We begin our journey into listing in the two big directories: Apple and Google.
They each have their own systems for accepting podcasts into their directories. Each reflects their cultural ethos and so we must adjust. This episode will cover Apple, next episode Google.
Apple is all about control and privacy. To add your podcast to the Apple Podcasts Directory you need the following before attempting the task.
- An Apple ID.
- A published episode on your host
- An rss feed
- Artwork which meets Apple’s standards.
An Apple ID is a straightforward thing to set up. It requires an email and a password. This all occurs at appleid.apple.com.
A published episode can be a trailer but it must relate to your show. I’ve seen podcasts rejected because the first episode went along the lines of: This is a placeholder episode to make sure we meet Apple’s standards.
Better is: Welcome to the XYZ Podcast. We will be publishing in ten week seasons, four times a year. Our podcast is aimed at these people to achieve this outcome to solve this problem. I’ll be your host and I’m looking forward to the journey, please join us and tell your friends. If you subscribe/follow now you’ll receive your first episode automatically after we publish.
Once you’ve set up your hosting account and even before you upload your first episode, you should have a unique rss feed for your podcast. Where this is located, varies from host to host but can generally be tracked down without too much trouble.
The artwork is important, not just because Apple has strict requirements but because it is the visual window into your audio content. New listeners, who haven’t been recommended by a friend, will decide whether to listen or not based solely upon your artwork. More directories are now or are about to offer 30 second taste tests but to get to that stage, a new listener must, at the least, not be repulsed by the artwork.
Now to some design requirements:
- The image must be between 1400 x 1400 pixels up to 3000 x 3000 pixels and it must be square. 2000 x 2000 not 2000 x 2001, square.
- The image must not be blurry
- It must contain any apple products, trademarks or images
- References to illegal drugs, profanity, or violence, or
- Ads, sponsor logos, or marketing copy
These standards are constantly being tweaked so I’ve included the link in the transcript: https://podcasters.apple.com/support/896-artwork-requirements#:~:text=Apple%20Podcasts%20accepts%20episode%20artwork,The%20largest%20size%20is%20preferred.
Once you have these ducks in a row, proceed to Podcasts Connect. Here you sign in with your Apple ID. Once in, click the + sign in the top left.
There you’ll be asked if you want to start a new podcast or channel. I’ll deal with channels in another episode. So click “new podcast” and then start a new podcast with rss feed. The non rss feed option is shows behind a paywall, again, another episode.
You’ll then be asked to add your rss feed from your host. Apple then does its thing. It normally takes, according to Apple, between 24 and 48 hours to receive approval. I’ve never waited more than an hour.
And there you are, listed in the Apple Podcasts directory.