Alan Levy – BlogTalkRadio

Posted on 05. Oct, 2007 by in Broadcast, Tools

Your work in networked/citizen/collaborative journalism.

As CEO and co-founder of BlogTalkRadio, Bob Charish and I have created a platform that is currently allowing over 3,000 hosts to broadcast live call in shows online. This social broadcasting platform allows anyone to have a voice and say they’re peace. You don’t have to be Rush Limbaugh to be a host on BlogTalkRadio—you just need a phone and a vision, and you get to be a citizen journalist when you speak what’s on your mind.

What are your goals?

To be the largest social broadcasting platform in existence and we’re well on our way.

Notable achievements?

Our new site has expanded our core functionality (using phones to produce live audio streams that are instantly archived and made available as a podcast) to include more community tools. Like Facebook, hosts can now add favorite shows, add friends within BTR, and leave comments on each other’s internal blogs. We’re excited to be growing our community so hosts can help support one another in their efforts.

Lesson you’ve learned (including mistakes you’ve made)

You have to always be evangelizing about your vision. I’m deeply passionate about BlogTalkRadio as I see it as such a great tool to bring voices to blogs where there was only print before we came around. I think the lesson there is to never underestimate the power of any conversation you have with anyone you meet. I think a mistake might be to assume that just because you don’t make a sale of your product or have someone instantly love what you do you should feel that you
failed. If they learned about your business or heard your message, it means they walk away knowing about you when they didn’t before. That’s a big deal.

Are you getting revenue for this? How?

Yes. We’re monetizing in two primary ways at this time. First, by rolling ads into our content and doing a revenue share with hosts. Secondly, we’re selling the private label version of our software (our “Business Solutions” platform) where people can either license our tools to put them in their own branded environment or build an Enterprise Station on our network to help drive unique traffic to their content.
What’s next? What do you need to get to the next level?

We’ve incorporated video into our text chat and are building up that infrastructure as hosts have asked for video and we like to respond to their request as quickly as we can. To get to the next level we’ve mainly been adding staff at this time to handle all the growth we’ve dealt with in the last few months.


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