Podcast Help Desk

Companion show to Podcast Insider by Blubrry, Weekly Podcasting tips, opinions, gear, technology and news from a Veteran podcaster of over 16 years. Have a podcasting question? Ask here at the Podcast Help Desk.

By Mike Dell



PHD is changing to Podcast User

December 12, 2022

This is the first post on the new Podcast User blog.  This website is going to be the home page for the Podcast User blog, Podcast and YouTube channel. I will be doing reviews of podcast apps, Podcast listening platforms and technology that podcast listeners care about.

The plan is to do demo and reviews of Podcast Apps, Directories and Networks. Also some how-tos and podcast history articles. All from the listener side of things.

Thanks for checking out Podcast User!


When is it time to kill a show? – PHD167

October 01, 2021

When do you know it’s time to call it quits on a podcast?

When you don’t have time to do a quality show. When you don’t have the motivation to do a quality show. When it’s just no fun anymore. When it’s not profitable anymore (if you podcast for profit). When you have run out of things to say on your subject of choice. When your topic is no longer relevant

What do you do after killing the show?

Start a new show. GO fiishing


Live or Not? – PHD166

September 07, 2021

Should you do live video?  If so, where? Facebook, YouTube, Others. Riverside.fm, streamyard or direct. 

Podcast Movement Review 

Website caching.  Getting a bit geeky. 

This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe!


On Hiatus Until September

August 16, 2021

I will be back in September 2021.  Be sure to check out PodcastInsider.com for weekly podcasting content.


PodPing (and other stuff) with Dave Jones from Podcast Index and Podcasting 2.0 – PHD165

June 13, 2021

I had the opportunity to talk to Dave Jones from Podcast Index and the Podcasting 2.0 show about PodPing and other podcasting stuff.

We talked about the comments we made about PodPing on the Podcast Insider show with Angelo Mandato, CIO of RawVoice Inc. / Blubrry Podcasting. Also a lot of other podcast related things. It was a fun conversation for sure!

Also, be sure to check out NewPodcastApps.com for all the Podcasting 2.0 powered apps and things out there.

This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe!





Episode Notes - Tag Experiment Part one - PHD164

May 09, 2021

content:encoded tag –

Today I talk about Episode Notes tags  (Show Notes).  This is part 1 of an experiment.  Please email me mike@mikedell.com and let me know what app or apps you see this in and what tags (at the top of this text) you see and where.

This is a LINK to something cool.


This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe!



The Podcast Landscape is Changing

May 01, 2021

One thing you can always say about how podcasting works, it’s always changing.  The last couple of weeks it seems that there is a sort of shift in how it works on basic levels.  Or, does it work the same and only some apps are changing?

Apple changed Subscribe to Follow for free podcasts. Apple added “Subscribe” for premium podcasting. Spotify say “Me too!” and adds Premium Podcasting for a very limited number of people. Apple may have changed how their app works when it comes to “followed” (ie. subscribed) podcasts work. *still not sure about that Apple really hid the “Add show by URL” function in Apple Podcasts.

What do we indie podcasters have to do to insure our shows remain free of gatekeepers and the cancel culture?

This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe (or Follow)!


Apple Paid Subscription Podcasts – PHD162

April 24, 2021

Apple announced “Subscriptions” after changing the name of subscribing to a free podcast to “Follow”.  We have more details about that system.  Today I will attempt to tell you, technically, how this is going to work and what it will not do.

What it is… Apple Podcasts will allow you to create a show that is a paid subscription only available on Apple Podcasts. You can do free episodes and paid episodes in the freemium model. You can do a Paid Subscription only (with or without a free trial) Apple will take 30% (the same as Apps and Books) Costs $17 a year (as far as I know at this time) to participate. What it is not… It is NOT a replacement for your RSS based free podcast It will not distribute anywhere outside of Apple Podcasts It is not free podcast hosting (you still need a place to put your mp3 files for a totally free RSS based show) What does it mean for your current podcast? Nothing really. You could use an Apple-only show to give paid subscriber bonus content that they must pay for.


Apple announced a lot of other things in both the Tim Cook public announcement and in the Briefing that podcast hosting companies go to go to after that announcement.

This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe and/or Follow!


Airing My Top 10 Podcasting Grievances – PHD161

April 15, 2021

I put on my Grumpy Old Man hat on today.  Here are the top 10 things that bug me about podcasting and podcasters these days…

10. WordPress.com is NOT the same as WordPress.org.

9. People that use “POD” to mean Podcast.

8. Companies that want to change the word “Subscribe” to Follow.

7. No Tech Support for some podcast directories and apps.  They blame the podcast hosting companies for any issues.

6. So-called Podcast Consultants.

5. Podcasters that focus too much on one platform.

4. People who think Apple and others can do no wrong.

3. People that say they know how many Subscribers (or followers) they have total.  It’s an unknowable stat for the most part.

