I had a podcast on iTunes within 12 hours. Ten of those hours was simply waiting for approval. This is how I did it:
The fastest podcasting tool:
I was introduced to Zcast by friend and We Create community member Mary Alice Long. Zcast has set out to be a social streaming podcasting tool – think of it like Periscope or Facebook Live, but for straight up Audio streaming.
You can sign up via Twitter and be broadcasting immediately, either recording directly into your phone (if you have an iPhone with the Apple earbuds, it can record into the built-in-microphone) or by whatever microphone you have connected to your computer.
I live with my family in a small apartment in a loud neighborhood in Puerto Vallarta with roosters crowing from 4AM throughout the day, which meant my podcast had to be recorded after the kids were asleep, which meant that I had to record quietly enough to not wake them up. With those limitations in mind, I thought, why not whisper the podcast? ASMR is a trend that has been growing for years (people who have a physical, scalp-tingling reaction to certain sounds, whispering being the most common), so there is an audience of people who would listen. I could choose a book in the public domain and each episode could be a chapter. GENIUS.
I needed a title and cover art to be considered for iTunes. All in all this took me about 10 minutes to put together.
I used our Yeti Blue microphone to do the recording, which picks up small sounds perfectly.
It’s a simple matter of pushing two buttons, and you are broadcasting. In addition to recording directly into the browser, you are also streaming live to anyone who might be up browsing for new stuff to listen to. I had no idea if anyone jumped in during my recording, as I was reading from a book throughout. If I had been streaming from my phone, there might have been an opportunity to see what others were doing.
Once your recording is finished you can hit publish and it goes live to an RSS feed specifically set up for your profile. From there, if you want to be considered for placement on iTunes, you have to go into your RSS settings and modify them to add a description and cover art (also note: your iTunes podcast email is public, so choose an email that you don’t mind being out in the public). Within these settings you can place it in a category, choose the language and choose whether the content is explicit in language or content (meant for adults).
Once you have all of your info set up, you can copy the WEBSITE link in your RSS info (the zcast.co link in your RSS settings, shown in the image above, and then connect your podcast to iTunes by going here: (https://podcastsconnect.apple.com/) You will need an iTunes account to make the connection, otherwise the process is extremely straight forward. It will ask for your feed URL, and you will click VALIDATE. iTunes will then pull your feed in, showing you the description and podcast cover that you just placed. Check to make sure it is all correct before hitting the submit button.
And then I went to bed because it was close to 2am. The total amount of time spent from the time I sat down to start working to the submission was a little less than 2 and a half hours. The next day, I was notified that the podcast was approved. I had a podcast on iTunes!
So in all, it took about 12 hours total from sitting down to being on iTunes with my first podcast. Very cool, right?
Who is Zcast for?
- People dipping their toes into low-pressure podcasting for the first time.
- People who want to quickly and effortlessly begin talking to their audience without being bogged down with editing and production
- People who want to try podcasting but have not invested in equipment.
- People who can naturally riff on a subject for long periods of time (think between 10-40 minutes, realistically).
Who is Zcast not for?
- People who are experienced and carefully prepare their podcasts.
- People who have equipment and need a polished finished product, edited with music
I would highly recommend Zcast to anyone who is curious about podcasting but has never tried it before, as a way of getting used to the podcasting format and experiment. In the same way a writer has to actually write in order to find their voice, a podcaster has to talk to find theirs, and Zcast is a perfectly fun playground to do just that.