What’s in a name? For a podcast names can contain quite a bit of pertinent information. Show names, episode titles, file names and domain names are crucial and helpful for a podcast. There’s also a lot of places where it can go wrong.
Stick around in episode 16 for information on a Yeti microphone and what Google is up to. Todd and Mike also share some tips on how best to get support, this week on Your Podcast.
File names, episode titles, titles of the main podcast and the author tag: What’s the best practice for naming all of the properties of your podcast feed?
MP3 file names: Name your files in a way you can understand them and keep them short. No spaces, no punctuation (other than underscore _ or dashes – ).
Blogging and podcasting on the same site, a match made in heaven: People that are checking out your podcast should be interested in your blog and those reading your blog might be interested in your podcast. Why not run them together on the same page of your site? If it’s the same topic, then it would only stand to reason it would be the same audience.
Include some sort of contact information in your podcast and in your show notes – you’d be surprised how many people want to contact you.
Provide your email on your website; at the very least include a contact form.
Be sure to set the iTunes/Apple email tag to an email you CHECK regularly!
When submitted a ticket and/or email to Blubrry please include the following: email address you use at Blubrry and show name (possibly including the feed).
National Podcast Post Month, better known as NaPodPoMo, begins on November 1st. Do podcasters have what it takes to podcast for 30 days straight? Here is the chance – no restrictions or rules – just a desire for podcasters to challenge themselves. This is the 10th anniversary of the challenge and if you’re a podcast alumni, you can schedule your interview to be part of the NaPodPoMo community with Jennifer Navarrete.
Learn about the Werk It Festival, a podcasting festival solely for women, not to mention the ONLY women podcasting festival out there. Hosted by the the WNYC team, Werk It is filled with keynotes, sessions and a podcasting bootcamp, women are able to network and learn from the best in the biz. Live podcast sessions were recorded, so be on the lookout for these online.
The Podfather Adam Curry did not write the article discussed at the end of the episode, focusing on the deadly sins of podcasting, but we do talk about him. There are some things about podcasts that seem to bother everyone, but what should podcasters do to actually change these things? Get creative with your advertisements, your format, and most definitely your logo.
Thanks for listening to the show and please subscribe!
Congratulations to all of the Podcast Awards winners, awarded live on International Podcast Day. Media companies are always changing and recently Vimeo, known for recorded video acquired Livestream giving them access to live streaming capabilities as well. Todd tried out Apple’s AirPods and was pleasantly surprised. Given the current political climate, there has been an influx of podcasts on politics – Joe Biden is the most recent to come out with one. Lastly, Todd and Mike suggest that podcasts insert ads in their podcast so prospective advertisers can hear what your ad reads sound like, like a trial run.
Why podcasters should consider doing a demo for their podcast. The benefits of being advertiser ready.
“I posted an episode and it’s not in Apple Podcasts yet. What did I do wrong? PLEASE HELP.”
We get this question A LOT!
The iTunes/Apple store listing and what appears in your feed are two different things. People that subscribe to your feed in iTunes will get the new episodes as you post them but the listing at iTunes can lag by a day or so behind your feed. This is normal. Again, remember to tell people to subscribe.
People get the wrong impression that your RSS feed PUSHES to iTunes: it does not. iTunes (when it sees fit) PULLS your feed. It asks for your feed when it gets around to it and PULLS your feed to update the listing. Your subscribers (even in iTunes) subscribe to your feed and after that never really touch iTunes (the service) again. They are just subscribed to your feed directly in the iTunes software. Subscribe to your own show, so that you can be reassured when you publish new episodes that all is well. It works the same as every other directory or app.
There is nothing we or you can do to make that faster. It takes whatever time it takes and if you want it to go faster you have to go to iTunes and refresh your feed manually.
Here is a checklist of things we do to make sure all is working fine.
Know what your feed address is.
Check your feed whenever you post. One way to check is a simple check in the Firefox browser. Load your RSS feed and check that the title is correct, the media file is indeed attached and that the feed loads without errors.
Check your feed in a validator. Podba.se or castfeedvalidator.com are up to date. Feedvalidator.org or W3 Validator are seriously out of date for podcast feeds.
Subscribe to your own podcast in your podcast app of choice. You should get the episode within a few minutes of publishing. Regardless if it’s in the store for that app, you will get it and your subscribers will too.
Malcolm Out Loud, host and owner of the America Out Loud network sees the potential of podcasting and creating a network that provides something for everyone. Malcolm started his network a few years ago and has continuously added shows with about a dozen active at the moment. Recently the network wrapped season one of the podcast Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Pleasure; season 2 starts in November. He’s currently looking for new hosts for the show, check out his site if you’re interested.
Malcolm has found that by providing a network with content for all types of people that he is gaining a large audience and success. The entire network is run on PowerPress and has been vital to the expansion of the site and network of podcasts.
