We're podcasters just like you. That's why we crafted the Captivate experience to make things nice and easy for you, starting with how to create and publish your podcast episodes.
How to publish your podcast episode
Head to the top right of your Captivate dashboard and click Publish Episode. You will then be taken to the podcast audio upload screen:
Here, you have a couple of different options available:
- Drag and drop your fully edited audio file into the drag and drop window
- Choose files from your own library
- Select a audio file from your Captivate media library
- Import your audio (and transcriptions) from Descript
- Or, if your audio isn't quite ready yet skip this step and upload the file later 😊
When you have your selected file, click the Upload Audio File button. You'll be taken to the Publish An Episode Screen:
Now let's dig into each section:
- Podcast episode artwork
- Podcast audio file
- Publish date and time
- Advanced options
- Episode title
- Episode subtitle
- Display a different episode number on Apple Podcasts?
- Episode show notes
- Apple Podcasts episode summary
- Episode type
- Season number
- Episode number
- Mark as explicit
- Episode URL
- Episode Page SEO (for Captivate Podcast Website & Captivate Sync users)
Podcast episode artwork
As a default, Captivate will automatically add your podcast show level artwork. If you wish to add unique episode artwork for each episode (perhaps to highlight a guest), simply click the artwork displayed and choose the artwork that you wish to use.
Note: When creating your podcast artwork we recommend using these podcast artwork specifications: Max. 3000 x 3000 pixels in size (min. 1400 x 1400 pixels), set to "RGB" setting, ideally under 512kb in filesize and a JPEG or PNG file.
Need podcast artwork ideas? Check out our top do's and don'ts for creating kick ass cover art!
Podcast audio file
If you uploaded your podcast audio file on the previous screen this is where the audio file will be displayed. If you need to replace the podcast audio file for your episode, a Replace the audio file in this episode? button will be displayed.
Manually create and manage your own transcriptions or upload your SRT file to add transcriptions to your podcast episode.
Note: If you have uploaded your audio file from Descript and have a transcription file attached to it, the transcription file will be automatically added here.
Publish date and time
Select the date and time you want your podcast episode to be published. Click on the little calendar icon next to the current date, and choose your preferred publish date and time.
- Exclude this episode from feed: if you have an episode that you wish to only share with a certain audience - newsletter subscribers, membership course, etc - you can use this option to stop a specific episode from appearing on public platform apps.
- Set episode expiration date: there may come a time when you only want an episode to appear for a certain amount of time (a limited time offer, an excitement builder for a new show, or even a Christmas message). Check this box to choose a day and time you want this episode to be removed from your RSS feed.
- Collections: if you have created a Collection (or multiple Collections) for your show, you can add your episode to the relevant Collection here.
Your episode title will be displayed in all podcast directories and players. Try and make your episode title catchy and something that grabs your audiences attention. Think of what people might search for when looking for a podcast or episode they may be interested in. For example:
- SEO for Your Podcast
- Podcast SEO 101: The Future of Podcast Discoverability?
Which one do you think would get more listeners, and help people find your show when searching online? Hint: it's not the first one! 😜
Currently, not a lot of podcast apps use episode subtitles, so this is just if you really want to add some more context about your show.
Display a different episode number on Apple Podcasts?
Use this if you would like to display a different episode title in Apple Podcasts, for example, a title without an episode number in it.
Episode show notes
Show notes are a great way to let your listener know what to expect from your episode, as well as offer takeaways, links to connect elsewhere, download resources, and more. They can be as long or as short as you wish, but here are some key things to include:
- A short introduction to the episode and its content/guest
- Resources and links for any topics discussed on the show
- Links to where listeners can connect with you or your guest(s)
Note: Save time creating your show notes with our great Snippets feature.
Apple Podcasts episode summary
This is an optional summary for use in Apple Podcasts. We recommend creating a short, 2-3 sentence summary of your episode. Great for giving your audience a 'taster' of what they can expect to hear on your podcast episode.
Most episodes will be normal episodes, but sometimes you'll create podcast show trailers or bonus content that displays differently depending on the listener's podcast player.
Podcasts usually fall within two categories - episodic or serial/season. Episodic are standalone shows that can be listened to in any order.
Serial, however, are part of an ongoing series, and can be broken down into seasons (much like your favourite TV shows!). This option lets you display what season the episode is part of.
This lets you choose which episode number you are publishing. This helps both listeners catch up on shows they've missed, and podcast apps differentiate in what order an episode should be displayed.
Mark as explicit
This is an important option to make sure you get right! If your episode has any profanity in it, you need to set it as explicit. This will ensure only an age-appropriate audience will see it.
Note: Apple Podcasts can remove your episode from Apple Podcasts if your show is not properly age-gated!
If you don't use Captivate Sites or the Captivate Sync plugin, you can enter the URL for where your episode is published on your self-hosted site. This ensures anyone clicking the episode title via the RSS feed or on a podcast app will be taken to that specific page on your site.
Using the Captivate Podcast Website or Captivate Sync? Here's more...
Episode page SEO
This is where you can really optimize your show for maximum visibility on search engines. Think of your listeners, what they'd be searching for, and how your episode answers that.
- SEO Title: try using an informative and authoritative title. "10 Insider Podcast SEO Tips To Optimize Your Podcast" versus "SEO Tips For Podcasts".
- SEO Description: this is the little box that shows up on search results, and enables you to expand on your title to offer more information on your episode, while including the type of keywords people search for on Google.
- Episode Slug: this is the URL for your episode if you use a Captivate-powered website for your show. This will auto-complete with your SEO Title, but you can change it to your own preference.
That's it! You're ready to publish your episode, safe in the knowledge that your show notes are on point, your SEO is ready to drive listeners to your show, and your new episode is looking and sounding the best it can!
Recommended Reading: Podcast Analytics with Captivate - Overview