June 08, 2005

7 Minutes To Covervile Covers and Counting....

7 minutes! 7 bloody minutes!!! Much as I love Coverville, there's something rather galling about having to sit through 7 minutes of chat, adverts, chat and more adverts before the first tune started playing in Coverville #94. Brian, please, work out a better way to finance the show than top loading everything. I know I'm sticking with Coverville, but my IM list has three previously regular listeners dropping the feed because of this.

Now, this might sound like big shouty Ewan, but there's a practical side to all this. Coverville and The Jazz Show (over at The Podcast Network) are the two shows that gave me enough momentum to start TPN Rock, which is now moving into people's MP3 players every Friday (a Friday Rock Show? Hmmmmm). I've learnt a lot over the first three months, both in how to sound "DJ'ish" on the show (compare the Radio 4 like performance from #01 to last week's #11) and having a great time doing it.

I suppose I'm getting annoyed at Coverville because since TPN Rock #01 I've made a point of getting "straight to the music" as soon as possible. There is space for a preshow advert (max 30 seconds if it's going to be used at all ), then TPN Rock's theme music (27 seconds). That's it. Most of the band introductions and show news waits till after that first hook - it's no surprise the catchiest song in the week's mix usually goes in slot 1. A 60 second advert sits in the middle of the show, and again I'll hook music as soon as possible on the return. While Podcasting isn't commercial radio, music casts can learn a lot from how they structure coming back from news, weather and commercials as well.

It's not going to stop me listening to Coverville, far from it, but it does mean that when I play it in iTunes at the start of the working day, I'm automatically sliding forward through all the adverts till I hear the first burst of music - completely negating the point of the adverts. Other 'casts carrying advertising throughout the show don't get this fast forward treatment. It's a fact of podcasting it needs to pay somehow (and Brian, by using licenced music, is up $500 a year just in fees) so how to do it effectivly is the question, and one that will become more relevant to the new entrants into the podcasting sphere as theyattempt to catch up to us Old Guard members with the entrenched readership.

Posted by Ewan at June 8, 2005 01:31 PM | TrackBack
Are there any kind of stats of clickthrough rates for podcast adverts? Posted by: Martin Little on June 8, 2005 03:46 PM
Hi Ewan, Point taken - and for the record, I agree with you. The extra length of time will only be temporary though. From show 94 to 99, I'm doing a contest to give away a couple of iPods. After that, it should go back to the regular format, which I try to keep under 2 minutes from theme song to first featured track. I appreciate your listening to the show, and sticking with it despite the longer chatty bit. Maybe if I broke some of that out into later in the show...? Posted by: Brian Ibbott on June 13, 2005 06:21 PM
Brian, thanks for the post, and glad you took the post in the constructive way it was intended. I'll reply in depth in a personal email, but in short, tease me! A simple "stay listening to win an Ipod" and drop that in the middle will break it up enough I think. Posted by: Ewan Spence on June 13, 2005 08:00 PM
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