Prefer to listen to the changelog? Try Captivate Insider!


--

19 November 2020

Zapier Upgrades and More Bug Smashing

It's weekly release time podcasters!

Zapier Improvements

We've refined a few elements of our Zapier integration.

When using our 'Create Draft Episode' action, you now have the option of setting an episode title (the same will be used as your file name, to keep things organised.)

Zapier will also use your default publishing time (if set), making the whole drafting and publishing process smoother and well, more automated!

We've updated the Zapier FAQ to reflect this.

Whilst you're here, check out our 10 handy Zap templates to speed up your podcast workflow!

Pocket Casts Integration

Pocket Casts recently made some changes to their ingestion process and no longer use Apple's API to distribute your podcast. We've created a new section within Marketing that allows you to enter your new Pocket Casts link for use on your Captivate Site™ and Single Subscription page.

There’s also a convenient link in the Distribution area to Pocket Casts submission page! Happy distributing!

Bug Fixes

Another round of very-important-but-not-so-glamorous fixes to bugs, including:

  • Improvements to feeds for greater compatibility with various feed-readers.
  • Your latest episode player will now correctly show your most recently published episode, even if your feed is set to display oldest to newest.
  • Loads of misc back-end improvements to increase behind-the-scenes performance and stability ahead of new feature releases.

Over n out!

12 November 2020

This week we've been squishing bugs left, right and centre!

Here are the details:

  • We fixed an issue where daily analytics were invisible under some conditions. Rest assured, fully visible now.
  • Episode comparison graphs have improved stability.
  • Captivate now supports international characters in Apple URLs.
  • The Facebook Pixel and Google Analytics tracking code are now on your 'listen' page! Take a look at our guide to Facebook marketing for inspiration.
  • We improved the UI around missing or incorrect user settings when submitting episodes.
  • Stitcher had a makeover earlier this week, which caused existing links to break. We have fixed those links so you won't encounter any disruption going forward.

TLDR; We've fixed bugs in our dashboard and analytics. We've made general performance improvements to internal systems to make your Captivate experience smoother, easier to use and more reliable. :)

Podcast Q&A Session replay available!

We held our monthly deep-dive podcaster Q&A session yesterday and wow, the questions were great! Whether you missed it or want to review the answers to the podcasting questions that came up, we've just made the replay available in the Rebel Base Media Podcaster Support & Experience group.

See you next week!

5 November 2020

Smarter, More Reliable Import Processes and Podcast Websites

It's weekly update time!

We're always listening to what you'd love to see in Captivate, so this week we've made improvements to two important facets of the platform:

  • Our import process is now quicker, smarter and more secure.
  • You can now expect even higher levels of reliability from our podcast websites.

A big thank you to Captivate podcasters Issen Alibris, Rob Gorski, Nurit Ben for the feedback that led to these improvements!

Smarter Podcast Imports

We’ve updated our import process to upgrade the speed and function when importing to Captivate from another podcast host.

This is linked to our strong anti-piracy stance and means that we can now show you where items from your old feed may be problematic for your podcast in the future, just in case you move to Captivate from a podcast host that’s a little more cavalier with their feeds.

If things are missing or awry in your old podcast host’s feed, Captivate will highlight those missing pieces and give you a set of sensible suggestions and quick review process so that you can keep your show in tip top shape!

More Reliable Podcast Websites

We've revamped the way that Captivate’s podcast websites save their data when you make changes. This is to maintain high levels of reliability and stability as we release even more new podcast website features moving forward.

As usual, all relevant help articles have been updated:

28 October 2020

Captivate Zapier and Mailchimp Integrations Are Go!

It's a busy week for integrations here at Captivate HQ!

We're always on the hunt for new ways to make your life easier as a podcaster, whether that's giving you new ways to promote your episodes, grow your audience or cut down on your boring admin jobs.

Well, this week we're bringing you TWO new integrations to help you do all those things!

1. Connect Captivate to 2000+ apps on Zapier

Our Zapier integration is now available to use! We'll be building our template library over the coming weeks, but for now, get started with a few of our 10 automated podcast workflows in our dedicated Zapier guide.

Zapier Podcast Integration: 10 Zap Templates to Automate Your Podcast Workflow

2. Use Mailchimp with your Captivate Site

You can now use Mailchimp with our Email Opt-In Captivate Sites feature! Start building your lists and create a high value lead magnet without leaving the Captivate dashboard.

As usual, all relevant help articles have been updated:

22 October 2020

A New Distribution Partnership with Deezer!

Great news! You can now submit directly to music streaming service Deezer through Captivate's distribution dashboard using a simple, one-click submission process - no fussy form filling here, sir!

Once listed, you'll be able to tap into Deezer’s 16 million monthly active listeners across 180+ countries. That's another brilliant opportunity to expand your reach and open your podcast up to a huge potential audience of listeners.

a gif of captivate's submission to deezer

Submitting to Deezer is super easy and takes just two clicks:

  1. Head to the Distribution tab from the Captivate dashboard
  2. Navigate to Deezer
  3. Hit 'Submit Podcast' and follow the prompt
  4. You're done! Your podcast will now be ingested by Deezer 👌

As usual, all relevant help articles have been updated:

15th October 2020

Captivate Analytics V3: Even More Powerful Insights to Help Grow Your Podcast!

