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Podfly Academy

Adobe Audition for Podcasters

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Adobe Audition for Podcasters

Podfly’s Corey Coates takes you through the first of a series of tutorials on anything you might want to know about setting up a podcast. These specialization videos will focus primarily on Adobe’s Audition software, but this particular one is all about the basics and how to get started. Learn how to position your introduction, remove annoying ‘ums’, turn a few stumbling sentences into a natural conversation and much more.

With over 45 minutes of step-by-step teaching, complete with pre-recorded audio clips and examples, you should hopefully come away with a lot of questions answered. That said, the Podfly Academy Team hope it’ll also leave you itching to find out more and really get to grips with this sophisticated piece of programming which could just change your life.

Once you’ve worked through all the tutorials, you’ll be the one answering everybody else’s questions!

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Podfly Academy - Lesson 10 of 10 - Sharing Your Podcast

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Podfly Academy - Lesson 10 of 10 - Sharing Your Podcast

Sharing Your Podcast

Today we're taking a look at different ways of sharing your podcast after it's been uploaded to your server. Just putting your show out on iTunes or on Stitcher, or having it available on the internet, definitely does not draw attention to your podcast. The next step is to get listeners to know your show is live. 

Let’s look at social media techniques, ways of putting an HTML web player on your website, and a more. Let’s dive in!

 

Make It User Friendly

When sharing your podcast with either current or new listeners, we always want to keep in mind the easiest way for them to play it and listen to it. Asking people to go through a series of stages in order to acquire your show is often too much, especially in the day of social media, Twitter, Google+, and more. 

We really wanna just click on a button and hear the episode. If they like what they hear, they will go to iTunes or Stitcher and subscribe, but in the short term we want to find some way for people to just click play, listen, and be aware of what you released. 

Let's take a look at some of the web players we can put on our website to get that going. 

 

Embed a Web Player

In previous lessons we have recommend that you use Libsyn as your hosting service. One of the big reasons is that they have a great social media sharing service. Login to my Libsyn dashboard, I can go to 'Destinations', and see some of the social media options that I have here. Clicking on 'Add New', you can see I can automatically plug in LinkedIn, YouTube, Blogger, and more. 

This is a great way to automatically push out to your followers that your show has been published, but let's take a look at the web player they have available for you. 

Here I can choose a series of different web players, different sizes, and then publish it to my website. This is a great way for people to go to your site, click on play, and be able to hear your episode. The default configuration provides me with everything I need to share my podcast and have my people subscribe, listen, and more. 

The menu options that are provided here are fantastic. It makes it easy for people who are listening to your show to share it to some of their friends as well. All I need to do is go to my Dashboard, under content, go to previously published episodes, and you'll see here I'm provided with a series of menu items to share my show. Opening the link section you see that I have a direct download URL and at the button a preview for the embed code. You can highlight this HTML code and paste it into your website. 

Now people can go to your web page and play your show. 

 

Alternative Hosting Services

Remember that Libsyn is not the only hosting service available. Having chosen your hosting service, many of them offer very similar services. PodBean is another great service that offers you options to share your media, have mobile players and more. So look into the market and consider what's going to be the best hosting service for you and consider what's going to be the best in your work flow for sharing media.

 

Built-In Players - Squarespace

Another option rather than using the embed code that's provided by your hosting service, you can have this audio play directly off your web page. The downside would be that it's not collecting and arrogating your statistics. Using, for example, the Libsyn web player, you can count each and every play and download. However, some people want a little more control over their audio and how people are going to experience it. As an example, I'm in the back-end of Squarespace right now. Putting audio on Squarespace for people to play couldn't be simpler. 

Clicking on 'Audio', I simply find the file to upload, put the track title and author, and it will appear on my web page. 

While I'm waiting for this file to upload, I would like to remind you that you do have an option of using Squarespace for podcasts. This can create that RSS feed that is readable by iTunes and other service directories. 

For more information on the service, simply go back to the podcast posting lesson and take a look at how this can be done with Squarespace. But for now, we're simply going to have a player embed on our website. Now I can save my changes and view the page. 

I don't have any text or images or anything fancy at the moment. All I'm really showing you is how easy it is to get your podcast here.

 

Built-In Players - Wordpress

For those of us that use Wordpress, it's just as easy to put media on our site. By going to 'Media' and 'Add New', we can upload new media files to our library. We then can take that media file and embed it on the page and have it play right off our website. Again, remember the downside to this is you're not collecting statistics that you would by using an embed code that is provided by your hosting service. 

