Creating a Podcast and Promoting it on iTunes and Zune in 5 easy steps

If you think you’re ready to join the world of producers and not just consume all the time, and love to talk about something that people love to hear…  I recommend a weekly show, 5-15 minutes is not bad, you don’t need to do hour long shows.  You should commit to doing at least 5 before deciding to promote it.  I hate seeing an empty podcast listed or one from 2 years ago with a single item.  Be committed.

1. Record some cool content with your favorite recorder (even Vista’s, I mean Mohave’s Sound Recorder will work.  (I discovered the Win XP only gives you one minute.  Camtasia by Techsmith gives you a 30 day trial.  (I’m so impressed I will likely buy it at the end of my 30 days.)  That works too.   I found that I was saving mine as .wav files and later found out that MP3 works much better, so I downloaded Quick Media Converter a free GPL licensed converter.

2. Go to your favorite Podcasting hoster, or use the podcasting kit, whatever… I used a free service at Podango.com and signed up for free podcast hosting.

3. Create a profile, fill out your details, and give it a cool name, image and put in great description, tags, and keywords. (The UI is pretty intuitive) *These really matter.  Then add an episode add the audio (preferably MP3, the file you created in #1) and fill out the details then click "save."

4. Grab the RSS Feed from your new podcasts (on podango.com you go to "my podango," then click "view your show page," mouse over the generic + RSS button, right click and choose "copy shortcut" or simply click on it, (verify the podcast is there and that your audio works), copy the URL in the address bar (Note: You can click on Subscribe with iTunes which will skip to the "Submit a Podcast" in Step 5, but you still need the URL, just in case.

5. Promote your Podcast and get it included on iTunes and Zune.

For iTunes open iTunes the desktop app, and go to the iTunes Store, click Podcasts in the upper left hand navigation, then right smack in the middle of the page you’ll see Submit a Podcast.  You then paste the URL of your Podcast RSS from step 4.  Then login with your apple ID when prompted.  Additional References: FAQ, Podcast Tech Specs

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Zune

Open the desktop Zune software, and go to the Zune, click Marketplace, then podcasts, visit the main podcast section in the software to Suggest a Podcast for inclusion in the public Podcast Marketplace.

Click Submit a Podcast (You may need to scroll down to see the link, it’s directly underneath the "most subscribed")

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Enter the URL of your RSS feed of your podcast from step 4.  Expect it to take 24 hours (maybe up to 3 days?) or so to be included.  I’m not sure what an accurate estimate is… more than an hour so far 🙂  If you need more details on submissions see the Zune blog on sumissions.

Additional Marketing…

I’d recommend "Digg" Bloglines, Google Reader, Yahoo, etc… by clicking on those links from the Show Page, this simple step of posting once will include your blog for search from other users in their directories (essentially, they’ll know you exist).  You may need to create the various accounts to do so.  I recommend feedburner for your RSS feed, and twitterfeed to promote your posts on twitter.  Obviously these take time and research, but the benefits are worth it.  Feedburner appears to have some iTunes promotion plus more built in.  The more places people can find your content the better.

Additional Details on Podcasting

I was inspired by this YouTube Video on How to Create a Podcast.  It helped me figure out the basics enough to get going.  There’s more on the editing and recording side of the podcast than I included here.  There are a bunch of people ready and willing to help you get started.

Most of all Have fun with this!

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