Umano, the app and service that uses real people to narrate to you news and other written articles, is releasing a new publishing platform out of beta that lets writers themselves make money off their narrated content. Instead of reading static text, readers can listen to the words being read by the author – bringing a bit of personality and emphasis to the article.
Called Umano for Writers, the new free service is an extension of the current Umano service, which offers narrated articles from curated content covering a variety of topics, as well as stories directly from sites like Reuters, Wall Street Journal, Salon, New Yorker, and, of course, Digital Trends (click here to read more). Think of Umano like audio books, but for news and magazine articles; in many ways, it’s similar to podcasting, but it’s audio tied to written content (there’s a link to the actual text).
Instead of using computers, Umano employs real people to narrate the articles. With Umano for Writers, content authors make money by narrating their articles themselves. “Writers can easily grow their followings and generate new revenue on a Cost Per Impression (CPM) model. The platform also provides its content creators with a suite of analytics tools that allows them to monitor their overall content performance,” Umano says. So, you’ll either make a little or a lot, depending on how many listeners tune in. (There are no details on how much writers will actually be paid based on CPM, but we will update this article when the information becomes available.)
Whether you’re a journalist, book author, blogger, or someone with something to say (and thinks there’s an audience who wants to hear it), you can use the Web-based Umano Studio app to record the high-quality audio. A 2,000-word article can be produced in less than 10 minutes, according to Umano. The service is already being utilized by writers at publications such as Forbes and USA Today. For bloggers who have a popular following, Umano for Writers could become a new way to connect with the audience, as well as expanding it.
At first, the service will be available by invite only. Besides the Umano app, the audio can be listened to via widgets embedded on other websites. Content creators will have complete control over their material, Umano says. For Umano, it increases the amount of audio content available for listeners.
“The addition of Umano for Writers brings our vision to develop a complete end-to-end audio publishing solution full circle,” says Ian Mendiola, Umano’s co-founder and CEO. “Writers, publishers, and listeners now create a self-sustaining cycle of content creation, distribution and revenue generation on our platform where everyone wins.”