Category Archives: Highlighted

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Meet Mike Dell, Blubrry’s Lead Support Tech



From the hardworking customer support techs who are the front lines when you’ve got a question or concern to the behind-the-scenes people making our services and products among the best in the business, Blubrry boasts a staff of dedicated men and women who, above all, are passionate about podcasting and want to help all podcasters create the best shows they possibly can.  This is the first post in a new series featuring our awesome team members here at Blubrry! We hope you’ll enjoy getting a sneak peek at the awesome people who power our company.

mike podcasting

Name and Position: Mike Dell, Lead Support Tech

Worked at Blubrry Since: 2009

Tell us about a typical day at Blubrry. 

I spend most of my time answering support tickets for people who are having issues with our services or need help with podcasting in general. For example, maybe they can’t get a feature to work so I walk them through it, or they need help setting up PowerPress for podcasting. Sometimes I do one-on-one consulting, where I’ll do a screen share with the customer and help them get their website looking the way they want it, show them how to set up their RSS feeds, and that kind of thing.

What’s the thing that causes newer podcasters the most confusion? 

People don’t always understand that the RSS feed is the center of a podcast. They say “I want to put my podcast on iTunes,” but podcasts don’t work that way. You have to have an RSS feed, and everyone centers around that. That can be a hard concept for people to understand. I always describe it like this: your RSS feed is like the transmitter from a radio station. Whatever radio you’re listening to a show on, the show itself is coming from the same transmitter.

You’ve been at Blubrry since 2009. How have things changed in the industry since then? 

I started podcasting in 2005, so I’ve been at it for 11 years now. It’s completely changed. When I first started you had to be a geek to even listen to podcasts because the technology wasn’t user-friendly. With podcast apps in pretty much all smart phones and some newer cars, it’s a whole lot easier for the listeners.

On the other hand, the technical side for producers hasn’t changed a whole lot – but our tools make it a lot easier. The basics are still there: you still have to have an RSS feed and host your files on a server, but once you get set up it’s easy.

What makes working for Blubrry special? 

All of the founders of Blubrry were podcasters first. We’re grassroots.

I knew most of the people involved with RawVoice and Blubrry prior to coming to work there. We’re laid back when we need to be and we get right down to business when we need to. I also love that our whole business model is based on doing what’s best for the community and podcasters first. We don’t do anything as a company that’s not good for the entire industry. We aren’t the cheapest service in town, but I feel we are the best. It’s great to work for a company where you believe in the product, and everybody at Blubrry is passionate about the product.

Speaking of…tell us about your podcasts!

I have a podcast called Podcast Help Desk to help people learn more about podcasting. I also do one called Geek of the North, where I take something that’s not normally thought of as technology and explain it as technology – for example, I recently did the technology of garbage trucks. I talk about snow removal, nascar tracks, all kinds of stuff. And sometimes I guest host the PowerPress podcast, and that’s a lot of fun.

mikebanjoSI08

Tell us about your hobbies and life.

I live in Traverse City, MI with my wife, dog and cat, in a 1940s log cabin about 600 yards from Grand Traverse Bay. I call myself an attempted banjo player and like going to music festivals in northern Michigan.

What’s the best part of your job? 

Yesterday a customer emailed me and said, “When was the last time I told you your support was awesome?”

That kind of thing happens a lot, and it always makes my day.

 

 

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Using The Podcast Channel Feature



One of the most powerful features of the PowerPress Podcast Plugin for WordPress is the ability to make custom podcast channels. I find the channels life savers, as I have 2 other host that have their own shows on my site.

Doing 2 separate shows myself in both Audio and Video, requires that I have a total of 4 rss feeds for just my two shows. 1 Audio and 1 Video feed for each show.

I found that my audience would subscribe to either the Audio or the Video feed of my show, but not both feeds more often than not. So ultimately you are giving your listeners and viewers a choice of content formats.

But here are the three things you really need to know about creating more podcast channels.

Example 1: You want to distribute both an mp3 and an mp4 version of your podcast. Use the default podcast channel for your mp3 media and create a custom channel for your mp4 media.

Example 2: You have a video podcast with multiple file formats. Use the default podcast channel for the main media that you want to appear on your blog (e.g. m4v). Create additional channels for the remaining formats and sizes (e.g. wmv, mov, mpeg).

Example 3: You create two versions of your podcast, a 20 minute summary and a full 2 hour episode. Use the default channel for your 20 minute summary episodes and create a new custom channel for your full length episodes.

If you are part of one of our communities keep your eyes open for our newsletter as they all contain critical information that will help grow your show.

Todd…

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What Feed do I Submit to iTunes?



What feed do you submit to iTunes? We get this question a lot! Our answer: YOUR PODCAST FEED!

Why?

Your podcast feed is just that, it only contains the blog posts that you’ve associated media content with via the PowerPress “Podcast Episode” box. By submitting your podcast only feed to podcast directories like iTunes and Blubrry.com, you guarantee that your feed is delivering exactly what those directories are looking for. If you submit your regular blog’s feed, you may end up limiting the number of podcast episodes that are available on iTunes.

So what’s My Podcast Feed?

IF you go into PowerPress settings in your WordPress blog, select the tab titled ‘Feeds’. Look for the option titled “Podcast Feeds”. You should see at least one feed listed titled “Podcast Feed”. This is the feed you want to submit to iTunes, Blubrry.com and other podcast directories.

How Come I Only See 10 Episodes on iTunes?

If you have more than 10 podcast episodes, and you only see 10 in iTunes, it is because your feed is set to only include 10 items. To change this globally for all of your feeds, go to WordPress Settings > Reading page. In the field titled “Syndication feeds show the most recent”, enter a number larger than the default 10.

WARNING: We do not recommend settings this any larger than 50. The feed will eventually get excessively large which may lead to issues with your listings on services such as Tunes.

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PowerPress Quick Start Guide



Welcome to Blubrry PowerPress! We recommend you follow the getting started steps to both save you time and to guarantee that you’ve properly setup your blog for podcasting.

1. Configure all of the Settings in PowerPress

Before you do anything else, go through all of the settings in PowerPress. In particular, it is very important that you upload your iTunes and RSS images before submitting your podcast feeds to directories such as iTunes and Zune marketplace.

2. Create Your First Podcast Episode

Sounds simple enough, simply go into WordPress “Posts” section and select “Add New”. When you edit your new blog post, brwose to the bottom of the page where you will fin a new “Podcast Episode” box. Here is where you link your media file to your blog post in order to create a podcast episode (Remember, podcasting is simply an extension to blogging).

Need help recording or uploading your media? Please visit www.podcastfaq.com for help!

3. Submit your Podcast Feed to Directories like iTunes and Blubrry.om

Once you have your podcast settings configured and you have 1 episode in your feed, you can now submit your podcast feed to podcast directories. VERY IMPORTANT: Make sure you submit your “podcast” feed, not your main blog’s feed. The podcast only feed provided in PowerPress is ideal for podcast directories like iTunes because it will only contain your podcast episodes. Feeds with blog posts will not appear and wil only crowd out your podcast episodes.

You’re all set!

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