 

Using Direct Links as Web Players

Pushing people to our website is a great way to get our statistics up and also make people more aware of our brand. However as I mentioned earlier, sometimes we want to eliminate as many stages in the process of getting a listener to play our show as possible. One great way is to take a web player and simply embed it in our social media. Let's take a look at how we can use a link within Twitter or Facebook or any social media site in order to get people to just immediately listen to our show. 

Regardless of the hosting service you've chosen for your podcast, with each and every episode you will be provided with the direct download link. These download links are great because they will also play live in a web browser. Let's take a look at an example here in Libsyn. 

If I go back to my 'Content' and 'Previously Published', and then click on the links tab, you'll see that I have a direct download link. I can copy this link and paste it into a new web browser and the podcast will play directly in the web player. Now the value of this is when I go back and look at that link, I can use it in my social media. Taking this link and popping it in Twitter will make a shorten bit.ly link that people can click on and play immediately in their web browser. 

The same goes for social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr. So when sharing your podcast, consider using this direct download link so people can instantly hear your show.

Having looked at a couple quick play options for your podcast so that people can immediately begin listening to your show, you might be wondering how do I get people now to become a subscriber or visit my website. We find at Podfly one of the best ways to do it is to immediately mention right at the top of your show where you can be found.  Whether it be a web address or ask people to look for you at iTunes and Stitcher, they will hear it in that quick play within that first 30 seconds of your show. If they like what they hear, they're going to go and subscribe. 

 

Create a Call to Action Intro

Let's open up Audacity and cut a really quick intro to direct people towards our website and our subscriptions. 

“Hi, this is Corey from my new podcast, don't forget you can find us on iTunes and on Stitcher, simply go to www.myshow.net.”

Once I’m happy with my intro read, let's put a little bit of music underneath it and make this the introduction to our show. 

 

Ask Your Guests for Help

If you have a compelling guest or interview or someone that you mentioned during your podcast, getting them involved in your social media sharing can be really effective. In a lot of cases what I recommend we do is actually send them something to tweet. We can mention them in our Twitter feed, we can mention them on Facebook and Google+, and more, but a lot of people love if they can share something original when it's easy for them to do. 

After having a guest on one of my programs, I love to send them a follow up sheet. This follow up sheet has tweets, Facebook messages that they're free to share and use if they wish. Composing these after the program and sending these out to your guests and your audience is a great way to get them to share the show for you. 

 

Start a Conversation

Using social media effectively is tricky. Simply going on Twitter or Facebook and saying your podcast is available is not nearly enough. We want to find a way to engage that social audience. Having them click on it, retweet, reply, and share is ultimately the way to get you up in the rankings in these social media sites. Engaging your audience on this level will get them involved and interested in what you have to say. 

So composing tweets simply once a week with a little hashtag that says 'Podcast' is not nearly enough. Let's take a look at a couple of the social media managers that are available, so that even if I only post a weekly show, I can tweet every single day about my episode.

 

Social Media Managers - Hootsuite.com

There are a wide variety of social media management services available today. One such service is Hootsuite. This is a great way to plug into one hub all of your social media sites. The power of Hootsuite is that in one session, I can go ahead and create tweets, Facebook posts, and more and schedule when these are going to be released. 

It's great with a podcast when you've record one to not only let people know on the day that your podcast is out, but engage people socially on the course of the week on that episode. This is a great program and for as low as $10 a month you can manage multiple social media accounts. Making this part of your social media work flow means you can minimize the amount of time and focus on targeting people that you want to reach. 

 

TweetDeck

Podcasting and Twitter go hand in hand. This is an amazing way to engage their audience and directly communicate with them. The days of email and contact forms are long gone. People much prefer to directly reply to people and send messages via Twitter. A great free program out there that can manage your Twitter feeds is TweetDeck. Here you can also time out when your tweets are going to go, which service you're going to use, and an image, and more. 

This is a super way to engage your audience and let people know what's going with your show. 

 

Make it Easy

The takeaway from today's lesson is to make your podcast as easy from people to listen to as possible. Even though, for example, my mother has an iPad and an iPhone, she still does not to this day know how to subscribe to my podcasts. She loves to go to my web page and just simply click the play button. And she, to her mind, thinks that's what a podcast is.  

Educating the podcasting audience will take time and you will get there, but remember when sharing with social media and putting web players on your page, you're making it as easy as possible for as many people as possible to listen to your show. 

