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School of Podcasting - Plan, Launch, Grow and Monetize Your Podcast

Dec 19, 2016

Because of My Podcast I Got Media Passes - Cheri Field

Cheri Fields has at least 7 children, and produces the Creation Science for Kids Podcast

What Podcaster's Can Learn From

Amazon is an amazing company. Recently I purchased an Amazon Echo, and Later and Amazon Dot. These devices allow me to do things through voice activation system known as Alexa. You can control Alexa with an Amazon Echo, an Amazon Dot, and Amazon Tap, and now you can control your Amazon Fire TV.  If you're interested, check out my Buyer's Guide.

The item that made me purchase the Echo? The ability to say “Alexa, add eggs to the grocery list.” The more I examine the Amazon company, the more I believe there are tips we podcasters can learn from them.

Amazon Makes It Easy To Find Stuff

Their search is at the top of their page. You don’t have to search for the search. Amazon understands their customer may want a number of things, so they make it easy to find.

Podcasters you need a search button that is easy to find, if you provide topics that are more of a reference. Podcasters you could use categories to create filter to only show those episodes that are categorized a certain way.

Customer First Mentality

Any research into amazon and you will read how they make all decisions based on serving the customer. They are spending money on items that will better serve the customer. So when you are thinking about purchasing some equipment for your podcast you need to ask yourself who the purchase is serving, you or your audience?

Amazon project lead Ian McAllister has described a sort of reverse engineering that happens frequently at company HQ. “We try to work backwards from the customer, rather than starting with an idea for a product and trying to bolt customers onto it,” he wrote on

When someone approaches you to to be a guest on your show, you need think, “Will my audience want to hear this content?”

Personalized Recommendations

There are plugins that can add related links to other episodes on your site. So when someone listens to an episode about Topic A there could be links to more Topic A shows at the bottom of the post. There are plugins such as Yet Another Related Wordpress Post Plugin (which has lots of features, but can be a bit of a resource hog), and Related Wordpress Posts is a lighter weight plugin with an easy setup. If you’re using Appendipity themes, this is a built in feature

They Don’t Always Win, but They Try

I completely forgot that Amazon launched a “Fire Phone.” That tells you how much of an impact it had on the phone space. They’ve done quite a few things that didn’t land well.

It wants to infiltrate people’s lives to such an extent that they can’t imagine living without it — that they don’t even try to imagine living without it.

We always joke that "No one will punch you in the face," here at the School of Podcasting. Your podcast is a recipe, not a statue.

One of the cool things about being cloud based, is they are constantly adding new features to the Alexa system

Keep Your Pages Loading Fast

After analyzing the ratio of sales to website performance, Amazon discovered that for every 100ms of page load time there was a 1% decrease in sales. So how fast does your website need to be? Many usability experts propose that the ideal page load time is 2 seconds or less. You can easily test the page load time of your own website by using free tools such as

So podcasters be careful loading tons of plugins if you're using WordPress. Some of those may slow down your site.

Make it Fun

Google the phrase "Alexa Easter Eggs" and you will find a giant list of goof things you can get Alexa to say. There are

Make it Easy

The one thing the Amazon Echo and Dot do is they make it super easy to ORDER STUFF. With a few phrases, "Alexa order Angel Soft Toilet paper" it is pretty much on the way. She will state what size the package is and the price and ask me if I want to order it. There are safeguard can put in so your kids do order every thing under the sun.

Podcasters who are saying thins like, "Find me in iTunes" are missing a golden opportunity to lead their customers by the hand and show them exactly how to subscribe to their show. One of the things I did as a young grocery clerk was if someone asked where something was, I would take them to it, and make sure they could reach it. I wanted to see that product go into their cart. I would also ask if there was anything else they were looking for before I returned to whatever I was doing before. Make it easy.

You can do this by finding your show in iTunes, and right clicking on your art work and copying the link then add a button to your site and attach that link to the button (there is a tutorial for this at the School of Podcasting

Amazon's Ultimate Goal - Routine

Amazon wants to be your right arm. They want to be integrated into your life. When I recently traveled without my Amazon Dot, it was weird not to wake up, check my to do list, get the weather, and hear my custom news.

If you can podcast on a regular schedule, you become part of your audience's routine.

Podcast Glossary "K"

I couldn't think of any "I's, or J's" so we are moving o the the K's.

kbps - This is stands for kilo bits per second. This is a measurement that you use when you are exporting your files. Typical settings are

128 kbps - Stereo (if your primarily music)
96 kbps - mono (for those doing speech, and want a slightly better sound than 64 )
64 - kbps mono (same as 128 stereo, but mono)

When exporting you do not want to use VBR (variable bit rate) as you mp3 file may not play on all players.

Podcast Rewind - I Was On the SoloPreneur Hour with Michael O'Neal

I appeared on episode 509 of the Solopreneur Hour with Michael O'Neil. We talked a little music, we talk about my early days of training people on office equipment, getting fired after busting your butt, and how I ended up in Podcasting. Check it out HERE

You can hear Michael on this show sharing how he stands out from other podcast when I interviewed him on episode 542

Podcast Launch the Mark Nelson Show

Mark is going to help you with your negotiating skills. Check out his show at or Subscribe in iTunes

Mentioned in This Show

Glenn-Hebert- Dave-JacksonComputer Tutor Podcast

Solopreneur Hour

Podfest.Us (use the code Dave to save)

Alexa Cast

Amazon Alexa Buyers Guide

Building a Better Dave (questions website)

Horse Radio Network

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