Category Archives: Episode

Gushing over the Rodecaster Pro – PHD124

Every part of my studio, other than the mic boom and cable is new.  The Rodecaster Pro has replaced a whole rack of stuff.  I gush about how much Love this thing.  It may not be perfect but man-o-man does it make things a bunch easier for most average podcasters.

I also talk about the other podcasts I’m doing including the new (ish) one I’m doing for Blubrry Podcasting called “Podcast Insider” ( with Todd Cochrane and sometimes Barry Kantz or MacKenzie Bennett.  It’s the Official Blubrry Podcast.

I talked about Podcast Movement 2019 in the Sauna that is Orlando in August (Lucky there was no Hurricanes coming).

Also much more!


** Note: the intro was inspired by Brett Butt (  Check out his occasional podcast 🙂   Also “Corner Gas” now available in the US on Amazon Prime Video.

PHD at Podcast Movement 2019 – PHD123

A quick update of what is going on with Podcast Help Desk and Blubrry.

  • Will be at Podcast Movement with “Podcast Help Desk” office hours.  Stop by the booth if you need some help with your show’s tech.
  • Win a Rodecaster Pro by entering Blubrry’s record a promo contest at the Blubrry booth.
  • Podcast Help Desk News RIP.    I killed it.  It was fun while it lasted on Alexa.


Check out Blubrry’s new official podcast at

Mike Dell’s World Studio Equipment – PHD122

Today I go through what I’m using currently for podcast production.   Here is the list:

Mackie 1202VLZ4 Mixer
Behringer Composter PRO XL 2 channel Compressor, Limiter, Gate
Denon DN-300R Rack Mount Digital Recorder
Heil PL-2T Boom
Heil Shock Mount (normally for a PR40 Mic)
Electrovoice RE-20 Mic  and/or Audio-techincia BPHS1 Headset Mic
Zoom H5 Handi Recorder
Behringer XM8500 Hand-held Mics for extras or portable


Auphonic Leveler (desktop version)
Adobe Audition

Do you need all this stuff?    NO!   This is just what I use currently.


If you are going to Podcast, JUST PODCAST! – PHD121

The single best way to make sure your Title is what you want it to be EVERYWHERE is to use it as the blog title (assuming you are using WordPress to publish your podcast) or the TITLE box in whatever podcast service you are using.   The Best way to make sure your “shownotes” are the same everywhere is to use it in the main post content box.

There are, in Theory, ways to specify for different places different titles, post content and whatnot, but Apps do not have to follow those extra tags.  RSS is a standard and apps and directories can choose what they want to use and what they don’t.

Apple, for instance, does not USE the Apple Title tag in “iTunes” desktop or the web preview of Apple Podcast listings.  Only in the IOS App.  (weird I know).  They also do not use the “iTunes Image” tag ANYWHERE in their system other than maybe search preview.  No way to force it.

Sorry for the mini-rant.

Breaking News from PHD News – Apple is making changes to Apple Podcasts

This is Wednesday’s episode of my Alexa News Breif Podcast Help Desk news.

In addition to killing off “iTunes” on the Mac Desktop, Apple is also changing up the categories.  (Later this summer)

Also adding some search and photo settings.

Your podcast companies did not know about this ahead of time and will (the good ones anyway) be up to speed by the time this gets implmented at Apple.


Changing Your Podcast’s Title – PHD120

One of the questions I get a lot is how to change your podcast’s title.

In this short episode, I explain how to do it and why you might want to.  Also some of the things that won’t change because you change your title.

As some of you might remember, this podcast used to be called “Podcasting Tech Coach” Back in Episode 13, I changed it to Podcast Help Desk

Here is a link to that episode PHD013 – Rebranding

This podcast is Sponsored by – Hosting – Stats – Web and More! 

6 Things Every Podcaster Should Know About Podcasting – PHD119

For those that do not know me, I’ve been podcasting since 2005 and made every single mistake in the book. I’ve also worked in support for a podcast company for 10 years (as of next month).  I think I might know what I’m talking about, at least about these topics.