Today, we’re proud to announce a huge upgrade to our podcast analytics, bringing you the most comprehensive analytics suite of any podcast host.

We want to give you as much detailed data and information as we can about your podcast performance, no matter what plan you’re on.

This new update - now live for all Captivate podcasters - provides new, deeper and more powerful insights on your podcast, your episode content and your listeners.

We've also made the analytics more accessible, more visual and easier to understand, meaning you’ll now be able to get - and understand - the information you need quickly.

You can read the full breakdown of Analytics V3, what's new and how you can use the new features on our blog, but here's a summary:

  • Access in-depth analytics for individual podcast episodes
  • You can now get full, detailed episode-level download overviews
  • Identify download milestones, spikes and troughs with cumulative view
  • View an episode’s downloads from its release date
  • See today's trending episodes
  • Make strong content decisions with timeline comparison
  • Get deeper listener insights with detailed web player analytics

As always, all help articles have been updated to reflect this release.

We've been working hard on this release for months. A BIG thank you goes out to our lovely dev team and our podcasters, especially Christopher Bandura, Walker Neer and Steven Weber, for their suggestions, feedback and support - we couldn't do it without you!

Over 'n out!

8th October 2020

We’re Taking A Stand Against Podcast Piracy

This week, we’ve introduced new verification measures upon import to tackle podcast piracy. Plus, an exciting announcement about our podcast, Captivate Insider!

  • Our Podcast Import Process is Now Safer - We've added an extra level of security to our existing podcast import process to further safeguard against podcast piracy and preserve the integrity of your audio. You can read about our decision and the new process on the blog!
  • A Big Change to Captivate Insider! - We're changing the format of our podcast, Captivate Insider, to make it more useful and engaging. It'll still be home to our weekly releases, but from now on, we'll be inviting Captivate podcasters on to talk about their podcasting journeys, as well as featuring community Q&As. Captivate Insider will relaunch on Thursday 5th November. If you have a podcasting story to share or want to put a question to us, let us know either in the Facebook group or via support.

As always, all relevant help articles have been updated.

Over n out!

2nd October 2020

A New Player FM Integration and a Login Screen Makeover!

It's weekly update time! This time, there's a brand new integration in the Distribution dashboard! Plus, we've improved our login screen to improve your experience and help you to find useful information a whole lot quicker!

  • Player FM Integration - You can now submit your podcast to Player FM straight from the Captivate Distribution page. Head to the blog to find out more about our new partner, its millions of active users and how to get listed on the platform.
  • New Login Screen Makeover - She's here and she's gorgeous! We've given our login screen a polish for better user experience. You'll now be able to find useful and essential information a whole lot easier. Head to the login screen to check it out for yourself!

As always, all relevant help articles have been updated.

That's it for this week!

24th September 2020

Introducing... Captivate Sites™ 2.0: The Most Powerful Podcast Websites From ANY Hosting Platform

Today we’re proud to announce a raft of exciting new upgrades (EIGHT to be exact!) to Captivate Sites™, making them the most powerful podcast websites from any hosting platform, included for free on every Captivate hosting plan.

Every single Captivate podcast website now has even greater build features, flexibility, functionality and marketing potential so that you can grow your show on your own terms.

Here's everything today's huuuugee feature includes:

  • Two new additional site layouts, totalling three fully responsive website templates.
  • Customizable episode order settings - display most recent or oldest episodes first.
  • Pin an episode to the top of the page - perfect for trailers!
  • Customize team biographies at show level - extremely useful for teams managing multiple podcasts.
  • Email opt-in forms - capture emails for newsletters straight from your podcast website! Choose from direct integration with AWeber or insert an HTML snippet from another provider. Customize the copy of every single element to suit your podcast's messaging. BONUS: if you choose to upload an image alongside your email opt-in, Captivate will make your opt-in layout look great automatically, too!
  • Lead magnets - incentivise sign ups by adding an image to your opt-in and creating a lead magnet! Captivate's Library now supports image and PDF uploads, allowing you to host all of your marketing assets centrally, making workflow that much smoother.
  • Website search functions - we've added a search bar to the site's top navigation. Listeners will now be able to satisfy their own search quickly without having to crawl through the entire feed.
  • Captivate Sites™ now uses the API to display episodes, instead of the RSS feed - podcast feeds will now auto-paginate and will populate as many episodes as it needs to fill the page, improving site speed.

We've put together 6 detailed, step-by-step guides showing you exactly how to set up your podcast website and apply these new features the right way! Check 'em out:

Part 1 - Basic Podcast Website Settings
Part 2 - Setting Up Your Header
Part 3 - Setting Up Your Team
Part 4 - Email Opt-Ins
Part 5 - SEO & Social Sharing
Part 6 - Advanced Settings

18th September 2020

A New Integration with PodcastIndex!

We’re delighted to welcome our latest distribution partner, PodcastIndex, a decentralised podcast directory built by 'Podfather' Adam Curry and developer Dave Jones to preserve podcasting as a platform for free speech.

Find PodcastIndex on the Distribution within the Captivate dashboard and submit your podcast now:

You can read the full writeup on Captivate's blog here.

