At Captivate, we want to make it easy as possible to grow and make money with your podcast. That's one of the reasons why we built private podcasts the way we did.
But we also know that not all podcasts are just about making money. Organizations like to produce internal podcasts for education, insights, and mentorship.
That's why private podcasts are perfect for creating content that only your most exclusive listeners can access, from paying subscribers or financial supporters of your show, to private internal podcasts for employees, students, and more.
With Captivate, it's super easy to create a new private podcast, and enable your select audience an easy way to subscribe to it! 😎
How to Create Your Private Podcast
When you're logged in to your Captivate dashboard, you have two ways to create your new podcast.
If this is your very first podcast, click Create a new podcast.
If you already have an existing podcast, click on My Podcasts in the top left of your dashboard, and then click Create a new podcast.
This will open up your show creation page, with our handy five step guide to creating your show, including tips on naming your show and more.
Note: although you're creating a private podcast, some default podcast features are still included, in case you ever wish to make your private podcast public again.
Step 1: Podcast name and author
Your podcast name is super important, as it's this that will entice potential listeners. Make it as punchy and relevant to your audience as possible. For the subtitle, use a tagline to describe your show in one sentence.
Choose between your name, or your business/brand name as the author of the show. This is the name that will be associated with your podcast. Be sure to keep it on point, and not loaded with keywords, otherwise Apple may ban you from Apple Podcasts.
Fill in your email address. This will be the one associated with your podcast. if you have an Apple ID, use that as it opens up Apple's Podcast Connect platform to you, should you ever decide to make your private podcast public again.
Once you've completed this information, check the Yes box where it asks Is this is a private show?
Once that's complete, click Next: Podcast Cover Art.
Step 2: Cover art
This is the image that will be displayed on your podcast as well as your Captivate web player, if you wish to use that as an embedded player on a private landing page or blog post.
Best practices for cover art include strong, bold colours and font for your podcast name, so it's easily identifiable for your private podcast subscribers.
Once that's complete, click Next: Description and Categories.
Step 3: Description and categories
While this section isn't as relevant for a private podcast as it is for a public podcast, it's still useful to complete should you ever wish to make your podcast public.
This is also a great place to link out to exclusive landing pages and/or resources for your private subscribers. Just drop the links in the description box, and your subscribers can click through to them.
Choose the three categories that are most relevant to your podcast, with the Main Category being the most important, and complemented by the Second and Third Category.
Business > Entrepreneurship
Business > Management
Business > Marketing
Once that's complete, click Next: Set Up Your Directory Settings.
Step 4: Directory settings
Similar to public podcasts, this is where you can optimize your private podcast for your subscribers.
How is your show formatted?
Choose how your podcast will be released to your subscribers:
Episodic - your podcast displays episodes from newest to oldest
Episodic with seasons - your episodes are still newest to oldest, but are grouped in seasons. This would be prefect for an online course with multiple modules, or an educational course presented annually
Serial - much like a TV show, episodes are displayed oldest to newest, and grouped in seasons (so, Season 1 Episode 1 through to Season 5 Episode 18).
Does your podcast include explicit language?
Since this is a private podcast, you don't need to worry about this at the moment (as long as your subscribers are aware there may be some fruity language!).
However, if you ever made your podcast public, and it had any explicit language but wasn't identified as such, your show could be removed from the various podcast apps.
Check out this Google guide on what's defined as "explicit language".
Maximum episodes on feed
This shows the maximum amount of episodes displayed on the podcast app your subscriber is using to listen to your private podcast.
Default publish time
Set a default time when your latest episode will go out to your subscribers. This is particularly useful for new modules of online courses, business news updates, or educational lesson plans.
What timezone is your show in
This complements your default publish time, so that everyone knows when your show will be published in their timezone. It also determines the tracking timeline for your private podcast's analytics.
Once that's complete, click Next: Confirm Your Feed.
Step 5: Confirm your feed
For a public podcast, this is where you would normally change your RSS feed address to suit your podcast brand. However, since this is a private podcast with a private feed, you don't need to do this.
Instead, we'll create the private feed for you, and then you can use that feed to create a unique invitation and URL for your selected audience. Simply click Create My Podcast to set it up.
Once you've created your podcast, you'll be taken to our handy tips and resources page to help you get the most out of your private podcast:
A link to our private Facebook group just for Captivate users
Our weekly YouTube videos on marketing your podcast
How to create effective calls to action to entice your audience with your offers
Where to find our awesome support team should you need any help.
And, if you're ready to get going right away, you can publish your first private podcast straight from here - though we'd recommend inviting your subscribers first! 👊
And that's it - you've successfully created your private podcast, ready to send out invites for your exclusive audience to subscribe!