The Church and Sermon Podcast Hosting Niche February 20, 2007Posted by Jeff in Godcasting, Podcast Hosting, Podcasting.
Got a question this week about podcast hosting specifically for churches and sermons. This was my response:
Podcasting is all about niche markets, and church or sermon podcasts are definitely one of those. More than educational institutions want to get their classes out to people, more than TV shows want to drive people to websites and snag more viewers, churches want to get their messages out to their congregation, possible visitors, and ultimately the world.
If you’re a church, and want to do this, what are the options? There are plenty of podcasting hosting services out there (see this post), but what about those services claiming to be church or sermon podcasting services. I did a quick check of the services out there, and it turns out that there are benefits to going with a service that is specifically for sermons.
Websites with transcripts, categorized searches, mailing lists, and other tools that specifically help a church or religious organization communicate more effectively are just some of the features that these sermon niche hosting services have. I also like the feature, if you’re not a podcast savvy place, of the hosting service doing it all for you. Just get the sermon to them somehow (even snail mailing a tape will do), and they set up your podcast, the rss feed, the transcript, and even links to the scriptures used in the sermon.
Looking at the different services out there, I’d have to say that the top five are probably:
- AltarCast: http://www.altarcast.com/
- SermonCast: http://www.sermoncast.com/
- podpoint: http://podpoint.net/
- PraiseCast: http://www.praisecast.com/podcasts.shtml
- PulpitPodcast: http://www.pulpitpodcast.com/
Though I haven’t done an in depth study of all the sermon podcast services out there, I did quickly compare storage, pricing, and features. These stood out from rest, relatively in the order I list them. AltarCast and SermonCast would be my first picks to get a demo of, some client references, and a sandbox to see which one I wanted to do. If you’ve had any experiences with these, please email me and I’ll write some updated posts on this in the future.
In my opinon, if you are looking to do sermon podcasting, sign up with a sermon specific podcast hosting service.*
*caveat – if you have multiple podcasts at your church, and would like to distribute the administration of these podcasts out to different departments or individuals, the services above are really strictly for sermon casting. I recommend libsynpro for a multi-podcast organization: http://libsynpro.com, though the price may be prohibitive for a church. I personally run most all of my podcasts and client’s podcasts through libsyn’s less expensive one podcast offering (http://libsyn.org).