In the eighties, the simple art of recording your own voice and sharing it with friends online was known as “audio blogging”.
Since then, the little known practice has evolved into one of the most profitable, convenient ways to consume web-based media: podcasting. Whether it’s a true-crime drama or a daily news breakdown, we all have podcasters that we’ve grown to love over the years.
Now, it’s estimated that there are over one-hundred thousand English podcasts hosted on the web. On a weekly basis, 42 million Americans over the age of twelve listen to at least one podcast.
With such a saturated market, it can be difficult to attract a sizable or loyal audience. Though there are tons of free distribution websites out there, it seems that none of them target the root issue of stagnation.
Podbean was developed for just this purpose. Whether you ride solo or represent a large franchise, Podbean has been in the business of making new podcasts successful for over a decade.
As this integrated service has grown to tremendous popularity among audiophiles of all kinds, we have to ask: does Podbean actually work? What’s the catch?
In this Podbean review, we’ve compiled some of the most relevant information about the popular service. Step by step, we’ll address all your burning questions about the included features, pricing, and potential drawbacks of Podbean.
What is Podbean?
Far from its humble beginnings in the early two-thousands, Podbean has now become one of the most reputable podcast publishing and monetization services of the past decade. With tons of customizable hosting packages available, Podbean handles all of the tricky tasks of management, publishing, and analytic insight through one easy tool.
Podbean provides a streamlined, friendly interface that every user can get started with right away. With enhanced share and embed tools, it’s possible for you to promote, manage, and edit podcasts through a simple point and click tools.
Aside from these publishing toolsets, Podbean features one of the most popular audio apps on the iOS and Android app stores. Simply through hosting on Podbean, you’re able to diversify your audience right away.
Podbean provides flat-rate plans with potentially unmetered bandwidth, free storage, and access to in-depth analytics. After getting your feet wet, it’s possible to increase your earnings by relying on the service’s integrated monetization toolsets.
In short, Podbean is the all-in-one platform for managing your podcasts. Publishing, distribution, monetization, and even live streaming are all made simple through Podbean.
Podbean Review Features
Podbean is known for providing tools for both the front and backend of podcasting. With intuitive publishing, distribution, and analysis tools, the service handles all of the frustrating details of getting yourself out there.
Perhaps Podbean’s most well-known feature is its user-friendly publishing interface. With just a few clicks, you can get your podcast published to the Podbean app or embedded onto other websites. Mobile users can even publish right from their iOS or Android device.
The service also offers unlimited storage, bandwidth, and recording time. Once you’ve published, it’s possible to make a Podbean-hosted professional podcast website with its own unique domain.
There’s no limit to the ways that you can schedule uploads, customize audio, and publish right on your timeline.
In addition to publishing toolsets, Podbean provides distribution and promotion services. Once you’ve published, Podbean is able to port your podcast automatically to all major platforms: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and more.
In particular, those who use the service appreciate the embedded podcast players Podbean provides. It’s easy to customize either single episode or multi-tracks before embedding them on a WordPress page, blog, or custom site.
Through email integration, it’s easy to automatically share new episodes to subscribers through the Mailchimp system.
Money, money, money. Podbean offers great, scalable ways for you to make a sizable income from your podcast. Depending on your needs, there are several different monetization schemes available to you.
Most Podbean users opt for podcast advertising, which lets Podbean host your podcast on an advertising marketplace for free advertiser pairing. Once you get paired, Podbean allows you to dynamically insert them as naturally as possible.
Alternatively, it’s possible to get paid through the user’s premium subscription or patronage. Podbean will handle all the nitty-gritty details of payment, technical issues, and support.
For patronage, users can provide monthly donations to support your podcast painlessly. Podbean allows you to whip up and embed a Patron page in minutes with different audience tiers, rewards, and donations.
Podbean provides sophisticated statistics so that you can better reach your intended audience.
In addition to simple download numbers, the service shows scalable episode-by-episode trends so that you understand holistically how your podcast is doing. Podbean will summarize all download data, presenting you with the top ten performers for pre-selected data ranges.
Better yet, Podbean provides enhanced listener geographic data so that you know where your listeners come from. Information like the user’s favored platform, download times of day, and user retention also come in handy.
