How to start a podcast with Captivate

Starting and creating a podcast with Captivate is quick, simple & fully guided. Plus, you can create as many shows as you like!

Mark Asquith avatar
Written by Mark Asquith
Updated over a week ago

So you want to start a podcast or add a new podcast to current network? Welcome - you're in the right place!

At Captivate, we want to make it as easy as possible to start and grow your very own podcast. And it's super easy to do - from setting up your show, uploading your show artwork, optimizing it for listeners, and so much more!

Note: You can also import your podcast from another podcast host, too - in fact, you can import as many as you like!

This is a complete, step-by-step guide to create your podcast:

Click on Create a new podcast and let's get started!

Step 1: Podcast name and author

After clicking the Create a New Podcast button, you'll open up the flow for creating your new podcast. The first step is choosing a name for your podcast. As you can see, we offer some handy tips on making sure you pick a name that sets you up for success. πŸ‘Š

  • Podcast name: your podcast name is what is displayed when it gets published on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and other podcast apps. Keep your title punchy and attention-grabbing for a better chance of new listeners checking you out. Check out our great tips for creating the perfect podcast name.

  • Subtitle: here you can add some short snappy tagline for your show. This will also appear on podcast apps that display subtitles in their search results.

  • Author name: this is the name associated with your show. This can either be your own or brand name. Note: Make sure you only use this area for your name, and not keywords, otherwise you could be removed from the podcast apps for keyword stuffing.

  • Author email address: this is the email address that you want to have associated with your podcast.

  • Is this a private show? this is where you can choose whether your podcast will be on public feeds and podcast apps, or if it's a private podcast for paying subscribers, employees, online courses, etc. Check our Private Feeds tutorial for more info.

Once you're happy with all of the above click Next: Podcast Cover Art

Step 2: Podcast cover art

As much as choosing the right name for your show is important, so is using the right artwork. This is the image that appears across all the various podcast directories, and in most cases will be the first thing that your audience see when searching for podcasts.

We have a handy little guide on podcast artwork specifications here but ideally your image needs to be:

  • square image

  • 3000px by 3000px maximum (with a minimum of 1400px by 1400px)

  • a file size of less than 500kb to ensure compatibility

  • jpg or png

When you're ready to move to the next step, click Next: Description and categories.

Note: You don't have to add your podcast cover art at this stage, just hit skip for now and add it when you're ready.

Step 3: Description and categories

Now that you have your show name, it's time to expand on this, and really tell your audience what your show's about. Here's just some things that you can include in your show description:

  • What the topic is.

  • Will it include guests.

  • Will it be in seasons.

  • How long each episode usually is.

  • How often you'll publish.

  • How to get exclusive content.

  • Where to find you on social media.

To help the most interested listeners find your podcast, you can choose which Categories it falls under within the directories. There are usually three options:

  • Main category: the one used for all podcast platforms, and the main parent category it will fall under on apps that support more than one category.

  • Second category: this is the sub-category for your Main Category. Think of it as an extension - if "Business" is your main category, then you could use "Business>Marketing" as your sub-category.

  • Third category: again, this enables to you extend your reach, by choosing something like "Business>Entrepreneurship" as your third category.

Note: Some categories have far fewer options when it comes to second and third categories, so try and get creative while still remaining in your niche!

Once you're happy with your Description and Categories, click Next: Setup your Directory Settings

Step 4: Directory settings

We're in the home stretch! Now that you have your show name, artwork, description, and categories picked, it's time to tell the various podcast apps (and listeners) what to expect from your show. Here you can choose from:

  • How is your show formatted? You can choose between episodic (the default format with episodes displayed newest-to-oldest), episodic with seasons (still displayed newest to oldest, but grouped in seasons), and serial (now the episodes are displayed oldest-to-newest, and grouped in the seasons they're set).

  • Does your podcast include explicit language?: This is super important! While you might think a certain swear word isn't bad, others may disagree (including Apple, who can boot your show of its platform if they feel it's explicit and you didn't state that upfront). Best approach here - better safe than sorry. You can always update this option on an episode-by-episode basis.

  • Maximum episodes on feed: This is simply to let the podcast platforms know how many episodes to display on their directories.

  • Default publish time: This is the time of day you expect your show to go out each week (and is used when scheduling episodes ahead of time). This can be different on an episode-by-episode basis, though it's good for your listeners to have a set scheduled time that they can expect to see a new episode.

  • What timezone is the show in?: This is important to set up, especially if you're scheduling episodes, or promoting shows as being live at a certain time. Choose the correct setting for your location via the drop-down.

Once you've filled in all the required info, click Next: Confirm your feed

Step 5: Confirm your feed

Almost done! We're at the final step: setting up your RSS feed.

This is what's used to send all of your show's information to the various podcast platforms and apps, and how listeners can use these apps to add your show to their library.

Captivate sets you up with an RSS feed by default, but you can amend that to something you prefer. Your feed will always start with and then it's the part after that where your show will 'live'.

Once you've chosen your feed, click Create my podcast and your show will now be displayed in your My Podcasts section of your Captivate dashboard.

Now you're all set, ready to start uploading your first episode! πŸŽ‰

Brand new to podcasting, and just getting started?

We don't want to just throw you in at the deep end when it comes to starting your podcast journey, which is why we've created a whole bunch of features to help you along the way:

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