Should I Use Soundcloud For My Podcast?Sep 05, 2019
"Should I use Soundcloud for my podcast? " With so many audio hosting services available to podcasters, it can be difficult to choose the best one for your needs. Perhaps Soundcloud is the platform for you? Maybe it isn't. Let's do a brief examination of the platform.
I Don't Use Soundcloud Anymore
Let's make this short and tell you that I'm not particularly a fan of Soundcloud.
When I first started my own podcast "Be The Experience," I first went with Soundcloud. When I went with this service, everyone kept telling me to use Libsyn or Blubrry because the services provided much more for a similar price.
Although I had used Blubrry in the past, I thought, "You know what? I'm going to try Soundcloud so that I can see whether the service is worthy of being used."
At the time when I signed up for Soundcloud, I received an email a week later--from Soundcloud--that the service was the verge of shutting down. At the time, Soundcloud hadn't figured out a way to monetize to the point of profit. Since that time, the service has stepped up their game, but they haven't ever really been a big player in the podcast market.
I know they have tried to make a dent in the podcast hosting provider market, but they just don't provide enough in "service" like the big dogs, Libsym, Blubrry and Spreaker.
I've always looked at Soundcloud as a platform mainly for musicians, not podcasting. Why?
If you sign up with Soundcloud, their service is basic at best. With all of the changes that are happening with Apple Podcasts, Spotify, etc., Soundcloud hasn't made metadata a priority on its platform.
Podcast Metadata Is Important For Syndication to Apple Podcasts and Spotify
When podcasters complain about their podcast not showing up the right way on these syndication platforms, those problems fall back on the service provider who is providing the fields for the podcaster to fill out.
I can't tell you whether Soundcloud has stepped up their game in this department, but from what I have seen from those who have purchased service with Soundcloud, there hasn't been much in terms of "updates" on their metadata platform.
Replacing Your MP3 File Mistakes Instead Of Re-uploading
One thing Soundcloud doesn't offer is the ability to replace an audio file once an episode has been published.
For example, let's say you made a mistake in your podcast and didn't edit something out. Now that you've published the episode, you have to go back into Soundcloud, delete the episode and all the work you put into the metadata and start from scratch.
This means re-entering in all of the metadata and re-uploading the corrected audio. This can be extremely cumbersome and time consuming for a content creator.
With a service like Libsyn, you don't have to go through this process.
Don't Lost Search Engine Indexing After You've Promoted A Podcast Link
If you publish an episode to Libsyn and you've made a mistake in your final audio, Libsyn allows you to replace that piece of audio without having to start from scratch.
In other words, all of the descriptions and metadata that is needed for Apple Podcasts and other syndication platforms doesn't go away. It stays. This is very helpful if you've started promoting the podcast and have driven traffic to that particular podcast link.
When you drive traffic to that podcast link, you're drawing attention to the podcast episode which should send signals to Google that it should crawl that website link and index for keywords for Search Engine Optimization.
Another instance where you may need to re-upload audio is in active promotion for your sponsors.
SAVE YOUR OLD PODCAST WORKFLOWS / TEMPLATES!
Maybe you've created a call-to-action inside of the podcast for a different promotion for one of your sponsors. And let's say you've promised your sponsor that you would insert a piece of audio in upcoming podcasts as well as 3 of your top-downloaded podcasts as well. This is easy if:
1) You've saved previous podcast editing episode workflows.
2) You've set up your podcast editing workflow to have sponsorships dragged and dropped into the DAW.
Whatever you may be offering to one of your sponsors may be doable if you have your workflows set up correctly and you're using Libsyn.
When you use a service like Soundcloud or Anchor, you don't have this ability.
Your Hosting Service Determines How Far You Want To Take Your Podcast
Refreshing old episodes with new sponsors can help bring in extra monetization opportunities to your podcast if you've got the drive to do so.
Before you dive in and start using a service like Soundcloud or Anchor, it's important to understand what your goals are when it comes to what the services provide.
If you like Soundcloud because it offers a form of "social' connection on the platform, sure that's cool, but not everyone is going to start a Soundcloud account to comment on your podcast while they're listening.
Secondly, if you're getting a service like Soundcloud because you want to have a "pretty" podcast player on your website, this should be the least of your worries. Libsyn allows you to do the same thing as Soundcloud in terms of embedding podcast players on a website.
The only difference between Libsyn and Soundcloud is that Soundcloud allows listeners to comment on the piece of audio while they're listening. Even though this is cool, it's not effective.
If you're looking for comments on your audio, you should be directing your listeners to comment on the blog where your podcast lives. This way you can promote your website and what you have to offer through your site.
On paper, Soundcloud seems cool to use, but when you actually use it, you'll find you might be struggling with some of the features that power podcasters are using to get more downloads.