We’re helping thriving audio creators accelerate their growth with the upgraded Sounder Plus.
There’s never been a more exciting time in history to be an audio creator.
If you’re looking for proof, take a look at the announcements in the last few weeks from top audio and social companies. Apple is reinvesting in its podcast platform—providing creators with a chance to make money from their content with subscriptions. Spotify recently launched its new audio ad network and just yesterday announced it is also entering the subscription space. Facebook has joined in on the fun with its announcement of live audio rooms and new audio clip sharing features. The numbers don’t lie—2021 poised to be the biggest year ever for podcasting. In the last 12 months, the total number of created podcasts grew 2.4x, from about 850,000 to more than 2 million.
As the Internet has matured, we’ve seen the centralization of technology and audiences across industries leading to winners-take-most environments. However, what’s made podcasting so special since 2004 is its open, diverse, and inclusive nature. Both listeners and creators win when there are no limits to where audio content can be found. Innovation brews when every creator has the chance to have their voice heard. Ultimately, creator autonomy not only protects the podcasting ecosystem we all know and love, but also provides greater economic opportunity to creators and more (and better) content to listeners.
From a listener’s perspective, it’s exciting—there’s more amazing content to discover and hear. From a creator’s perspective, it can feel a bit intimidating. After speaking to many of the thousands of audio creators on the Sounder platform, one thing became abundantly clear:
With new platforms entering the space, more creators starting podcasts, and new tools being created every month, being a podcaster is a more challenging and fragmented task than ever before.Joey Fernandez, Head of Product at Sounder
Just take a look at how our industry has blossomed:
The audio industry is going through a transformation. Gone are the days of merely selecting a host and tacking on a handful of growth partners and tools. Audio management platforms, such as Sounder, help creators do it all: host, grow, track, and monetize creator content. We’re excited to help creators respond to this complicated environment by building the necessary technology and partnerships to help every creator accelerate audience growth.
For creators to win at audio, it means the right listener must find their content at the right time. It means search engines need to appropriately index content. It means social networking algorithms need to surface the right content whenever contextually appropriate. Our investments in machine learning, for example, allow us to recommend the right strategic recommendations and insights to help creators better market their content.
Being a successful podcaster in 2021 means being obsessed with creating the best content for your audience. Growth should be built into your audio management platform. That’s why we’re so excited about Sounder Plus. For $12.99/month, Sounder Plus helps creators stand out in a competitive podcasting landscape. Our reimagined Plus experience helps creators (1) automate their content distribution; (2) leverage new formats to share audio content; (3) improve their content and marketing with insights-driven and AI-powered analytics; (4) collaborate seamlessly with their production teams; and (5) develop an authentic brand identity.
Let me walk you through it.
How Sounder Plus Helps Podcasters Efficiently Grow Their Audience
Getting Creator Content in Front of Every Listener
Sounder already made it easy to get your podcast syndicated with every major directory such as Apple, Google, and Spotify. Traditional distribution to podcast listening platforms is now table stakes. However, creators need to make sure their content is distributed to wherever podcasts are heard. Did you know most people are still finding podcasts via YouTube?!
With Sounder, creators can set up automated episode distribution to YouTube—a major way, if not the number one way, new listeners discover podcasts. The heart of Sounder’s mission has always been to drive growth for our creators and that means ensuring content exists in every place where it can be heard.
Upon linking your Google account to your Sounder account, your future full-length episodes will distribute to YouTube automatically. As the industry grows, the lines will blur as to what is considered a place to listen to podcasts and what is not. Ultimately, podcasts should be where anyone is willing to consume content, and Sounder helps creators respond to these changing industry dynamics.
Making Audio Content Engaging on Video-First Platforms
Automatic distribution will always be the center of any podcast growth strategy. It allows creators to do more in less time. Additionally, we are determined to provide creators with best-in-class technology to help them build their audiences.
Podcasters in 2021 know that the best way to grow their audience is not just to be on social media platforms, but to be active, consistent, and authentic in sharing content. Videos generate 1,200% more shares on social platforms than text and static image posts combined. So, in turn, we developed a new way for our creators using Plus to engage audiences on video-first social platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Today we are launching Videobites.
Videobites enable your content to be more engaging on the platforms where your audience and future listeners spend the most time. Creating visually engaging content from your episodes is a simple process. Videobites take full advantage of Sounder’s built-in transcription that’s provided for every episode. Audio becomes visual with Videobites. We’re eager for our creators to start sharing them through Sounder Plus.
Improving Creator Growth Strategy & Tactics
When it comes to smart growth, Sounder does the heavy lifting. Creators should never get bogged down in the numbers—analyzing ways to make data work for them. With Sounder Plus, noise is transformed into insights. Creators learn when new content excites listeners, how marketing tactics engage new audiences, and what keywords should be leveraged to improve SEO. Tactically, creators can leverage episode description analysis, RSS feed keyword suggestions, and social media tagging tips to refine their promotion and distribution approach.
Sounder’s upgraded transcription technology drives these recommendations through better accuracy and quality. We’re able to better understand creator content and thus offer them more tailored suggestions as to how to improve their promotion strategies. Ultimately, Sounder Plus works to ensure audio browsers convert to long-term listeners, and search engines can index episode content effectively.
Ensuring Every Production Team is Poised to Thrive
We fundamentally believe that podcasting is a team sport. The best content is created when everyone on your team is working together in a collaborative and seamless manner. With Sounder Plus, creators have the ability to work with up to teams of five. No password sharing. No mess. We created a secure environment for creators and their collaborators to do their best work.
Enabling Podcast Authenticity to Shine
While we don’t like to admit it, sometimes we judge a book (or podcast) by its cover (art). Sounder Plus enables creators to make their content shine by changing the theme of their Sounder Player’s visual identity and setting vanity URLs for and customizing the colors of their podcast’s website. No two podcasts sound the same, so we made it possible for no two podcasts to visually look the same. Creators can build their podcast’s brands their way.
This is just the beginning of the technology we are building for thriving creators on Sounder Plus. We are helping creators accelerate their growth, build bigger audiences, and have more fun along the way. If you have any ideas or features you’d like us to consider as we make out the Sounder Plus experience, we’d love to hear from you.
We are excited to see audio receive so much attention and innovation. With more focus from leading companies, the ecosystem wins, innovation increases, and new technology is born.
And, if what you’ve read gets you even more excited about Sounder’s mission and vision for audio, we’re hiring!