September 12, 2020
Shipping is hard, but it makes all the difference. You can do all the creative work in the world but if you never ship anything it may as well not exist at all.
Nearly two months ago I shipped Olifant, a service monitoring platform. Since then I have been hard at work. I added a number of features to Olifant such as IRC, SMS and webhook notifications among a number of other features. I also built and launched a new service called Podable.
Podable is a podcast discovery platform for businesses. The idea is simple. There are a number of businesses that do marketing through podcasts. There are also plenty of podcasts out there that would benefit from sponsorship deals. I wanted to build a service that saves companies time (and thus money) when it comes to discovering podcasts in their target market, while simultaneously helping podcasters acquire sponsorship deals.
The pain points Podable solves are,
Both of the pain points can be solved manually given enough time and motivation. I wanted to take that manual process and streamline it to save businesses time.
In order to flesh out the concept I had to clearly define a few points. First and foremost, what constitutes an "active" podcast. I did some research to figure out how often podcasts publish episodes and it seems like once a month is a decent indicator for a podcast's health. I didn't dwell too long on it. I decided on one month and moved on (it will likely change, but I needed to start somewhere).
I also had to figure out how to get in touch with podcasters. This is the tricker issue and depends heavily on the podcast. In some cases the podcaster may provide an email for companies to contact them, and others may provide a form on a site. Ultimately, I decided to use a number of automated methods and manual curation to find and enrich my data set with contact information.
Moving forward, I have many plans for enhancements. In particular, I have a number of ideas to improve podcast discovery through more intelligent search. I also want to add a number of advanced podcast filters such as "up and coming" to target podcasts that are new and growing quickly.
Up until now I have been focused on the business side— but I would love to find out how podcasters feel about Podable and potentially have a means for podcasters to submit their own details and contact information.
Let's see what the next month brings. Keep shipping.