P.S. There's no Captivate Insider this week - we're taking a well earned break. Rest assured, we'll be back again next week with something very big and exciting!

3rd September 2020

Well well well, we're back with more updates!

This week has been largely a bug fixing week but we did do two things that might interest you, too...

  1. We integrated AdBarker prefix support directly into Captivate - thanks, Ryan Gray!
  2. We welcomed our brand new podcaster support expert to the support team. Welcome, Danny Brown! Danny has been a long-time Captivate user so if you're in our private Facebook community, I have no doubt that you'll know Danny already. Danny joins the team lead by Sam to continue to give our podcasters the very best podcasting experience, bar none!

Hey also, we're thrilled to announce that we've been working with the Gerry Anderson network (creators of Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlett and so much more) on their stunning new show First Action Bureau which is an original, in-universe creation from Jamie Anderson and Nicholas Briggs and features an insane voice cast including Sacha Dawan, Nicola Walker and Patterson Joseph.

Check out the trailer for First Action Bureau, here.

Last up, we're announcing the first keynote speaker for our private Ready, Set, Grow! podcast marketing event tomorrow, too!

This exclusive to Rebel Base Media podcasters using Captivate, Podcast Websites and Podcast Success Academy (growth-tier).

27th August 2020

Jiosaavn Distribution is Here!

Hot on the heels of our Amazon Music & Gaana distribution partnerships, we're delighted to announce that from today all Captivate podcasters can submit their podcast to another of India's biggest streaming platforms, Jiosaavn!

We also updated our Amazon Music/Audible integration with some more behind-the-scenes tweaks to make ingestion even easier for the Amazon team.

FUN, EXCLUSIVE STUFF ALERT:

Captivate is 1-year old on August 29th! We have something special happening!

We debated whether to do a big public party or not but decided, for our first year, to instead honour those who have helped us the most through the first year: our podcasters like you.

So, tomorrow (August 28th) we're going to be announcing something very special for our Captivate podcasters and you can join Mark at 12pm Eastern in the exclusive Facebook group for the announcement.

20th August 2020

Role Management Overhaul & Some Analytics Preparation!

Today we released a HUGE redesign of how Captivate's role management works, making it even easier to grant the right levels of access and create a custom setup that works perfectly for you and your team. You can now set very specific permissions for each show in your account, and for each person on your team.

Plus, we released some background analytics tracking ready for a feature release in around a month - this is so that when we release the new analytics feature, you have some data in there already!

As always, Sam and the podcaster experience team have updated all of the relevant help articles and tutorials, too!

14th August 2020

Today we're delighted to welcome two brand new Captivate partners:

  • Gaana, India's #1 audio platform (found in Distribution), and
  • Podcorn, the podcast sponsorship marketplace (found in the new Resources section)

We've been working hard with both the Gaana and the Podcorn teams to make life easier for podcasters so, to both teams, thank you!

We also released our brand new podcaster resources section that includes our recommended design, outsourcing, music (intro, outro, etc) and editing tools - all from partners that we know, trust and use ourselves.

Oh, we also updated the marketing section to allow you to use Google Podcast's new URL structure, too. Faaaancy.

Here's Gaana...

And Podcorn in the new Resources section

6th August 2020

It's a PRIME new podcast distribution integration release today as we welcome Amazon Music and Audible to Captivate!

We've been working with the Amazon team behind-the-scenes for a few months now on their new podcast offering. You can now pre-submit your show ready for when Amazon Music's and Audible's podcast offerings launch shortly!

Head to "Distribution" right now to submit your podcast to Amazon Music and Audible!

30th July 2020

Embeddable player multi-language support & YOU get a timestamp, YOU get a timestamp and YOU get a timestamp!

Imagine if there was an embeddable podcast player that translated its interface into your listener's language.

Well, now there is with Captivate's embeddable player! Plus, we make it easy to add clickable audio timestamps to any website and smash a bug like a Starship Trooper.

Here's what we released today cats and kittens...

  • Multi-language embeddable player support: Now the interface on your embeddable Captivate podcast player auto-translates itself to Dutch, Portuguese, Spanish, German, Polish, Italian and French depending on your listener's browser language setting. How fancy is that?!
  • Clickable timestamps for you, and you, and you! We released clickable timestamps to WordPress via Captivate Sync™ and Captivate Sites users a couple of weeks ago and today we've made it so that *anyone* can have them on their sites using a little bit of code in their site's header. How? Check out the help article here.
  • Unique listener bug: We had a few sporadic reports of the dashboard "unique listener" figure for 90-days being higher than the all-time number. That was weird. But we found an issue with one of our database queries and fixed it. Weirdness, be gone!

Until next time...

23rd July 2020

*NEW* cheaper annual pricing plans, multi-currency options and fresh onboarding!

Today we released annual pricing for all podcasters using Captivate :)

That means that Captivate now starts at $17 per month (paid annually) and that all plans have an annual plan available that saves you money on your podcast hosting.

We also launched multi-currency options so that Captivate will detect USD, GBP or EUR pricing based on your location, meaning that if you're in the UK, for example, you won't pay extra if your bank charges for international payments (how is that still a thing in 2020?!).

