Quit Peeing in the Sandbox – Buy Your Way to the Top at Soundcloud

Recently Apple sent out communication to media hosts Like Libsyn and Blubrry (and others) stating that anyone keyword stuffing their author name tag would NEVER be featured in iTunes. It was a polite way of saying KNOCK IT OFF!  You see iTunes use to search your description field until people started stuffing their descriptions with a bunch of crap. Apple likes to deliver VALUE. Why did Google beat Netscape back in the day? They delivered better VALUE- FASTER.

I’ve spoken in the past about Twitter bombing (the act of sending hundreds of tweets per hour directly to an mp3 file to boost downloads) and how it (in the end) hurts all podcasters. A sponsor believes you have 5000 downloads when in reality you have 500.  Here again, companies have put technology in place to battle the A**holes peeing in our sandbox.

Well these people are like playing “Whack a Mole” at Chucke E. Cheese. A new industry has emerged where you can BUY clicks on SOUNDCLOUD (Soundcloud should just start selling this as a service – maybe they could actually turn a profit).

Case in point (purposely not linked). 






For $3 or less you can purchase 1000 plays on soundcloud. So now you charge your sponsor $40 for 1000 downloads and pocket the other $37.

So word to sponsors, if the podcast your are sponsoring is on Soundcloud, you might want to think twice. Now I’m not saying that everyone who hosts on Soundcloud is a weasel, but if we hear someone doing this we need to quickly, and swiftly, kick them where it counts (ok, that might be a little over the top). But seriously…


Here is a (Not safe for work) video from Gary Vaynerchuk explaining how this is nothing new.

In the immortal words of John Lennon, “How do you sleep? I would also like to add, I hate your guts (Zakk Wylde). You’re going to ruin it for everyone.

When you’re ready to get off of Soundlcoud check out Libsyn.com or Blubrry.com and use the coupon code sopfree to get a free month of hosting.

Don’t Be a BUT Head

I got this email today from the Martin Rushe who is the  CEO at selz.com

notcoolSome of you may have read about the problems at our competitor Gumroad who announced they are laying most of their staff.

It would be easy and a little predictable for us to feel some schadenfreude about this. But we truthfully don’t. We always questioned the sustainability of Gumroad’s business model but we also admired them as an innovative competitor. The service we provide, which allows our brilliant creators and entrepreneurs to sell direct to their customers without paying away their hard-earned margins to marketplaces, is fast-growing and we see the loss of good operators as a net loss to the industry as a whole.

We also wanted to reassure you in case you had any concerns about the stability of Selz. I’m pleased to tell you that Selz goes from strength to strength. Our community of great customers, our team of committed staff, our feature-set and our unstinting dedication to giving you the tools to sell more online is growing by the day.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Your business is our business and we’re here to help.”

For me (who wasn’t worried how his business is doing) I thought this was kind of a douche bag kind of thing to do. Realize when you say BUT it negates everything you said before it. I think you’re a great person BUT… I don’t need the money BUT… it was a great movie BUT….

Hey Martin, don’t build your business by stepping on the face of others. If you want to grow Selz, how about not charging me to use PaypPal?

Why Feedburner is a Bad Idea

I got a voicemail from Greg Whitaker and he asked, “Why is it bad to use Feedburner and how do I leave?’

FeedburnerLet’s go back in time a bit. Feedburner was a great idea when iTunes first came on the scene because we needed an iTunes compliant feed, and well, there was hand coding your feed, or feedburner (there were other, but just a few options). So we all jumped on board, and later Feedburner was purchased by Google. All was good. The other benefit was if you needed to change your feed, you could just update Feedburner and it was SUPER easy. That was 2005 and things have changed.

While previously there were few options, today many hosting companies like Libsyn, Spreaker, the Powerpress plugin from Blubrry provide iTunes compliant feeds (stay away from Soundcloud – you’ve been told).  These services are up to date. Also all of these service make is easy to redirect your feed (which was one of feedburner’s biggest features).

Feedburner stalls a fair amount of time. This means they quick checking your feed. iTunes is watching feedburner, but it has stopped watching your feed. The end result? iTunes (and any other service looking at Feedburner) doesn’t get updated. For me, when there are better solutions, this becomes a deal breaker.

Feedburner’s Smartcast (iTunes settings) or is it the smart feed (one of the two) have been known to cause conflicts and render your feed invalid.

In summary, much like the 8-track tape it had its purpose until something better came along.

I’ll answer “how to leave feedburner” in a future post with lots of screenshots.



Get More Traffic and Sales Without Being Salesy

There are certain phrases like “Used Car Salesmen” and “Internet Marketer” that have negative side effects when you hear them. When you go to certain websites that really seem to push you to buy something. It just feels wrong.

Ray Edwards Copywriting AcademyThen there is Ray Edwards. I have loved Ray since the first time I heard his podcast. I bought his book Writing Riches, and I took his course on how to write a book quickly (great stuff), and when it was in beta I joined his copywrighting academy. Ray takes you under the hood of how to get your audience to engage in your content (this could be buying a product, joining a list, etc). The thing I love about it is you don’t have to adopt the “SUNDAY! SUNDAY! SUNDAY!” heavy sales effect. You simply identify your audience, their issues, then explain how you can help them. You enhance the feelings they already have and it moves them to action. Instead of applying outside pressure to buy, you stoke the fire of emotions within. It’s a very cool approach.

He makes me think, he makes me laugh, and he oozes integrity.Like I said, I love Ray Edwards.

Well right now Ray has lost his mind and is giving away tons of free stuff as he gets ready to launch his copywriting course to the world.

So here is the fun part. I dare you to go over and watch his video (you will need to give him your email, but he’s not a spammer). If Ray is as good as I say he is, you’re going see it, and feel Ray stoking your passions inside you. You might end up buying his course when it’s launched, and that might lead to you writing better copy on your site (which might lead to more success for you). If he stinks, his videos and sales free gifts and handouts will bore you, and you will know not to buy his course. I’m just here to tell you, Ray is good. He’s very good (he’s help write copy that is responsibly for milllions upon millions of sales).

CLICK HERE to  check out Rays Free Training before it disappears.

Jerry Seinfeld – Half the Time Nobody Got His Show

Jerry Seinfeld was talking about his show coming to Hulu.com

He explains how his show was not connecting with the audience for the first four years. Podcasters are trying to reproduce the Seinfeld model.

  1. You do a show for yourself because its fun.
  2. You tweak it a little
  3. Your audience finds you
  4. You gain their trust
  5. They tell their friends
  6. You capitalize on the relationship between you and your audience.

The audience has a bit of an echo, but it’s got some good insight.