:season>

Identifies and organizes episodes by Seasons. No season number shows if there is only one season.

<itunes:episode>

Use this tag to specify the recommended order for episodes within a season.

<itunes:episodeType>

You can indicate certain types of episodes in iTunes using this tag. They are:

  1. Full (default). Specify full when you are submitting the complete content of an episode.
  2. Specify trailer when you are submitting a short, promotional piece of content that represents a preview of a show.
  3. Specify bonus when you are submitting extra content for a show (for example, behind the scenes information or interviews with the cast).

How to Set the New iOS11 iTunes Feed Tags in Podbean

Set Podcast Type: Episodic/Serial:

  1. Go to Settings-Feed/iTunes. Find “iTunes Type”
  2. Choose episodic or serial. Podcasts will be set as episodic by default.

Set Podcast Seasons:

  1. Go to Publish. Click “Publish New Episode” or click the edit icon by any episode. Click “More Options” in the episode editor.
  2. By default, it is set off. Click it on and pick the season for this episode (click “more” to add season 2 and beyond to your drop down menu).

Set Episode Type:

  1. Go to Publish. Click “Publish New Episode” or click the edit icon by any episode. Click “More Options” in the episode editor.
  2. By default, episodes are set to “Full”. Choose “Trailer” or “Bonus” here.

HLS Protocol for Video Podcasting: A Better Viewer Experience

HLS, or “HTTP Live Streaming”, is a video streaming format that breaks streams into a sequence of small HTTP-based file downloads, thus making video streaming faster and smoother.

With HLS, we’ll deliver the best possible version of your video at any given time. This means that the Podbean embed players and Apps will switch quality streams depending on the internet speed available. If we detect that your viewers have slower internet initially, but the quality picks up after a few seconds of watching, we’ll automatically switch to a higher quality viewing stream as the viewer watches. They don’t have to touch anything!

You can upgrade your video podcast to HLS by selecting the HLS video option in the Podbean app marketplace.

1. Go to apps.podbean.com and purchase the HLS video app. (You’ll be sent to the Podbean login page if you aren’t logged in; select a podcast channel if you have multiple channels.)

HLS Get App

2. In your Podbean admin, navigate to “Settings”->”Apps”. (You will be redirected to this page when installing the app.)

HLS app in dashboard

To see all the powerful features, services and plugins available to enhance your podcasting experience, visit the Podbean app marketplace. Stay tuned for more to come!

Podcast Downloads Explained

Podbean downloads

The world of podcast statistics can be a bit confusing, but we’re here to simplify it for you. There are various stats you can see to analyze your podcast’s success and audience behavior. You may want to read “Key Statistics to Understand Your Podcast Audience”.

The statistic that most podcasters (and sponsors) care about is downloads. The number of unique downloads you get for each episode shows the approximate size of your listening audience.

So, what is a download? Where do I find statistics on listens via various apps and streaming?

A download indicates any time your file is directly downloaded (i.e. a listener hits that download button and gets the whole file) or when someone listens to/streams the episode. Technically, the way podcasting works, the file is downloaded when someone listens in a player, app or other streaming method (a stream is just a progressive download for a podcast). Therefore, when you’re looking at your downloads you should see a full picture of the size of your audience across various players, website downloads, iTunes, apps, etc.

Unique Downloads

Podcast hosting and statistics services also filter these downloads according to accepted standards to show your unique downloads (a more accurate picture of your listening audience). In other words, some apps and podcatchers may hit your feed numerous times. Podcasting companies like Podbean use a formula to filter out downloads coming repeatedly from the same IP address for the media file within a certain timeframe.
So, the downloads stats you will find under “Trending” in your Podbean statistics provide an accurate picture of the number of downloads/listens. You can view these by episode and different time periods.

Feed Hits

Feed Hits show the number of times your podcast feed is fetched. Podcast apps, such as the Apple podcast app, fetch your podcast feed to check if there is a new episode. If there is a new episode and the user’s iPhone settings allow downloads, the new episode will be downloaded to the phone. If there is no new episode, nothing will be downloaded. So, “Feed Hits” and “Downloads” are related but not equivalent.

You can check feed hits on Podbean, though we hide it by default because it is not a useful statistic for understanding audience reach.

How do I see how many subscribers I have?

You can view your Podbean subscribers/followers in the app or on your site. Apple does not provide a window into that information on their platform. So, you can only estimate subscribers based on download behavior. This is why download numbers are so important as a method of gauging audience reach.

How do I know if someone actually listens?

When files are downloaded or streamed to many devices, it is difficult to know what happens from there. The person may never listen, or they may listen multiple times or with a group of friends.

However, proprietary apps and players can collect greater user intelligence. For example, we can see what listeners are doing when they use Podbean players and the Podbean app. Though this may not show your total audience’s behavior, it can provide great insight about your podcast. Podbean offers “User Engagement Intel” as an enhanced feature in the Podbean app marketplace. With this feature enabled, you’ll get data about how long people listen, what parts of the episode they skip or repeat, and average engagement.