All of the new plans are available to new podcasters and to you as a podcaster already using Captivate, just head to your account to switch to an annual plan.

Oh, we've also tweaked the onboarding a little for new users so that we capture information that we need for VAT (to make your invoices more useful) and to help you decide how you want to be walked through your first minutes within Captivate.

Saweeeeeet!

16th July 2020

It's weekly update time!! This week we've introduced a few tweaks to keep giving you that gold-standard podcasting experience. Here's what's got better:

  • mp4/m4a to mp3 auto-conversion: Although we all like to upload podcasts in mp3 format, sometimes podcasters upload an mp4 or m4a file to Captivate and Apple Podcasts, etc aren't so keen on it. So, we've made it so that Captivate now automatically converts mp4 and m4a files both on upload and on import from other podcast hosting platforms, to save you some hassle! It's nice to be nice.
  • Upgrades to some admin reports: We love reports. Honestly. We love nothing more than a really nice spreadsheet. So, we've upgraded two of our internal reports that help us to help you - pretty boring, but really useful for us. Remember the clickable timestamps last week? That was more fun, wasn't it.

Over and out!

9th July 2020

Introducing Clickable Timestamps!

As a podcaster, one of the biggest goals that you have is to drive people through to your website. That's why today we're introducing automatic clickable timestamps to make it easier for your listeners to navigate your audio in just one click!

All you need to do to add a clickable timestamp to your podcast show notes is to type a timestamp in the following format:

03:41

04:26

10:31

etc...

Once you publish your episode, Captivate Sites or Captivate Sync™ will automatically turn those timestamps into clickable links that will take the listener to that point in your embedded Captivate podcast player. Magic!

Don't worry, if you type an invalid timestamp in (that doesn't exist, for example), Captivate is smart enough to know that it's not a valid one and won't turn it into a link.

3rd July 2020

Captivate Sync™ Updates!

This week it's all about showing love to Captivate Sync™ and our wonderful WordPress users - we have feature additions, bug fixes and code changes to lighten the load even more.

  1. Episode-specific artwork upload now uses the WordPress media library for processing, providing better error handling of erroneous dimensions, etc.
  2. Fixed a minor bug that popped up now and then when an episode status is different between Captivate and Captivate Sync™.
  3. We’ll now alert you if there is something wrong with your MP3 file when uploading via Captivate Sync™.
  4. On new installations of Captivate Sync™, sync will now run every 10 minutes make sure all episodes are swept up nicely.
  5. Fixed an intermittent issue with episode date and timezones.
  6. You can now add a custom WordPress excerpt per episode in Captivate Sync™. Shiny shiny.
  7. We’ve also done a full code sweep and refactored lots of code to make things even faster. Love a good clear out!

Sweet, right? Right? Right!

See you next week!

26th June 2020

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...

  • Updated playlist player for seasonal podcasts: For you beautiful seasonal podcasters, we've made the Captivate embeddable playlist podcast player most recent seasons and episodes first and made it even easier to navigate for listeners. It's pretty nifty, actually!
  • Expanded the use of automatic Apple banners on Captivate powered podcast websites: You know those fancy little banners that you see at the top of websites that send you to the app store or Apple Podcasts? Yeah? Well, Captivate sites automagically includes them on your Captivate powered podcast website so that visitors have one-click access to your show in Apple Podcasts from their device. Also pretty nifty!

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

18th June 2020

Introducing Collections, Curated Podcast Playlists that Your Listeners Love, Expertly Crafted By You!

We just released a unique feature that lets you curate playlists with custom embeddable players and their own RSS feeds that you can use to educate, entertain and expand your podcast audience.

The "Collections" feature can be found on the right side menu of your Captivate account. It is the perfect way to make your back catalogue more accessible and to increase listenership of your podcast through curation and collection of related episodes.

We also put together three creative and really powerful ways to use the "Collections" feature, here.

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

11th June 2020

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...

  • Switch show cover art on and off: As part of your advanced player customization options you can now decide whether you want to display your podcast cover art on your player. Just another way to make your player look and feel how you want it to. Head to your player settings for a closer look.
  • Append podcast name to SEO title on singe episode web pages: A small tweak means that your podcast's title will be appended to the meta title (SEO title) of each episode web page when using Captivate Sites.
  • Set an episode expiration date & time: There are often times when you need to say something that is time sensitive, whether that is a holiday message, an announcement or something important that you need to tell your audience but that isn’t always something that needs to stay in your podcast RSS feed forever. It’s something I’ve needed, that’s for sure – so, we built it! From today, all Captivate podcasters can set an episode to “expire” from their RSS feed and thus, the podcast directories on a specific date and time. The time settings respect your Captivate timezone settings and each episode with this setting applied is clearly visible within your Captivate episode listing.
  • Exclude podcast episodes from your feed and directories: We also noticed that there are often times when a podcaster wants to publish an episode but exclude it from their RSS feed and the directories. This isn’t a private RSS feed, it’s a way to make sure that your episode is only available via a direct share or a web embed using the Captivate embeddable podcast player and so, today we also launched the ability to exclude podcast episodes from your RSS feed at your leisure – nice!

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

29th May 2020

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...

