We’ll start with the one everyone flocks to when they first start out in Podcasting – free hosting. Of course it’s attractive, it’s free after all. But if you’re looking to Podcast long term and take it seriously from the beginning, then this isn’t the way to go.
Free hosting comes with a raft of downsides, not least of which is the lack of options and support. Many free hosting options wont offer much in the way of iTunes listing options, such as category or even cover art. And most wont offer you any support when things go wrong. If your host goes down for 2 days right after your latest episode is launched, that’s not going to help your popularity much.
Next, free hosting tends to be very, very slow. That might not be a big deal for most, but for those who want to to stream your episodes rather than download them, it can cause a bit of trouble.
Lastly, noone does anything for free. That means the free hosts are looking for somethng from you. That either comes in the form of advertising, or a hosting setup that’s so limited it’s designed to lure you in and then nudge you into upgrading to a paid plan in the end.
For the former, why cheapen your show with external advertising that you can’t control? And the latter: if you’re going to pay in the end anyway, let’s choose a great host right from the beginning, rather than being forced down a particular path.