Dave Lee, co-founder of International Podcast Day explained not only what International Podcast Day is, but how it started and how it has evolved. On September 30th podcasters and podcast listeners from all around the world will celebrate the power of podcasts and their appreciation for the medium. This day of celebration is not just for podcasters, but for anyone that is fan of podcasts, interested in them, etc. Tune in for 30 hours of live streaming of people involved in podcasting all over the world. In it’s 3rd official year they will be representing 14 different countries with hopes for more next year. If you’re not available to watch live, all footage will be available on YouTube afterwards.
Blubrry is a sponsor of the event and will be involved in two segments: Podcast Problems: What To Do When Things Go Wrong and Proven Social Media Strategies. Get listening and start the conversation!
Earlier this week, Apple released iOS 11 – and with that release came several changes to the Apple Podcasts directory that will add new functionality and enhance the experience of finding and listening to podcasts. Here are the new podcast tag types:
New Serial program/show type. Not to be confused with the podcast of the same name, this tag will be useful for shows that release content in seasons. Previously, there was no built-in way to direct new listeners to start at episode 1 of the latest season, rather than just jumping in at the latest episode as podcast listeners are accustomed to doing.
While this new tag won’t affect most current podcasts, we have noticed an uptick in the popularity of serialized podcast episodes and podcasters who follow this format will benefit greatly from the new options. If your podcast follows a serial format, be sure to utilize the new tags by selecting “serial” in the iTunes Type field of your iTunes tab in the PowerPress plugin settings. Hover over “PowerPress” in the lower left-hand column of your WordPress dashboard, choose “settings” in the menu that pops up, then the ‘iTunes” tab in the main window to find the field:
New Title field: Apple Podcasts has made a move toward displaying “clean” titles to listeners during playback – that means no episode numbers or other extra information. For example, if your podcast episode is titled “The Best Podcast Episode Ever, #143,” a potential listener would only see “The Best Podcast Episode Ever” displayed as the episode title.
Luckily, here at Blubrry we’ve been on top of these iOS 11 changes for a while. We included support for these new attributes in PowerPress back in June’s 7.1 release and also within Blubrry’s publisher interface, and we’ve also updated our media uploader for Blubrry hosting customers so that upload speeds can be maximized. In other words, if you’re a Blubrry hosting or PowerPress user, you’re already ahead of the game. We hope you’ll find that these additions to Apple Podcasts have a positive impact on your podcast, and remember that if you have questions, our top-notch customer support team is always here for you.
A little while back, the EFF finally ended the patent troll case that has been threatening podcasting and podcasters for years. At the end of the month, we’ll be celebrating International Podcast Day. Hosted by Steve and Dave Lee, Blubrry will promoting the power of podcasts. As ad deals gain more traction and attention in podcasting, there comes some ups and downs. Todd and Mike discuss how all of this works together and best practices for people that want to get involved. Podcasters that want to get advertising, statistics have never been more important.
Episode zero – In the new iOS 11, you can use tags to set an episode zero as a trailer. Great for promotion and launching a show.
“Second show syndrome” – Just remember, when you want to start a second show, it will take just as much time to produce as the first show. Make sure that you have the time, resources and your family’s blessing to do one.
Ad deals – Learn more about advertising with Blubrry and the general overview of how this all works with podcasts. To become at Blubrry Advertising Priority Partner, click HERE
Stats – We have been getting a ton of questions about stats recently. Blubrry ad deals require that podcasters use our statistics. In a pinch, we’ll accept stats from Libsyn or Podtrac, but we always prefer Blubrry stats. You can sign up for FREE stats at Blubrry.com or our Pro stats for only $5 per month. (use the promo code Blubrry005 for a free month).
Stats have to be implemented on your media files (not the feed itself) See the “Getting Started” link in your Blubrry stats area for details on how to setup stats. Also, check out this YouTube video on how they are setup with or without PowerPress: https://youtu.be/wJdiZZiudU8
Some hosts do not allow 3rd party stats. If your RSS feed address does not have your domain in it, you will have to check with your feed provider to see if you can implement Blubrry stats.
Anyone whose podcast depends on interviews with guests faces the same dilemma in the beginning: without guests, you have no show. But before your show is well-known, how can you get guests?
These 8 tips from the Blubrry team and podcast hosts will help you land those guests and put out a great show, even if you’re just getting your podcast off the ground:
Just ask. Graham Smith and Kirsten Dunlap, co-hosts of The Home Hour podcast, have had success booking well-respected experts even though they just got their show off the ground about six months ago. Their number-one piece of advice? Just ask. “The reality is, you’re offering a great service to potential hosts,” says Dunlap. “Be confident that you’re giving them a lot of value – it’s an even exchange.”
Play up your strengths. Just starting out? Don’t focus on the small size of your audience, but accentuate the positives about working with you, suggests Dunlap. “You might say “we have an audience full of women who are interested in these kinds of things,” she says. “Don’t focus on the numbers if they aren’t impressive – they may not ever ask, so don’t let lower numbers hold people back from saying “yes.”