  • Advanced player customization options: We're seeing podcasters all over the world using the Captivate player within their marketing stack. Often, that means that the player is integrated into a current website using Captivate Sync™ or via a direct embed. We've made it easy to control every single aspect of the interaction ability of a listener using the embeddable player by giving you the option to decide what you'd like your player to show to a listener. Head to your player settings for a look see. Thanks to Daniel J. Lewis!
  • Captivate Sites social updates: We now show all social links entered in your personal Captivate profile within the bio section of your Captivate powered podcast website. We've also shifted from two additional external links and now will display one link, but with a custom label for the link. We force the update to your website whenever you save your profile. Magic! Not really... CODE!
  • Added IAB Verified logo to sponsor kits: Following last week's announcement that Captivate is now IAB Certified (awww yeah!) we've added the IAB verified seal logo to your sponsor kit so that potential sponsors can see that your podcast analytics are verified accurate. Shazam!

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

22nd May 2020

As the podcast industry continues to develop and evolve, the one thing that we are dedicated to as a podcast hosting platform is of course, the accuracy of your podcast analytics.

We are passionate about getting closer to the people listening, not just the number of file downloads that your podcast receives and that’s why, Captivate is delighted to continue its user-focused push to become the world's best podcast hosting platform by announcing today that the platform is now IAB Tech Lab Certified! Awesome!

Check out the full details over on the Captivate blog.

14th May 2020

It's weekly update time, this week is a doozy, too!

We're always working hard to help you to grow your podcast. But, as podcasters we're a little addicted to measuring downloads when really, we'd love to be able to measure people who listen to our show.

So, we've just introduced "Unique Listener Tracking" to your Captivate analytics as a free upgrade to all Captivate podcasters!

Right now, in your Captivate analytics area you'll see a new section called Audience Overview. Within this section you'll now be able to see the following unique listener data points:

  • Unique listeners today
  • Unique listeners yesterday
  • Unique listeners over the last 7 days
  • Unique listeners over the last 28 days
  • Unique listeners over the last 90 days
  • All-time unique listeners

This data is aggregated as:

A unique listener is defined as a listener from the same IP address and the same device within the presented timeframe. This is a way of estimating the number of people downloading your show. This is based on the IAB v2 guidelines.

This is part one of an analytics upgrade aiming to make it easier to estimate your true audience size and we're hosting a live webinar on this within our private, Rebel Base Media podcaster group over on Facebook next week to dig even deeper into this.

We've also added "Last updated" information to the top right of your analytics screen and your main Captivate dashboard so that you can see the last time we updated your data for you.

Pretty sweet, right?!

As always, help articles have been updated and we can't wait to see you on the live product upgrade webinar next week AND our usual deep-dive- podcaster Q&A!

7th May 2020

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...

  • Public Podcasting Group Launch: In addition to our exclusive, highly-personal Rebel Base Media Support & Experience Group, which features two-way live Q&A sessions and a personal service for all podcasters using our platforms, we just relaunched our public group to help all podcasters regardless of their skill level or status. Join the thousands of other podcasters over there.
  • Update to Google Podcasts Manager in Distribution: Google Podcasts has just released Google Podcasts Manager which is a very simple way to submit your podcast to Google Podcasts and, in a similar way to Apple Podcasts Connect & Spotify for Podcasters, view Google-specific podcast analytics. We've added this to the Captivate "Distribution" area and created some help articles & tutorials on how to work with Google Podcasts Manager

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

1st May 2020

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...

  • Better parsing of link text in show descriptions for Captivate Sites: When using Captivate Sites, if you add a website address in your show settings it needed to become a link automagically. It will now automatically turn http://google.com into a link that is target=blank, for example.
  • Internal show transfer process updates: We've made it easier for our team to be able to transfer shows between owners for when, for example, someone leaves a network or production company to build out on their own. It's still a highly personal and vetted process.
  • Regex update to Google Podcasts URLS: Fix for the regex for adding the Google URL when copying from Google Podcasts, users can now include %/&/= in the Marketing section.
  • No copy and paste madness in show notes: When copying from a Word or Google document the formatting that comes over for colors and background colors on spans and other tags can be problematic. We've expanded the "blacklist" for pasted in code and still maintain the "whitelist" to make sure things like lists, etc, are formatted nicely on paste.

21st April 2020

With a new episode deep-dive view, publish date overlays and city/region breakdowns across your entire show or on an episode-by-episode basis, your Captivate podcast analytics just got a serious power boost!

Pierre, one of our resident Captivate engineers, an all-round nice guy and owner of the biggest hair in lockdown has been working exceptionally hard with the engineering team on crafting some sweet podcast analytics upgrades for Captivate podcasters that we’ve released today!