 

Conclusion

Sharing your podcast has to be part of your work flow. Understanding how to book your guests, record your show, release it and more is already enough work, but we begin to understand how social media can play a big role in the success of your programing. However, don't spend too much time on social media. Content is still king. If you were to look at a ratio, I'd recommend that you spend about 80% of your time on getting your content really good and maybe 20% of your time on social media. 

Ultimately good content is what's going to generate listeners. The better your content, the more people are naturally going to talk about you and share it on their own. However, getting that information out to a larger audience still needs to be done.

 

 

 

 

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Podfly Academy - Lesson 9 of 10 - Submitting Your RSS Feed to Directories

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Podfly Academy - Lesson 9 of 10 - Submitting Your RSS Feed to Directories

 

Now that we've created your RSS feed and we've validated that feed to make sure it works properly, it's time to look at submitting it to directories. These are the places where many people are going to discover your show. We'll focus today on the two big ones being iTunes and Stitcher Radio. From there, we're going to take a look at how many episodes should I have uploaded and more. So let's jump in and understand first of all what a directory is.

 

 

Podcast Directories

A podcast directory is simply a website where a list has been compiled of podcasts that are available. There are a variety of podcast directories out there today. Obviously iTunes and Stitcher are the two biggest places in the market. That said, we don't want to disregard the tens of thousands of listeners and tens of thousands of podcasts that are available in these alternative directories. Not to mention to have your show in these directories, because it really helps your search engine optimization. The more places that your show can be discovered by a Google search, the better your chances are on finding a listener.

You can see here that there are a number of amazing directories available. Each of them has a different approach and a different audience. Equally, many of these directories have a different submission process.

 

A Directory of Directories.

Let's go to podcast411.com. Here we see that Rob Walsh has compiled an exhaustive list of podcast directories available and a submission process that goes along with them. We will have a link to this in the transcript to make it easy for you to find these directories.

 

Submitting to iTunes

Now that we've looked at the wide varieties of directories available on the internet. Let's take a look at how to submit your feed.

*** Note that iTunes has changed the submission process since we recorded this video. You can now login here to submit, and manage your show: 

https://podcastsconnect.apple.com

 

Submitting Your RSS Feed

In previous tutorials we've looked at where to find your RSS feed and what it looks like. Let's go back and do a quick refresher in Libsyn for my new show. Going to the Destinations page, I can find here the 'Libsyn Classic Feed'. This is the RSS feed that we'll be copying and pasting into iTunes.

 

Open iTunes

Open the application on your computer iTunes and log into your account. If you do not have an account with iTunes, it is free to create. You do need to create an iTunes account in order to have an email address, through which they will verify your RSS feed as been submitted to the iTunes store. Going into the store now, let's navigate to podcasts. Underneath the podcast category we see, 'Submit a Podcast'. Taking the podcast RSS feed that we copied out of Libsyn, we are simply going to paste it into 'Podcast Feed URL' and click continue. iTunes has now picked up the feed and recognized it as valid. The next step in iTunes is to choose the category for your show. In this case we'll say Education.

 

Next Choose a Sub-Category and Submit

The feed has now been submitted to the iTunes store for approval. Usually within 24 to 48 hours iTunes responds to the email address provided in your iTunes account as to whether or not your show has been accepted. Once your show has been accepted, they also provide you with a link that you can share, put on your website, and let people know that you're now available in the iTunes directory as a podcast.

 

Submitting your podcast to Stitcher

Here at Podfly we measure our statistics of our clients and students very carefully, as well as hosting companies such as Libsyn, they see now a massive increase in the amount of downloads being generated from Stitcher. Stitcher is a beautiful directory and a great way to get your podcast shared and heard. Let's take a look at how we get our podcast in Stitcher.

The process for submitting your show in Stitcher is a little bit different from iTunes. We need to, as iTunes asked us to create an account, become a partner of Stitcher. This is free and easy to do. Navigating to the bottom of the page you can see there's a partner sign up. In this partner sign up page, simply fill out the form and agree and continue.

Here's an example of a podcast that we've recently submitted and is managed at Podfly. You'll notice that Stitcher has created a gorgeous page. It's already appearing in many people's playlists and there's a lot of social links as well to share. One of the great elements about Stitcher is the mobile application. The application available for iOS and Android is phenomenal. In addition, as a partner, we're provided with great players we can put on our page, banners that we can use to promote our show, and more.

