If you have a WordPress blog, there’s now an easy way to write your post and include your podcast all in one go. Not only that, you can get your podcast into iTunes in that one go.

You achieve this with Podpress, a cool plugin for WordPress that lets you do this:

  • Full featured and automatic iTunes feed generation
  • Auto-generation of enclosure tag
  • Makes adding a podcast to a post very simple
  • View MP3 files ID3 tags when you’re posting, and copy ID3 data to the post title and content.
  • Control over where the player will display within your post.
  • Support for various formats, including video podcasting
  • Automatic media player for MP3, MP4, MOV, FLV, and more, with inline and popup window support.
  • Preview of what your podcast will look like on iTunes
  • Easy way to link to your podcast within iTunes

I’ve just installed the plugin (which I found a bit tricky: more on that in a minute) and writing a Podpress-enabled post just to try it out and see how simple it is to do.

The podcast I’m including below is a short recording I made yesterday. Quite an appropriate one, I think – this recording is some ‘audio thoughts’ I sent to Nicole Simon yesterday to answer her question “Do you think blogging podcasters are more successful than just podcasters?” More (a post) on that later; meanwhile, read Nicole’s post to find out what this is about.

As a podcaster, I could tell you exactly how many copies of each edition of For Immediate Release: The Hobson & Holtz Report are downloaded. I can also tell you which podcatcher or distribution services downloaders use. I can even tell you whether downloads are direct or via RSS subscriptions. Plus quite a few other useful facts.

These are the types of fundamental stats Shel and I get from Libsyn, the service we use to host our show’s MP3 files. For example, those stats currently say that the average total number of downloads for each edition (the “average audience” as Libsysn describes it) is 570. So that’s 1,140 downloads per week. The most popular way to get the show is iTunes according to the stats, currently accounting for roughly 75% on average of all downloads.

But there’s one significant statistic we can’t yet determine – how many people actually listen to each show. We also have a link on each show notes post where you can click and listen there and then rather than download the MP3 file. And as Shel and I cross-post each show’s show notes to our own respective blogs, that’s three different places where you can click-and-listen. No way to measure that, as far as I know.

This is a problem every podcaster has. Downloads of the MP3s is one thing. Who listens, how many listeners there are and where they are, is another. Yet that’s the most important statistic of all to aid you in creating and tailoring the content in your show to your listener demographic.

Via Techcrunch comes news about Podbridge, a service that aims to connect podcasters with advertisers and serve as an advertising network for audio advertising in podcasts. That wouldn’t have grabbed my attention were it not for this text in Podbridge’s service description:

Accurate measurement of podcast listens – not just downloads … Audience profiles with demographics, listening habits and locations

My feeling about including advertising in our show is a) I’m not sure how our listeners would feel about it, and b) I’m not sure how I feel about it either. Note that Shel and I haven’t discussed the notion of advertising at all.