Here’s a quick rundown of what the team has done:

  • Deep-dive episode view: You can now dive-deep into the trends for each podcast episode that you release by filtering your entire analytics data on an episode-by-episode basis. Ooooof!
  • Overlay download data with release days: What happens when you release an episode? BOOM! Downloads! Right? Well, usually yeah but sometimes peaks and troughs occur where you absolutely would not expect them. So, click the new shiny little box to overlay your podcast release dates on to your podcast download data to start to learn about some of the trends that your show experiences. Pro tip: try “singe day” view with this turned on and choose a date when you published something.
  • Break your download data down into state, region, city/town level: Available at show or individual episode level, you can now view the states/regions and city/town that your show gets downloaded in. Cool, right?
  • Add percentages to all the data you’d like to see as a percentage: Data geek? Just like the shape of a percentage sign? We’ve added percentages to every reasonable piece of data that you’d want to see a percentage next to. You’ll see percentages in grey next to the core data where available. If you do just like the shape of a percentage sign, here’s a little something for you: %%%%%%%%%%.

Of course, all of these updates are free to every single Captivate podcaster 🙂

Some charity work

Hey also, we’ve been HUGE fans of what Podchaser has been doing to help Meals on Wheels America’s COVID-19 charity efforts by donating 25c to the charity for each review left on the platform.

We’ve decided to contribute by matching every single review left over on Podchaser for a Captivate hosted podcast and will match the donations up to $750 in total.

You gotta do your bit, right?

YouTube channel launch!

Podcast advice is usually complicated, full of jargon or given by people who have been podcasting for about an hour.

So, we decided to do something about that by launching our straight-talking, no BS YouTube channel to help you cut through the podcast education noise.

Here’s my head on the trailer and you can subscribe to the channel here:

7th April 2020

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...

  • XSLT stylesheets: RSS feeds are dull as dishwater. But, they power podcasting and sometimes, you pop your RSS feed into the browser and see the feed is all its gargantuan glory - code and all. That's ok, it's how it's supposed to be, but we wanted to make it easier for anyone stumbling across your feed in a browser window to know exactly what to do with it and to be able to listen to your show directly from the feed. So we sexy styled it up. Look: https://feeds.captivate.fm/podcastaccelerator
  • Behind the scenes service tech: We spent a day or two building a new backend area for us to link your Captivate account to Intercom via a secure Intercom widget. Sounds boring, and it is a little bit, but it means that we can support you even faster by seeing right there in the support chat with you which show you're working on and quickly launch that show in Captivate's dashboard for us to take a look at. Sam loves it.

31st March 2020

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...

  • Speed up cache flushing on the embeddable player after editing an episode, show or player style: When you edit an episode title or content, Captivate will now clear the cache for that specific episode on the web player. Also, when you update your player style it will clear all cached episodes from the player too, so that you can see the changes much quicker.
  • Quick view episode web pages from the episode sharing screen: We added a nice little "View" button next to the "Copy" button within the episode sharing screen that will open the episode web page URL in a shiny new tab for you to quickly take a peek.
  • URL preview on publishing an episode: When using Captivate Sync™ or Captivate Sites for your podcast website, you will now see a preview of the full URL that will be created for any given episode within the episode publishing or editing screen. Lovely job.
  • Anchor import issue: When importing an RSS feed from Anchor and when the podcaster has the dynamic ad system setup on Anchor, Anchor splits files and rejoins them, making them an M4A with a mime-type of MP4 instead of MP3. This causes import problems. Well, it did. Not anymore :)
  • Live Q&A over in the Facebook Group: Come and join us, on Wednesday 1st April, 5pm UK, 12pm Eastern, 9am Pacific, over in our exclusive Rebel Base Media Podcaster Support & Experience Facebook group, where Mark and the team will be answering all of your podcasting questions. Sweet! 

25th March 2020

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...

Your podcast analytics, in your timezone!

Today we're pushing out a release that will display your podcast download analytics in your own timezone, as set in your show settings.

This means that you can view data in a time local to you rather than the standard UTC timezone, plus the timezone will also carry through to CSV exports and the one-click sponsor kit generation. 

Set within your show settings, the timezone already controls the default publishing time and is always set at show level, not user level.

Reminder: We love working with you and our community. We wanted a way to bring all of our Rebel Base Media paying podcasters together into a safe community to discuss anything that you need at all. So, separate from our public-facing community, we just created the private Rebel Base Media Podcaster Support & Experience Facebook group - make sure you're a part of it!

Stay safe. 

17th March 2020

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...

  • Error checking upgrades: There are so many times where we need to give you a pointer or a heads-up about something you're doing on Captivate so this week we've gone through many of our error messages around podcast artwork, player settings and more to make those errors even more descriptive and useful to you. Boring, we know but important, too!
  • Admin tools for our team: We have a lot of background admin tools that our team uses to help you out via support. This week we added a couple more around imagery and social sharing that you won't see, but that you'll experience thanks to our support being even faster!
  • New private Facebook group: We love working with you and our community. We wanted a way to bring all of our Rebel Base Media paying podcasters together into a safe community to discuss anything that you need at all. So, separate from our public-facing community, we just created the private Rebel Base Media Podcaster Support & Experience Facebook group - make sure you're a part of it!

13th March 2020

It's weekly update time!! 

One-click sponsor kits now available for free to all Captivate podcasters!

This feature is something we've been wanting to do for a long time! 

Being growth focussed means that our goal is to make it easier for you to achieve your own version of success as a podcaster. Knowing exactly how to work with sponsors is something that so many indie podcasters are concerned about and one of the vital, early-stage conversations with potential sponsors is around whether you're both a fit for each other. 

