By Alex Mandossian
Microsoft has a web server called IIS, Microsoft Internet Information Server. Their main competitor is the web servers from Linux.
It has always been difficult to get people to switch from a Linux server to a Windows server because it′s more expensive, there are always technical and support issues, and there is really no compelling reason to do so.
I’ve got a compelling offer for Microsoft that would cause their server sales to soar.
If the next version of IIS, had podcasting statistics integrated into it, personally, I would move everything to a Microsoft server in a heartbeat. And I know thousands of podcasters who would do the same.
What do I mean by podcasting statistics? I mean statistics that let me go into my web hosting server and get full reports on the things I want to track on my podcasts. As a marketer, I like to know how many real subscribers I have, how many people listened on the computer, and how many people downloaded it and took it with them. I′d also like to tie the IP addresses that the podcatchers ping into a sequel database.
That type of differentiation of the same content could help any company make very important decisions concerning their next step.
For instance, if 98% of your audience is listening in front of their computers, maybe podcasting isn’t for you. But if more than half of your audience is downloading the podcast and taking it with them, you need to know that.
Microsoft could integrate that kind of webcasting statistics into their server operating system. They have access to that in their web server.
And most importantly, nobody else is offering this type of service. The best stats available right now are from FeedBurner, who is doing a great job, but cannot give the kind of statistics that I′ve mentioned.
Podcasters are limited because they don′t have access at the root level where they want it – on the web servers. Most Podcast are being run over patchy Linux platforms.
I′m not just suggesting that Microsoft develop a good statistics program that reads your web stats and gives you podcast-friendly stats. That already exists.
I’m suggesting integration at the server level so that almost your entire reporting feature, the stuff that you watch and monitor, is available when you want it.
I′m suggesting a web server that is based on the purpose of serving podcasting and webcasting, a web server that allows podcasters to put the content in once, and then stream it or podcast it. Maybe it could even tie some of their DRM into it.
If it was integrated at the server level on IIS, I could put a podcast file in once, then it could be downloaded as an mp3, or even a Microsoft media file, or streamed in. I could get all those statistics in one place.
Podcasters who are serious about monetizing their podcasts would switch to this kind of a server in a heartbeat, and Microsoft could easily dominate that market.
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