How to Set Up a Podcast – The Complete Guide

set-up-podcastI remember how hard it was when I first wanted to start my podcast. I searched, and searched, and could not find a good set of instructions on how to do this.

It literally took me about a year before I finally set up and started my podcast show. Till this very day, people still have problems with setting up their podcast.

Just the other day I found myself looking for answers on how to get the artwork to show up on iTunes. Couldn’t find any. I finally figured it out. Made a video on it too ;-)

I finally got fed up with it and decided to make my own “How to” step by step guide on how to set up a podcast.

So hopefully this will find all those people who need help on setting up their own podcast show.

Below you’ll find a complete guide with images, and resources to help set up your podcast.

Note: This guide is on how to set up a podcast. Not setting up a blog, creating an image, editing or rendering an audio, etc. Click here to learn how to set up a blog.

Getting Started

Before we get to the step by step guide, there are a few things you should know and have in order to properly set up your podcast.

Things you’ll need:

  • Thing 1: WordPress Blog
  • Thing 2: Audio Player Plugin
  • Thing 3: FeedBurner
  • Thing 4: iTunes Account
  • Thing 5: [optional] Image Artwork 1400 x 1400 px (iTunes will provide you with a default ugly image artwork)
  • Thing 5: [optional] S3 Amazon or Libsyn account (to host your audio files)

The way I’m going to show you will probably be the easiest way to set up your podcast. It will also cost you the least because you actually don’t need to spend any money to set up your podcast. You can do this all free.

The only thing you’ll have to pay for is hosting to host your blog. To pay to host your audio files is optional.

Note: The following steps are given with the assumption that you have a wordpress blog already set up.

Step 1: Create Podcast Category

A WordPress blog is so you can have another way to share your podcast other than on iTunes. Lets face it, not everyone has an iPhone, iPad, iPod, let alone iTunes. You’ll obviously need hosting to host your blog and possibly your audio files as well. We’ll get into the audio part later.

To create your podcast category, simply login to your WP backoffice. Hover over Posts. Click on Categories. Now add a new Category called “Podcast”. Leave the Parent at none. Scroll down and click on Add New Category.

create-podcast-category

You’re going to post all your podcast episodes under this category.

Step 2: Installing Audio Player

You’re going to need an audio player so your audience can listen to your podcast right on your blog.

In your WP backoffice, hover over Plugins and click on Add New. In the search field type in Audio Player. Should be the first one. Click on install and activate the plugin.

install-audio-player

Step 3: Getting Your Domain Feed URL

Before we go to step 4, you’ll need your blogs podcast feed url. This is totally different from your blog feed url.

To get your podcast feed url simply add “/category/podcast/feed” at the end of your url.

EXAMPLE: http://www.yourdomain.com/category/podcast/feed

Copy and paste this link in a notepad or something. You’ll need it for step 4.

Step 4: Setting up FeedBurner

The FeedBurner acts as a middle man between your blog and your iTunes. This is important because if you ever decide to move your podcast to another blog or site, all you’ll need to do is edit one field in your feedburner.

You’re going to need to have a gMail account. If you haven’t yet, you might as well get it simply because You’ll eventually need it to use google analytics, webmaster tools, adwords, adsense, youtube, and whatever else google has monopolized.

Go to feedburner.com. In the blank field paste in your podcast feed url that you got from step 3. Check the “I am a podcaster!” box. Click the Next button.

feedburner1

IMPORTANT: Feedburner might find other feeds. If this happens, choose the feed that matches the one you created.

feedburner-maybe

Next you’ll name your feed title and your feedburner address. Click on the Next button.

feedburner2

Next you’ll copy and paste the feed url in a notepad or something, (you’ll need this for Step 6: Submitting to iTunes). Click the Next button.

feedburner3

Next you’ll configure your podcast so feedburner can tell iTunes how to list your podcast. This part is pretty much a fill in the blank type of thing.

I would leave the podcast enclosures at “any rich media file”. For the Category, I would click on “Use additional categories”. This will help your podcast reach more people.

In the “Podcast image location”, this is where you will paste the image link. The size of the image should be 600 x 600 1400 x 1400 pixals. This is for your iTunes directory. If you don’t have an image then iTunes will put their own default image which looks horrible.

Click Next when done.

feedburner4

You can use your wordpress blog to host your images. This is exactly what I do. In your WP backoffice, hover over Media and click on Add New. Drag or upload you image. Once upload is complete you can copy the image link and paste it into the image location in your feedburner.

getting-image

Note: If you don’t have an image right now, don’t worry, you can add this later. If at a later time you get your image artwork done. Simply click here for step by step instructions. Keep in mind that iTunes will use the default image.

On the next screen check all the boxes. Click the Next button.

feedburner5

You done here. Move on to the next step.

Step 5: Creating a Podcast

We’re almost ready to submit your podcast to iTunes. But before we do this, iTunes needs to know where your podcast is coming from. You can’t submit a blank podcast.

So we’re going to create a podcast by simply creating a post. Now I’m going to assume that you have your audio file ready to go and ready to upload.

Hover over Posts and click on Add New. Then name your podcast show and click on Upload/Insert icon.

audio-player1

Next you’re going to drag or upload your audio file. Click on the Audio Player button and then click Insert into Post.

audio-player2

Next you’re going to create a downloadable file for your podcast. iTunes requires this in order to pick up the feed. The easiest way to do this is highlight the actual link from the audio player and right click to copy.

audio-player3

Type in something similar to this, “Right click to download audio file”. Then highlight the text, click on the Link icon and paste in your audio file link and click Add Link.

audio-player4

For an example on how a podcast post looks like, click here.

Note About Hosting your Audio Files:

You can host all your audio files with your current hosting. This is the easiest and will cost you nothing to do. However, if and when your traffic goes crazy and blows up, you’ll run the chance of crashing your server and potentially being permanently suspended.

A simple hosting solution can only handle so much load. As the traffic gets bigger, you put more strain on your hosting and you will then need to host your audio files on places like S3Amazon or Libsyn.

S3Amazon is really dirt cheap. It’s like 0.1 cents per TB. The best price around. You pay for what you use.

Libsyn is a bit more, however it has tracking which allows you to track where and when your podcast was downloaded and listened to. This is for more serious podcasters. This is what I use simply because I want to know exactly where my audience is coming from.

Step 6: Submitting to iTunes

iTunes is for you to distribute your podcast to the masses. You’ll need an iTunes account for this. No worries, it’s totally free. However you will need a credit card to open your account.

Click here to go directly to submit iTunes Podcast or follow the directions below.

Go to iTunes store and click on Podcasts tab. Then on the right side click on Submit a Podcast.

itunes1

Here you’ll need the feedburner URL link we created earlier in step 4. Simply copy and paste that link in the blank field and click continue.

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If you done everything correctly, iTunes should automatically pull the information from your feed. If it’s not correct, click cancel. If all is good, click Submit.

itunes4

Make sure to choose the category you want your podcast to be under. This is important.

Click Done to finish.

itunes5

Now it’s pretty much a waiting game with iTunes. It’ll take a few days to get approved. I’ve seen it get approved within 24 hours.

Once approved, you’ll get an email message like this with your feedburner and itunes website link.

itunes-approve

That’s All Folks ;-)

There you have it. That’s how you set up a podcast using wordpress, feedburner, and itunes.

I hope this was very helpful and hope this finds all who are having trouble setting up their podcast.

It’s why I created this post. I know first hand how frustration it is to search for an answer and not find one.

This is how you setup a Podcast! Click to tweet <<==

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