2. BAD ad insertion in podcasts.

1. YouTubers saying they have a PODCAST on YouTube.

Bonus: Of course, Spotify.

This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe!


More Podcast Namespace Talk with Andy Lehman – PHD160

April 05, 2021

I love it when people correct me! Andy Lehman tells me all about what I didn’t get quite right about the Podcast Namespace.

Andy is the guy that does the Podcast Namespace WordPress Plugin, an Add-on to PowerPress to add more namespace tags to your RSS feed.   –  https://github.com/Lehmancreations/Podcast-Namespace-Wordpress-Plugin 

Andy also does a podcast called Dudes and Dads Podcast – https://dudesanddadspodcast.com/ 

We had  a great chat.

** The Podcast Namespace is a project of podcastindex.org


Andy’s plugin adds (or improves) the following tags:

Channel Tags Locked Funding Contact (Currently only Feedback and Abuse) Location Item Tags Transcript (only json format, to use set a custom field on your post of “transcript” and a value of the url) Chapters (only json format, to use set a custom field on your post of “chapters” and a value of the url) Person (use the custom form in the post to set the people) Soundbite (use the custom form in the post to set the soundbites) Location Season Episode

If you get value from this plugin and want to toss a few dollars my way you can support the podcast I produce and Host, via paypal Support me

To install this Plugin, you have to download the zip file here: https://github.com/Lehmancreations/Podcast-Namespace-Wordpress-Plugin/releases/tag/v1.3 and side-load it by following these steps.

Go to Plugins > Add New click ‘Upload Plugin’ Click “select file” and select the zip file you downloaded. Click install now. Click Activate

You will find the channel level tags in the WordPress settings > Podcast namespace menu.

This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe!


Podcast Namespaces in RSS – Explained – PHD159

March 21, 2021

In the history of podcasting, there have been a few Namespaces added to RSS to make podcasting work.  Apple added the namespace, Google added the namespace and even Blubrry added the namespace.  Now there is a new one done by independent podcasters,...


How Podcasting Works – Back to Basics – PHD158

January 31, 2021

Today I want to go back to the REAL basics of how podcasting works.   So, without going into a history lesson,  podcasting has worked the same way since it started  16 years ago.  (some say longer). 


Build Your Own Podcasting Platform – PHD157

January 10, 2021

Why would build your podcast on someone else's platform when you can build your own?


Review of 2020 in Podcasting – PHD156

January 06, 2021

In 2020, the podcast industry added over 1 million shows.  Out of 1.7 million shows listed on Apple, 60% (ish) are inactive. 


Podcaster’s Block – What do you do when you don’t feel like podcasting? – PHD155

December 28, 2020

Here is what I do. I do more show prep.  It seems I get more motivated to podcast if I do show prep on a show I'm about to record. 


My top 6 Podcast Listening Apps – PHD154

December 23, 2020

There are lots of apps you can use to play podcasts.   As a podcaster I'm sure you are also a podcast listener.  Here is my top 6 (in reverse order of use).


What is RSS? Why should you care?

December 19, 2020

RSS is what powers podcasting.  In fact, this is why podcasting even exists. The enclosure tag in RSS2 allows you to “attach” a media file. Mainly an MP3 but you can also attach just about any media like a video file, a PDF or ebook file.


Why is Podcast Index so important to podcasting? – PHD152

December 16, 2020

Podcast Index: "Lets preserve podcasting as a platform for free speech!"


Podcast Help Desk going 2 times weekly starting December 16th – PHD151

November 30, 2020

I failed miserably at completing the NaPodPoMo 30 episodes in 30 days this year.  OH well,  Such is life getting in the way.  The Good News and part of the "big" announcement I teased is this show is going 2 times weekly starting on Dec. 16, 2020.  


My 8 Favorite Podcasts – PHD150

November 21, 2020

I'm not only a podcaster, but an avid podcast listener.  I have something like 30 shows that I subscribe to plus I listen to a lot of one-off shows that I don't subscribe to.   Here is my top 8 (as of late November 2020) Also, not in Rank order.


The beauty of Simple (Part 2) – PHD149

November 17, 2020

Keeping it simple makes it easy for you to produce your podcast and not worry about waisting a lot of time if you don't have a lot of time.  


Do not look at your stats for the first 3 months – PHD148

November 16, 2020

YES, I really did just say don't look at your stats for 3 months! THIS MEANS YOU!


Who Is Your Show For? – PHD147

November 15, 2020

So, who exactly is your show for?    - When you try to make a podcast for EVERYONE, you really are making a show for NOBODY.  


8 Things YOU Need To Know (or learn) About YOUR Podcast – PHD146

November 12, 2020

There are many things about a podcast that a podcaster needs to know even if you don't do everything for your show.  A lot of indie podcasters do everything.  Prep, Talent, Recording, Editing, Producing, Publishing, Booking guests and ALL of it.