Today, we've made it easier than ever to start that conversation by introducing the initial version of our one-click sponsor kits! Inside the marketing section of your Captivate dashboard, you'll now see a "Sponsor Kit" tab and space to enter your listener avatar. 

Once done, hit the generation button and a beautiful PDF will download itself ready to send to sponsors, not bad, right?! Hey also, this is only the first version of this tool - lookout for more and more as we develop it.

Hey, we also just launched a private Rebel Base Media support & experience group on Facebook - don't miss out on the podcasting conversation over there - come join us!

7th March 2020

It's weekly update time, again!! 

Sure, it's a little later than usual thanks to Podfest and Social Media Marketing World, but we always have your back :)

So, what's new...

Export analytics to CSV for Excel or Google Sheets! 

This is something that the Captivate power users have asked for and today we're very pleased to announce that you'll see a lovely little download icon next to the information icon on each section in your analytics area - hit that for a download of the data within each section so that you can use it wherever you like! 

Don't see the new export icons in your Analytics page? Hit a hard refresh on your screen :)

If you're in Orlando for Podfest, swing by and say hi to some of the team - oh, and grab a t-shirt!


27th February 2020

It's weekly update time!!

As always, we've worked hard to listen to what you'd love to see in Captivate and we've just added one of the most requested features by podcasters using Captivate sites to generate their stunning podcast website - single episode pages 🙂

We had to take our time with this so that we could make sure to get Captivate Sync™ (our WordPress plugin) perfectly set, first. But, now that is all done we've been able to bring you the single episode pages that you've been asking for, plus customisable SEO titles, descriptions & URLs and auto-generated social images. Whoop!!

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

19th February 2020

Introducing the podcast playlist player and latest episode players!

We just released the outstanding embeddable playlist players and the simple, powerful latest episode embeddable player to all Captivate podcasters! 

As of today, you can embed a beautiful player that showcases all episodes of your podcast into any website or, you can embed a player that always shows and plays the most recent episode of your show.

Of course, we couldn't leave the main player out of the action so we've also released a new build that makes it even easier for listeners to access your calls to action, your subscribe options and show notes, plus a big upgrade to how listeners can share your podcast player. 

All fully responsive on all devices too, of course! 

Check it out LIVE on MarkAsquith.com/podcasts right now and head to your Distribution area in Captivate to use the brand new players for your own shows!

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

11th February 2020

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...

  • Drag & drop team member ordering on your Captivate podcast website: This is a nice one - you can now drag and drop your team members into your desired order for display on your Captivate podcast website. This makes it even easier to customize the display of your team online.
  • Single subscription link custom domain bug: In certain circumstances, the single subscription link wasn't respecting your use of a custom domain name. It is now :)
  • Advanced WordPress options for Captivate Sync™: Users can now use a captivate.php file in their theme for a custom layout for the episode list page (for example, you can base this on the index.php page that comes with WordPress and then you can customize sections of it so it's a different layout to the blog.) You can also, if you want to, edit single.php for single episodes by uploading a single_captivate_podcast.php page which you can edit. This is for advanced WordPress users only.

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

4th February 2020

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...

  • Request a Captivate feature!: We love working with you and we love making things that work for you. So, we've added a "request a feature" link to the Captivate dashboard footer so that all Captivate podcasters can let us know the features that they'd like to see released. This links directly to our project management platform and we'll be able to let you know when your feature has been greenlit for build!
  • Even simpler cancellation process: Even though we hate to see you go, we understand that, for various reasons, you may want to cancel your Captivate account. It's our job to make sure that you never need to, but that if you do, that the process should be clear and easy. So, we've redesigned the cancellation process from the ground up to make it even simpler! That's nice, isn't it!

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

28th January 2020

It's weekly update time again, whoop!

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...

  • Full transparency mode: The podcast industry is growing and with it, the technology in the space and the value of advertising dollars is also growing. Attribution of those ad dollars is pushing the industry to track more and more as the brands look to define their ROI. As such, several third-party tracking, sponsorship and advertising tools are popping up such as Chartable & Podcorn. The challenge for creators is maintaining ethical practices when it comes to your listeners, even if a creator isn't aware that listener data may be being passed elsewhere - after all, it's you that they're trusting when they listen to your show and in turn, you trust Captivate as your host to do the best by you. There's a lot being discussed about listener privacy right now in the podcasting space and in addition to our listener privacy policy, we are happy to announce that Captivate is the first podcast hosting platform in the world to provide a "Full Transparency Mode" for all podcasts and creators. Enabling this will append a short, nicely formatted statement to the end of each of your episode show notes that will disclose to the listener which third-party analysis tools are being used within your show, along with a link to each service's privacy policy so that the listener can dig deeper into those services, should they have any questions. We believe in transparency and urge all podcast hosting companies to consider implementing Full Transparency Mode within their platforms, too.
  • Remove the Captivate branding from your podcast website: We know you love Captivate, and we love you, too. But from time to time, we also understand that you might want to remove the Captivate logo from the bottom of your auto-generated Captivate podcast website. So, from today you can! Thanks, McKane!

