How to migrate your podcast to Soundcloud from Libsyn
After publishing the first few episodes of my podcast with Libsyn, I decided I’d rather host my show on Soundcloud (and, incidentally, make a mess rebranding from Working Jobs Radio to Why We Work). The current podcast publishing process (finding a host, creating an rss feed, submitting to iTunes + stitcher, crossing your fingers and waiting for it to show up) is confusing enough, so switching hosts felt daunting. When I googled for help, I didn’t find any great resources to help me migrate my feed. It worked out eventually, but hopefully this post will help podcasters from the future who are hoping to do the same thing.
1. Reasons to migrate
Soundcloud is more social. While most of your listens will come from plays from iTunes and podcast players, Soundcloud is a promising network to attract new listeners. The player has comments, you get your own page with all your sounds, and the embeddable player is far more attractive than any other player out there. This makes it easier for you to share an episode on social media and increases the likelihood that somebody that sees it will share it.
2. Reasons not to migrate
Analytics aren’t as robust (though, podcast analytics in general are pretty lackluster), no easy access to the mp3 file, and fewer features overall. For example, you can’t edit the publish date of a given sound, so when you migrate, all of your episodes will show up not on the date they were originally published, but on the date you uploaded it to Soundcloud.
3. How iTunes interprets RSS feeds
Apple doesn’t host any of your files for your podcast, which is why you need to pay for a host like Libsyn or Soundcloud in the first place. All it does is verify an RSS feed and push the content through their platform. So if you want to switch hosts, you just need to feed Apple the new RSS feed. This way, even if you change literally all of the content, you will still keep all the subscribers you had from before. However, there is no way to directly change the feed through iTunes, which we will cover on step 5.
4. Getting a Soundcloud RSS feed
Soundcloud’s podcasting program is still in beta, so you need to apply to enable RSS on your account here. When I applied, I had three episodes and was accepted after a couple days.
Once you’re accepted, you’ll be able to see your RSS feed in your settings.
5. Redirecting your RSS feed
I can’t speak for other hosts, but Libsyn makes it easy for you to redirect your feed. Because there isn’t a way for you to give Apple a new feed in iTunes, you need to add a redirect to your original RSS feed by adding the following tag to your feed:
You can do this in Libsyn by going to your dashboard and adding that tag into the Extra RSS Tags text box. Instructions here at the bottom.
6. Setting up Soundcloud
Your show’s name and description will get pulled from your account details, and each episode from each sound you upload. It’s all very straightforward. The only thing to keep in mind is that you need to choose whether any given sound will appear in your RSS feed in its Permissions.
And if you want to give people the option to view your podcast from you Soundcloud profile’s RSS feed or change the “by” line of your podcast, you have to go to the advanced features here.
7. What to expect
Now, you just have to wait for iTunes to pick it up. They’ll say wait one or two days for the effects to show up, but mine only took about an hour.
Hope this helped. Let me know if it worked for you in the comments.