Pros & Cons: Publishing a Podcast to Soundcloud

3 min read

So, you’ve uploaded your podcast on Simplecast and now you want to share it. On your Simplecast dashboard, you can easily distribute your podcast by navigating to Show Distribution and going through the different channels and networks where you’d like to upload your show. In this post, we breakdown what you can expect when publishing a podcast to Soundcloud.

Pro: Soundcloud is built for audience interaction

Every platform you publish your show on will have a slightly different audience. One pro of having your show on Soundcloud is that it’s a social network combined with a streaming service. Everyone on the platform has the chance to comment on, like, and share audio. This provides instant feedback to content creators on what people like or don’t like about a piece of content. On top of this, content has the chance to go viral. Since users can share things and see what their friends are listening to, there’s a chance for podcasters to reach a wider audience organically.

Pro: That platform makes it easy to access podcast content

Where do people listen to podcasts? Two primary sources are streaming services or dedicated podcast apps. Soundcloud provides both of these things. Their mobile app makes finding, listening to, and interacting with podcasts super easy. If you know that a large portion of your audience is on Soundcloud or uses the Soundcloud app, then publishing to this platform can help them access your show.

Con: Soundcloud isn’t primarily for podcasters

Soundcloud is known as an audio platform, but, unfortunately, podcasts only make up a small percentage of the content on the platform. With so few podcasts on the platform, Soundcloud has little incentive to implement or improve features that benefit podcasters. While other podcast hosting and distribution companies have modernized to meet new standards for Apple Podcast ID3 tags and IAB Compliance, Soundcloud has yet to keep up. Soundcloud might not be the best option for more developed podcasts because, at the end of the day, it is primarily a streaming platform and not meant for hosting and distributing podcasts.

Con: Soundcloud won’t automatically import your existing podcast episodes

Probably one of the biggest cons for publishing a podcast to Soundcloud is that, no matter where you host your podcast, you cannot automatically import podcast episodes onto Soundcloud from an existing RSS feed. This is a problem for a number of reasons. For starters, you have to manually import each episode into Soundcloud again. If you have a lot of podcast episodes, this will be a tedious process. Also, reuploading your podcasts onto Soundcloud will affect how you track your listener data. Since the Soundcloud reuploads are not tied to your existing RSS feed episodes, you will need to combine the listener data from both sources to get accurate analytics. Lastly, by creating a Soundcloud account, you create a new RSS feed for the podcast episodes you upload there. You are able to redirect an existing RSS feed to this new Soundcloud RSS feed, but this could lead to issues with distribution on other channels.

Con: Soundcloud’s analytics are not IAB compliant

Soundcloud’s lack of IAB compliance can be an issue for podcasters who require robust analytics to share with their teams and advertisers. The Interactive Advertising Bureau, or IBA, released a set of standard metrics to measure a podcast’s listening numbers. These guidelines help improve the podcasting industry so that content creators can accurately measure and track podcast listens and downloads. As IAB compliance becomes more of an industry standard amongst podcast hosting platforms, it will be harder for content creators to legitimize their listener data to sponsors and advertisers without it.

Con: Soundcloud users are limited by upload time

Each Soundcloud plan has its own “upload allowance”. Unlike other podcast hosting and distribution platforms that limit uploads by file size, Soundcloud caps audio by how many hours are uploaded. This works for music, but when it comes to podcasts it can be very limiting. Users get 3 hours of upload allowance on the Basic free plan, 6 hours on Pro $6 plan, and unlimited for $12. For podcasters the upload allowance on the Basic and Pro plans gets used up fairly quickly and the only way to upload more is to delete existing audio files.

Is Soundcloud right for your podcast?

Publishing your podcast onto Soundcloud is not a great experience for content creators who want to host and distribute their podcast elsewhere. If you host your podcast on any site other than Soundcloud and want to publish your shows there, you risk creating issues with listener data accuracy and your RSS feed. This isn’t something we recommend, but if you know that most of your listeners use Soundcloud and want to publish your shows there, be aware of these technical issues.