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19th November 2019

It's weekly update time!! 

This week we finished rolling out some major upgrades to your account area, making it super easy to switch plans, view your download allowances on a super sweet looking "progress" style bar and of course, viewing and downloading your invoices. 

The biggest update is actually behind the scenes this week.

We've updated and tweaked our geo-location API for the statistics. At times over the last few weeks, our download stats have been a little slower to update in your dashboard that we'd like.

There's nothing wrong with this, as such, it was just due to the simple scaling safeguards we'd added. But, we weren't happy with that experience for you so we updated our geo-location API  to allow for much faster processing of data and thus, quicker throughput to your dashboard.

On the surface, you'll just see your download analytics performing much more in "real-time" which is of course, awesome!

12th November 2019

It's weekly update time!! This week it's been a week or account updates, making sure that your billing and download quota is easy to view, manage and understand.

The biggest changes this week will actually be rolled out periodically over the next few days so that we can make sure each element is bulletproof.

Changes include:

  • A clear, concise download quota graphing system in your account.
  • Easy ability to view and download your Captivate invoices from your account section.
  • A clearer layout to show you which plan you're currently subscribed to.
  • An easier interface for updating your payment details.

We're also pushing out various small tweaks and features to Captivate Sync™, too but nothing overly interesting, it's all behind the scenes to keep the sync process nice and continually quick.

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

5th November 2019

It's weekly update time and this week is a BIG one!! 

Captivate Sync™, our WordPress podcasting plugin, is here!!

We've been building WordPress *stuff* for a long, long time. In fact, my (Mark) background is over ten years running a design, brand and digital agency that specialised in WordPress development.

So, when we moved into podcasting in 2014 with our first product, Podcast Websites, naturally that progressed to become the world's #1 hosted & managed WordPress service for podcasters - completely hassle-free, growth-focussed WordPress for you as an audio influencer.

When we began building Captivate, we knew that we wanted to fully support WordPress and continue what we had started with Podcast Websites.

And so today, we're delighted to release Captivate Sync™, the easiest way to podcast using WordPress, featuring:

  • Automatic sync between your Captivate podcast hosting account and your WordPress site.
  • Simple, multi-show management direct from WordPress.
  • Publishing & managing of episodes right there in WordPress.
  • Full, automated use of the stunning Captivate podcast player including calls to action, simple subscribe links and full device compatibility.
  • Powerful sharing options that help drive traffic to your podcast's website.
  • Integration with self-hosted WordPress and the Podcast Websites hosted & managed WordPress platform.

Captivate Sync™ works beautifully with WordPress, giving you a quick, solid way to podcast via a well thought out custom post type structure and full control over episode links and more.

And hey, this is only version 1 of the plugin, you just know there's more to come ;)

Control and own your podcasting brand.

Related: How to get started with Captivate Sync™

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.


29th October 2019

It's weekly update time!! As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and have put together the latest release which is ALL about Alitu!

Your Podcast Editing & Hosting Workflow Just Became Easy with Captivate & Alitu

We’ve always had a vision of making podcasting as simple as it can possibly be but we see two things happening every single day getting in the way of that: 1. some podcast hosting companies making podcasting more complex than it needs to be in 2019, making podcasters feel bad about not being an “expert” and 2. new tech companies entering the space because they spot the potential to make money.

The thing is, to succeed in podcasting you have to love it because it’s hard and doesn’t have the instant “stickiness” that other hobbies, professions or commitments do – if you don’t see your downloads jump quickly, you’re perhaps going to podfade.

The same goes for tech companies in the space – sure you can generate a bit of buzz early on, but can you maintain a quality product when the industry is still finding its commercial feet?

When we built Podcast Websites back in 2015 we brought with it a human touch that is still missing from most podcast hosting companies and when we decided to shake up the podcast hosting industry by creating Captivate, we put that human touch front and center – it’s why podcasters love Captivate and our Rebel Base Media team: we treat you like a person and never talk down to you.

But more than that, we rebuilt podcast hosting from the ground up with a core focus of simplicity, usability and the growth focus of giving podcasters what they need without out-dated pricing structures and imposed limits on creativity – in short, we think about what podcasters need today and tomorrow, and then we build it.

And we have done our time – we spent a long time getting to know the industry without diving in and professing to have all of the answers – but we did that without sacrificing the ability to quietly innovate and pleasantly surprise our podcasters.

And so, whilst building Captivate out, we’ve been stealthily working on something to make podcasters’ lives that much easier.