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

21st January 2020

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 website "hero" section options: Some fine folks wanted the ability to be able to turn off the "hero" section at the top of their Captivate podcast website. Now you can, so that's good :) 
  • WOW! Single subscribe pages for all podcasts: Asking people to subscribe to your podcast can be a real pain - where do you send them? To what link?! We have your back... now, all podcasts hosted on Captivate include a very special "/listen" link for their Captivate podcast that works on any device and includes one-click subscribe links to all major podcast listening apps, at no extra cost. Promoting your podcast just got way, way easier and there's more to come! Check out this Spark of Rebellion example or Mark's Podcast Accelerator example

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

17th January 2020

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...

  • Episode URL added to publishing screen: We've popped in a lovely little field within the episode publishing screen for you to add the URL for your episode if you aren't using Captivate Sync™ or Captivate Sites. Useful for people using Wix, Squarespace or some other web platform. Remember GeoCities? Awww. Also, thanks Evo!
  • Quashed a minor team member bug: In some really specific edge cases, owners of shows were able to remove themselves from their own show. It took some jiggery-pokery to actually do it, but one or two peeps had the issue so we took a lightsaber to it and got it sorted.
  • External prefix interface changes: In preparation for next week's release, which is a powerful one, we've made it easier to chain together podcast prefixes like those from Chartable, Podtrac and Podcorn. Captivate's interface now lets you choose the prefix provider and we'll do some checking to make sure your prefix looks a-ok for you.

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

12th December 2019

It's weekly update time!!

This week it's all been about SEO, whoop!

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...

  • Episode page SEO: Whether you're a Podcast Websites user or you're using Captivate Sync™ on your own WordPress website, you're going to love the addition of episode page SEO tools. You can now set a custom SEO meta title and meta description, as well as customize the permalink/slug of your episode for your WordPress website. This feature is available in the WordPress Captivate Sync™ interface and in the episode editor within Captivate proper, if you're using Sync.
  • Edit your show notes with the WordPress editor!: One of the biggest pieces of feedback we've received about Captivate Sync™ has been the desire to edit show notes using the WordPress editor when publishing or managing episodes from WordPress. Well, now you can! We've added a fancy little toggle switch to the Captivate Sync™ episode screen which means you can switch between the Captivate editor or the WordPress editor for adding videos, HTML etc. And, we do all the relevant work on the backend to make sure your tags are right in your podcast's RSS feed, how cool!
  • Internal coupon stuff: Our goal is to be a platform that can be as agile and responsive as possible. There are some podcast hosts that still do things like affiliate programmes using paper (I know!) and from day one, we didn't want to be that company. So, we spent some time this week working on a custom interface to extend the way that we can add coupon behaviours to our pricing system. This means that for events, quick spin-up online summits and so on, we can respond quickly with custom plans/trial extensions for them - it's great for organizers to get answers quickly. Boring for you, super useful for us!

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

Heads up, too - it's holiday season so there'll be no feature releases during the weeks commencing 23rd December and 30th December.

Holiday support hours.

During the holidays, we'll be around as usual with exceptions on these days:

  • 24th December, Christmas Eve - reduced support hours, but still around.
  • 25th December, Christmas Day - closed.
  • 26th December, Boxing Day (UK) - reduced support hours, but still around.
  • 31st December, New Years Eve - reduced support hours, but still around.
  • 1st January 2020 - closed.
  • 2nd January 2020 - normal service.

Happy holidays!

4th December 2019

Well, today is another good day for Captivate podcasters. 

We've built every product and business we have here at Rebel Base Media on one simple ethos: helping people. 

Sure, we have to pay the mortgage but it's not all about money, it's about what we can do to be the very best for the podcasters that we serve.

Recently, we made some upgrades to our CDN (content delivery network) and reduced our costs as a business for that CDN usage. 

Rather than keep the money to ourselves, perhaps in a Scrooge McDuck style vault in a tower on the top of a hill, we decided to pass some of the savings on to podcasters using Captivate and so, from Monday 9th December ALL of our plans will receive big increases in the number of downloads included per month with that plan.

Those plans with 10,000 downloads now receive 12,000; those plans with 50,000 downloads now receive 60,000 and those plans with 120,000 downloads now enjoy 150,000 included each and every month.

Remember, Captivate doesn't force you to upgrade to access "advanced" analytics (they're included on every plan) nor do we force you to pay more to add extra team members or upload more hours of audio, for example.

We'll keep doing our very best for you as a podcaster and also, we released a few other tweaks to the platform as well today including an easier way to check image specifications for your podcast's website on Captivate and changing the time that our platform notifications stick around for, from two seconds to four seconds.

What a lovely day to podcast!

26th November 2019

It's weekly update time again, whoop!

This one is a bit of a boring one, sorry - it's "bug smashing" as much less cool companies would write.

So, during our Captivate Sync™ rollout we did what all good tech peeps do and "shut up to listen". We spoke to a lot of users of the plugin and many of the users of our managed WordPress platform, Podcast Websites to learn what they wanted tweaking.

We've pushed out some updates to permalink settings, diagnosed a weird little bug that would duplicate certain episodes only in WordPress and added some functionality to the Podcast Websites interface  that we removed during the initial rollout to allow players to be embedded in certain Builder modules.

It's one of those "boring to talk about but important to get out" updates, argh.

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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