  1. Know that Podcasting is  PULL technology. All apps, subscribers, and directories PULL your RSS feed from wherever it lives. That means when you publish your podcast, there will be a delay between publishing and when that episode makes it to the directories. Your subscribers (in *most* apps) will get it as soon as their local app PULLS your feed.
  2. Know what your RSS feed address is and know how to check it. and are the only 2 validators that are podcast specific. Any other validator is not meant for podcasting and will tell you something is wrong when it’s not.
  3. Know that RSS is important and if you generate it via your website, you can not move to another website without redirecting the feed to the new feed. I’ve spent a lot of time explaining to podcasters why they lost all their listeners because they decided to move their feed without letting anyone know.  A 301 redirect is needed no matter what anyone else tells you. If you want to move to a different website or a different podcast host, please contact your current host to let you know what steps are needed to not lose your listeners. Your only link to them in the RSS feed.
  4. Know that Ratings and Reviews in Apple Podcasts (NO IT’S NOT CALLED iTunes ANYMORE) do NOTHING for your ranking in Apple Podcasts. They are great to have and are great social proof, but your ranking or findability have nothing to do with them.
  5. Trying to game the system by stuffing keywords everywhere in Titles, Author tags and other places will get you delisted from Apple.  Believe it or not.
  6. What hosting company you put your MP3’s on will do nothing to improve your success. As long as the host can deliver the files fast and reliably, you are good to go.

There are a lot of other things I could write here, but these are the top 6 I wish people would learn.  IF you are going to podcast, you REALLY need to spend a little time learning the basics.

Here is a little form you should print out and fill out for your podcast for your information: PodcastInfo.pdf

Apple Backs Down on Episode Numbers in Episode Titles – PHD118

Apple seems to have backed down on Episode Numbers in Episode Titles.  Here is a partial quote from the email they sent out…

We’ve received a lot of questions about metadata best practices on Apple Podcasts. We want to provide more details and clarification as you think about improving your show’s metadata.

Your Show Won’t Be Removed for Having Episode Numbers in Episode Titles

Starting with iOS 11 in September 2017, we introduced modern RSS tags to improve podcast metadata. These tags include support for seasons, trailers, and episode numbers. The new tags help us present your show to your listeners on Apple Podcasts and present listening data to you in Podcast Analytics.

Be sure to listen to Episode 117 for the first part of this story…

Here is a list of the apps/directories that are using the Apple Tags and not using the Apple tags.

Apple Podcasts – iTunes title (of course)
Itunes desktop – main title ‽
Blubrry – main title
Google Podcasts – main title
Pocket Casts – iTunes title
Podcast Addict – main title
BeyondPod – Stripped out the number but uses the main title ??
Spotify – main Title
Tunein – main title
Stitcher – Not updating 🙁
Overcast – iTunes Title
Himalaya – iTunes Title

The End of Episode Numbers in Apple Podcasts? – PHD117

Apple sent a letter to podcasters today (It was a bulk email NOT just to you). The big takeaway is that you need to remove episode numbers from your titles. I have a way of doing that and keeping them in your blog titles (as you can see above) and Keep Apple happy.

Here is what they sent:

Dear Podcast Provider,

To improve your experience with Apple Podcasts, we want to share the following information and updates.

Optimize Your Show’s Metadata

The metadata of your show is your product packaging. It includes all of the details about your show — such as title, author name, description — that potential listeners will see on Apple Podcasts. High-quality metadata can help your show be discovered and grow your audience, as it ultimately determines whether it appears in relevant user searches.

Conversely, poor-quality podcast metadata may affect new submissions as well as active shows to ensure our platform meets Apple’s quality standards.

Here are some things to avoid:

Including placeholder text from your hosting provider. For example, descriptions such as “Podcast by [author name],” “New podcast weblog,” “Cover art photo provided by [name],” or “Description goes here.”
Verbatim repetition of the title or author name in the description. For example, “The Very Hungry Tourists by Dr. María Sánchez and John Appleseed.”
Incorporating irrelevant content or spam. For example, show titles like “The Very Hungry Tourists | Travel | Explore | Learn” or author names like “Dr. María Sánchez, coach and travel enthusiast.”
Adding episode numbers in titles. For example, show titles like “The Very Hungry Tourists Episode 01” or episode titles like “01 Broken Heirloom.”

These practices could result in your show being rejected or removed from Apple Podcasts.

Review the resources below to learn more:

Podcasts Partner Search
Podcasts Connect Help
Apple Podcasts Marketing Best Practices

Resubmit RSS Feeds in Podcasts Connect

Users now have the ability to resubmit rejected feeds.

Should your show fail our review process or be removed from our catalog for the reasons described above, review your RSS fields to ensure compliance. Then, revalidate the feed and resubmit it via Podcasts Connect.

Bad Podcast Advice? Not one size fits all – PHD116

Is all Podcast advice applicable to your goals in podcasting?  Be careful about who you are getting your advice from. Do they have an agenda? (most do) Do they match YOUR goals in podcasting?    Not everyone wants advertisers.  A lot of advice given on the Facebook groups is not applicable to the person sitting next to the water heater in a basement studio.

This is my little rant/brain dump on the subject of advice.

Be sure to listen to the last episode with Paul Culligan as well.