Podcaster's Dilemma
November 9, 2006 7:23 AM   Subscribe

Is anyone selling music or content on iTunes? How did you do it?

I am considering putting some archived programming on iTunes. I have noticed the archives we have online are being downloaded a lot through our podcast effort and think it might be time to start making some money from this for my fantastically cool radio show.

I would like to hear from people who have experience selling content (audio/video/bulk dry food) on I-Tunes and what your experience has been and how you were paid.

posted by parmanparman to Work & Money (13 answers total)
I have a label, and I got my stuff on I-tunes thru CD BABY.

CD BABY is pretty liberal when it comes to selling CD's. They don't prefer CDR's, but if you make a presentable package, you can get your stuff on there for $35 bux. I think you are required to at least have a bar code (which you can buy from them as well for $15) for each release....Then, they will submit it to I-tunes, and may be up in as little as 6-8 weeks.

at least, that's how it worked for me...this way, you can possibly get hard copy cd sales, and digital.
posted by TwilightKid at 7:27 AM on November 9, 2006

Response by poster: I should note that my show is not about music, but a public radio news-talk program about religion and spirituality.
posted by parmanparman at 7:30 AM on November 9, 2006

A friend of mine did the same thing as Twilight Kid. He regularly gets good press in Europe. You can buy his stuff on iTunes too.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:48 AM on November 9, 2006

A guy I work with said it was amazingly easy to get his bands' music into iTunes.
posted by chr1sb0y at 8:00 AM on November 9, 2006

Some friends of mine also sell their band's music on iTunes, and they said that though it was quite easy to arrange, it took a frustratingly long time for the tunes to appear in the store. (This was in the UK, btw, should that affect matters.)
posted by thoughtless at 8:16 AM on November 9, 2006

Are podcasts actually selling on iTunes? I just did a little browsing to check and it seemed like every podcast available was free.
posted by gfrobe at 9:33 AM on November 9, 2006

I also went through CD Baby, and it did take quite awhile. I've no idea if they offer any kind of services for non-musical material though - I suspect that they do not, but you might want to contact them.
posted by ludwig_van at 9:49 AM on November 9, 2006

Best answer: Selling music and providing podcasts are pretty different endeavors, even if they're both accessed in a similar fashion (i.e. iTunes Music Store).

You can submit your podcast for inclusion on iTunes podcast list (I belive you have to assert that your 'cast contains no copywritten material, etc etc), but you can't sell it.

Music files are not accepted by iTunes from independent artists - as far as I know, CDBaby is the only way for an artist to get their music submitted to iTunes for resale.

It's still a pretty hard sell for indie music, even once you're on the ITMS - I'd be very very surprised if anyone wanted to pay for a podcast. Just MHO, of course.
posted by Aquaman at 9:53 AM on November 9, 2006

crap, "believe". Lame.

/obligatory correction post completed
posted by Aquaman at 9:55 AM on November 9, 2006

Response by poster: I just spoke to Apple and they are not going to start making podcasts available at cost for a while. Thanks for everyone's help!
posted by parmanparman at 10:21 AM on November 9, 2006

Have you tried filling out the application?
posted by trevyn at 10:59 AM on November 9, 2006

Could you sell individual episodes as audiobooks rather than as a podcast? I think that's what This American Life does with their archives (current one is free, archives cost 95 cents).
posted by cabingirl at 12:43 PM on November 9, 2006

cabingirl's got a good idea - if you put a couple of episodes together into an "album", you could submit it to CDBaby and get the tracks onto iTunes that way!

CDBaby's sanctioned loophole works thusly:

Their position is that they're an online independent CD store which, as a sideline, also offers digital distribution to various sources. You're supposed to keep supplying them with physical CD's to sell through their onine store.

However, you can sign yourself up, submit a CDR of several episodes and indicate that you'd like it to be included in their digital distribution program. Then, purchase your own CDR back from them and (here's the kicker) never send them another copy.

But your tracks are now on iTunes (and 3 dozen other DPD providers like MusicNet, Rhapsody, etc) forever. Free money!
posted by Aquaman at 9:14 PM on November 9, 2006

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