What is the best way to share your audio on Facebook?

The challenge of making audio social

Here are two observations. First, Podcasters find it hard to grow the audience of their shows. Also, Facebook really prioritises its own native video (meaning a video uploaded to and hosted on Facebook) over literally anything else you share. At first it may be hard to see how these facts relate to one another, but as any audio content maker will tell you, the social sharing aspect of audio is just hard.

It’s a challenge that we faced head on, and we’ve built the best way to do it.

This problem has been discussed a few times before. Digg wrote an article addressing “why audio never goes viral”, and my favourite Podcast e-newsletter Hot Pod has dealt with the issue a couple of times. Even the very popular StartUp Podcast posed the question in episode 2.

“What if you wanted to tweet this moment right here… as a little audio file… you can’t”

So, to help Podcasters build audiences and aid audio discovery, we built a bunch of tools that let you share audio clips on social media. For example, here’s the inline player we made for Twitter:

@podcaststartup Challenge accepted. https://t.co/xUfMOY6KTT

— Omny Radio (@omnyapp)

January 18, 2016

So, sharing audio on Twitter was solved. But what about Facebook?

We were smart: without being overly technical, anyone who published audio on Omny Studio would automatically, and secretly, have a video generated for them. When someone shared our Omny link on Facebook, the secret video would display and the audio would be heard. This meant that you could play clips in-line on desktop and mobile, without needing to leave Facebook.

However, if the links aren’t being seen in the timeline then you’re not really getting anyone hear the audio. The fact of the matter is, Facebook just straight up prioritises its own native video platform. Makes business sense, but how did we solve this problem?

How have others solved this problem?

Radio stations would see audio content going well and turn it into a video, in order to get more people to hear them. Take Hamish and Andy, who take the time to animate popular segments from their radio shows:

If you’re not scared of having a moth in your room while you sleep, you might be after watching this…

Posted by Hamish & Andy on Monday, January 18, 2016

Also, Facebook has begun experimenting with native audio. NPR has partnered with Facebook to experiment with sharing audio clips.

But what do you do if you don’t have the video resources of Australia’s largest radio show, or the audience size of NPR?

The answer – make it extremely easy to turn your audio content into a native Facebook video. In Omny Studio, we built this feature and made it available for everything you upload. “Post video to Facebook” is now just one click away.

The results speak for themselves. We wrote an article on how we got one of our Podcasters, Em Rusciano, to number 1 on the iTunes charts – and one of the biggest lessons was share short bits of audio as a native video. For Em, we found a huge increase in audience engagement by sharing audio in this way.

Pro Tip: keep it short

As we have mentioned in our “Sharing Audio Best Practices” article – if you’re sharing audio to your Facebook or Twitter feed, keep it short. People’s attention spans on social media are not great, but you can work with that!

Sharing your 30 minute Podcast on Facebook is silly. People will scroll past it before your intro is done. Use Omny Studio to create short, engaging, best bit clips that are used to advertise your full show, which you can encourage people to listen to via their usual Podcasting choice, or even your own apps.

How to get Advanced Facebook Sharing for yourself

Until Facebook moves closer to native audio, and allows you to have that audio actually be seen – Omny Studio is a wonderful solution for advanced social sharing. If you’d like this feature for your own show, sign up for Omny Studio today.

Happy Podcasting!

Matt Saraceni is the Head of Content at Omny. Omny Studio is a new all-in-one tool to capture, edit, host and share your Podcast for free.

Matt is on Twitter: @iamnotmatt

Email: [email protected] with any questions/comments/suggestions.

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