Now, let’s set up your website to work with your podcast. There are a few elements to this, including uploading the show, publishing it and then delivering it to your listeners. Let’s start with the first part, and the most common thing we’re asked.
Where Do I Upload My Podcast?
Here’s how it works.
Each episode of your show is made up of one audio file. That audio file is uploaded to your Media Host. You don’t upload it anywhere else, such as iTunes or other directories. I’ll show you why in a little while.
A media host is very similar to a web host, but designed to deliver big bulky files like audio and video. You need a separate media for a range of reasons, but let’s keep it simple here and just say you need one. Here’s why it’s not a good idea to host these files on your own website hosting if you want the detail.
So, when you finish a podcast episode, you upload it to your media host. When that’s done, it’s added to the full list of episodes that make up your podcast. It’s this list (technically called an RSS feed) that you submit to iTunes and other directories. This is great because it means you’re not uploading episodes to the directories themselves. You just show them the list, and then they keep checking in to keep it updated on their own servers.
Whenever you upload a new episode to your media host, it’s added to the list, iTunes picks that up and then points your subscribers towards the file on your media host.
How Do I Create an RSS Feed?
Don’t worry, no need to know what an RSS feed is or how to make one. We’ll rely on a great little Plugin called Powerpress to do it for us. Remember, we’ve looked at how to install plugins already.
The main function Powerpress offers is the ability to attach audio files to our blog posts. This turns a normal blog post into a Podcast episode. Next, it automatically generates our ‘list of podcast episodes’ – our RSS feed – from all of the blog posts that have had audio attached.
This means that your weekly podcasting process is simply to do the following:
- Create audio recording
- Upload audio file to media host
- Attach audio file to blog post using Powerpress
And that’s it! Powerpress automatically updates your RSS feed. iTunes automatically picks up the update, and prompts your subscribers to download the episode.
How Do I Attach My Audio Files to A Blog Post?
It’s great how simple this is – Powerpress simply adds a box at the bottom of each blog post which allows you to enter your podcast episodes.
If you choose to use BluBrry as your media host then it’s even easier, because Powerpress lets you upload the file right there in the post.
What Media Host Should I Choose?
There are a few big players on the market – BluBrry, Libsyn and Podbean (use the code podhost or podcraft to get a free month) – and quite a few alternatives that are really starting to challenge them.
Right now, if you want to work from your own website (and since you’re doing this course, I assume you do!) I think BluBrry is the best option. This is simply because it makes the workflow really really simple. It keeps everything within your own site, allowing you to upload episodes to the media host directly within your Blog post.
If you use Libsyn or other services, then you need to log into that website, upload the file, copy the embed code, come back to your own website and then paste that into your blog post. Not a completely ardous task, I know, but it’s still a few extra steps.
For the rest of this section, I’m going to show you how it works with BluBrry, because that’s the host we use and recommend. But I’ll show you how it works with other hosts too, as we go.
How to Install Powerpress
First things first, we need to install the Powerpress plugin. Even if you aren’t using BluBrry as a media host, you need this plugin to generate your RSS feed. That’s essential for allowing people to subscribe to your show.
Setting Up Powerpress
Next, let’s have a look through the Powerpress settings. There’s a lot in here, but it’s not too complicated when you know how.
Creating a Podcast Episode
Now that you have Powerpress installed and set up, how do we create a podcast episode? This video shows how to create a blog post, and then attach your episode file to it. Once the audio file is attached, that blog post is miraculously transformed into a podcast episode and added to your RSS feed!
In this unit we have three tasks, all aimed at getting our Podcasting basics set up. And by that, I mean Powerpress!
- Install Powerpress
- Set up your basic details within the app
- Create one podcast episode, following the instructions earlier in this unit.