What is an RSS feed anyway? – PHD145

November 11, 2020

As a Podcaster, your RSS Feed is your connection to the world for your podcast.  The transmitter for your "Radio Station".  Your RSS feed address is just like a "Frequency" Like "101.9 FM".  


ID3 Tags – PHD144

November 10, 2020

Do you use ID3 tags? If not, no worries. It's only used in very unique circumstances.


Numbering your Episodes in the Title – Yes or No? – PHD143

November 09, 2020

There are reasons you might want to number your episodes in the title of your post. Also, there are reasons you might not want to.


My Top 6 Web Hosting Platforms For Your Podcast Website – PHD142

November 08, 2020

We talked yesterday about why you need a website.  Here are my top 6 web hosting platforms and why (Plus a few I don't recommend). 


5 Reasons You Need A Website For Your Podcast – PHD141

November 07, 2020

Do you need a website for your podcast?  YES! Here are my 5 reasons.


Advertising in your show – PHD140

November 06, 2020

Do you do advertising in your show?  Do you WANT to do advertising in your show? 


Be Everywhere with your Podcast – phd139

November 05, 2020

I don't care how you listen to Podcast Help Desk.  I just want you to listen. 


The perfect length of a Podcast episode – phd138

November 04, 2020

How long should your Podcast Episode be? Only as long as it needs to be to get what you want to say, said. Period.


How important are Shownotes? – PHD137

November 03, 2020

Do you need good shownotes? Yes, you should put SOMETHING for the search engines to find.


The Beauty of Keeping It Simple – PHD136

November 02, 2020

Today I talk about keeping your podcast simple.  Simple to use, simple to subscribe, simple to produce, simple to post and keeping the website easy to manage.  Complicated always turns out to be harder than simple. 


Podcast Help Desk History – PHD135

November 01, 2020

I go into the history of Podcast Help Desk and why I am doing #NaPodPoMo in 2020. - This podcast is posted on PodcastHelpDesk.com.  Go there and subscribe!


NaPodPoMo 2020 – PHD134

October 26, 2020

I I will be joining with a bunch of other podcasters this year doing National Podcast Post Month in November. That is 30 episodes in 30 days for the entire month of November. - This will be the 4th or 5th time trying it for me.


Freedom of Speech in Podcasting – PHD133

October 09, 2020

Free Speech,Spotify, Podcast Index, REAL podcast apps and more on today's show!


Show Notes Experiment and Why I Pulled My Show From the Spotify Platform – PHD132

September 05, 2020

I'm doing an experiment for Show Notes. This text is typed in the Description tag.


Leaving Spotify – Please resubscribe at PodcastHelpDesk dot com

August 30, 2020

Just a quick note to let you know I will no longer be on Spotify with this show. IF you are listening there, please go to podcasthelpdesk.com and resubscribe using another platform by September 7th, 2020. - Thank You! -  


A walk in the woods – PHD131

May 30, 2020

I took my portable setup on a walk in the woods in a industrial park. I talked about RSS, big shows vs. Indie shows, Joe Rogan's deal with Spotify and a bunch more. - Recorded using a dynamic clip on microphone from Shure.


Podcast Episodic Artwork Test Results – PHD 130

March 11, 2020

The results are in!  Thank you for those that reported what you saw in your app of choice. - I put different images in different places. I put a Green logo image in the ID3 tags (embedded in the mp3 file),


Episode Artwork Test – Revisited – PHD129 (repost)

March 06, 2020

In today's episode I am testing what episode artwork shows up in which apps and directories again.   Things are changing and I want to see what apps show which artowrk. -   - I have an RSS image for this episode with blue type,


Episode Artwork Test – Revisited – PHD129

March 06, 2020

In today's episode I am testing what episode artwork shows up in which apps and directories again.   Things are changing and I want to see what apps show which artowrk. -   - I have an RSS image for this episode with blue type,


Indefinite Hiatus Status – PHD128

February 12, 2020

I am going to leave PodcastHelpDesk active.  Just going on 'indefinite Hiatus"  or "once in a while" mode.    So no expectations of an episode every week or even every month, but I will put stuff in this feed once in a while.    Stay subscribed! -


Podcasting Crossroads – PHD127

February 04, 2020

Looking for some help here.  What do you think I should do with this podcast?   I am not consistent (as you can tell) and I want to pair down the number of shows I feel obligated to do. - Should I leave it online and just let it podfade and exist?


Podcasting Ramblings at the end of 2019 – PHD126

December 31, 2019

What is going to happen to podcasting in 2020? Who knows, but i make some predictions and ramble about podcast topics at random in this informal Podcast Help Desk episode. - Catch me on Evo's Podcast Pontifications as the Guest-host. -


Putting all your eggs in one basket – PHD125

December 15, 2019

Typed into the 'iTunes' Subtitle box


Gushing over the Rodecaster Pro – PHD124

August 31, 2019

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 ...


PHD at Podcast Movement 2019 – PHD123

August 05, 2019

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.


Mike Dell’s World Studio Equipment – PHD122

June 22, 2019

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