Stitcher is a growing community, an amazing website, and a great way to get your podcast heard.

 

Google Play

Google has made its official entry into podcasting. You can find instructions to submit to the Google Play Store here

 

 

FAQ: How Many Shows Should I Have at Launch?

I want to take a moment and address a question that we get a lot here at Podfly Academy and that is, how many shows should I have available before I submit to a directory? When we do our first show, we're very eager to share it and get it out there. However, we should take into consideration how many shows are available to a new listener. More importantly, there's evidence to suggest that iTunes will rank your show higher if you have more shows available.

Let's also consider when people discover your show for the first time, it looks great to have three or four shows available for download immediately. In many cases, we see new listeners download all of those, which immediately boosts your stats thereby upping your ranking as something that is new, noteworthy, and popular in the iTunes store.

So before submitting to some of these directories, it might be a wise consideration to have some of these shows, as we say, in the can, so that at launch you have a catalog of programming available for your listeners.

 

Conclusion

We've seen that there are literally dozens of podcast directories available online. Clearly part of your podcast launch strategy has to be getting into iTunes and Stitcher. From there, many podcasters like to slowly roll out their show into other directories. From podcast411.com, we've provided you a list of active directories and the methods by which you submit to them. Some of them are much more complicated than simply pasting in your RSS feed. In some cases, you need to email the company with your show description, details, and more. However, slowly but surely, getting these into the directories makes you more and more discoverable.

 

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Podfly Academy - Lesson 8 of 10 - Controlling and Validating Your RSS Feed

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Podfly Academy - Lesson 8 of 10 - Controlling and Validating Your RSS Feed

Validating Your RSS Feed

Now that we've created our RSS feed, we need to validate that feed before we submit it to any directories. iTunes is very particular, as are other directories, so we want to make sure we don't have any odd characters or anything unusual in our feed before we begin the submission process. Let's take a look first at a free service in order to validate your new feed. No matter how we created our RSS feed, we're going to end up with a RSS feed address. This URL is similar to that which you will find on a website. Starting with: Http://thenameofyourshow.hostingcompany,com/rss.

 

Finding Your Feed in Libsyn

In this case, let's take a look at one of the shows that we manage here at Podfly. We manage this particular show in Libsyn. By visiting the destinations page on Libsyn, you can see some of the quick links that are available to you. One of these quick links is the RSS feed.

 

FeedValidator.org

This RSS feed will never change as long as you stay with the same hosting provider. In order to validate this feed, we simply need to highlight the feed, copy it, and paste it into a free service called FeedValidator.org. When I copy in my feed, I simply click validate. We're looking for the first word being 'Congratulations, this is a valid RSS feed'. This means that this feed is available to submit to directories, which we'll be looking at in the next tutorial.

Following that are great recommendations from Feed Validator to make sure we don't have something that might be incompatible with a directory. Though many of these recommendations may seem inscrutable to the average user, they are valuable for the advanced user who wants to really tweak their feed. This gives an opportunity to insure that you are 100% compatible with all the directories that are available. However, for the purpose of validating your feed, we're only really looking for 'Congratulations, this is a valid RSS feed'.

 

Working With Text

Within the blogging community it's been a well known rule of thumb to never use Microsoft Word. If you're copying and pasting text from Microsoft Word into a website, into a blog, or in our case, into an RSS feed, there tends to be an issue with something called 'special characters'. Microsoft Word uses special characters and these can break our feed. Let's take a look at some of those special characters and try and remember to use the same rule of thumb as bloggers do. Never Use Microsoft Word.

No matter what type of content we're putting on the internet. It is always advisable to be working in a plan text editor. Microsoft Word is a great, beautiful, powerful tool for doing office work and creating documents. However, it is not a good tool for creating text to be used on the web.

I point to a C-net article here on tips to make sure you do not break your podcast feed by using special characters that are often and involuntarily put into your document by Word. We can see here in this article a couple of special characters that are marked as bad and good. However, again, to avoid these issues, it's always advisable to simply use a plain text editor. These are provided by your operating system whether you're using Mac, Windows, or Linux.

 

Check Your Feed With Each New Release

We've learned now no matter how we created our RSS feed, whether it be using an online service, a program such as FeedForAll, or hand-coding our own, it's important to check and validate that feed. We also advise with each update and release of a new episode, you take a moment and check that feed as well. We sometimes forget within the show description itself, that feed can be broken. Using this free service is a great way to  make sure all of your content gets out to your audience trouble free.

 

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