There are PLENTY offer media hosts (buzzsprout, podbean,blogtalk radio, talkshoe) and in the past I've said not to use them. Today I explain WHY.

The Best Podcast Website Configuration

Ask any podcast consultant worth their price that and they will THE BEST configuration for your podcast is to use a self hosted WordPress install (see my quick start page for more information) for your website, and either or for your media. If you use Libsyn, use the coupon code sopfree to get a free month.

This allows you to completely control he look of your website. Any advertising on your website are there because you put the there and you benefit from them. Any RSS feeds icons are to RSS feeds YOU control.

Neither Libsyn or Blubrry change your file. Blubrry can add id3 tags if you set it up. But the name, format and publishing quality are not touched.

Libsyn and Blubrry do not limit how many listeners you can have. They do not limit how many episodes you can have in your history. The only limitation you have is how much you can upload a month (so you set a target length for each podcast and determine how much hosting you need). This means you have ONE price no matter the size of your audience. This means people that find you today can go back and download your entire back catalog (I have over 300 episodes online). The more episodes your audience consumes, the better the relationship you build with them.

Now Let's Look at Free Media Hosting For Your Podcast

As we go through this list you will see where they break the above rules.

Blog Talk Radio

  1. Their audio is 1/2 the quality of a CD. It's very, very bad. Keep in mind most people are publishing their podcast at CD (or near CD) quality. You will stand out in a bad way.
  2. The links they put on your page on their website uses the “itpc” method to subscribe to iTunes. This means that anyone who uses this links iTunes ignores. So if you're looking for your popularity numbers to jump they are not. iTunes doesn't even know you exist using this method.
  3. The link they put to iTunes is a feed that you can't control. If later you want to switch, you are stuck with BTR (see this video to help explain).
  4. There is a TON of advertising on your page featuring other podcast shows. You don't see a dime for this. If you want to cross promote your podcast for FREE see
  5. The file name of your media file does not reflect your show. They list and the author.
  6. Their price is $40 a month. This is in case you do podcast 2 hours a day for 30 days they have enough space. I would guess that most people do NOT podcast 2 hours a day (MAYBE 2 hours a week if they are ambitious). Consequently, you are paying for services you are not using.


  1. They limit your total storage to 2 Gigs of storage space and 100 Gigs of bandwidth. You have now put a limit. Admittedly a large limit, but none the less a limit.
  2. They put advertising on your site.
  3. They also use the itpc method of linking to iTunes so you get no “Credit” in iTunes for those subscribers
  4. The link they put to iTunes is a feed that you can't control. If later you want to switch, you are stuck with BTR (see this video to help explain).


  1. INSANE amounts of advertising on your page. EVERYTHING has an advertisement (this is why its free).
  2. If you are going to try to make money with your podcast you HAVE to go through them.
  3. Their stats are not even close to Libsyn or Blubrry
  4. They encourage you to submit THEIR feed to iTunes (which you later can't change).
  5. When you login to your account you have to get through a captcha service (annoying).
  6. Their player is not iPad compatible
  7. Their backend is based on Podpress (and that's bad).
  8. If you use the paid version, you CAN change the links to iTunes.
  9. Can't add any plugins.
  10. If you want

Buzz Sprout

japanese_buzzsprout 1.  This company has unlimited bandwidth and storage (when you pay). If you go free you back catalog is online for 90 days.

2.  They change the format of your audio to CD quality mono (I didn't see a way to change this).

3.  They offer an RSS feed that you can't control

4.  When I uploaded a file and downloaded, the ID3 Tags came up in Chinese.

Feedburner is on Thin Ice

While I don't think Feedburner is going away (although it could) Google has turned off some of the “back end” of this service. Consequently, I do not recommend using this service, and instead recommend using the PowerPress Plugin. If you are not using WordPress, then go through as you media host (and use their system).

Tweriod Help You Know When To Tweet helps you find out when your twitter followers are active (so you know the best time to send tweets). If you like this tip, check out my Weekly Web Tools podcast.

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About the Author
Owner of the School of Podcasting. Also produces the "Ask the Podcast Coach." He is also the author of the book "More Podcast Money" and is a regular speaker at podcasting and media conventions.
12 comments on “Avoid the Dangers of Free Media Hosts
  1. Dave Jackson says:

    I just found this in an article about Podomatic, and Blog Talk Radio

    I hated the format of the show, not only because it was a weekly live show, but because we were using the abysmal service that was unreliable at best. Every week became more and more bleak, as each episode bled into another, the same old thing every single week, introductions, news, banter with my co-hosts until the guest called in, sit in silence for the majority of the show, take calls, end the show.

    The final nail in the coffin was a slow cancer. We had set our goals impossibly high when we started the show, and while initially using Podomatic we could see our shows were being downloaded, but as episodes got longer, the files got bigger and we started to have to pull old episodes down due to the space constraints of our basic account. The numbers we were seeing for downloads were not corresponding to the amount of feedback we were getting, which was almost none. We started questioning why we even bothered to record episodes. We had decent downloads but no one was writing in or commenting on the show.

    Full article at

  2. Matt Johnson says:

    Hi Dave,

    I’d appreciate your feedback on this.

    I’ve got everything setup in my BluBrry PowerPress on my self-hosted WordPress Blog and output to my own self-hosted feed:

    Because I didn’t know what I was doing when I started I sent the above feed into Feedburner and it is at I believe this is redundant.

    Problem is now I have 10,000s of listeners and in many podcast apps. Seems I could just delete the Feedburner Feed and then publish an episode so all the apps get the 301 redirect from feedburner back to my original feed and problem solved to move away if it comes down to it?

    If Feedburner is discontinued I would imagine they would offer longer than a 30 day 301 redirect. Then again, I fear they cut it off randomly like they did for the .jp domain. WOuld be huge backlash on Google.

  3. Dave Jackson says:

    At this point, I’m updating my iTunes feed, and I’ll jump off the Feedburner train when it is truly on fire (they are back online). I just won’t be using them for any future podcasts. If you’re using them now, I think we’re OK…for now…

  4. how to create a website says:

    It’s an awesome paragraph for all the internet users; they will take advantage from it I am sure.

  5. Minnesota Matt says:

    Hi Dave, Any tips on getting away from buzzsprout? Trying to figure out how to leave buzzsprout without losing RSS to iTunes. Any advice is greatly appreciated!

  6. I have learned so much from your articles. Thank you for all you to because it has really helped me learn what I needed to know. 🙂

  7. none says:

    Do NOT use “Talkshoe” for hosting at all. By design, Talkshoe strips the podcast files of all identifying information (such as a meaninful name) and replaces it with a new name of its choice…which is a random number.

    Podcasts hosts at a minimum should not wreck the files that are hosted.

  8. For the users out there, that don’t want to pay for podcast hosting, what would you recommend?

  9. What do you say to a cyclist who doesn’t want to pay for his bike? To me its just part of the deal. I was playing with (free) and sure enough they are no longer accepting new podcasters, and they are not returning emails.

  10. Podbean is now one of Dave Jackson and Daniel J. Lewis’ recommended media hosts.

  11. Please, note Podbean is not my top choice. So if someone is using Soundcloud or Squarespace, I would recommend Libsyn (first), Blubrry (2nd), Then either Spreaker or Podbean. As always there is always an “it depends” on different aspects of your podcast.

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