Today, as the first part of a wider project to deliver a platform that allows podcasters a simpler way to develop their podcast, we’re delighted to announce a deep integration with Alitu, the world’s #1 online podcast editing and creation platform.

I’ve been friends with Colin Gray, the founder of Alitu, for years now and no one loves the podcasting space more than he does. But more than that, no one more exemplifies the way that we approach podcast creation than Colin and his team.

From today, Alitu users can connect their Captivate account and publish/edit their shows using the two tightly integrated systems, making your podcasting workflow exceptionally easy.

We’re not finished yet, either.

There’s more to come on this front, tying together proven technology and industry denizens to bring together a simple podcasting platform with the stability of the trusted names behind them.

Thank you to Colin and his team for being simply amazing to work with and as a podcaster, start simplifying your podcasting workflow with Alitu & Captivate.

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

22nd October 2019

It's weekly update time!! As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and have put together the latest release as follows...

  • Simpler website pagination - this week's update is a website focussed update with the first upgrade being to the pagination system on your Captivate generated podcast website. We've made it so that each page featured five episodes and now loads even quicker, whoop!
  • Simple 302 redirects - boring alert - we've made it easy for you to redirect your podcast website to WordPress or similar when you change from using a Captivate website to something else. This means that all the links to your Captivate site will redirect to the new website for if you decide to use WordPress and Captivate Sync™, for example.

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

15th October 2019

It's weekly update time!! As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and have put together the latest release as follows...

  • Podcast import assistant just got smarter! - sometimes your old host will have it set that your show must only display, for example, 150 episodes in your feed. We have made sure that Captivate checks your episode numbers and that if we detect that your show has published more episodes than are in your feed, we let you know to change that setting in your old host before importing. It's the little things, right?
  • Intermittent Safari dropdown bug - in certain circumstances, specific dropdowns wouldn't behave properly due to a small bug in Safari. This is now fixed. Cheers Cody!
  • Episode level cover art updates - every now and then, if you don't have a podcast cover art set in your show settings as you ramp up to launch, you'd have a problem uploading episode level cover art. That's all sorted, now.
  • Smarter CMYK checks on cover art - uploading the wrong type of podcast cover art can result in your show being rejected by Apple et al. No one wants that, so we've made our cover art sanity checker even more useful by making sure that if you upload your file in the CMYK colorspace, we'll let you know.
  • Embeddable player animation tweaks - the player animation is now a little more intelligent when it comes to the status of your audio (playing or non-playing) and will perform as you'd expect when you pause the player.

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

8th October 2019

It's weekly update time!! As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and have put together the latest release as follows...

  • Brand new "system status" area - we'd planned this for Q4 2019 but accelerated its development in light of the StackPath challenge below. We now have a complete and comprehensive system status area for Captivate's entire infrastructure. This has its own page right here and system status will also show within the live chat support section at the bottom-right of Captivate's dashboard. Whoop!
  • Extra layer of object storage added - our CDN provider, StackPath, had an issue with its object storage node on the US East Coast. The object storage nodes are used to store your audio files before they get to the CDN when requested by a podcast player, plus they store other items such as podcast cover art - this issue with StackPath meant that uploads were sporadically failing and that audio sometimes couldn't be quickly played back because the CDN couldn't grab the audio file every time from the object storage system. StackPath is mega-reliable but just like any tech company, they do have some issues now and then - luckily, this is very very rare. We added an extra object storage redundancy layer which means that if StackPath ever has issues again, uploads will instantly switch to our secondary storage option seamlessly and automatically with no impact on upload or download speed. Bottom line: the issues that you may have experienced this week won't happen again. Thanks for bearing with us :)
  • Apple Podcasts URL format change in Captivate's marketing section - in some instances, we were spotting that some Apple URLs weren't validating correctly within the marketing section of your Captivate dashboard. As it happens... Apple has a couple of different URL formats so we added extra validation for them. Awww yeah.

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

1st October 2019

It's weekly update time!! As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and have put together the latest release as follows...

  • New player branding options! - a big thanks to many of the networks and agencies who use Captivate for their podcasts, we've made it super-easy to decide how much Captivate love you show on your embedded player - you can choose from our full branding, subtle branding that just shows the Captivate icon or no Captivate branding at all. The first two options let you link to your affiliate account, remember!
  • Responsive player preview update - you can now preview the podcast player in your Captivate dashboard on device sizes down to iPad portrait. Thanks, Olivier!
  • Artwork speed updates - importing podcast cover art for each episode is now even quicker on import for podcasters who use episode-level artwork.
  • Bio text alignment on Captivate Sites - left-aligned your host bio on your Captivate powered website. Much prettier :)

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

Surprise upgrade! Spotify passthrough data and big analytics upgrade!
27th September 2019

We're delighted to share that all Captivate podcasters can now enjoy complete passthrough data from Spotify’s analytics system – “Spotify” will now show within your analytics dashboard as a place within which people listen – pretty sweet, huh?!

