Today I would like to write about a question that I get frequently on my podcast and blog. What is a feed, do I have to use a Libsyn feed? Do I have to use my Soundcloud feed? Can I have multiple podcasts on my Soundcloud/Libsyn/Blubrry accounts?
The answer is yes! Here in this blog post, I am going to show how to setup a feed independent of all of these media host services and for free using WordPress.com!
For those of you who don’t know first we have to define “what is a podcast?”. Well to put it in simple terms a podcast is a collection of recordings that are tied together through a rss feed. Through this feed we are able to subscribe to them using software (podcatcher) on our computers and mobile devices. This enables us to listen to them in a serial manner and keep track of what we have listened to.
This being said what does it mean to you and how does WordPress.com help us. In the prior blogpost ***Soundcloud media host, we found that we are going to upload our files to Soundcloud to store them. Also, we learned that Soundcloud will create a perfectly acceptable feed for us. However, if you choose to customize your feed or host multiple podcasts this is where WordPress.com can help. Following this “How To” guide and you will see all the steps required to create a feed independent of your media(define) host. Lets get started:
- Open an account with a media host — sc / lb /blb
- Upload your files when you are done recording to media host
- Obtain your feed from the media host **if it generates one
- Obtain the filename from the feed for the file you just uploaded
- Open a WordPress.com account
- write a blog post on WordPress.com make sure to create a category(**link on WP.com) for the podcast
- Some where in the content for you blog post you will need to insert [audo src=http://linktofile] **this will embed a player and the file to the blog post
- Obtain the feed from WP.com by going to WP.com/blog/feed ** define
Next two steps are preferred but optional. They are preferred when using wp.com as some encoding is left out and these steps will take care of embedding things that iTunes requires.
- Open a Feedburner account
- upload logo and input iTunes information
- Obtain feed from Feedburner
- upload either feed to iTunes. If you use Feedburner this will be the one that goes to iTunes, otherwise use your WP.com feed.
This is all that is takes, I have setup an example on my WordPress.com blog. You can subscribe using a podcatcher by entering a custom feed. I have not placed these in iTunes at the time of publishing this article. *****Links here.
Words of caution using this method.
- If you use the WP.com feed directly. Your iTunes image could changed from time to time as I am not sure what image gets attached to the feed exactly. So if the image on the podcast in the podcatcher is important to you I highly recommend using Feedburner. Feedburner seems to be more consistent in this imaging.
- Remember you are using free services that could change anytime. So there is some risk that something could change and break things. I believe the risk is very low, but be aware it is there. The solution to eliminate the risk would be to setup a self hosted podcast you can follow my guide here: blogmadesimple.com
- Be sure to read the policies of all the companies that I have sited in these post. I have sited ways you can do things, but just because it works does not mean it is in their policies.
- If you plan to register a domain and grow your podcast further this is just the beginning stages, I highly recommend Feedburner as it should make moving your feed a little easier later.
Now that you are an expert I highly recommend you go and try to set something up! I do highly recommend using this free option using wp.com paired with something like Soundcloud (free at the time of writing this post). I truly recommend this free service with WP.com and Soundcloud when you are doing a daily short audio log of your life for kids, or maybe you have a non-profit and want an audio newsletter for your crowd. Anything that is not specifically business related and not intended to grow. If you believe you will grow in the future I encourage you to setup a self hosted WordPress with a domain name or at a minimum register a domain through WordPress.com. You will be much happier and the cost is very minimal to the tune of $49 / year or less. ***reference post.
Now go off and get recording!!!