Land a big fish – and talk it up. It might take a while, but if you can reel in a well-known guest, you can use that name as bait to hook other guests in the future, suggests Smith. After getting a B-list celebrity to agree to be on a future show, Smith began dropping her name in conversations with other potential guests. “It’s some level of flattery – suggesting that you believe the person you’re asking is in the same leagues as your famous guest. Once the episode with a well-known guest has actually aired, you’re in an even better position to capitalize on the connection via your podcast website and social channels. But don’t worry too much about your potential guests’ audience size, suggests Dunlap. “In the beginning we got a little starstruck and had on some guests with giant followings. But those people are busy and don’t always share your stuff to their audience.” She shares that guests with smaller to medium-sized followings are usually much more generous with sharing the episode out to their following. “You don’t have to get a big name to have a good show with a great guest,” says Dunlap.
Make the ask personal. “I always find something personal to add to my initial outreach email – it’s never a mass email,” says Smith. Dunlap agrees. “I think if you find guests who really bring value to your listener, it comes across in your ask and helps you narrow down which guests to ask.
Make it easy. “I offer potential guests flexible appearance times, and make sure to respect their time by staying within the time allotted,” says Blubrry CEO Todd Cochrane.
Do your homework. “I do a lot of research before inviting a potential guest on the show,” says PowerPress Podcast Host, MacKenzie Bennett. “If it turns out they’re not a great guest in the end, it’s usually on me.”
Partner with a publisher. The publicity department at a publishing house, or even independent publicists, can be rich sources of interview material, since they will be looking for PR opportunities whenever new books come out. Try reaching out to the publicist of a book you really love or an author you’d love to feature: once you connect with them and have a good experience, chances are great they’ll keep you on their “list” and pitch you for future authors as well.
Consider legal matters. Some hosts ask potential guests to sign an agreement signing copyright of the interview over to the host. This may seem extreme, but there’s a reason. “When someone appears on your show, the words they say belong to them via copyright,” explains Barry Kantz, Legal Officer and CFO at Blubrry. “It’s assumed that you have permission since they are appearing on your show, but they can withdraw that permission any time they want.” It’s not terribly likely this will happen to you, but if you’re interviewing a big name or the interview topic is at all controversial or could potentially be something the guest might want to distance themselves from in the future, it’s definitely a possibility and something to keep in mind. Of course, in that case, the guest may not be willing to sign anything, so you’ll have to ask yourself: how important is it that I have this guest now, versus the possibility of losing the interview later?
Armed with these tips, you’re ready to get started. Remember our number-one tip, Just Ask? That’s something that’s in your control right now, even if you’re just starting out. So show some bravery and reach out! You might be really surprised by just who says “yes.”
Back in September of 2015 MacKenzie was tasked with restarting Blubrry’s show, the PowerPress Podcast. With consistent bi-weekly episodes, it’s finally the two year anniversary of the show. The official date, birthday, whatever one wants to call it, is September 10th, 2015. Podcasting comes with highs and lows, regardless of how much support a podcaster has surrounding them. To help MacKenzie celebrate, she brought on Jane Ellen, a past guest to talk about what they’ve learned, experienced and changed over their time podcasting. Thanks everyone for listening and subscribing to the show for the past two years. Many good things to come!
Podcast Movement, the go-to conference for podcasters, recently occurred in Anaheim and Mike Dell was lucky enough to attend. Listen for a quick review of PM17, with mentions of Podcast Movement 2018 in Philadelphia. PowerPress 7.2 is coming soon with new features coming from the Blubrry team as well. If you’re interested in learning more about PowerPress, pay attention to the discussion on Blubrry PowerPress webinars. Angelo Mandato, CIO and lead developer at Blubrry/RawVoice guest hosts with Mike on this episode.
Blubrry player updated – Styling options and more.
PowerPress 7.2 beta – Coming in very soon.
Post To Social – Now built into PowerPress.
Player controls – Now built into PowerPress.
PowerPress 8 – Coming in the next few months with a new interface.
Multiple podcasts in PowerPress. You can use Category Podcasting or Podcast Channels to generate more than one RSS feed from PowerPress. The BEST way is to have a separate website for the second podcast if the topic is different. BUT, if you want, there are ways to do more than one podcast from one WordPress site with PowerPress.
Channels – Best if you would like to make 2 versions of the same episode, say video and audio. Best if done with a small number of podcasts/programs.
Categories – Best for more than 4 or 5 shows. Cannot be used with channels (including the default channel).
Podcast Movement 2017 has officially come and gone, and thanks to everyone that Blubrry was able to meet, catch up with and discuss anything to do with podcasting last week. We were so happy to once again be able to head out to Anaheim and sponsor and participate in one of the largest gatherings of podcasters that happens every year. Shawn Thorpe was attending for the first time this year and MacKenzie got his opinion on how the entire event felt day by day. She has been to multiple events for podcasting over the years and they had lots to compare.
Little bit on Shawn Thorpe: He’s been part-time tech support for Blubrry since March of 2015 (the same time MacKenzie started). He has been podcasting for 12 years now, and yet this was the first event that he has attended concerning podcasting.