Podbean provides nearly every axis of data available to give insight about your audience and their listening trends.
Podbean provides a comprehensive platform for you to live stream your audience directly. Through the Podbean platform, you have tons of options to engage with listeners, like easy instant messaging.
It’s easy to call in remote hosts or specific audience members for seamless group calls.
Many big-name podcasters even sell virtual tickets for live stream access or receive fans’ virtual gifts that can be converted to real currency.
Out of all these features, potential buyers are often most wary of the Podbean app. How big could it be? Do people really use it to listen to audio on the platform?
According to the site’s app statistics, there are over one million highly active users on the app. This makes the Podbean app one of the most popular and frequented services for listening to podcasts.
Through the Podbean app, it’s even easier for you to record, edit, and push content directly onto the platform. The app collects even more pinpointed data about user engagement, allowing you to leave comments, see specific followers, and follow other content creators.
Podbean provides several different tiers based on your needs. At any price point, the service is intuitive and all pricing is a flat rate.
Once you decide you want to climb to the next tier, it’s easy to switch the plan at any point without needing to speak to a customer service representative. In this way, Podbean is totally scalable depending on how your needs develop over time.
The Basic plan is totally free, providing you with five recorded hours of storage space and 100 gigabytes of monthly bandwidth. This free version even comes with Podcast site-building tools, iTunes and RSS feed support, and podcast statistics.
For more beefy features, the Unlimited Audio tier provides unmetered and unlimited storage and bandwidth at just $9 per month. You’ll get access to professional site themes, custom design options, a free domain name, and the advertising marketplace.
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The Unlimited Plus is recommended for podcasters with a quickly growing reputation. In addition to everything offered at the lower levels, this tier provides every monetization tool: premium sales, the patronage program, and dynamic advertiser integration.
Finally, the Business plan is everything that a mid-size company needs to build an audience. Starting at $99 a month, the tier provides multiple podcast channels, multiple admin accounts, private SSO authentication, live chat, and zero Podbean brandings.
The Pros and Cons of Podbean
Podbean is a great platform for those new to podcast publishing, distribution, and monetization. With easy to use tools, it’s possible to create an attractive webpage, embed your audio, and port your podcast to all major platforms.
Satisfied users appreciate that all monetization schemes are automatically built into the service. The service provides a holistic way to deal with all the podcasting details you’d rather leave behind, allowing you to focus on generating quality content.
That said, Podbean’s biggest advantages are also it’s biggest drawbacks. Some complain that the service is a little simplistic, especially since the podcast site will have limited functionality compared to a WordPress site.
Others are concerned that Podbean doesn’t offer enhanced security features, backups, and no site up-time guarantee. More experienced developers may be better off investing in the best hosting service for their needs.
Podbean provides their services at different flat-rate, simple price points. To get started, just choose the hosting plan that fits your needs. You can either be billed monthly or annually for a significantly reduced rate.
The cheapest paid tier is Unlimited Audio, at just $9 per month (or $14 billed monthly). Unlimited Plus is available at $29 per month ($39 billed monthly).
The Business tier starts at $99 per month ($129 billed monthly), depending on what extra add-ons you opt for. Multiple podcast channels and several admin accounts may cause the cost to adjust.
There are few limits to the ways you can use Podbean. Podbean is a general tool that makes the problems of publishing, distributing, monetizing, and growing your audience easier.
It’s best to get started by checking out the free podcast publishing interface. The sidebar will provide you simple overviews related to audience statistics, security, and episode management.
Yes, at the Basic tier, Podbean is always completely free. This podcast starter plan provides a great way to get your feet wet before you decide whether or not the service works for you.
Once you decide you need more features, it’s easy to bump up to one of the paid plans. Many podcasters remain on the Basic Plan and remove audio files as they need to remain under the 5-hour recording storage space limit.
Can You Make Money on Podbean?
Yes, it’s possible to make money through Podbean. Experienced podcasters state the platform pays for itself many times over.
There are several different ways that a Podbean user can make money, whether it’s through integrated advertising, setting up premium accounts, live stream donations, or making a sleek patron page.