But not only that, we’ve released a huge upgrade to the listening platform data that we give you as a podcaster. You can now see the listening platform, device and the operating system that listeners use to consume your podcast.

Data includes:

  • Listening App: Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify, etc
  • Operating System: iOS, Android, Other, macOS, watchOS etc,
  • Listening Device: Mobile App, Desktop App, Mobile Browser, Desktop Browser, Smart Home, Smart Watch etc

Also, we now track plays through your embeddable podcast player on your own website, your Captivate hosted website and specifically plays through Twitter, too.

And for the geeks amongst us, like me, we don’t track the Spotify bot crawling episodes to download to the Spotify cache so there are no skewed downloads here!

This is a free upgrade that has been rolled out to Captivate podcasters today.


24th September 2019

It's weekly update time!! As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and have put together the latest release as follows...

  • Third-party podcast tracking codes - added support for custom tracking codes provided by our friends at Chartable, Podtrac et al.
  • Custom copyright statement on a show-by-show basis - thanks to Cody Boyce for the idea, you can now override the default copyright statement on each podcast that you run.
  • Podchaser rating update - we've made it easier to showcase your podcast's Podchaser rating on your in-built Captivate website, whoop!
  • Add team members to new shows directly from their profile - it's now even easier to add team members to new podcasts that they don't already have access to.
  • Skip cover-art upload on setting up your podcast - thanks to Amy Woods, you can now create a podcast without the requirement of adding a podcast cover at that time - Captivate will keep tabs on this for you and not let you submit to any directories without uploading a cover later, all distribution options will be disabled to save any embarrassing moments!
  • Intelligent cover-art upload - Captivate now intelligently checks that your cover art is the optimum file size and colorspace so that Apple et al don't reject it. That's cute isn't it.
  • Added m4a audio file support - you can now upload m4a files to your podcast episodes and we won't convert them, you're welcome James Cridland.
  • No heroes... - you now have the option to remove all hero text from your Captivate podcast website.
  • Apple is more obvious - Captivate will now show you that you have submitted and been accepted in Apple Podcasts as long as you pop your Apple Podcasts URL into the marketing section of your dashboard.
  • Updated Google Play notes - we've made it clear in the Distribution section that Google Play is a little different to Google Podcasts (erm, a lot different).
  • Hansel & Gretel - started adding breadcrumb trails throughout the platform because it's nice to know where you came from. My Mum always reminds me of this. Hey, Mum.

All relevant help articles have been updated to reflect these changes.

UPDATE: Public beta!
29th August 2019

We're now in public beta - which is pretty much our version 1, but with a 'beta' sticker on it just in case any weird bugs pop up :p 

Thank you to everyone who supported us and signed up on launch - now we enter our product cycle, releasing new features and updates every Tuesday for you - keep an eye on this post for updates and new features, and of course we'll let you know via email, too.

UPDATE: Apple Podcasts category changes 2019
26th July 2019

Apple Podcasts recently rolled out an updated list of podcast categories that Captivate completely supports.

These categories have been implemented within Captivate, here's our guide on how to change your Apple Podcasts categories quickly and easily.

VERSION: Beta programme
28th June 2019

Captivate has always been a part of the Podcast Websites platform. This release sees the launch of Captivate's podcast hosting, analytics and distribution tools to the wider podcasting industry without the need for a Podcast Websites account - from here, you can host your podcast with Captivate at a rate similar to that of other podcast hosting companies such as Libsyn, Simplecast, PodBean, Blubrry et al - albeit with more ease of use.

The beta launch brings with it everything that you would expect from a world-class podcast host and sets the stage for innovative new growth-oriented features in future versions.

Beta features include but aren't exclusive to:

  • Easy import from other podcast hosts, for free
  • Multiple podcast shows and RSS feeds under one account
  • Easy, quick podcast publishing
  • Simple syndication to podcast directories including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and more
  • IAB compliant (soon to be IAB certified) podcast analytics
  • Podchaser integration
  • Stunning, easy to configure podcast websites
  • A powerful yet simple embeddable podcast player for your website and social media
  • The first range of marketing tools, including podcast links & embeddable player calls to action
  • Captivate Sync™ WordPress plugin
  • Podcast teams and personnel
  • Bulk media uploads
  • ...and more
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